Classic Pizzelle Cookies

A few years ago we started a new family tradition - making homemade pizzelles for the holidays.  These thin, crisp and crunchy sweet cookies are so tasty!

Pizzelles are Italian cookies made with a press that looks very similar to a waffle iron.  The plates are decorative and give the cookies an embossed appearance.  They can be served flat, or while warm, can be rolled and filled to make cannoli.

There are many pizzelle press styles available and for many families, the well loved press is a treasured heirloom passed down through the generations.

My press is a Cuisinart model WM-PZ2 and I'm very pleased with it.  It heats evenly and the nonstick plates are a breeze to clean with a damp paper towel.

This recipe comes from a very old church fundraiser cookbook.  I can't recall the name of the cookbook, but the recipe is for basic pizzelles.

Classic Pizzelles

1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 large eggs, beaten
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract or anise

Plug in the press to heat while preparing the batter - on Setting 3.

In a small bowl, mix and set aside the flour and baking powder.

In a medium bowl, mix eggs and sugar with a mixer on medium speed for 1 minute.  

On low speed, add melted butter and vanilla or anise extract (not both!), just until blended - about 15 seconds.

Slowly add flour mixture and mix until combined, about 15 seconds.  Do not over mix.

Spray press plates with cooking oil.

Drop 2 teaspoons of batter onto center of each press plate.  

Close the lid and lock.  Red indicator light will be on.

When red light goes off and green indicator light comes on, open lid and carefully remove pizzelles using a heatproof plastic spatula.

Place pizzelles on a cooling rack to cool completely.

NOTE:  Adjust the press setting to a higher number for darker pizzelles, or to a lower number for lighter pizzelles.  Our family likes dark cookies so I make them on Setting 5.

Or, while warm, wrap pizzelle around a dowel to form cannoli shells.

There are many recipe variations as well - for chocolate pizzelles, cocoa can be added to the batter.  For marble pizzelle, add 2 ounces of chopped chocolate to the batter.  

SAFETY TIP - the pizzelle press cannot be left unattended - the batter cooks very quickly and therefore, can burn very quickly.  If you find you need to leave them unattended, unplug the press.

These are a great treat to have on hand when you'd like a sweet but light snack - awesome with a hot cup of coffee or tea following a generous holiday meal!  

Have you made pizzelles?  Or, eaten homemade or store-bought versions?  Do you like them? 

Your comments are greatly appreciated and I look forward to your thoughts and ideas!  I try to respond to comments via email as soon as I can. If your email address isn't available, I will comment here. Thanks so much for visiting!

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  1. Replies
    1. Wish you could smell them! The anise is so fragrant!

  2. THese are so pretty and bet they are delicious.. I am making candy and cookies today.. Such fun..

    1. Your pretty new red mixer is adorable, Judy! I just know you're having a great time making goodies for your grandkiddos!

  3. I had a friend that used to make these and bring them over during the holidays. I've always wanted to get a cookie press to make some. Lovely! Thanks for sharing at the Inspiration Spotlight party. Shared. Happy Holidays!

  4. I've never heard of pizzelle but the look amazing Carolyn. I can just imagine how lovely the house must smell while they're baking. I wonder if I can get a Cuisinart pizzelle in South Africa, I'd really like to try these.