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Italian Anise Cookies!! These cookies NEED to be on your holiday cookie tray! Not a fan of anise? Use your favorite extract for a new flavor!
You guys! These cookies are so soft and delicious! They’ve been a staple in our family since I first made them about 20 years ago. Of course, you’ll want to share these amazing little treats! They make great neighbor gifts … or would be great on a cookie tray with other cookies or candies.
Anise, in case you don’t know, tastes like black licorice. From what I understand, some people really love the flavor – and others, not so much. I don’t think there’s any middle ground on that flavor. Personally, I love these cookies – they’re a real treat for Christmas. We even make them for Easter sometimes!
I love all of the tasty treats this time of year! Cookies and yummy desserts seem to be flooding the blogging world! I really love to share traditional Christmas Cookies and I especially love ones that maybe aren’t shared often by others. It’s a good thing most of that is in virtual life – looking and drooling is calorie-free! ? These Italian Anise Cookies are super easy and so soft! I love how puffy they are!
If you’re not really a fan of black licorice, feel free to substitute your favorite extract flavor in place of the anise extract! ? Be sure to use a regular teaspoon to measure out the cookies. You will want a slightly heaping scoop. For smooth cookies, be sure to roll the dough into balls. When you dip these cookies into the glaze, you’ll want to add the nonpareils right after – this glaze is thick and hardens up fairly quickly.
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For the cookie dough
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
- 2 large eggs
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 tsp. anise extract
- 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
For the glaze
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 4-5 tsp. milk
- 1 tsp. anise extract
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- Beat the sugar, butter, eggs, milk and anise extract in a large bowl with a mixer until well blended. On low speed, beat in the flour, baking powder and salt until well blended.
- Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto the prepared baking sheets.
- Bake 8-10 minutes or until the bottoms are a light golden brown. Remove cookies to a wire rack to cool.
- Prepare the glaze: Whisk the powdered sugar, milk and anise extract in a small bowl until smooth.
- Dip the tops of the cookies in the glaze, and while the glaze is still wet, sprinkle on the nonpareils. Let set until glaze hardens.
If you're not really a fan of black licorice, feel free to substitute your favorite extract flavor in place of the anise extract!
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 42Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 8mgSodium: 21mgFiber: 0gSugar: 3gProtein: 1g
Originally published on December 19, 2013. Updated on April 25, 2021.