Grandma Italian Orange Juice Cookies

Sunday, May 31, 2009
If you are searching for a basic orange Italian cookie recipe that grandma made in the old fashioned way, these are it.

Simple ingredients all made from scratch and fresh ingredients.

Back in Rome, Italy, grandma's mom made these when she was a child, and coming to American at 16 in the late 1800s these became a tried and true classic cookie in our family.

The recipe is super easy to follow and you can leave them plain, rolled in sugar before baking or decorate them with icing after cooled for holiday, wedding trays, and all decorated for a special event with colorful sprinkles.

If you are looking for a sugary sweet cookie this isn't it, the cookie is lightly sweetened unless you add the frosting and to be honest grandma never frosted them.

The cookies were simply rolled in granulated white sugar and then baked.

1/2 cup butter, softened

1/2 cup granulated sugar

3 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 1/2 cups flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 cup 1 tablespoon grated orange peel (just the orange part)

more granulated sugar for garnish or after baking sprinkle with powdered sugar or glaze with a light frosting

Cream the butter and sugar together.

Add the eggs then stir in the remaining ingredients with the juice and peel to evenly blend dry ingredients.

Roll into balls then into sugar if no icing is desired.

Bake in a preheated 350 oven until set around 13 minutes.


Glaze with a powdered sugar and water icing, or just sprinkle with powdered sugar or leave plain.

These freeze well and perfect for wedding trays and holiday baking.


  1. I'll make vodka cookies and together we can have screw driver cookies. Seriously these sound good and seem easy to make. I might even be able to make them.

  2. These sound like they are going to be a new favorite for me. When you say "tie in a rope" do you keep tying them and cutting them?

  3. What a great little cookie Claudia, I can see why these would be a huge hit. :)

  4. Looks like I'm going to have to try some of these! Greg, you're too much!

  5. Yes you roll out a little piece of dough in a rope about 2 inches or however big you want them, then tie in a knot. Thanks Janis

    Greg you may have a winner there, sounds like I need to experiment with that idea!
    Thanks Triple D!
    Belinda he (Greg) may be on the right track here!

  6. Oh I love how simple this recipe is... The presentation of fabulous too! I wonder, have you tried to make them with different kinds of oranges... like blood oranges?

  7. I have never had these. I feel so sheltered. They are lovely to look at and so easy to do I will have to try it.

  8. Claudia, thank you for sharing another of your family traditions. These are great cookies!

  9. I haven't seen this type of cookie and they sound so good--I will definitely give them a try. Love anything orange!

  10. it is seriously so cute and lovely
    sounds nice for the eid day thanks for sharing

  11. They're almost too pretty to eat! Love the flavors in these. Thanks for sharing Claudia, have a good one! =]


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