This easy vanilla pizzelle recipe produces light and crispy vanilla pizzelle cookies using a pizzelle iron! Includes tips for how to make pizzelles + variations for making chocolate pizzelles and traditional anise pizzelle cookies.
So here’s the thing — pizzelle cookies were never really on my radar until I got married. Oh, I’m sure I’d eaten them before, but I’d never made them.
As a newlywed, my husband begged me for weeks to make pizzelles for Christmas. I kind of smiled and nodded and said I’d look into making them — and then he mentioned how his grandmother made them every single year for Christmas. How an Italian cookie became a Polish family tradition is beyond me… I knew I couldn’t keep putting them off at that point.
So I scoured the Internet for a pizzelle recipe (because of course he didn’t have her recipe), and using several different sites, created one that sounded like what he’d described. Only problem? We didn’t own a pizzelle iron.
Traditionally pizzelles were baked with a true pizzelle iron over an open fire, a hot and tedious undertaking. Thank goodness for modern conveniences — we can now purchase electric pizzelle irons that make baking pizzelles simple and easy.
After a little research, I settled on this nonstick pizzelle baker. The price was slightly more than I was hoping to spend, but I’ve definitely gotten my money’s worth from it over the years. We only pull it out a couple times a year, but it’s still as shiny and pretty as ever!
Vanilla Pizzelle Recipe
If you’re not a fan of the flavor of anise, a common spice in pizzelles that has a flavor akin to licorice (I am decidedly not), don’t worry. Pizzelles are wonderfully flexible when it comes to both flavoring and shaping them. Vanilla, chocolate, almond, citrus — these are all fabulous flavors to add. And warm pizzelles can be shaped into cones, cannoli, bowls, tacos, and more.
I opted to keep my cookies simple, just flavoring them with pure vanilla extract. Sometimes I’ll also make a chocolate version, which is a favorite with my kids. Whatever flavor you fancy, when you’re making a recipe as simple as this, high-quality ingredients make all the difference — so choose the best you can afford!Print
This easy vanilla pizzelle recipe produces light and crispy vanilla pizzelle cookies using a pizzelle iron!
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 stick unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- Beat eggs and sugar in a mixing bowl approximately 2 to 3 minutes, until they’re fluffy and a light yellow color.
- While still beating, slowly drizzle in melted and cooled butter and add vanilla extract.
- Using a spatula, fold in flour and baking powder just until incorporated into the wet ingredients.
- Bake one medium cookie scoop of batter (about 1 1/2 tablespoons) per mold in pizzelle maker until golden brown, about 30 seconds. Remove and cool on rack.
- chocolate pizzelle cookies — omit vanilla extract in recipe above, adding 3 tablespoons of quality unsweetened cocoa powder sifted and 3 tablespoons of granulated sugar.
- traditional anise pizzelle cookies — add 1/2 teaspoon anise seed to recipe above.
- almond pizzelle cookies — substitute one tablespoon pure almond extract for the vanilla extract in recipe above.
Tips for making perfect pizzelles:
1| Even if you’re using a nonstick pizzelle maker, you may still need to mist it lightly with oil before the first use.
2| Place your batter slightly behind the center of the mold because it will spread forward as you close the lid. I highly recommend a medium cookie scoop for measuring perfect portions and releasing the batter easily.
3| Speaking of closing the lid, do it slowly to allow steam to escape easily and not burn the heck out of your fingers. Don’t ask…
4| Have a cooling rack easily accessible next to the pizzelle maker. I’ve found that the best workflow for me is to use a wooden spatula to remove the cooked pizzelles from the maker to the cooling rack, start another batch of pizzelles cooking, and then move the cooled pizzelles to a stack to make room for the next round of hot ones.
5| The pizzelles will be very flexible when you remove them from the pizzelle iron, and then they will crisp up as they cool. I actually prefer them after they sit for about a day, but they don’t often last that long! If you want to mold your pizzelles into a different shape, do it while they’re still warm and flexible.
These days, making this vanilla pizzelle recipe has become a family Christmas Eve tradition. I’m hoping that my kids continue it when they’re out on their own someday!38