Italian Hazelnut Cookies

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Italian Hazelnut Cookies

Italian Hazelnut Cookies

These crispy cookies are made with Piedmontese staples—hazelnuts and eggs—and called Brutti Ma Buoni: literally, “Ugly But Good.” But they are really more plain-looking than “ugly,” and pack a powerful, sweet, nutty burst of flavor, making them welcome at any table.

Serves 30

Prep Time 15 min

Total Time 120 min.


  • 2 cups hazelnuts, toasted and skinned (see Tip)
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cooking Directions

Step 1

Position 2 racks as close to the center of the oven as possible; preheat to 325°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or nonstick baking mats.

Step 2

Pulse nuts and sugar in a food processor until finely ground. Scrape into a large bowl.

Step 3

Beat egg whites and salt in another large bowl with an electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the egg whites into the nut mixture. Add vanilla and gently but thoroughly mix until combined.

Step 4

Drop the batter by the tablespoonful 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets.

Step 5

Bake the cookies until golden brown, switching the pans back to front and top to bottom halfway through, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes. Gently transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. When the baking sheets are thoroughly cooled, repeat with the remaining batter.