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Chinese Almond Cookies

Chinese almond cookies are commonly served during Chinese New Year celebration. These delicious and highly addictive cookies only need common pantry ingredients, yet very easy and beginner friendly.
Chinese Almond Cookies
Chinese Almond Cookies

There is nothing like Chinese New Year to send my whole family into cookie baking frenzy. Most Chinese families will do a cookie baking marathon, churning out boxes and boxes of different kind of cookies.

What is surprising to most is that we do this mainly for the enjoyment of our guests, though it is not a secret that most people bake extras for their own enjoyment.

Among the top must bake in my house is this Chinese almond cookies, alongside other must-haves such as Chinese peanut cookies, nastar, and lapis legit (thousand layers cake).

This almond cookies recipe is super easy and perfect for beginners, so even the kiddies should have no trouble helping Moms in the kitchen.

Chinese Almond Cookies
Chinese Almond Cookies

Whole almond vs. ground almond

Nowadays you can buy almond flour which is very fine pre-ground almond. Growing up, we don’t have such luxury of buying almond flour. Instead, we buy whole almond and grind them with a food processor.

This hand-me-down recipe assumes that you will grind your own almonds. If you use almond flour, the cookie texture will be less rustic, which may or may not be a bad thing. It should work, but know that it is different from what pass as Chinese almond cookies.

Chinese Almond Cookies
Chinese Almond Cookies

Neutral flavor oil

The most common oil to use when making Chinese almond cookies is peanut oil. If you cannot find this, feel free to use other neutral flavor oil, such as canola or even vegetable oil.

Don’t use olive oil or coconut oil as these will impart their flavor to the cookies.

Chinese Almond Cookies
Chinese Almond Cookies

Decorating the cookies

If you are short on time, you can leave the cookies plain. Just shape them into round balls and brush with egg wash and pop them in the oven.

But if you have just a bit more time and some extra whole almonds at hand, I highly suggest dressing them up by pressing one whole almond (or a half almond) on top of each cookie, then follow with egg brush before popping them in the oven.

Personally, I always make sure I have extra almonds on hand when making these.

Chinese Almond Cookies

4.8 from 22 reviews

Author: Anita Jacobson




Prep Time: 20 mins

Cook Time: 20 mins

Total Time: 40 mins

Serves: 55-60 cookies

Print Recipe


  • 180 gram (1 1/2 cup) all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 100 gram (1/2 cup) sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 120 gram (1 1/4 cup) ground almond
  • 120 milliliter (1/2 cup) neutral flavor oil (e.g. canola, vegetable, peanut)
  • Egg wash and garnish
  • egg wash (mix together 1 egg yolk + 1 teaspoon water)
  • whole almonds (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 180 Celsius (350 Fahrenheit). Line two baking sheets with parchment papers.
  2. In a mixing bowl, sift together all-purpose flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Add sugar, salt, and ground almond, mix well. Add oil, mix and form into cookie dough. The texture will be dry, and it is best to use your hands at the very end to bring the dough together.
  3. Use a teaspoon to shape the dough into round balls. You should get about 55-60 cookies.
  4. You can leave the cookie plain, or you can decorate each cookie with almond. (*)
  5. Arrange the shaped cookies on prepared baking sheet.
  6. Brush the top of each cookie with an egg wash, then bake the cookies in preheated oven for 18-20 minutes.
  7. Cool the cookies in the baking sheet for 10 minutes. Gently remove the cookies and cool on wire rack. Once the cookies are completely cool, store in airtight containers.


  • (*) You can use one whole almond to top each cookie. Or you can cut each whole almond into two halves and top each cookie with a half almond.
Indonesian Pantry
Indonesian Kitchen


  • veena Azmanov veena Azmanov says:

    Love the use of Ground Almond in making these cookies. The Glaze to this cookies is amazing. These cookies look delicious and yummy.

  • Andrea Metlika Andrea Metlika says:

    Love these almond cookies. Never thought about making them myself but now I can, Thanks.

  • Emily Emily says:

    What great looking little cookies. They look like the perfect Chinese treat. Can't wait to make them.

  • Tracy Tracy says:

    These sound soooo great! Love the use of almond flour. Perfect for the Chinese New Year!

    • Anita Anita says:

      Definitely a favorite and one of the must have cookies for Chinese New Year.

    • YT YT says:

      What will be the recipe if I plan to use Almond flour? Is it replacing all-purpose flour?

      • Anita Anita says:

        YT, please don't replace all-purpose flour with almond flour. For the 120 grams ground almond, you can either use store-bought almond flour, or use whole almonds and ground them into powder with a food processor. :)

  • Shadi Shadi says:

    So tasty! I had these at a party and have been looking for the recipe!

    • Anita Anita says:

      Have fun with the recipe Shadi, hopefully they turn out exactly like the ones you had at your party.

  • Jane Lee Jane Lee says:

    The recipe was very dry. I measured everything and followed everything yet it still wasn't a homogeneous mixture.

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Jane, I'm sorry you are having a hard time with this recipe. All Chinese nut cookies (peanut, almond, walnut, e.t.c.) are very dry in texture compared to Western cookies (e.g. chocolate chips cookies, snickerdoodle, e.t.c). At the very end of the mixing, we usually use our hands to work the dough, so it is much closer to working with tart dough. I'm sorry if I didn't explain this part properly in the recipe. I hope you will give the recipe another try.

  • Beth Beth says:

    I enjoyed learning the story behind these cookies! I also love finding recipes that I can make with my kiddos - these will be perfect!

  • Anjali Anjali says:

    The ground almonds gave these cookies such a rich, nutty flavor! These will be making an appearance in my holiday cookie basket for sure!

  • Angela Allison Angela Allison says:

    Gorgeous cookies! These are perfection. Loved every bite and can't wait to make them again. Thanks so much for sharing.

  • Alisa Infanti Alisa Infanti says:

    Thanks for the tip in grinding down whole almonds instead of using almond flour. I could never get them rigth but this recipe turned out perfect. That tip was a game changer!

  • Michelle Alston Michelle Alston says:

    I can't wait to make these, they look great! Thanks for explaining about using your hands to bring the dough together, I'll definitely use that technique. Thanks for sharing them.

  • Chris Collins Chris Collins says:

    Oh yum! I've never actually tried Chinese Almond Cookies but after reading this i'll definitely be trying the recipe!!

  • Lilia Lilia says:

    My family and friends love it! Added some chopped almonds for crunch. Will keep this recipe for festive baking.

  • Lina Tan Lina Tan says:

    Tried this recipe during this current lockdown. I have left overs of the ingredients but not much to use the full quantity, so I half all the ingredients. I ran out of vegetable oil, so I use olive oil instead and it turned out well. I wonder whether I could use butter to make it more ‘lemak’ instead of oil. Very easy to prepare & bake and it’s great with coffee.

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Lina, thanks for giving the recipe a try. I haven't tried with butter yet, but I am quite certain you can use melted butter instead of oil, and I'm guessing the cookies will be more "lemak". :)

  • SY SY says:

    Followed this recipe and used store bought ground almonds. Worked perfectly! The dough wasn't too dry at all. It was slightly crumbly but with a little compacting, they shaped well. The house smelt lovely and lots of amazing comments from everyone who tasted them. Everyone wanted more! I only managed to get 26 cookies out of the full recipe, probably because I made them quite thick and big :) Thank you for sharing the wonderful recipe

  • Grace Grace says:

    Tried the recipe today and it was a success! tasted like those i bought from some store and I used peanut oil so it was good. I might have made it a bit too big so it doesn't yield 55 cookies (but doesn't matter!). Also after it came out of the oven, it does looks a bit cracked but it is still holding together.. a bit difficult to roll it into a ball but i managed to squeeze it into a "ball" using spoon (any suggestions will be great). Now I can bake some for CNY!

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Grace, once I scoop out a rough ball like shape from the main dough, I use my hands to roll them. If you want a bit of help to portion out the dough, a teaspoon size (#100) cookie scoop is very helpful.

  • Michelle Michelle says:

    HI! I was wondering if I could intensify the almond flavor by adding almond extract? I haven't tried the recipe yet, but I was wondering it that would make the cookie too strong in terms of almond flavor. Thanks!

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Michelle, I will try adding 1/2 teaspoon of almond extract just to increase the almond flavor a little bit. If you prefer a stronger almond flavor, try using 1 teaspoon instead.

  • Sharon Sharon says:

    I've been researching chinese almond cookies and came across your recipe... but am curious to know why there is no shortening or butter in the recipe... all the others I find online have some sort of shortening or butter.

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Sharon, the recipe I grew up with doesn't need butter or shortening. If you want to use either butter or shortening, you can replace 50% of the oil with either melted butter or shortening.

  • Waiyee Waiyee says:

    Thank you for the receipt. i like the idea of making my own almond meal with whole almonds. I used 1/3 cup of sugar, still found it a bit too sweet to my taste. Also bit too dry for the dough to form and hold shape. will try to use a little bit more oil next time. I think this is a Chinese version of shortbread, just added almond meal, oil replaced butter. My question is why should it need baking powder and baking soda. when there is no liquid in the receipt, the baking powder and baking soda won't have any effect. This cookie texture is very similar to shortbread, which has no baking powder, baking soda.

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Waiyee, you can make these without baking powder and baking soda, and they will have a similar texture to my Chinese peanut cookies. By adding baking powder and baking soda, the cookies will become crispier and lighter as opposed to denser. So both versions are doable, it just depends on the end result that you prefer.

  • Julie Ng Julie Ng says:

    Hi, how long can I keep them after baking?

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Julie, it should keep for 1 month in an airtight container at room temperature. Please make sure the cookies are completely cool before storing them, or they won't stay crispy and won't stay fresh for long.

  • Serena Serena says:

    Great recipe! Mine turned out delicious, even when substituting with brown sugar ☺️ Thank you!

  • Lea Lea says:

    Love the recipe! Thanks for sharing. But my cookies all turned out cracked. Any idea what went wrong? Still taste great thou.

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Lea, if all the ingredients were measured with a scale, then most likely the shaping technique is the culprit. I usually roll each cookie dough with my palms to shape it into a smooth ball. If this step is skipped or if the dough is not shaped smooth enough, it can lead to some cracks (small or big depends on how not smooth it is). Also, we inadvertently introduce minor cracks when attaching the whole almond pieces on the cookies, so that too will contribute to the cracks.

  • Ellie1212 Ellie1212 says:

    Can this recipe be double or even tripled?

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Ellie, definitely. If your oven is small and you need to bake in batches, I suggest chilling the extra 2 batches while waiting for the oven to finish baking the first batch. You can definitely shape them and arrange on extra baking sheets, so once the 1st batch is done, just bake the 2nd batch, and once that batch is also done, you can bake the 3rd batch.

  • XQ XQ says:

    Really good, didn't add the egg wash due to allergies but still turned out great. Although I did have a few crack its still delicious.

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