Nutty Orange Snowballs Recipe
Nutty Orange Snowballs Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Nutty Orange Snowballs Recipe

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4.5 12 11
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These nutty, buttery cookies will melt in your mouth, leaving just a trace of orange flavor. An old recipe from my mom in North Dakota, they used to be reserved only for weddings and special occasions. But they're great for Christmas because they look just like snowballs! —Judith Weidner, Spearfish, South Dakota
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. Bake: 10 min./batch + cooling
MAKES:36 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. Bake: 10 min./batch + cooling
MAKES: 36 servings


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1-1/4 cups confectioners' sugar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange peel
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped hazelnuts

Nutritional Facts

1 cookie equals 107 calories, 7 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 13 mg cholesterol, 52 mg sodium, 10 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 1 g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1 fat, 1/2 starch


  1. In a large bowl, cream butter and 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in orange peel and extracts. Combine flour and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Stir in nuts.
  2. Shape into 3/4-in. balls. Place 1 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes or until bottoms are lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool completely.
  3. Place remaining confectioners' sugar in a large resealable plastic bag. Add cookies, a few at a time, and shake to coat. Store in an airtight container. Yield: 3 dozen.
Originally published as Nutty Orange Snowballs in Simple & Delicious November/December 2009, p33

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Reviewed Mar. 3, 2012

"Loved them. Gave a few away but ate the rest myself. Am going to make again soon. They're not just for Christmas."

Reviewed Feb. 14, 2012

"LOVED this recipe. Such a nice twist to have a butter cookie with orange high-lights. Course this recipe would be simple to exchange for any of the citrus flavors and or nut combinations you desire. Mine turned out great with the walnut/hazlenut combo. And I used the zest of an entire orange - way more than 1 teaspoon as the recipe called for. It was delish! Made them for Valentine's Day packaged in cute little cello bags. They were a hit. I will definitely be making these time and time again!"

Reviewed Dec. 30, 2011


Reviewed Dec. 30, 2011

"Made these today using orange zest instead of just grated peel. Next time I think i will add a touch of orange food coloring to give it a color other than dough. The powdered sugar did not ahere to it as well as in the photo. Decreased the amount of nuts to 1/3 cups because it seemed to be a lot. Tasted a bit flour-like to me and were more "crumbly" than melt in your mouth type, but the family enjoyed them."

Reviewed Dec. 25, 2011

"Just made these yesterday for our Christmas get-together. I couldn`t find orange extract so I used lemon extract and also added more orange zest. For the nuts, I used almonds; they were really finely crushed, powdery, and the package size was just what I needed.

They are really, really good! Making them into balls was a bit time consuming but then I baked 28 in just one batch so it wasn`t that bad.
Will definitely make these again, and not just for Christmas. :D"

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