Lemon linzer cookies are tender, lemony and buttery morsels, that you won’t be able to stop eating. Make the easy dough, roll it out, cut out cookies, bake and enjoy!
If you love the taste of lemons in baked stuff like me, this cookie is a must to add to your repertoire. And not just for the holidays.
I upgraded the classic Czech cookie by adding lemon zest and lemon juice to the dough, and it instantly elevated the whole taste of it.
Linzer cookies are typically decorated and filled with fruit jam, but this one just gets an egg wash and little sprinkling of coarse sugar on top before baking, and that’s that.
Ingredients for Homemade Linzer Cookie Dough
Like most good recipes, this is a low-maintenance cookie dough with a few important ingredients.
- ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR to make a soft and crumbly cookie.
- POWDERED SUGAR for a light color and texture. And it also incorporates better into the dough.
- UNSALTED BUTTER, cut into pieces to make it easy to work into a smooth dough. The butter is necessary for a flaky and moist shortbread cookie.
- EGG YOLKS, which add color and flavor, and also moisture to the dough.
- LEMON, which lends its zest and juice to amp up the brightness and taste of these treats.
- COARSE PEARL SUGAR, also called Swedish pearl sugar, which has a delightful crunch, texture and decorative look to it.
How to Make Linzer Cookies Without Jam
Making linzer cookies at home is a simple process of combining dry and wet ingredients into a tender and crumbly cookie dough. I make it by hand on a kitchen counter, but a stand mixer will do a great (and quick) job as well.
Once the dough comes together, rest it in the fridge for half an hour. This lets the butter in the dough firm up a bit so it’s easier to roll out and shape.
I used an owl cookie cutter (or is it a cat?) and you get to be creative too. Use your favorite cutter, just keep in mind that the shape and size affects the baking time.
Smaller shapes cook faster, in about 10 minutes, so stay close to your oven and check on them often.
Classic Linzer cookies are decorated and filled with fruit jam. However, for this lemony recipe, I just added an egg wash and a sprinkling of coarse sugar on top before baking, and that’s that.
You’ll know that your cookies are done when they start getting brown around the edges.
The end result is a surprisingly tender, lemony and buttery cookie, that you won’t be able to stop eating.
Discover More Delicious Czech Cookies Inside my Online Baking Program:
In this 90-minute, 10-video-module online course, I share heirloom cookie recipes from my Czech family as well as teach you about ingredients, tools and baking techniques.
All recipes have been tested and calibrated with American ingredients for the American home baker.
Gifting a tin of whimsical cookies is one of the best ways to show love AND show off your baking skills.
Serving and Storing Linzer Cookies
I bet you won’t need much encouragement, but these cookies are truly best when they’re fresh from the oven. However, you can store any extra in an airtight container for up to 30 days.
To serve, arrange your lemony Linzers on a beautiful walnut wood cutting board and watch as they disappear.
More Delicious Recipes from Very Good Cook
If you love these Linzer cookies, try these other classic classic recipes.
- Linzer Cookies With Raspberry Jam is my mom’s foolproof Christmans cookie recipe that she’s been baking for decades.
- Linzer Torte with Raspberry Jam transforms the cookies you love into a shareable tart!
For more classic Czech recipes, see my full collection.
And if you’re just in the mood for something sweet, you know I have you covered. See all of my dessert recipes, including these all-time favorites:
- Sweet Potato Chocolate Pudding
- Apple Walnut Cake
- Gluten-Free Rhubarb-Strawberry Crumble
- Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
What’s your favorite cookie? Do you love lemon zest in everything like me?
Tell me in the comments.Print
Tender, lemony and buttery cookie, that you won’t be able to stop eating.
- 2½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1¾ cups powdered sugar
- 9 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 lemon
- 1 egg for egg wash
- Coarse sugar (optional)
- Sift the flour and sugar into a large bowl, or onto a clean counter (large cutting board works too).
- Add the butter and egg yolks. Zest the lemon over the mixture, then cut it and squeeze it, and measure out 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Add the lemon juice to the mixture.
- Using your hands, mix the ingredients together, tossing and kneading from the sides to the middle and from bottom to top, until shiny dough forms, about 5–7 minutes. (Steps 1-3 can be also made in a stand mixer).
- Form a ball and press it down. Cover with plastic food wrap and let rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and position two racks in the upper part of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Take the dough out of the refrigerator, and when pliable, roll it out ¼ inch thick on a floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin. Keep sprinkling the dough and your rolling pin with flour if it gets too sticky.
- Cut out shapes with your favorite cookie cutter. Using an offset spatula, transfer them to the baking sheet, spacing 2 inches apart.
- Reroll the dough scraps and keep cutting out more cookies, until you use up all the dough.
- Beat the egg in a small bowl to make an egg wash. Using a pastry brush, brush each cookie with the egg wash, and sprinkle with coarse sugar, if using. (Mine is Swedish pearl sugar).
- Bake in the oven until the edges start to brown, about 12–15 minutes, depending on size.
- Let cool completely on a wire rack. The cookies will last 3–4 weeks in a tightly covered container.