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Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies | Gluten Free

Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies are a deliciously chewy treat that’s naturally gluten free. Made with ground almonds and cocoa powder, these subtly sweet cookies are perfect for any occasion.

Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies stacked on each other.

If you are craving a light and chewy treat, then these Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies are for you. You’re going to love this slightly sweet and flavorful cookie that’s great to make ahead.

This recipe was passed down to me from my Zia Lina. I remember this cookie being served at the holidays, but it’s a great treat to have year round. I have since tweaked the recipe a bit adding more cocoa powder to play up that chocolate flavor.

Also, since the original recipe called for Paneangeli, an Italian vanilla baking powder, I substituted baking powder and vanilla extract. If you do happen to have Paneangeli, you can use that in place of the baking powder and vanilla in this recipe.

Plate full of Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies.

Gluten-free Italian Cookies

Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies are also naturally gluten free thanks to the crushed almonds acting as the “flour” for the cookies.

With this recipe, I recommend grinding almonds in the food processor rather than using almond flour. You want a bit of a crunch with this cookie.

There are other naturally gluten-free Italian cookies out there as well. Be on the lookout for anything made with almond flour – a common ingredient in Italian baking.

Amaretti Cookies are a great gluten-free cookie option. Moreover, you are going to love that this cookie is crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside.

Lemon Amaretti Cookies are another version of this chewy cookie confection. Filled with tasty lemony flavor, this cookie keeps well and is great for any occasion.

Lemon Polenta Cake is not a cookie, but a naturally gluten-free cake that’s made with cornmeal!

Stacked Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies.

Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies

This recipe comes together fast and is super easy to make. The only piece of equipment you need other than a cookie sheet is a food processor.

You could use almond flour or almond meal for this recipe, but it would give you a much different texture. Almond flour uses blanched (peeled) almonds, while almond meal is whole ground almonds. If you wanted to skip the of grinding your own almonds, I would recommend almond meal over almond flour.

Firstly, you will need to grind the almonds. Here I use about 2 1/4 cups of almonds to start with, which is about 12 ounces. Then, place it in the food processor with the internal mixing blade attached. Blend until the almonds resemble a fine ground.

ground almonds in a food processor.

If you prefer a crunchier cookie, you could grind the almonds less. However, I find that the ideal texture is when the almonds are ground to nearly the consistency of flour.

Next, pour the almonds into a large mixing bowl. Then, stir in the sugar, cocoa powder, and baking powder. Add in the beaten eggs, vanilla, and almond extract.

batter in a glass mixing bowl with checkered cloth in the background.

The batter will be dense, but continue mixing until the dough is evenly combined. This can take up to a minute.

Roll Italian almond chocolate cookies into balls and coat in powdered sugar

Lastly, use a cookie scoop to measure about 1 inch balls of cookie dough. Use your hands to roll the dough into a ball. Then, toss the cookies in powdered sugar and place on a lined cookie sheet about a two inches apart.

Cookies rolled in powdered sugar on lined baking sheet.

Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until the cookies are just set. The cookies will be soft. Let them cool on the baking pan for about 5 minutes before moving to a rack to cool completely.

Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies cooling on wire cooling rack.

Italians make some of the most delicious cookies out there! Be sure to check out these other favorite Italian cookie recipes:

Limoncello Ricotta Cookies

Italian Thumbprint Cookies

Butter Cookies

Almond Ricotta Cookies

Amaretti Cookies

Cannoli Cookies

Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies on a wood cutting board with a checkered napkin.

For another delicious holiday cookie, be sure to try these White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies. And for a fun twist on chocolate chip cookies, be sure to try these Triple Chip Cookies!

I hope you love this recipe for Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies! Be sure to comment below if you try them.

Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies stacked on each other.
Print Recipe
5 from 6 votes

Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies

Italian Almond Chocolate Cookie are a slightly sweet and moist cookie that's naturally gluten free. Great for holidays or with a cup of espresso or coffee.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time14 mins
Total Time24 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: Almond Cookies, Cocoa Cookies, gluten free
Servings: 2 dozen
Calories: 117kcal
Cost: 6


  • food processor
  • baking sheet


  • 2 ¼ cups almonds, finely ground (about 12 ounces)
  • cup sugar
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar


  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchement or a baking mat; set aside.
  • Place almonds in a food processor fitted with the chopping/mixing blade. Process until the almonds are very finely ground; almost to a flour-like consistency.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together ground almonds, sugar, cocoa powder, and baking powder. Stir in eggs, vanilla extract, and almond extract until mixture is combined.
  • Place the powdered sugar in a small bowl. Use a small cookie scoop to scoop out 1 inch balls of the dough. Use your hands to roll the dough into a ball shape. Then roll the ball in powdered sugar just to coat. Place the cookie on the baking sheet leaving about an inch and a half between each cookie.
  • Bake for 12-14 minutes or until the cookies are just set. Cool in the pan for 5 minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool competely.



These delicious cookies can be made ahead and kept in an airtight container at room temperature for four days. You can freeze in an airtight container for up to a month. 


Calories: 117kcal
Italian Almond Chocolate Cookies
Recipe Rating


Sunday 28th of November 2021

Recipe looks yummy. Can I make the dough a few days in advance of baking?


Thursday 2nd of December 2021

Yes! You can make up to a week in advance. Enjoy!

Candace Curtis

Friday 13th of August 2021

HI, just found your recipe for chocolate almond cookies. Can I use regular almond flour in place of the ground almonds? If so, how much flour would I use, or would I just use the same amount as calls for almonds in the recipe, the 2 1/4 Cups? Thanks so much.


Friday 13th of August 2021

You can substitute the same amount of almond flour for the crushed almonds. Enjoy!


Monday 22nd of February 2021

Love Italian cookies and this one is a winner in our house!


Monday 22nd of February 2021

These cookies were so delicious! And I love that they're naturally gluten-free! Win win!

Pam Greer

Monday 22nd of February 2021

I love family recipes like this!! I think the extra cocoa powder was a great tweak!