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Date-Nut Pinwheels

Pinwheel cookies with dates and walnuts are a family treasure. There are a few steps when prepping, so I sometimes freeze the dough and bake the cookies later. —Frieda Whiteley, Lisbon, Connecticut
  • Total Time
    Prep: 30 min. + chilling Bake: 10 min./batch
  • Makes
    about 9 dozen


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 packages (8 ounces each) pitted dates
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts


  • In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Beat in eggs. In another bowl, whisk flour and baking soda; gradually beat into creamed mixture. Divide dough into 3 portions; shape each into a disk. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour or until firm enough to roll.
  • For filling, place dates, water and sugar in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, until dates are tender and liquid is almost evaporated. Stir in walnuts; cool completely.
  • Roll each dough portion between 2 sheets of waxed paper into a 12x10-in. rectangle. Refrigerate 30 minutes. Remove waxed paper. Spread a third of the filling over each rectangle. Roll up tightly jelly-roll style, starting with a long side. Wrap securely. Refrigerate until firm.
  • Preheat oven to 350°. Unwrap and cut dough crosswise into 1/3-in. slices. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes or until set. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool.
Nutrition Facts
1 cookie: 67 calories, 2g fat (1g saturated fat), 8mg cholesterol, 21mg sodium, 12g carbohydrate (7g sugars, 1g fiber), 1g protein.
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  • Debra
    Dec 18, 2019

    These are a family favorite since childhood! A tip from my family to yours is to use an old fashion cast meat/foot grinder with medium grind attachment and take whole pitted dates and whole walnuts and grind up before going on the stove. Then cool. It makes spreading on chilled rolled out dough much easier and finished cookies even better. We freeze rolls of these in wax paper with ends twisted to have available as long as possible!

  • _nlfPA
    Oct 1, 2019

    This is my husband's favorite cookie. I always make them for my cookie trays at Christmas. I freeze dates when they are in the store at holiday time and then I have them on hand to make these all year long.

  • Randy
    Dec 7, 2017

    First time using this recipe and they turned out great! Directions are accurate to the letter. Used parchment paper on dark cookie sheets so I baked at 375 for 10 minutes. Cookie is tender on the inside and slightly crisp on the outside.

  • t2z
    Dec 4, 2016

    I discovered pre-chopped dates contain they don't stick together? Next time I will chop my own so I'll have control over the sugar. They were very stiff to roll for me so I'm going to try a little less flour also and a little less sugar in the dough. I would also like to try lemon zest in the dough. Very good!!!

  • Luija43OK
    Oct 28, 2015

    These are a blast from past, cookies from children they are wonderful

  • jmkasprak
    Nov 23, 2014

    These are fantastic. To fit my schedule, I made the date mixture and mixed up the dough one day, then assembled the next day. I still have a roll in the freezer available to pull out when I need a quick dessert. They're quite impressive looking.

  • mizfixit
    Oct 19, 2012

    This is my family's favorite cookie at Christmas. It's always the first thing to get eaten and the first thing to disappear.These are a bit of work, but well worth it. I usually have to use around 4 1/2 C. of flour in the dough--otherwise, while baking they tend to spread into an oblong shape. If you cook the date filling too much it will be difficult to spread--add a little water back to the mixture to make it more spreadable. I have frozen the dough rolls up to a month before baking (wrapped in waxed paper, then put in a 9"x13" cake pan with lid.) Also, these cookies freeze well. I usually make them in November for Christmas. I would say these could easily be frozen up to 3 months.

  • puffybloomers
    Jul 8, 2010

    very good,everybody loves them

  • krish96
    Dec 15, 2007

    No comment left