If your New Year’s resolution is to begin or continue your baking journey, then I can’t think of a better place to start than with these complex, satisfying cookies. Plus, they’re so pretty and tasty I hope they’ll serve as a fitting antidote to 2020 and put you in a happier, brighter frame of mind for 2021!

Yield: Makes 24 cookies
Pistachio Almond Amaretto Sandwich Cookies

Pistachio Almond Amaretto Sandwich Cookies

My husband and our son, Joseph, cannot say enough good things about this cookie. They are certain that even hardened foes in conflict would put down their arms to share a plate of them. It has all the elements: the perfect shortbread sandwiched with an amaretto-flavored nut paste and half-dipped in chocolate. They are as beautiful as they are delicious, and the most elegant cookies I make. The combination of chocolate, amaretto, pistachios, and almond paste makes them truly special!


  • ¾ cup (6 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1¾ all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup shelled unsalted pistachios
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 3½ ounces almond paste, chopped
  • 3 teaspoons amaretto
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Optional glaze
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 4 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup finely chopped shelled pistachios
  • Substitute the chocolate glaze with a mixture of confectioners’ sugar thinned with milk. Add a few drops of almond extract. The cookies can be dipped in the confectioners’ sugar glaze or drizzled with the glaze using a fork or spoon.


  1. Prepare the cookie dough. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine butter and confectioners’ sugar. Beat until mixture is light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. With mixer on low, add flour and salt. Mix to incorporate. Cover bowl with food wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. Prepare the filling. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place pistachios and sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until finely ground. Add almond paste and process until combined. Add amaretto and vanilla. Pulse to combine. If filling is too dry, not to worry—add another splash of amaretto.
  3. On a lightly floured work surface, roll dough to a ⅛-inch thickness. Use a ¾-inch round cookie cutter to cut out cookies. Place cookies 1 inch apart on parchment-lined sheet pans. Bake until cookies are slightly brown around the edges, about 20 minutes. Let cool on pans for 5 minutes then transfer to cooling racks.
  4. While cookies are baking, prepare the glaze. In a one-quart saucepot, combine sugar and corn syrup. Bring mixture to a boil. Remove pot from heat. Add chocolate, let sit for 2 to 3 minutes or until chocolate is melted. Stir chocolate until smooth. Let cool slightly.
  5. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Place 1 teaspoon of filling on the flat side of half of the cookies. Top with another cookie and press gently to form a sandwich. Dip half of each cookie into the chocolate glaze. Place on prepared pan. Sprinkle top of chocolate area with chopped pistachios. Once chocolate has completely set, transfer to an airtight container.
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January 01, 2021 — Mary DiSomma