Pistachio lace cookies are a nutty take on a classic and are surprisingly easy to make. Buttery flavor melts in your mouth with every light, flaky bite. Crunchy pistachios add extra deliciousness.
Named for the lacey holes that form as they bake, most lace cookie recipes call for cooking the batter before baking. Then, the batter is spooned onto a baking sheet, hoping the cookies come out somewhat round.
I've simplified the process for making lace cookies, and my tip for freezing the dough lets you slice and bake perfect lace cookies every time.
This is also a bonus because you can keep the dough chilled and bake a few off anytime during the holidays!
You'll find cookies like this with various ingredients. Sometimes lace cookies are made with almonds or include rolled oats or other nuts. I love the sophistication of pistachios and the color they add.
Lace cookies are similar to Brandy Snaps in that the batter cooks into a thin, very crisp sheet. Brandy Snaps are quickly rolled into a cannoli shape and filled with cream, but lace cookies often stay flat.
Ingredients in This Lacey Cookie Recipe
Simple, pantry ingredients go into making these little wonders. Five, to be exact!
- The butter (plenty of it) gives the cookies great flavor, helps them get golden brown, and causes them to spread to that wonderful thinness.
- I use confectioners' sugar and corn syrup for sweeteners, but they also play a big role in the cookie's structure.
- A bit of bread flour as well as the pistachios gives the lace cookies' batter substance.
Why Use Confectioners' Sugar?
I swapped granulated sugar for confectioners' in my pistachio lace cookies to cut out the step of cooking the batter. Cooking a batter simply helps melt the sugar granules before baking since these cookies don't stay in the oven long enough to do it themselves!
Confectioners' sugar is so finely processed, it blends and melts fast enough in the oven.
Why Use Corn Syrup?
Corn syrup is an invert sugar. That means it prevents sugar crystals from forming. This all happens on a microscopic level, so you don't see that sugar granules have jagged little edges. They like to cling to each other and form bigger crystals.
Corn syrup helps melt the cookies properly when baked and stay nice and smooth. Even with confectioners' sugar, the corn syrup acts as a interfering agent and prevents with the crystallization process.
Why Use Bread Flour?
I choose bread flour because of its high protein content. Not completely necessary with this recipe, but just a little help to make them the most perfect lacey cookies.
If you swap it for all-purpose flour, the batter is more likely to be thin and crispy and darker in color as it bakes.
Can I Use Another Kind of Nut?
Yes! You could use any nut to create Christmas lace cookies. (Almonds are typically used in this recipe.)
However, I love the festive color and killer flavor pistachios have. They let everyone know you think they're special enough to spoil them.
How to Make Lace Cookies
These pistachio cookies are very unique, but are so easy to make! Here's an overview of the baking process:
- In a bowl, beat together the butter and confectioners' sugar. Mix in corn syrup, then add nuts and flour.
- Wrap dough in a sheet of plastic wrap, forming it into a log 1½ inches in diameter. Freeze until firm.
- Unwrap log and cut into ¼-inch-thick slices, rooting after each slice so log retains its shape.
- Place rounds about 3 inches apart on baking sheets. Bake until golden and lacy.
- Slide cookies, still on parchment, onto countertop to cool.
Tips for Making Christmas Lace Cookies
- Be sure to use parchment paper on your baking sheets, or a silicone baking mat. I love pre-cut parchment sheets so much! I stock up on them every few months! Silicone baking mats are so great for avid bakers. They are reusable, so wash them after use.
- I made these as pistachio cookies, but you may use any chopped nut you prefer.
- I do not recommend substituting the corn syrup or confectioners' sugar. Please read the post above to learn why I selected these specific ingredients.
More Unique Christmas Cookies:
- Chocolate Snowman Cookies
- Honey Cinnamon Cut Out Cookies
- Blossom Chai Cookies
- Black Sesame Chocolate Chip Cookies
Pistachio Lace Cookies
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- 2 tablespoons light-colored corn syrup
- ⅔ cup coarsely chopped pistachios
- ½ cup bread flour
- In a bowl, beat together butter and confectioners' sugar until smooth and fluffy, about 2 minutes on medium speed. Mix in corn syrup, then add nuts and flour; mix to combine.
- Wrap dough in a sheet of plastic wrap, forming it into a log 1½ inches in diameter. Freeze until firm, 30 min.
- Heat oven to 350°F and line baking sheets with parchment.
- Unwrap log and quickly cut into ¼-inch-thick slices, rolling after each slice so log retains its shape. Place rounds about 3 inches apart on baking sheets.
- Bake until golden and lacy, 9 to 10 min. Slide cookies, still on parchment, onto countertop to cool; repeat with remaining dough.