This is the BEST Ricotta Cookie recipe. Light & airy in texture, not too sweet and packed with fresh ricotta cheese. You’ll love this version of the classic Italian cookie.
Ricotta cheese added to anything is a win in my book. It’s a wonderful ingredient because the uses range from savory to sweet and anything in between. After making these cookies though, I’m kind of obsessed with the texture and taste this cheese adds.
These cookies are creamy, delicate clouds. The other characteristic of this this cookie, which makes it instantly recognizable, is the royal icing cap with rainbow nonpareil sprinkles. Not only delish, but pretty too!
I’ve worked on this recipe for a long time, and while they always came out very good, the bite was still a little stiff & bready. Until, I made changes that changed it all.
How to make perfect ricotta cookies
Two ingredients need special attention for perfect ricotta cookies; the cheese and the flour.
Cheese: Unless you’re able to source high quality, small batch ricotta cheese (you want the cheese to be more dry than milky), you’ll need to drain out most of the moisture. I do this by blotting the cheese with paper towels until most of the moisture is soaked up. You could also use a cheese cloth and allow the cheese to drain in a sieve overnight.
*UPDATE* I’ve found that the Galabani brand Whole Milk Ricotta is an excellent choice for this cookie and can be used straight from the container (without straining).
Flour: Out of all the recipes I’ve seen for Ricotta Cookies, they call for all purpose flour. Don’t get me wrong, you can end up with a delicious product using all AP flour. BUT! When I tried out the recipe with Tipo 00 flour…. Phenomenal.
What is Tipo 00 Flour?
Tipo 00 flour is a very fine, powdery Italian flour which is normally used for making fresh pasta & pizza dough (it can be found in most grocery stores I believe, in the baking aisle near the different flour types. You can also find it here, on Amazon). I found that by blending this specialty flour with all purpose flour, it made this cookie ridiculously soft & pillowy. You can still use straight up all purpose flour for this recipe!
Other than fussing a little with the cheese & finding the right flour, these cookies are pretty easy to make. The batter comes together quickly and you can scoop it out right onto the tray. Once the cookies are finished baking, top with a simple glaze made from powdered sugar & milk. Decorate with classic non-peril sprinkles and you’ll have perfect ricotta cookies!
*Lemon Variation of Ricotta Cookies*
If you’re looking for something different, try adding a pop of lemon! Add the zest of two lemons to the dough and sub 1 tbsp of lemon extract for the glaze in place of the milk. I also added yellow food coloring to my glaze, decorated with white sprinkles!
For the Cookies
- 1 c unsalted butter softened
- 2 c granulated sugar
- 2 eggs room temp
- 15 oz Ricotta cheese room temp, drained of excess moisture (I recommend using Galbani Whole Milk Ricotta- no need to strain!)
- 2 c all purpose flour
- 256 g of Tipo 00 flour 128g of Tipo 00 equates to almost 1 cup of AP flour. You can sub the 256g here for 1 ¾ cups of AP if needed
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
For the Glaze
- 3 tbsp milk
- 1 1/2 c powdered sugar
- 1/4 tsp extract of your choice (vanilla, anise, lemon, almond are all GREAT options!)
- Non-peril sprinkles for the tops!
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the butter & sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs and ricotta cheese. Combine.
- In a separate bowl, sift together both flours (or the total of 3 ¾c all purpose if you don't have the Tipo 00 flour), baking powder and salt.
- With the mixer on the lowest speed setting, slowly add the flour mixture into the wet ingredients. Stop mixing once the batter is fully combined. Do not overmix.
- Using a tablespoon sized cookie scoop, drop the batter onto the sheet pan.
- Bake for about 10-12 minutes, or until puffy and barely golden brown. These are easy to over bake; pull them out of the oven once they start to brown.
- Remove from oven, allow to cool for a few minutes on the tray before moving them to a cooling rack to fully cool.
- Prepare the glaze by mixing the milk, sugar & extract into a bowl. Drizzle over the cookies and promptly sprinkle with nonperils. Allow to sit until glaze harden.