Italian Florentine Cookies are lace cookies made from chopped almonds with orange & vanilla. They are then sandwiched with chocolate and you get the most delicious cookies. Serve with hot espresso or coffee to transport you right to Florence, Italy. Crunchy and almost toffee-like, the flavor combinations are just perfect.
My husband is Italian and so we have a great love for Italy and have been fortunate to have been to many cities there many times. Lake Como and Florence are our favorite and so are Florentine cookies that originated there in the Renaissance period.
What are Florentine Cookies?
Sometimes called lace cookies, Florentine cookies are made of finely chopped almonds with a hint of orange and vanilla, then baked into lace cookies. You can eat them plain or sandwich with chocolate.
Florentine Cookie variations
I recently posted a White Chocolate Florentine Cookies (picture above) and for Christmas, you may want to try my festive Peppermint Florentine Cookies (picture below).
Our love of this Italian delicacy came about on one of our annual trips to Carmel-by-the-Sea in Central Coast California and they are one of their signature dessert items. So after many years of eating them, I finally have my own Florentine cookie recipe.
Yes! They freeze very well for up to 3 months when well wrapped. Just defrost at room temperature and enjoy.
Candied orange peel
The candied orange is a delicious addition, as would many dried fruits. You can also leave it out and they will still taste good.
How to make Florentine Cookies
- Add peeled/blanched almonds to a food processor and blend
2. To a bowl, mix almonds, flour and orange peel.
3. To a pan add sugar, heavy cream corn syrup and butter. Melt and cook for 1 minute.
4. Add the melted mixture to the almond mix along with the vanilla. Stir until combined. Allow to cool until it is cool enough to handle, about 15 minutes.
5. Roll 1 teaspoon measurements of the dough into balls.
6. Bake until they spread into lace cookies
7. Add melted chocolate to 1 half of the cookies, then top with the other half.
How to make candied orange peel:
- 3 oranges
- 2 cups granulated sugar, plus extra for rolling
- ¾ cup (180 ml) water
- Cut the top and bottom off the oranges. Score the skin from top to bottom around the orange and peel. Cut the peel into strips, about ¼-inch ( ½ cm ) wide.
- Add water to a medium saucepan and bring to boil. Add the orange slices and blanch (boil) for 2 minutes.
- Drain, discard water and repeat 2 more times. This is to reduce the bitterness.
- In the same saucepan, whisk the sugar and the 3/4 cup water. Bring to a simmer over medium heat until the sugar dissolves and is simmering.
- Add the orange peels and reduce heat to continue to simmer until the peels are translucent, about 45 minutes. DO NOT STIR. This will produce sugar crystals, but you can swirl the pan if needed to move the peels around.
- Drain the peels onto parchment paper and discard the syrup.
- Roll the peels in the sugar and allow to dry on a rack for 4 to 5 hours or overnight.
- Store in an air tight container until needed.
Florentine Cookie making tips:
- When preparing the dough to make the cookies, make the balls as round as possible, this will make nice round cookies. The dough will spread as they bake.
- To drizzle chocolate over the cookie, put the melted chocolate into a small ziploc bag. Snip of a very tiny piece of the corner and pipe over the cookie. This will allow you to get the perfect drizzle.
The recipe calls for peeled almonds, which isn’t an easy thing to do so I have a post here on how to do that, How to peel almonds.
This recipe yields 30 sandwiched cookies that are 2-inches/5 cm in diameter.
76 Comments on “Florentine Cookies”
Delicious! Florentines are a wonderful cookie. We love it.
Thank you 😊
So good, I need to get them out of the house.
🤣 This has happened to me before
This Florentine cookies looks delicious! Anything chocolate chip cookie is my favorite.
Can these be frozen? How do you store them?
I have not tried freezing the cookies, but I have seen others have success doing it. I normally just store them in a sealed container at room temperature since they get eaten very quickly. Let me know if you have any more questions.
This is the second recipe I’ve tried for florentine cookies and I’m so glad they turned out great. They’re thin and dainty so not the easiest cookies to make but this recipe was awesome. I used silicone mat and the cookies just slips right off after a few minutes of cooling. I also used regular cream because that’s what I had at home. I was worried about using sliced almonds so made sure I weighed them instead of relying on measuring cups. They are the perfect cookies to give as a gift.
Thank you so much for the feedback and tips on the cookies. I’m happy you enjoyed them. If you’re a fan of white chocolate, I make them the same with white chocolate for the Christmas holiday season. https://culinaryginger.com/white-chocolate-florentine-cookies/
Hi, just tried to bake these, but they were sticking to the silicone.
I’m sorry the cookies stuck your silicone mat. I have not tried them using this surface, parchment paper is what I always use and recommend in the recipe and this always works me.
Thank you for this recipe. I tried it now and it came out so well. I am so happy that i found the perfect recipe.
More powers and Thank you again.
I’m so happy you enjoyed the Florentine Cookies, they are my favorite.
The recipe calls for heavy cream, when do you use it? I don’t see it in the instructions.
It’s added in step 5 with the sugar, corn syrup and butter.
I can’t find your candied orange peel recipe. I saved it on pinterest, but it says it is no longer available. Help!
Sorry about that, I’ve added it to this post.
I am a craft baker in India and love to explore new recipes….
This florentine recipes seems easy and yummy but just wanted to know abt the light corn syrup – how to make as few things are not easily avlb here.
hope to hear form u soon
Hello, you can substitute honey or golden syrup. Enjoy
How big are the dough balls? Tablespoon? Doesn’t say!
Sorry about that. Step 7 seemed to have disappeared and I have now corrected this.
Thanks! I was baking them at the time of my question and was able to figure it out…. first after they came out so so big! Haha thanks!
Oh no, again I’m sorry. I hope you were able to enjoy them anyway.
Yes, they were great!! Thanks!
I made these with gluten free flour and a dash of psyllium husk powder, and they were divine. Bought a bag of Diamond sliced almonds and pulsed those up in my food processor. Always nice to use a bit more orange peel..so fragrant. If your dough is too runny, just slip in the fridge for a bit until you can easily roll the size balls you want. My first batch ran together and I had to cut the cookies out with a biscuit cutter! SO worth making these…my husband loves these and so did all of our friends. Served them with a dark chocolate mousse.
Thank you for the feedback and tips. I’m loving that you served them with chocolate mousse.
I recently became gluten free, I appreciate your post. Why did you add the psyllium husk ?
Do i have to use orange? Also can i use pre bought almonds already peeled
The orange is optional and if you can find already peeled almonds, skip step 2.
Where do you get the orange peel from?
I got the dried oranges from Trader Joe’s. They have dried mandarin and sliced orange, you can use either. I hope this helps.
One of my all time favorite biscuits! Beautiful, Janette!
Thank you, they’re mine too 🙂
Just finished making my first batch of Florentine cookies. They are spectacular and delicious. After the first pan, I knew just how long to bake them. Thank you for a wonderful recipe!
I’m so glad you’re happy with the cookies. They are my favorite, happy holidays!
These are delicious. I added 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and used orange zest instead of candied peel. I also rolled the balls using a half teaspoon and the cookies were 2- 2 1/2 inches when baked. Opening the oven was such a pleasure with the orange and cinnamon scents. Loved these. I also drizzled some but used an eggnog filling I found. Perfect addition of flavors. Thanks for the recipe.
Janette t tried making these cookies for my daughters baby shower. I placed them
on the sheet tray as directed but the entire tray spread into one giant cookie. What did I do wrong. I did double the recipe. I didn’t waste it though. I cracked them like brittle. I used raw sliced almonds. Could that be a problem please reply
Hi Maria, I’m sorry this happened to you. A couple of things could have caused this, placing the balls too close (which doesn’t seem the case as you said) or making the balls too large. No more than a teaspoon of dough should be used. It also could be just a case of sometime they spread more than other times as well. A good tip is the next time you make them, bake a couple of test cookies to get a feel of how much the dough will spread. I’m glad you made good use of the outcome.
We have to avoid nuts in our house. I am wondering if it this recipe would work with finely chopped pumpkin seeds instead?
Hi Teresa. I can’t say that this will work with pumpkin seeds as I have not tried it. Also, the cookies have a very distinct almond flavor so the flavor would also not be the same.
Hello! I am in the process of making these. However, I am not able to roll the cookies because they batter is sticky. I spooned the batter onto the pan. Just not sure how you were able to roll out the cookies into rounds. Hope they turn out. Thanks!!
Hello Rose, they don’t have to be perfectly round and by the time you read this, you’ll see that they spread very easily when baking. I hope they turn out they way like them. Thank you for making me recipe.
Just made these yesterday for Christmas cookie tins for my family and friends. The only thing I did differently was used orange zest and 2% milk instead of whole. They turned out so fabulous, I can’t even explain. I love these and they will not last long. The flavor is exceptional. Also, I didn’t sandwich any of them I just did the tradition chocolate sguiggle with my fork on the bottom of each one. Thank you for this recipe 🙂
Thank you so much Jadyn, you have made my day! I read your comment to my husband and he loves the idea of the orange zest and asked if I would make them for Christmas. I going to use dark and white chocolate. Happy Holidays!
Pingback: 30+ Holiday Cookie Swap Recipe Ideas | Dreaming of Leaving
This recipe looks great, but before I try it, I’d love to know how many cookies it makes and how long it takes. Can you help me out with that info?
Thanks very much,
Hi Daniel, it looks like info was removed from the recipe when I redesigned my blog, sorry. Thank you for bringing this to my attention and it has now been updated. Total time is about 1 hour 10 minutes and it yields 20 cookies. Thank you for stopping by.
Thank you so much for getting back with me with this information! This has been very helpful.
Is it 20 cookies/10sandwiches?
Can I use almond meal instead of grinding my own almonds or will it be too fine?
Hi Michelle, I haven’t tried it and I believe it might be too fine because the almonds give great texture. I hope this helps and thank you so much for stopping by.
These are the best looking Florenting cookies I have ever seen. You make them look so easy to make. I must try making them.
My husband and I celebrated our anniversary last year with a trip to Carmel by the Sea. I can’t remember the name of the restaurant we went to, but we I wonder if it was the same one. We had a spicy red sauce pasta, gnocchi, and then creme brulee and it was fantastic.Anyway, these look gorgeous.
Janette, thanks for contributing these. My daughter and I made a very similar version from Williams-Sonoma cookies and they called them something like Almond Crisps! We loved these.
Going to have to try these!!! They sound fantastic! Thanks for sharing at Saturday Dishes. Pinning!
They are just Gorgeous!
Thank you Laurie 🙂
These look great! I may just have to try them, pinning for later
I bet these would go perfect with a cup of coffee! I’ve never had florentine cookies before but I definitely want to try them now!
Wow, these look delicious, especially with the French press coffee in the background!Thank you
I love florentine cookies. I will try your recipe soon, they look beautiful!
Thank you for stopping by Elena, let me know how they turn out 🙂
These look SO amazing!! Pinning!! 🙂
Thank you Sheena 🙂
I have never tried Florentine cookies before but that look amazing! I will definitely be trying this recipe 🙂
They’re my favorite cooke, Nicole 🙂
Florentine cookies are one of my favs. Lost my recipe years ago. Will give this a try. Thanks
Sounds great Judy. Let me know how they turn out
Your photos are fantastic. Florentines are a wonderful cookie. Thanks for sharing
Thank you Nicky 🙂
These look delicious!! Your photos are gorgeous, as always! 🙂
Thank you Michaela 🙂
I just gotta try these!!!Pinning and will be sharing on FB:)))
Thank you Evelyn 🙂
These are one of my favorite cookies, yours are gorgeous!!
Thank you Tara, I’m very happy with how they turned out 🙂