Kourabiedes Recipe: Traditional Greek Butter Cookies

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Kourabiedes Recipe: Traditional Greek Butter Cookies

Recipe by GreekFood
Course: CookiesCuisine: greekDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time





Kourabiedes (Greek: κουραμπιέδες, kourabiethes) are traditional Greek almond butter biscuits, typically shaped into crescents and dusted with powdered sugar. They are a popular treat during the winter season and are often served alongside other traditional Greek sweets, such as melomakarona and loukoumades. Kourabiedes are made with a simple dough of butter, flour, sugar, almonds, and flavorings such as lemon zest, rose water, or orange blossom water. The dough is then shaped into crescents and baked until lightly golden brown. Once cooled, the cookies are dusted with powdered sugar until they are generously coated.
Kourabiedes are known for their buttery, crumbly texture, and delicate sweetness. The powdered sugar adds a touch of sweetness and crunch, while the almond flavor provides a nutty depth. They are a delicious and festive treat that will please any crowd.


  • Butter: 1 cup (at room temperature)

  • Powdered Sugar: 1/2 cup for the dough, more for coating

  • All-purpose Flour: 2-3 cups

  • Almond or Walnut Pieces: 1 cup (toasted and finely chopped)

  • Vanilla Extract: 1 teaspoon

  • Brandy or Rose Water: 2 tablespoons

  • Baking Powder: 1 teaspoon

  • Salt: A pinch


  • Cream the Butter and Sugar: In a large bowl, beat the butter until creamy. Gradually add 1/2 cup powdered sugar and continue beating until fluffy.
  • Add Flavors: Stir in the vanilla extract and brandy (or rose water).
  • Combine Dry Ingredients: In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Gradually add this to the butter mixture, mixing until a dough forms. If the dough is too sticky, add more flour.
  • Add Nuts: Fold in the chopped nuts.
  • Shape Cookies: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Shape the dough into small balls or crescents and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Bake: Bake for about 20 minutes, or until they are just starting to turn golden.
  • Coat with Sugar: While still warm, carefully roll the cookies in additional powdered sugar.
  • Cool and Serve: Let the cookies cool completely. Before serving, sift more powdered sugar over the top for a festive look.

Recipe Video

Pro Kourabiedes Tips

Here are some tips to help you perfect your Kourabiedes:

  1. Butter Quality: Use high-quality butter, as it’s the main flavor component of the cookies. It should be at room temperature for easier mixing.
  2. Toasting Nuts: Toasting the almonds or walnuts before adding them to the dough can greatly enhance their flavor. Be careful not to burn them; just a light toasting will do.
  3. Dough Consistency: The dough should be soft but not sticky. If it’s too sticky, add a little more flour. However, be cautious as too much flour can make the cookies hard.
  4. Uniform Size: Make sure all your cookies are roughly the same size. This ensures even baking. Using a small cookie scoop can help.
  5. Gentle Handling: Kourabiedes are delicate. Handle them gently, especially when rolling them in powdered sugar while they’re still warm.
  6. Cooling Process: Allow the cookies to cool slightly before rolling them in sugar, but they should still be warm. This helps the sugar stick better. After they’re completely cooled, you can dust them with more powdered sugar for a snowy effect.
  7. Storage: Store the cookies in an airtight container. They can last for several weeks and typically taste better as they age.
  8. Flavor Variations: Experiment with different flavors like lemon zest, orange blossom water, or even a pinch of cinnamon for a different twist.
  9. Baking Time: Watch your oven as baking times can vary. The cookies should be just golden and not too brown.
  10. Sifting Sugar: For an even and fine coating, sift the powdered sugar over the cookies.

Remember, making Kourabiedes is as much about the process as it is about the result. Enjoy the baking experience!

What to serve with Kourabiedes?

Kourabiedes, with their sweet, buttery flavor, pair wonderfully with a variety of beverages and other treats. Here are some suggestions on what to serve with them:

  1. Coffee and Tea: A strong Greek coffee or a cup of aromatic tea like Earl Grey or Chamomile complements the sweetness of the cookies. The robust flavors of the coffee or the subtle notes of the tea provide a nice balance.
  2. Dessert Wines: Sweet dessert wines like a Muscat or a Port can be a delightful pairing. The richness of these wines matches well with the buttery texture of the cookies.
  3. Hot Chocolate: A mug of hot chocolate, especially during the colder months, makes for a cozy and indulgent pairing.
  4. Ice Cream or Sorbet: Serve Kourabiedes alongside a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a refreshing sorbet. The contrast between the warm cookies and cold ice cream can be delightful.
  5. Fruit: Fresh fruit like berries or sliced apples can add a refreshing, tart contrast to the sweet and rich cookies.
  6. Yogurt or Cream: Greek yogurt or lightly whipped cream can be served with Kourabiedes for a creamy addition.
  7. Nut and Cheese Platter: A platter with a variety of nuts, cheeses, and perhaps some dried fruit can complement the nutty flavor of the Kourabiedes.
  8. Fruit Compotes or Jams: Serving these cookies with a side of fruit compote or jam can add a nice, tangy contrast to their sweetness.
  9. Sparkling Water or Lemonade: For a non-alcoholic and refreshing option, sparkling water with a twist of lemon or a glass of homemade lemonade can be very refreshing.

Remember, the best pairing depends on personal preference and the occasion. Whether it’s a casual gathering or a formal event, these pairings can enhance the enjoyment of Kourabiedes.

Servings, Prep time, Cooking time & Calories

Here’s a breakdown of servings, preparation time, cooking time, and estimated calories for the Kourabiedes recipe:


  • This recipe typically yields about 24 to 30 cookies, depending on the size you shape them.

Prep Time

  • Preparation time: Approximately 20 to 30 minutes. This includes the time to cream the butter and sugar, mix the ingredients, and shape the dough into cookies.

Cooking Time

  • Baking time: About 20 minutes per batch. Keep in mind that oven temperatures can vary, so it’s good to check the cookies around the 15-minute mark.


  • Calories per cookie: This can vary based on the size of the cookies and the exact ingredients used, but on average, each Kourabiedes may contain about 150 to 200 calories. This estimation assumes a moderate use of powdered sugar for coating and a standard recipe without any extra additions.

Remember, these values are approximate and can vary based on specific ingredients used and individual preparation methods. Enjoy your baking!