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Irresistible Snowball Cookies enhanced with earthy rye flour and toasted pecans are melt-in-your-mouth, delicious! Easy to make, they stay fresh for days and make the perfect gift. Known also as Mexican Wedding Cookies and Russian Tea Cakes.

Snow Ball cookies on a center

We are beauty continuously being carved. At times, painful. Yet, each cut reveals deeper awareness of our inner magnificence. We get to the heart of matter, realizing we are more than this physicality.

Ulonda Faye

Snowballs are a rich shortbread-style cookie with no eggs or leavening agent. The cookie dough is lightly sweetened, filled with toasted pecans then coated with powdered sugar while still warm creating a glaze. After the cookies cool they are tossed again in the powdered sugar. The sweet coating marries perfectly with the rustic nutty cookie.

Adding a little rye flour just heightens the earthy flavor. But you can easily swap it out for wheat or all-purpose flour.

Snowball cookies on a platter.

Ingredients For Snowball Cookies

Pecans, butter, flour and sugar.

Ingredient Notes

Rye Flour- earthy flavor really compliments the sweet buttery cookies. Whole Wheat flour or all white will work too.

Pecans- toasting the nuts deepens the flavor of the cookies. The cookies are packed with a larger amount of nuts than is traditional, be sure to chop them small creating fine crumbs and also larger pieces for texture. Feel free to use walnuts, hazelnuts or almonds.

See the recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and measurements.     

How To Make Snowball Cookies

Chopped pecans spread out on a roasting pan.

STEP ONE- Toast the chopped pecans in the oven at 325F for 5-10 minutes, keep a close eye they will go fast. Cool completely.

Store in an airtight container. Cookies will keep for about 5 days at room temperature. They freeze perfectly.

Butter, sugar, vanilla, whipping in a mixer.

STEP TWO- Combine the butter and sugar, beating until lightened and creamy.  Add vanilla and salt.

Adding flour and pecans into the mixer with the butter and sugar.

STEP THREE- Add completely cooled toasted pecans, rye flour and all-purpose flour.

It is important for the pecans to be cool so the butter does not melt which would change the texture of the cookie and it won’t bake properly.

Crumbly cookie dough in the mixer.

STEP FOUR- The dough will be coarse and crumbly but will stick when you press it together.

Shaping the cookies into balls.

STEP FIVE- Press roughly a tablespoon of dough (20 grams) in your hand squeezing and rolling into a 1-inch ball shape.  Place about an inch apart on cookie sheets.

Cookies arranged on a baking sheet.

STEP SIX- Bake in a preheated oven at 325F for 20-25 minutes.

Baked cookies.

STEP SEVEN- While cookies are still warm, toss in a bowl of powdered sugar, covering the entire cookie.  The cookies should still be warm so the powdered sugar will stick and create a glaze on the cookies.  

Warm cookies in a bowl of powdered sugar.

Cool completely then toss in powdered sugar again.

Irresistible Snowball Cookies enhanced with earthy rye flour and toasted pecans are melt in your mouth delicious! Easy to make, they stay fresh for days and make the perfect gift. Known also as Mexican Wedding Cookies and Russian Tea Cakes.

Recipe FAQS

Can Snowball Cookies be made gluten-free?

I bet using a cup-for-cup gluten-free flour blend would work! We have not tried it yet, let us know if you do!

What is the difference between Snowball cookies and Russian Tea Cakes and Mexican Wedding Cookies?

They are all basically the same dough from different origins. Some have variations with different nuts and flavorings added.

Why are my Snowballs flattening?

The butter may have gotten too soft. Make sure your butter is just room temperature, the butter should sit at room temperature for about 1 hour.  You don’t want it too soft.  It should still be cool to the touch but indent easily when you press it with your finger.
When toasting the nuts, cool them completely before adding to the batter so they don’t melt the butter.

More Recipes You May Enjoy

Snowball cookies on a platter

Love this recipe? Please let us know in the comments and leave a 5-star ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating below the recipe card.

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Snowball cookies

Snowball Cookies

  • Author: Tonia | Feasting at Home
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 38 cookies 1x
  • Category: cookies
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Irresistible Snowball Cookies enhanced with earthy rye flour and toasted pecans are melt in your mouth delicious! Easy to make, they stay fresh for days and make the perfect gift. Known also as Mexican Wedding Cookies and Russian Tea Cakes.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1 1/2 cups (185 grams) pecans, chopped and toasted (chop them small creating fine crumbs and also larger pieces for texture. Feel free to use walnuts, hazelnuts or almonds.)
  • 1 cup (227 grams or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature (see notes)
  • 1/3 cup (66 grams) sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/41/2 teaspoon salt (a little more salt goes well with the nuts)
  • 1 1/2 cups (237 grams) all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (63 grams) rye flour or wheat flour or all purpose flour
  • 1/21 cup (60-120 grams) powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Toast the chopped pecans in the oven at 325F for 5-10 minutes, keep a close eye they will go fast. Cool completely.
  2. Combine the butter and sugar, beating until lightened and creamy.  Add vanilla and salt.
  3. Add completely cooled toasted pecans, rye flour and all purpose flour. The dough will be coarse and crumbly but will stick when you press together. Press roughly a tablespoon of dough (20 grams) in your hand squeezing and rolling into a 1 inch ball shape.  Place about an inch apart on cookie sheets.
  4. Bake in a preheated oven at 325F for 20-25 minutes.
  5. While cookies are still warm, toss in a bowl of powdered sugar, covering the entire cookie.  The cookies should still be warm, this will create a glaze on the cookies.  Cool completely then toss in powdered sugar again.

Store in an airtight container. Cookies will keep about 5 days. They freeze perfectly.


Notes

Butter should sit out at room temperature for about 1-2 hours.  You don’t want it too soft.  It should still be cool to the touch but indent easily when you press it with your finger.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cookie
  • Calories: 73
  • Sugar: 3.4 g
  • Sodium: 10.5 mg
  • Fat: 4.1 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 8.3 g
  • Fiber: 0.4 g
  • Protein: 1 g
  • Cholesterol: 6.2 mg

Keywords: whole grain snowball cookies, snowball cookies, snowball Cookies with pecans, Snowball cookie recipe with pecans

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Comments

  1. Incredibly delicious, and we all enjoyed them. Could they also be made with olive oil? We would like to make them often, but it is quite a bit of butter:) Thank you.

    1. The butter creates a consistency and texture that you won’t get with olive oil. You may be able to play about with coconut oil?

  2. I think these cookies are a favorite in many countries and cultures. My Jewish grandmother in-law made them in a crescent shape, and my Italian mother called them pecan butterball cookies. They never lasted long. The addition of rye flour is interesting. I will give that a try. Thanks for your creative ways of thinking “outside of the box”!

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Hi, I'm Tonia!

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