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Now that the holiday season is officially underway, I feel it only right to tell you that I don’t celebrate Christmas. In case Passover Week last year didn’t tip you off or anything.

But that doesn’t stop me from enjoying all this season has to offer. When I was a teenager, I’d hire myself out as a carol singer, and I still love those songs. In my childhood, I sang in the chorus of The Nutcracker every year, another beloved holiday season memory. And I have never, ever turned down a holiday cookie.


These are one of my favorites. They’re known alternately as Russian tea cakes, but to me, they’ll always be snowballs. It’s the perfect name for these sugary bites that quite literally melt in your mouth. This is one of those rare desserts without chocolate that I can’t resist. I sit down to eat one and wind up popping three.


The secret behind a good snowball cookie is powdered sugar. It’s in the dough, which has the chemical effect of stopping the cookie from spreading out as it bakes (food nerd alert!). It also provides a crumbly texture that is, quite frankly, just as addictive as the taste.


These cookies get two powdered sugar baths after baking as well to make sure they turn out super snowy. And then you can sit back and watch them disappear. I actually make these in small batches to prevent a snowball binge, but the recipe easily doubles or quadruples. With the proportions listed below, you’ll get about 14 snowballs.


Happy holidays, no matter what you’re celebrating, or not. I love the lights, the cheer, the optimism, the cookies. It’s a wonderful season!




1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup powdered sugar (for rolling baked cookies into)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Line a cookie sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla until fluffy. Add flour and salt and beat again until the dough forms.
  3. Roll the dough into tablespoon-sized balls and place on your cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the bottoms are just starting to brown.
  4. Wait 5 minutes and roll the cookies in the powdered sugar carefully. You don't want to press down, or the cookies will crumble. Wait a few minutes, and then roll them a second time.
  5. Cool completely. Store in an airtight container.



I fulfill many roles in life: wife, mother, teacher, everlasting learner. This site is dedicated to one role that expresses my creativity in ways that I find consistently challenging and rewarding: baker. Inventing new ways to enhance food, especially if that food involves chocolate or peanut butter (or both!), is a passion of mine. I look forward to sharing my ideas with you.

This Post Has 26 Comments

  1. Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice

    I haven’t had snowballs in years, but I think I need to change that! I love the looks of these cookies, Mir! So simple to prepare yet such a pretty cookie, and delicious, too! Sounds like just the cookie I need to start out the holiday season!
    Gayle @ Pumpkin ‘N Spice recently posted…White Chocolate Candy Cane PopcornMy Profile

    1. Mir

      I’ve been having them every day as an afternoon snack, Gayle. I seriously can’t stop. These look simple, but are pretty underrated. I love them!


    I love the melt-in-your-mouth effect these cookies have! One of my favorites, too!! I’ll be making these this season!! recently posted…Crispy Calamari with Citrus Parsley AioliMy Profile

    1. Mir

      I’m so glad you like them too, Annie! They’re strangely addictive. A real cookie winner!

  3. Manali @ CookWithManali

    These look so good and so easy! I would snack on them all day Mir! Pinned.
    Manali @ CookWithManali recently posted…Peas PulaoMy Profile

    1. Mir

      Thanks for the pin, Manali! And yes, they’re dangerous little cookies.

  4. Susan

    I grew up on these, from store bought to home made.

    1. Mir

      I think we all did, Susan! It’s kind of cool, really.

  5. Kelsey @ Snacking Squirrel

    its fun to see how you make them! i got them a couple christmas’ ago from a bloggers giveaway and they were so tasy!
    Kelsey @ Snacking Squirrel recently posted…Vanilla Chai OatmealMy Profile

    1. Mir

      That sounds like a great blog giveaway, Kelsey! They’re easy to make. I recommend!

  6. Stacey @ Bake.Eat.Repeat.

    We make a similar cookie every year, but with almond meal in the dough and a candied cherry in the middle. So, so good! These look like they’d be just as tough to stop eating!
    Stacey @ Bake.Eat.Repeat. recently posted…Mini Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie CupsMy Profile

    1. Mir

      Oh my goodness, Stacey, I love almond meal! That’s a cookie I have to try!

  7. Danielle

    I love snowball cookies, but can’t remember the last time I had one. That needs to change because I have everything to make these right now!
    Danielle recently posted…Monkey Bread MuffinsMy Profile

    1. Mir

      Then you have to, Danielle. They’re the best!

  8. Mira

    I love these snowball cookies, they are so easy to make and very tasty! I recently tried similar ones, but they were lemon flavored. Pinned and will make them soon!
    Mira recently posted…Naturally Sweetened Pumpkin Cream Cheese MuffinsMy Profile

    1. Mir

      Oooh, lemon. I like that. I want to use almond next. Thanks for the pin, Mira!

  9. Mary Frances

    This is my all time favorite Christmas cookie. My grandma makes them every year and (true story) when I was little, I believed they could only be baked this time of the year. It was humanly impossible to eat them any other time. You wouldn’t believe how shocked I was to eat one in the spring. And now I make them all the time because they are SO GOOD. Love how easy yours are Mir!
    Mary Frances recently posted…Banana Chocolate Chip Eggnog Coffee CakeMy Profile

    1. Mir

      That’s so funny, Mary Frances! I can see why they wouldn’t work as well in the spring. This time of year, they’re the most natural cookie you can make! And the most delicious.

  10. Medha @ Whisk & Shout

    Yum! I’ve never had one of these delicious cookies, but everyone swears by them and they look amazing. I’m always down for those rare no-chocolate-but-still-amazing gems 🙂
    Medha @ Whisk & Shout recently posted…Ganache Truffles, Four Ways {Vegan + GF!}My Profile

    1. Mir

      I bet you could make an amazing vegan version, Medha! Give it a shot!

  11. Simone

    O boy do those look delicious! I very seldom bake cookies but decided I need to change. That for this holiday season as what’s Christmas without cookies right? And these look pretty special!
    Simone recently posted…DudeFood Tuesday: Ham with a Fig and Date glazeMy Profile

    1. Mir

      They are pretty special, Simone! I don’t usually say that about cookies without chocolate, but man, these are a royal exception!

  12. Michele @ Two Raspberries

    oh my gosh! the center of these look wayyy to good! I want one of these right now 😉

    1. Mir

      It’s kind of like pie crust, but better. Hard to describe. But so worth it, Michele!

  13. Jocelyn@Brucrewlife

    Mmmm, snow ball cookies.. Aren’t they just the best?! Definitely a must have Christmas cookie! 🙂
    Jocelyn@Brucrewlife recently posted…Loaded Egg BurritosMy Profile

    1. Mir

      They are, Jocelyn. I have to make them all the time. They’re just so good!

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