A recipe for Pizzelle (Italian Waffle Cookies)! These thin vanilla and anise-flavored cookies are made using a special Pizzelle Maker.
Disclosure: I received a Chef’s Choice Pizzelle Pro Toscano in exchange for my honest review. All comments and opinions are my own. This post contains Amazon affiliate links. If you purchase something through the link, I may receive a small commission at no extra charge to you.
Pizzelle are centuries-old cookies originally from Abruzzo, Italy. They are formed into thin, decorated discs using a shaped iron and are a favorite during holidays and celebrations.
You can make the Pizzelle into a variety of flavors, but anise is one of the most traditional. They will be soft when removing from the iron, but start to become crisp as they cool to room temperature.
These cookies do require the specific iron to get the notable shape and texture, but otherwise they don’t take much effort at all. There is no resting time or decorating required. I don’t even use a stand mixer- just a large bowl.
I used the Chef’s Choice Pizzelle Pro Toscano to make the Pizzelle. With this tool, I was able to make two (4 3/4 inch, 12 centimeter) cookies at a time in about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
It has a nonstick surface and includes a metal roller if you want to form the warm cookies into a shell for cannoli.
If your maker does not have a nonstick surface, very lightly grease with oil as needed. Wipe off any excess with a paper towel. Continue to grease as needed. You may not have to do this for every batch.
Add about a heaping tablespoon of the prepared batter just behind the center of the mold. Slowly close the maker to allow the batter to spread as evenly as possible. The exact amount of batter may differ based on the size of your mold.
Different makers may have different heating times. Adjust as needed until the batter is cooked through and lightly golden.
Pizzelle are traditionally made with anise. I used a combination of vanilla extract and pure anise extract. Adjust the amount of extract as desired to taste. Some recipes also include anise seeds.
For a little contrast, I mixed in 2 tablespoons (12 grams) of cocoa powder into half of the batter to make Chocolate Pizzelle.
A Few Tips
A day with lower humidity is best to get that notable crisp texture.
Sift the flour to easily create a smooth batter with minimal mixing.
Thoroughly heat the iron before adding the batter. This will help keep the cookies from sticking.
Gently remove the cookies from the iron using a fork or spatula. Transfer to a wire rack in a single layer to cool to room temperature. Once thoroughly cooled and crisp, store in an airtight container or bag.
Looking for more cookie ideas?
Pizzelle (Italian Waffle Cookies) Recipe
Adapted from Baking a Moment
Pizzelle (Italian Waffle Cookies)
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3/4 teaspoon pure anise extract
- 1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter melted and slightly cooled
- 1 1/2 cups (190 grams) all-purpose flour sifted
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons (12 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder optional
- Preheat the pizzelle maker.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until well-combined.
- Mix in the vanilla and anise extract, then the melted butter.
- Add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir until smooth.
- If desired, add the cocoa powder to half of the batter.
- If needed, very lightly grease the pizzelle maker by dipping a towel in oil and brushing across the molds.
- Add a heaping tablespoon of the prepared batter just behind the center of each mold. Slowly press down to close the lid until the latch clicks.
- Cook until lightly golden, about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Gently transfer to a wire rack using a fork or spatula and repeat with remaining batter.
- Store in an airtight container once the cookies are at room temperature.
- If desired, dust with powdered sugar before serving.