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Russian Tea Cakes Cookie Recipe

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I remember fondly the first time I had these irresistible cookies. It was on a day that forever changed my life. It was on my wedding day over 31 years ago. 

My husband’s mother said she was bringing cookies to our wedding reception. She told me serving cookies was a family tradition. Little did I know I would fall in love with her cookies too.

Russian Tea Cakes Cookie

Russian Tea Cakes Cookie

Russian Tea Cakes are also known as Mexican Wedding Cookies, Snowballs, Pecan Dreams, and Tea Cakes, which are easy to make, crunchy sugar-dusted nutballs that are not too sweet, and melt-in-your-mouth delicious!

My husband’s mother is no longer with us, but I have all her favorite recipes in her family’s cookbook. You will be seeing more of her delicious recipes soon. 

This post may contain affiliate links. That means that if you purchase from one of these links, I will make a small commission.

How to Make Russian Tea Cakes Recipe

Making these buttery cookies is so quick and easy. You probably have all the ingredients in your pantry.

Cookie Ingredients 

  • 1 cup butter
  • Two teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups sifted flour
  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar (plus more for topping the cookies)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat your oven to  375 degrees F.

Equipment Needed 

  • Stand Mixer with a bowl
  • Sifter
  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Sheet pan
  • Silpat
  • Cooling rack
  • Cutting board and knife


Sift the flour and place it in a mixer bowl with sugar and butter, cream them together, and add vanilla.

Sift the flour

Sift the flour

Chop nuts and mix into the butter and sugar mixture.

Chop Pecans

Chopped  Nuts

Line the sheet pan with parchment paper or a Silpat.

Prepare pan for cookies

Prepare the pan for cookies.

Measure out dough and roll dough into a ball using a cookie scoop. 

Roll dough into a ball

Roll dough into a ball

Place dough balls on the cookie sheet about 1.5′ to 2″ apart. Place in a preheated 375-degree oven for 10 to 15 minutes. The bottoms should be lighted brown. Place hot cookie sheets on a trivet.

Cookies ready for the oven

Cookies ready for the oven

Pick up hot cookies with two spoons.

Use spoons to lift hot cookies

Use spoons to lift hot cookies.


 Add Sugar Topping 

Place the hot cookies in a bowl of confectioners sugar roll, then in the sugar to coat. Then place hot sugared cookies on a wire cooling rack to cool.

Roll hot cookies in confectioners sugar

Roll hot cookies in confectioners sugar and return to wire cooling rack 

Allowing the cookies to sit a few moments in the sugar

Allowing the cookies to sit a few moments in the sugar

Cookies on cooling rack

Cookies on a cooling rack

I after the cookies cooled added more confectioners sugar with one of these.

Buttery Tea Cake Cookies

Russian Tea Cakes Cookies

Delicious shortbread dough loaded with chopped pecans and dusted with powder sugar.
4.83 from 23 votes
Print Recipe Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American, Mexican, Russian
Keyword: German Tea Cake, Russian Tea Cakes Cookie Recipe, Snowball Cookie
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 30
Calories: 333kcal


  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla extract
  • 2 cups sifted flour
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 cup chopped nuts


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Place a Silpat or a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet.
  • Using a stand mixer with a large bowl, cream together butter, sugar, and flour.
  • Mix in chopped nuts.
  • Using a cookie scoop to measure out cookies
  • Roll them into a ball
  • Place them on the baking sheet about 1.5" apart
  • Bake for 10 to 15 minutes
  • Place about a cup of confectioners sugar in a bowl with low sides
  • Place the hot pan on a trivet
  • Remove hot cookies with two spoons and drop them into the confectioner's sugar.
  • Roll the hot cookies in the sugar to coat and place them on a wire rack to cool completely


Calories: 333kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 163mg | Potassium: 84mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 567IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 2mg
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Tried this recipe?Mention @kippiathome or tag #kippiathome!

When my children were little, I read this book about drinking tea. It is a fun book to read while sipping hot tea and eating tea cakes. Then, make your tea in a samovar for a special treat. 


Tea and Cookies

Tea and Cookies

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Recipe Rating

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alice muratore

Wednesday 20th of December 2023

how much sugar is used in the first step, the part where you are creaming the butter sugar and flour. This ingredient seems to be left out. The confectioners sugar is for after the cookie is baked.


Thursday 8th of September 2022

The cookies in the jars are the cutest!! I have a ton of these jars saved from mini pretzel salads that I could use for this! Thanks for the recipe too – it sounds delicious. foodle


Thursday 16th of December 2021

So I followed the recipe and noticed that the batter was really super dry. Wouldn't even ball together no matter how many times I tried. Added another 1/2 cup of butter and it seemed to ball up better. In the oven so we will see how they turn out.


Monday 6th of December 2021

How many should it make? 24?


Friday 1st of October 2021

In place of the nuts, I added 1/2 - 3/4 cup of the mini chocolate chips. Was thinking; like for Christmas, a person could add in some finely chopped dried cherries or dried cranberries.

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