Lemon Ricotta Cookies – These lemon infused cake-like Ricotta Cookies are soft, light, moist and totally addicting! Topped with a simple sweet lemon glaze, these Italian Ricotta Cookies are sure to become a favorite!
Ricotta cookies are like small cake bites, soft, tender and not overly sweet. The lemon glaze adds the perfect hint of tartness and sweetness to these lemon cookies. Although I am not a fan of glazes, in this particular cookie recipe the glaze is a must.
The first time I had Italian Ricotta Cookies was at a friends house. They were delicate and incredibly tasty. I didn’t know their name and was shocked to learn they were made with ricotta cheese. Ricotta cheese? You mean the stuff that goes into a lasagna? what? Well, I am here to tell you, these lemon cookies do not taste like cheese and don’t have a hint of savory in them!
How To Make Lemon Ricotta Cookies
- In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.
- Add the butter and sugar to the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or into a large bowl if you are using a hand mixer.
- Cream the mixture together on medium speed until creamy and fluffy.
- Add the eggs one at a time and mix until well combined.
- Add the ricotta cheese, lemon juice and lemon zest and beat on low speed until combined.
- Gradually stir in the dry ingredients until just incorporated.
- Spoon the dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. You want to leave about 2 inches between each cookie as they will expand a bit.
- Bake and when done, let the cookies sit on the baking sheet for about 10 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.
Making the Lemon Glaze
Ingredients: Powdered sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest.
- Stir together the glaze ingredients until the mixture becomes smooth.
- If needed, add additional lemon juice until you reach a desired consistency. The glaze should be easy to spread and not too runny.
Glazing the Lemon Ricotta Cookies
- Place the cooling rack over a baking sheet for easy clean up.
- Spoon the lemon glaze over each cookie. Use a butter knife or icing spatula to spread the icing.
- If you would like you can decorate the cookies by adding sparkling sugar and sprinkles at this point.
- Let the glaze set for a couple of hours before storing or transporting the cookies.
Frequently Asked Questions, Tips and Notes about Ricotta Cookies
- Can I make this lemon cookie recipe ahead of time?
Yes, you can make the cookie dough and refrigerate it for up to 3 days. You can also freeze the dough for up to 2 to 3 months.
- Can I freeze the lemon cookies already baked?
Yes, however I recommend to freeze the cookies without any glaze. After thawing, the glaze gets a bit wet and “messy”
- I use whole milk ricotta cheese for this recipe. This cheese is creamier and richer than the 2% skim milk one.
- Chilling the dough for 20 minutes in the refrigerator prevents the cookies from getting too flat when baked. I must admit, I hardly ever follow this step because I am always in a rush to bake and eat the cookies!
- I made the cookies for this post larger than the recipe indicates. I used a small ice cream scoop to guarantee all the cookies were about the same size.
- If you love lemon desserts and snacks, here are a few of my favorite:
Lemon Loaf Cake with Lemon Glaze
Shortbread Lemon Bars
Easy Mini Lemon Meringue Pies
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Recipe adapted from Giada’s Italian Lemon Ricotta Cookies
Lemon Ricotta Cookies with Lemon Glaze
For the Ricotta Cookies
For the Lemon Glaze
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
To Make the Cookies:
- Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.
- In an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle or a handheld mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on high speed until creamy and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time,and with the mixer on low beat until well combined. Scrape the size of the bowl as needed.
- Add the ricotta cheese, lemon juice, and lemon zest and beat on low speed until combined. Gradually, stir in the dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated.
- Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Spoon the dough (about 2 tablespoons for each cookie) onto the baking sheets. Leave about 2 inches between each cookie.
- Bake for 15 minutes, until slightly golden around the bottom edges. Remove from the oven and let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely before glazing.
- Combine the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a small bowl and stir until smooth. Add extra lemon juice if needed until the glaze reaches the right consistency.
- Spoon the lemon glaze over each cookie. Use a knife to gently spread if needed. Sprinkle with decorating sugar and/or colored sprinkles. Let the glaze set for about 2 hours.
- Chilling the dough for 20 minutes in the refrigerator prevents the cookies from getting too flat when baked. Although this is not a necessary step in the recipe, if you have time you can certainly do it.
- You can make the cookie dough ahead of time and refrigerate it for up to 3 days. You can also freeze the dough for up to 2 to 3 months.
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