Canestrelli Cookies
Print Recipe

Canestrelli - Italian Egg Yolk Cookies

Delicious canestrelli cookies have lemony flavor, super soft and butter-ly texture with a light crunchy bite.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Resting time30 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Cookies
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 3 dozen cookies



  • PREP: put egg in a pot of cold water and bring it to boil. Cook for about 8-10 minutes. Put under cold water to cool. Peel and set egg yolks aside. This step can be done well in advance.
  • Start by sifting flour, cornstarch and confectioners sugar in a large bowl. Add lemon zest, vanilla (optional) and cold butter cut in cubes. Chop everything with dough blender or in a food processor.
  • Add grated egg yolks and knead the dough by hand until it comes together in a smooth ball.
    Cover with a plastic wrap and set aside to rest for about 30-60 minutes.
  • You can also place it in the fridge overnight but remember to take it out at least 1-2 hours before you start to make cookies.
  • Preheat oven to 335F (170C).
  • Cut off a large piece of the dough. On a lightly floured work surface roll it out ⅓ inch thick.
  • Using a flower cookie cutter cut out the cookies.
    Using a straw or other small round hollow tool (see notes for other suggestions) press out the center of the cookie.
  • Transfer cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake in preheated oven for 10-15 minutes. Canestrelli should remain pale and should not get brown.
  • Let cookies cool completely on a wire rack and generously dust with confectioners sugar.


To cut out a center hole you can use plastic straw (if you still keep those), small pastry tip, pen or highlighter cap or even an olive oil bottle cap or leave the flower shape as is!