Crazy for Crust

Lemon Snowball Cookies

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Lemon Snowball Cookies – an easy wedding cookie recipe filled with lemon zest, juice, and extract. These are the perfect tea cake cookies and a delicious addition to a holiday cookie platter.

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EASY Lemon Snowball Cookies - this is my favorite wedding cookie recipe! Add lemon zest, juice, and extract to your favorite tea cakes to make the perfect lemon cookie.

Last week our annual American Girl Doll catalogue came. I always look forward to that day because I can usually write an entire blog post about the insanity that appears on the pages. Like the time I wrote about the $300 ice cream parlor (for dolls) and the VW Beetle that costs more than my car payment.

Jordan has loved those dolls for years and even though I don’t agree with paying $30 for a doll swim suit, I’m happy to spend the money to get a dolls hair brushed by a professional, because the longer I do that, the longer Jordan will play with dolls. Little girls play with dolls. Girls that play with dolls don’t like boys and don’t turn into nasty teenagers.

The arrival of the catalogue, however, was bittersweet this year. You see…last week Jordan had me take all of the doll stuff out of her room. The dolls, the clothes, the bunk bed my dad made…they’re all now in the garage, sitting on a shelf…collecting dust only to be used for the occasional play date with a younger friend.

And just like that, my little girl who plays with dolls is no more. No more obsessing over the American Girl catalogue…no more tea parties…no more shopping for outrageously expensive doll lunches that are allergy free.

It made me a little teary, if I’m being honest. What’s next…BOYS?

Lemon Snowball Cookies

Something that never changes? The love y’all have for my Mom’s Russian Tea Cake recipe. That one recipe, while so normal (and eerily similar to Betty Crocker) has satisfied so many people. They’re a staple in our house at every holiday. I’ve fallen in love with tinkering with the original recipe, just because that’s what I do.

There were the Stuffed Snowballs (with peanut butter cups), the ones with chocolate chips instead of nuts. I turned them into chocolate and pumpkin spice and stuffed them with Rolos. I’ve even made them strawberry flavor and taste like cake batter…all from one little cookie recipe.

I have a few more Snowball Cookie flavors to share with you over the next few months. First up: Lemon Snowball Cookies. My most favorite version of all!

EASY Lemon Snowball Cookies - this is my favorite wedding cookie recipe! Add lemon zest, juice, and extract to your favorite tea cakes to make the perfect lemon cookie.

The lemon snowball cookies recipe is nut-free, so they’re perfect for those with allergies.

The lemon flavor comes from lemon juice and zest in the batter, as well as a touch of lemon extract. There’s also lemon zest in the powdered sugar you roll them in.

Snowballs, tea cakes, wedding cookies, whatever you call them, they’re always dependable because they’re always delicious. And they’re easy to make! Just a few ingredients, no eggs or leavening, mixed for a few minutes and baked. No chilling needed, no special ingredients. There’s a reason why they’re such a popular cookie: because they’re addicting.

Notes about the recipe: without fail, every time I post a snowball recipe I get comments that they don’t turn out because the batter doesn’t come together. There are a few reasons for this:

  1. Do NOT pack your flour or powdered sugar.
  2. Do NOT use anything besides REAL butter. Margarine and butter spreads need not apply.
  3. Because there is a lot of flour in this batter and not a ton of liquid, it takes time for it to come together. If you’re using a stand mixer, this will happen pretty quickly. If you’re using a hand mixer or beating by hand, it will take a long time. Just keep mixing and the dough will form a thick cookie dough.

Now that I’ve made to-die-for lemon snowball cookies, I can’t wait to try other citrus flavors…orange with chocolate chips or key lime with macadamia nuts!!

Buttery Lemon Snowball Cookies
3.16 from 39 votes
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Servings: 40 -44 cookies

Lemon Snowball Cookies

Lemon Snowball Cookies - an easy wedding cookie recipe filled with lemon zest, juice, and extract. These are the perfect tea cake cookies!


  • 1 cup unsalted butter — room temperature
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon extract — optional
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1-2 cups powdered sugar + 2 teaspoons lemon zest — for rolling


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  2. Beat butter, powdered sugar, lemon juice, lemon extract, and salt until smooth, then stir in lemon zest. Add the flour and mix until a stiff dough forms. If you're using a stand mixer, this will just take a minute or so. If you're using a hand mixer it will take much longer.
  3. Scoop tablespoon sized cookies onto your cookie sheet. These don't spread so you can crowd them a bit, leaving about 1-2" between cookies. Bake for 8-12 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking, until the cookies are no longer wet looking. Cool 10 minutes before rolling in powdered sugar.
  4. Stir powdered sugar and lemon zest together in a bowl. Roll cookies to coat. If desired, do a second roll once they're completely cool, so they're perfectly white.
  5. Store cookies in an airtight container for up to 3 days or freeze for up to one month.

Nutrition Information

Amount per serving (2 cookies) — Calories: 133, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Cholesterol: 24mg, Sodium: 994mg, Carbohydrates: 13g, Sugar: 12g

Click here to see the complete list of Lemon Recipes!


Strawberry Snowballs

Strawberry Chocolate Chip Snowballs (4 of 5)

Pumpkin Spice Snowballs

Pumpkin Spice Snowballs (5 of 6)

Reese’s Stuffed Snowballs

Reese's Stuffed Snowballs (2 of 2)w

Sweets from friends:
Peppermint Snowball Cookies by Mom on Timeout
Pear Praline Wedding Cookies by Confessions of a Cookbook Queen
Chocolate Kiss Powder Puff Cookies by Averie Cooks

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  1. I am not looking forward to the day my daughter becomes interested in boys. She also enjoys getting her American Girl catalog, and I agree that those prices are outrageous! Your cookies are so perfect! I would definitely get a powdered sugar “mustache” from sneaking too many of these! 

  2. These are so you…the snowball cookies, the lemon!! And yeah we are sooooo done with dolls too. She never was really a ‘doll girl’. Stuffed animals, yes, but not really dolls. It’s all been replaced with youtube videos…

  3. Hello! I love you recipes i just wish you would write Grams also!! Would you?
    Id really appreciate that! Thanks!

  4. Wow, another variety and such a punch of lemon. Yum!

  5. I really think I need to come be your taste-tester! These make my mouth water just thinking about them and the orange with chocolate chips sound fantastic too! (Too bad taste a vision hasn’t been invented yet so we could sample online)

  6. I love snowball cookies and I love lemony desserts! These treats combine those two perfectly! 🙂

  7. I agree.. I bought Kailey *gasp* 2 dolls last year because she asked… and she was in 7th grade. We even made a trip on July 4th to the AG store for a tea party (bless my husband).

    Time goes too fast. 🙂

    On another note, your lemon snowballs look amazing! My sister and oldest daughter are crazy for lemon so I’m adding these to my Christmas cookie list this year!

  8. I’d like to offer a tip for a quick and easy way to coat the cookies in the powdered sugar. Put 1 cup of  powdered sugar in a gallon size zip lock bag.  Put completely cooled cookies in bag and seal bag. Gently roll the bag around in your hands, turning it over in different directions until cookies are coated.  If you need to you can add more sugar at any time. When you are finished, just  remove cookies from the bag and pitch it. 

  9. Ooooh I have lemons to use up and these cookies sound delightful!! I definitely need to bake a batch!

  10. Perfect in practically every way! I’d pucker up for these sweeties any day.

  11. It sounds too little lemon and lemon flavour to have the punch!. Are those measurements correct? Has anyone made them?

    • That’s why I added the extract – it helps with the punch of lemon flavor. Adding more juice won’t do it (and will change the texture of the cookie). You could add more zest for a more natural punch.

  12. These were great tasting. However, mine fell apart after dusting with the powdered sugar?

  13. My mother band i have been making these for years. However for the best version of these snowball cookies, it is necessary to use CAKE FLOUR.

  14. Self rising flour or plain flour

  15. Hi Dorothy! This was a great, and easy recipe to make. Thanks for posting!

    One question for you, do you happen to have the nutritional information on them?


  16. I join you in the sad part about no more dolls, but I’m glad about these lemon treats!

  17. Make this same tea cake every year as well and done my own chocolate chip version too which I dust with a mix of powdered sugar and unsweetened cocoa (so good). Excited to try this lemon version, but one question, does the zest keep the powdered sugar from drying? Since the zest has oil, I’m thinking it would make the sugar stay damp. Could more zest just be added to the cookie dough without compromising the texture?

  18. There are a few cookies here I want to make for the holidays. I saw your site on FB. I am a Celiac and so eat gluten Free and It seems I can make these cookies with Gluten Free flour. Thanks for these interesting cookies to make. I searched for these doing a comparison of ingredients and it seems they are the same. thank You

  19. I am very new to baking. Can you tell me why they only last 3 days if not frozen?

  20. Hi, thanks for the recipe. I was wondering would it still taste the same if I omit the salt and use salted butter instead. Thanks and keep doing a great job!

  21. Hello! Thank you for this recipe! My kids loved the cookies. I made them twice in 3 days! The only problem I have is that they spread a little and look like melted snowballs. Taste and texture are great. I followed the recipe to the letter. I used a hand mixer. Oven temperature 350. I just don’t know! It could be that my cups are different from yours and therefore are not in proportion with the amount of butter. Any tips will be much appreciated!

  22. I make these cookies every year but thought your lemon version sounded so good! The problem I encountered was adding lemon zest to the powdered sugar. The zest makes the sugar clump up and it won’t stick to the cookie. I ended up saving that sugar and making a second batch, so it wasn’t a loss!

  23. Hi just made these. I changed the weights into grams because I’m in the UK and I used plain flour (which I’ve found out is all purpose flour). As with an earlier comment my cookies spread but I did use room temp butter so I’m going to try again in a few days with butter from the fridge and I’ll cool the dough before I cook. I cooked at 180 for 10 min.

  24. This is one of the most delicious recipes I have ever made. I used a tiny scoop to roll and they keep their shape! They are also so pretty on a cookie plate

  25. This may be a stupid question but if making with orange or lime juice, would you then use orange/lime extracts?

  26. I am anxious to try some of the cookie receipes. I make a lot of cookies and give as gifts for Christmas gifts to a lot of the people where I live. They call me the Cookie Queen. Thank you for posting them I will try many of them this Christmas. Merry Christmas to you. And your family. 🌲

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