Russian Tea Cakes (No Nuts)

"These are bite-size shortbread-type cookies that are so simple and so popular. They're frequently the first cookie people will eat from my Christmas cookie tray. My mom made these every year for Christmas. She'd roll the dough into balls and we got to dunk the tops in green or red sugar crystals. Now I get to continue the tradition with my sons. My sister makes these for other holidays as well and changes the sugar color accordingly. The recipe is my mom's variation on the recipe from the old Betty Crocker "Cooky Book.""
photo by Dunja J. photo by Dunja J.
photo by Dunja J.
Ready In:
48 cookies


  • 1 cup butter or 1 cup margarine, softened
  • 12 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (I use almond extract) or 1 teaspoon almond extract (I use almond extract)
  • 2 14 cups flour
  • 14 teaspoon salt
  • 18 cup colored sugar crystals (I use red and green)


  • Preheat oven to 400°F Mix butter, sugar, and vanilla or almond extract throughly. Mix in flour and salt.
  • Roll dough into 1-inch balls and dip the tops in the colored sugar crystals. Place on greased baking sheet. (Cookies don't spread.) Bake 10 minutes or until set but not brown. Cool.

Questions & Replies

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  1. I tried this recipe...and it was HORRIBLE!!! I will never make it again.
  2. These were awesome, so easy to make. I cooked mine for 15min.
  3. So gross! Cooked for over 20 minutes and they were STILL RAW. Will never make these again! They were horrible!
  4. Its amazing! I made it in like 10min! great for parties and tea parties. It doesnt require that much effort just mix ingredients and blend and then roll into balls.
  5. Easy, easy, easy!! I mixed and rolled then my daughter did the dunking. She loved helping (she even helped roll then into balls)! Taste great too!!


I'm a stay-at-home mother who loves to cook. I try to stay pretty active -- especially since I have 2 young boys and a baby girl. I love using my church's monthly pot-luck lunch as a testing ground for new recipes. I love American Test Kitchen's, Weight Watchers, Cooking Light, & Prevention cookbooks. I have an enormous pile of recipes from magazines I want to try someday.
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