Deanna’s Gluten Free Italian Cookies

12 May

These are not paleo compliments of one ingredient.  I know, I know this is my paleo website, but these are too awesome not to share with you!  I love Italian cookies.  I especially love my homemade Italian cookies because they are not the consistency of hockey pucks.  If you grew up in an Italian family you know many a family who makes these cookies hard as a rock.  Of course the original version of this recipe is awesome, and full of stuff that isn’t exactly awesome for you.  So I’ve transformed my original, soft, Italian cookie recipe into this soft, gluten free, white sugar free (well, the nonpareils have sugar, but that’s it), soy free, mostly dairy free version.  It is on the way to paleo.  I’ve made paleo versions of my cookies, I prefer this version.  Where is this recipe coming from?  For mother’s day all my mom wanted was to come over and bake Italian cookies with me.  She wanted the regular version, but since we were already cooking, I made another batch of healthier cookies to take to work tomorrow.  When you work with someone who can’t have gluten it is most considerate to bring goodies they can eat too 🙂  This recipe makes 4.5 dozen cookies.

Deanna's gluten free Italian cookies

Deanna’s gluten free Italian cookies



1/4 cup palm shortening

2 tbl. Earth Balance soy free buttery spread

2 tbl. coconut oil

1/4 cup honey

2/3 cup organic blue agave

4 large eggs

1/4 cup canola oil

1 tbl. anise extract*

1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk beverage

4 3/4 cups Cup4Cup gluten free flour blend (this is the non-paleo ingredient)

1 tbl. + 1 tsp. baking powder

*Since not everyone loves anise I make these cookies with a mild anise flavor.  The more you love it, the more extract you should add!


1 cup coconut oil

60 drops liquid stevia

1/2 tsp. anise extract


Liquid stevia

Liquid stevia


In your stand mixer with paddle attachment cream together shortening, Earth Balance, and coconut oil.  Blend in honey.  Blend in eggs, agave, canola oil, anise, and coconut milk beverage.  Mix in 4 cups of the gluten free flour and 1 tbl. baking powder.  Mix in the final 3/4 cup gluten free flour and 1 tsp. baking powder.  Preheat oven to 350°F.  Use a 2 tablespoon size cookie scoop to dollop dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Bake the cookies two baking sheets at a time, one on the upper oven rack and one on the lower.  Bake them for 5 1/2-6 minutes, swap the racks (upper to lower, lower to upper), and bake for an additional 5 1/2-6 minutes.  Cool the cookies, then place the cookies on a baking sheet in the freezer for about 15 minutes so they are cool to the touch.  This is key, if your cookies are warm your icing will melt!  In your stand mixer with whisk attachment whisk coconut oil until completely smooth and creamy.  Whisk in 60 drops (the top of the bottle is a dropper, so just count 60 drops as you squeeze) of liquid stevia.  Whisk in ansie extract.  Dip each cool cookie in the icing then sprinkle with nonpareils.  Store cookies in a sealed container in the refrigerator.


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