Our family staple for decades, kiflin are tiny teardrop-shaped, sugar-coated, melt-in-your-mouth almond cookies.
At Christmastime, kiflin are the cookie that everyone goes for first, the cookie that isn’t made any other time of year, and the cookie that people nervously ask, “she’s making them again this year, right?” The cookie that, one year, my mom made in Utah and shipped across the country to us. They’re that good.
Kiflin came to my family through Aunt Mary, a distant relative, who would bring tins of the cookies to family functions. A quick Google search shows potential Austrian roots to a “kiflin” cookie, but the few recipes are quite different. When Aunt Mary passed, my mom came into possession of her kiflin recipe, but it didn’t include any measurements. My mom tried many combinations before finding the right combination, and now she’s been in charge of the cookies every year.
I’ve grown up making and shaping these cookies, and they’re such an important part of our Christmas traditions.
Now, I’m not going to sugar-coat it (pun intended), they’re hard work. Shaping each teeny tiny cookie takes time. But I promise you they’re worth it.
To shape, first you roll a tiny marble-sized ball, press down with your index finger to flatten, then pinch into a teardrop shape. Refrigerating the dough beforehand helps immensely.
Family-favorite bite-sized almond cookies.
- Prep Time: 45 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- Yield: 25 dozen
- 14 oz butter, room temperature
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 7 oz ground almonds
- 3 1/4 cups flour
- 1 cup superfine sugar (see note)
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line multiple baking sheets with parchment paper, set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and mix until well combined.
- In a small bowl, combine almonds and flour. Add to butter mixture and mix until combined. If the dough is loose, add up to 3/4 cup additional flour until the dough is thick and easy to shape.
- To shape the cookies, roll a small ball of dough, the size of a small marble (about 1/2 tsp total) in your palm, flatten with your finger, then pinch the top to create a teardrop shape.
- Place cookies an inch apart on the cookie sheet. If you are baking in batches, place the dough in the refrigerator between batches.
- Bake in preheated oven for 7-8 minutes until fragrant and not-yet browned around the edges.
- While the cookies are baking, place the superfine sugar in a medium bowl, set aside.
- As soon as the cookies are cool enough to touch, add a few at a time to the bowl of superfine sugar and shake gently to coat.
Make your own superfine sugar by placing granulated sugar in a food processor and pulsing until fine.