Lemon Snowball Cookies

3.4 from 5 votes

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!!

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!
3.4 from 5 votes
Yield 40 -44 cookies
Serving Size 2 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


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Store cookies in an airtight container for up to 3 days or freeze for up to one month.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 2cookies | Calories: 133kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 994mg | Sugar: 12g

Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate

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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49 CommentsLeave a comment or review

  1. 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!

    1. I can only speak to my experience since I’m not a food scientist, and 3 days is as long as they ever last before we eat them all.

  2. 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

  3. 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?

    1. I didn’t notice a problem with the zest in the powdered sugar, but you can omit and add more in the cookie if you like!

  4. 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?


  5. 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.

    1. I’m not quite sure why that happened. Did the dough come together okay? Mine are usually pretty stable cookies. Did you make any changes.

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

    1. 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.