Italian Ricotta Cookies (Orange and Lime)

Italian Ricotta Cookies recipe (Orange and Lime), pillow soft, light, cakey

Italian Ricotta Cookies (Orange and Lime)

This recipe for Italian Ricotta cookies makes five dozen of the lightest, fluffiest, most pillowy cookies. Ever. Flavored with orange and lime zest; topped with a simple glaze and a sprinkling of ground, toasted almonds, they are an explosion of deliciousness in your mouth. 

My friend Lisa over at The Cutting Edge of Ordinary posted these cookies on her site and I was determined to make them. While I have slightly modified the recipe she posted, the promise she made about how light and fluffy these cookies are holds true with these.

One of the changes I made with the cookies was to flavor them with citrus zest; for these I divided the batter and made half with orange zest and half with lime zest. I used the zest both in the cookie dough, and in the glaze on top. Not only did that add an amazing, fresh taste, but it added little bits of color that made them beautiful, too.

In her cookies, she got an almond element by adding almond extract to the glaze. I chose, instead to add a sprinkling of ground, toasted almonds to the tops of the cookies. By adding them while the glaze was still wet, they adhered well.

Additionally, I reduced the amount of sugar in the cookie dough. I tend to do this with nearly everything I bake, but I figured that with a sugary glaze (which I also reduced the sugar in), the cookies themselves didn’t need to be quite so sweet. I was glad I made this change, because they were plenty sweet enough for me.

As you can see from my modification, subtle additions can make a huge difference in any recipe. If you don’t like orange or lime, try lemon. Or, combine the two zests in the cookies and the glaze. Alter the extracts you use in a recipe to create an entirely different taste. It’s a very easy thing to tailor a recipe to suit what you prefer.

But, you must try these cookies. They are simple to prepare; they really are a taste explosion. They are the bomb. *wink*


Italian Ricotta Cookies (Orange and Lime)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Ricotta, the zest of oranges and limes, and toasted almonds make these pillow-soft cookies a flavor explosion.
Recipe type: Dessert, Snack
Serves: 5 dozen
  • ½ pound unsalted butter (2 sticks or 16 tablespoons)
  • 1½ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 -15 ounce container of ricotta cheese
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract (I know this seems like a lot, but yes...tablespoons)
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest, minced fine
  • 1 tablespoon lime zest, minced fine
  • ¼ cup toasted almond slices, finely ground (reserve for topping)
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream (or milk, or half and half)
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream (or milk, or half and half)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, add the butter and sugar.
  4. Beat on high until light and fluffy.
  5. Add the eggs, ricotta cheese and vanilla, beating until well combined.
  6. Scrape the bowl and blend.
  7. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and stir to combine.
  8. Gradually add the flour mixture to the ricotta mixture until well combined.
  9. Divide the dough into two and place into separate bowls.
  10. Add the orange zest to one batch and the lime zest to the other,
  11. Stir to distribute the zest through each batch of dough.
  12. Using a small cookie scoop, or a rounded teaspoonful, place balls of dough on the prepared baking sheets.
  13. Place the baking sheets into the preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies are very lightly browned.
  14. Remove the cookies from the oven and allow to cool on the baking sheets for 3 minutes, then remove to a rack to cool completely.
  16. In a small bowl, combine the powdered sugar, vanilla, zest and cream and whisk until smooth.
  17. Take the completely cooled cookies and dip the tops into the glaze.
  18. Place the glazed cookies back on the rack and immediately sprinkle with toasted almonds.
  19. Repeat with the remaining cookies and allow the glaze to dry.


About P ~ The Saucy Southerner

I started cooking when I was ten years old. For me, the process of cooking, from inception of a dish, to the execution, to the washing of the pots is sheer delight. I am now retired from a business I still own, in partnership with my husband. I used to work six days a week and still cook every night. Now, I'm gardening, still cooking, always having fun and hoping to share my joy with you. Thank you for reading...and commenting! P~
This entry was posted in Baking, Cookies, Desserts, Holiday Cooking, Living in Elegant Simplicity, Saucy Southerner Recipes, Snacks. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate this recipe: