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Snowball Cookies

5 from 3 votes

posted: 11/02/23

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

These Snowball Cookies are easy to make and are melt-in-your-mouth over-the-top delicious! Made with a small handful of ingredients, they will become a new favorite.

One of my favorite things about the holidays is baking with my kids. We spend a whole Saturday baking different treats and then we distribute them to our friends and neighbors. It’s the greatest holiday tradition!

How to Make Snowball Cookies

Here is a brief overview of how this snowball cookie recipe comes together. For the full recipe including all measurements, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of the post.

  • Beat the butter and sugar. When they are light and fluffy, add the vanilla bean paste and vanilla extract and mix again to combine.
  • Add in the flour and pecans. Beat until just combined.
  • Scoop into balls. Use a cookie scoop to scoop the dough and roll them with clean hands into balls. I share my favorite cookie scoop below. Place on a lined baking sheet.
  • Bake the cookies. They are done when the edges start to turn brown.
  • Roll in powdered sugar. Allow the cookies to cool for two minutes and then roll them in powdered sugar. Allow to cool completely and then roll in powdered sugar again.

Cookie Scoop

This 1 1/2 tablespoon cookie scoop is the best. It is perfect for making uniform cookies that bake evenly.
Product Image
Snowball cookies

Measuring Flour

Having too much or too little flour will ruin your baking recipe. To make sure you get the correct amount, start by whisking the flour in the container it’s stored in. Then use a spoon to scoop the flour from its container into a dry measuring cup. Use the flat edge of a spatula to level it off.

Tips and Tricks

  • Use room-temperature butter. Your butter should be soft enough that you can easily dent it with your finger, but not so soft that it goes all the way through. To do this quickly, cut it into one-inch pieces and leave it on the counter for 30 minutes. Or fill a tall drinking glass with water, microwave it for 30 seconds, empty the water, and put the glass over the butter standing on end for 10 minutes.
  • Don’t over-mix. This is critical so that the gluten (what is in flour) doesn’t get overworked. Once you add in the flour, you want to beat it just until combined. Over working gluten leads to cookies that are chewy in a really undesirable way.
  • Roll twice in powdered sugar. Rolling the snowball cookies in powdered sugar twice gives them a nice powdery “snowy” appearance. To get the powdered sugar to stick the best, roll the cookies once after they have cooled for about two minutes. Allow them to cool completely on a cooling rack and then roll in powdered sugar again.
cooling rack with snowball cookies

Additions and Substitutions

This pecan snowball cookies recipe can be customized! Here are a few ideas for ways to mix it up.

  • Chopped pecans: I made these both with chopped pecans and without. If you are making these for someone with a nut allergy, you can just leave them out and keep the recipe exactly the same.
  • Add chocolate chips: You can swap out the pecans and replace them with one cup of mini chocolate chips.
  • Vanilla bean paste: When I first made this recipe, I wanted them to have an enhanced vanilla taste. The easiest way to do this is to use vanilla bean paste. You could keep everything the same in this recipe and add a teaspoon of vanilla bean paste for a great pop of vanilla flavor.

Storing & Freezing Snowball Cookies

Keep your snowball cookies with pecans in an airtight container for up to one week.

You can also freeze these. Place them in a single layer on wax paper and put them in the freezer for a few hours. Then transfer to an airtight container for up to three months. These cookies make a great gift around the holidays!

plate of Snowball cookies with pecans surrounding.

More Great Cookie Recipes

You can’t go wrong with some of these other yummy treats.

  • Soft Cut Sugar Cookies are my go-to holiday cookies. They are a family recipe that we have been using for decades and they are bound to become a tradition in your house too.
  • Chewy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies are the perfect mix of soft, chewy, and delicious. Plus, you get all the tips and tricks for making these the best ever!
  • Lemon Sugar Cookies are melt-in-your-mouth good. You won’t want to miss the simple lemon icing on top — it’s the perfect finishing touch.

Leave a comment below and let me know if you try this pecan snowball cookies recipe or any of my other recipes. I love hearing from you!

Snowball cookies
5 from 3 votes

Snowball Cookies

Serves: 24 cookies
(tap # to scale)
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 18 minutes
Total: 28 minutes
These Snowball Cookies are easy to make and are melt-in-your-mouth over-the-top delicious! Made with a small handful of ingredients, they will become a new favorite.


  • 16 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature (226 grams)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (49.5 grams)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour (240 grams)
  • 2 cups chopped pecans (228 grams) optional
  • powdered sugar for rolling


  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Beat the butter and sugar together just until combined. Add the vanilla extract and beat to combine.
  • Add in the flour and (pecans if using) and beat until just combined.
  • Using a 1 1/2 tablespoon scoop, scoop out cookie dough, roll, and place on a parchment or silicon mat-lined baking sheet an inch apart. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes or until the edges start to turn golden brown.
  • After removing them from the oven, let cool on the baking sheet for about 2 minutes, then very gently roll them in powdered sugar. Allow them to cool completely and then roll in powdered sugar again.
Serving: 1cookie Calories: 177kcal (9%) Carbohydrates: 11g (4%) Protein: 2g (4%) Fat: 14g (22%) Saturated Fat: 5g (31%) Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g Monounsaturated Fat: 6g Trans Fat: 0.3g Cholesterol: 20mg (7%) Sodium: 1mg Potassium: 51mg (1%) Fiber: 1g (4%) Sugar: 3g (3%) Vitamin A: 238IU (5%) Vitamin C: 0.1mg Calcium: 10mg (1%) Iron: 1mg (6%)
Author: Lisa Longley
Course: cookies, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Snowball cookies

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Snowball Cookies

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Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

Reader Interactions


    Have a question? Use the form below to submit your question or comment. I love hearing from you & seeing what you made!

    Rate This Recipe:

  1. Dorothy @ Crazy for Crust says

    I didn’t know Horizon made butter. That’s awesome! I love snowball cookies so hard – such a great idea to use vanilla bean!

  2. Phi @ The Sweetphi Blog says

    YUM! These look so good Lisa!! And I absolutely love Horizon products, so definitely have the perfect butter to make these. Also, I need to binge watch gilmore girls, and these cookies would make for the perfect snack to do that with!

  3. Sandy says

    I don’t see vanilla bean paste in the recipe ingredients but the instructions state add vanilla bean paste?

    • Lisa Longley says

      Yup! I updated this post and revamped the recipe but leaving that in the instructions was an oversight that is fixed now. You could add vanilla bean paste and the amount is listed in the body of the post under additions and substations.

  4. Colleen B.~ TX. says

    Love these delicious cookies but I only make them around Christmas. but actually you can make these anytime of the year.
    The vanilla paste is used as a substitute in place of the vanilla extract. The paste gives the cookies more of a vanilla flavor than the extract does. I’d say it’s all up to the person on what you want to use.
    Myself, I prefer the paste.
    When using the paste leave out the extract.

  5. Deborah says

    5 stars
    I know this was my mother’s recipe that she made when I was growing up. Never could find it until now on your site. I just loved this recipe
    as much as she enjoyed making them. Will have to make soon!
    Thank you!

    • Lisa Longley says

      I hope you love these!

  6. Donna says

    5 stars
    Hi Lisa -This is a great recipe !I make this every Christmas and basically have the same recipe! I actually have had to hide them from my hubby and Grandson (and I won’t lie ME too lol!) They disappear so fast!!! By the way love all your recipes!


    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so glad to hear that!

  7. Donna says

    Is this plain or self rising flour?

    • Lisa Longley says

      All purpose flour.

  8. Deb says

    5 stars
    The cookies are wonderful

    • Lisa Longley says

      I’m so glad you liked them!

  9. Ken Safranek says

    Mine melted into a puddle shaped cookie in the oven and I THINK I followed the directions! Help! Any guesses to what I might have done wrong ?!

    • Lisa Longley says

      It sounds like either your butter was too soft or you didn’t have enough flour.

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5 Secrets to Stress Free Dinners



5 Secrets to Stress Free Dinners