German Spritz cookies, also known as Spritzgebäck, are buttery shortbread like cookies that are shaped using a piping back or a spritz cookie press. These are dipped in chocolate and topped with crushed candy canes but you can also leave them plain or just dip them in chocolate!
Can you make Spritz Cookies without a cookie press?
Yes! I usually make them with a piping bag (or plastic sealable bag if you don’t have one) and a star tip.
Do I have to add peppermint candy?
Nope, if you don’t like peppermint or just don’t want to add it, leave out the peppermint extract from the cookies and don’t add crushed candy canes on top of the chocolate.
Can these be made in advance?
Yes! One of the best things about these cookies is that they will keep for a couple of weeks as long as they are stored in an airtight container.
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Tips for making German Spritz cookies
- Make sure the butter is soft – this will allow the dough to come together faster without developing gluten and causing the cookies to be tough.
- When mixing the dough, be careful not to over mix it. However, it should be a smooth cohesive ball of dough rather than still crumbly. If it feels dry when clumped together by hand, add another tablespoon of heavy cream.
- Don’t over bake the cookies or they will be dry and crumbly. They shouldn’t really change color, just look like they have dried on the surface.
- If you plan to dip them in chocolate, be sure to allow the cookies to cool fully before adding the chocolate.
- All Purpose Flour: Any all purpose flour should work for these spritzgebäck I have not yet tried any other flours with this recipe.
- Baking Powder: Baking powder makes the cookies a little lighter and more tender.
- White Sugar: These cookies use granulated sugar for sweetness.
- Butter: Butter adds moisture to the cookies and gives them their soft crumbly texture.
- Egg: I use standard large eggs from the store, make sure the egg is at room temperature before adding it into the dough.
- Peppermint Extract: Peppermint extract is very strong, therefore it’s important to only use a 1/2 tsp otherwise your cookies will taste like mint toothpaste.
- Heavy Cream: Heavy cream helps to soften the cookie dough so that it can be piped more easily.
- Dark Chocolate: If you can, find dark chocolate couverture because it will be easier to temper but any dark chocolate will work, just make sure the chocolate hasn’t bloomed (this will be visible as a white chalky look on the chocolate).
- Crushed peppermints/ candy canes: These are for sprinkling on, after the cookies are dipped in chocolate. I recommend placing them in a sealable plastic bag and hitting them with a rolling pin or rubber mallet.
How to make Spritzgebäck
Make the Dough
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Arrange two racks in the oven so that they divide it into thirds.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, and baking powder together.
- In a large mixing bowl, briefly cream together the egg, butter, and peppermint extract if using. This is just to quickly mix it together, you don’t want to add too much air into the mix.
- Pour the whisked dry ingredients into the larger bowl with the wet ingredients. Mix on medium speed until just combined, then add in the 2 tablespoons of heavy cream and mix again.
- If the mixture still seems dry, add in more cream, one tablespoon at a time.
Shape the Cookies
- Place half of the cookie dough into a piping bag fitted with a large star tip.
- Pipe the cookies into any shape. They could be simple strips, circles, an S shape like what is shown in the photos, etc.
- Leave at least 1″ between each cookie, they shouldn’t spread much but you want to make sure air can easily circulate around each cookie.
Bake the Cookies
- Place the two baking sheets into the preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes. Rotate and swap the baking sheets after 5 minutes to ensure even baking.
- Once the cookies have baked for 10 minutes, check to see if the surface is dry. If so take them out of the oven and place on wire racks to cool. If not, bake for another two minutes and then remove from the oven and leave to cool.
- If you want to add chocolate, I recommend tempering the chocolate – this will make it set quickly and harden and won’t require these to be stored somewhere cold. However, you can also just melt the chocolate and then keep the cookies somewhere cold.
- Here is a Guide to Tempering Chocolate by King Arthur.
- Dip the cookies in the melted chocolate or drizzle it over the cookies. Sprinkle the chocolate with crushed peppermints or drizzle with melted white chocolate and leave to set.
Spritzgebäck | German Spritz Cookies
- 250 grams ap flour
- 125 grams granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 125 grams butter softened
- 1 egg room. temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 150 grams dark chocolate
- 2 candy canes
Make the dough
- Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- Place two racks in the oven so that it is divided into thirds.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking sheets.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, and baking powder.
- In a larger bowl briefly cream the butter, egg, and peppermint extract together. It's ok if it is still a little lumpy.
- Pour the whisked dry ingredients into the mixed wet ingredients and use an electric mixer to mix together until just combined.
- Add in the two tablespoons of heavy cream and mix again until just combined. If it still seems dry add in another tablespoon of cream.
Shape and Bake
- Add half of the dough into a piping bag, fitted with a large star tip.
- Pipe the cookies onto the lined baking sheets in any shape. Leave at least 1" of space between each cookie.
- Then repeat with the remaining dough.
- Bake the cookies in the preheated oven for 10-12 minutes until the surface is dry. Rotate and swap the baking sheets after 5 minutes to ensure even baking.
- Once baked, remove the baking sheets and place on wire racks to cool fully.
- Crush the candy canes and place in a small bowl.
- Temper or melt the dark chocolate.
- Dip half of each cookie into the dark chocolate and then sprinkle with the crushed peppermints.
- Place back on the parchment paper or silicone baking sheet to set.
- If the chocolate hasn't been tempered, place the cookies somewhere cool to set.