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February 14, 2019

Blood Orange Almond Icebox Cookies

Wonderfully fragrant with citrus zest and juice, these blood orange almond icebox cookies are a fancy version of slice and bake cookies dipped in icing.

Wonderfully fragrant with citrus zest and juice, these blood orange almond icebox cookies are a fancy version of slice and bake cookies dipped in icing.

Blood Orange Almond Icebox Cookies

I love when citrus fruit is meticulously arranged in pyramids at the grocery.

It makes you feel guilty when you put a few in your cart and you mess up the whole thing.

Of course the point of the beautiful display is to tempt shoppers, so I assume the produce people don’t mind filling in the gaps.

Just be sure not to take one from the middle and cause a crash of fruit on the floor!

Lately, I’ve been snacking on oranges. I like buying a few different varieties and sampling them.

They are good on their own or even in a salad with arugula, endives goat cheese and smoked almonds.

It had been a while since I baked anything with oranges. When it comes to citrus and sweets, I usually reach for lemons or limes first. 

The oranges that always get my attention are blood oranges. At first glance, they seem like any other orange except when you look more closely you can see hints of their gorgeous ruby color peeking through the peel.

Blood Orange Almond Icebox Cookies

Earlier this winter I made a citrus compote with blood oranges to go with gingerbread waffles, but this time I wanted to really incorporate them, zest and juice, into a dessert.

I ended up baking blood orange almond icebox cookies.

Icebox cookies are basically from-scratch slice and bakes. It’s great because you can make the dough ahead of time and bake them later. You even can freeze it.

How To Make Blood Orange Almond Icebox Cookies

First, I creamed the butter and sugar along with almond extract for the dough.

Then I lowered the mixer speed to add the flour and orange zest. I folded in sliced almonds.

The dough was crumby and very fragrant with nuts and orange.

I shaped the dough into a rectangular log and let it chill in the freezer. Once it was firm, I sliced off 1/4-inch thick cookies and placed them on a sheet pan.

I baked the cookies until they were just a bit golden. That could have been it, but I wanted to use the juice from the blood orange.

When the cookies cooled, I whisked together blood orange icing and smeared it on half of each cookie.

You could definitely do a full dunk into the icing, but I like seeing the pattern of the almonds in the cookies.

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Blood Orange Almond Icebox Cookies

Blood Orange Almond Icebox Cookies

  • Author: Paige Adams
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20-25 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 35-50 minutes + cooling & icing
  • Yield: Makes 34 dozen 1x

Wonderfully fragrant with citrus zest and juice, these blood orange almond icebox cookies are a fancy version of slice and bake cookies dipped in icing.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 blood orange, zest and juice
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour plus more for work surface
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup sliced almonds

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter and 1 cup confectioners’ sugar until smooth and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add the almond extract. On low speed, mix in the orange zest, flour and salt. When it is almost combined, but you can still see a little flour, fold in the sliced almonds.
  2. On a lightly floured work surface, shape the dough into a 12” long, 2″ x 1-1/2″ rectangle. Wrap in wax paper and freeze for 1 hour until firm. (If you are planning to freeze it longer, wrap the dough in plastic wrap.)
  3. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. 
  4. Use a sharp knife to cut the dough into 1/4-inch-thick slices. If the dough is too crumbly, let it sit at room temperature until it is easier to cut.  
  5. Bake the cookies for 20-25 minutes until they start to turn light golden brown. Let the cookies stay on the sheet pan for 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. For the icing, whisk together the remaining confectioners’ sugar and 2 tablespoons blood orange juice. If the mixture seems to thick, add more juice. If it is too runny, add more sugar.
  7. Either dip the cookies in the icing or spread it on top using an offset spatula. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to let the icing set.
  8. Store in an airtight container.

Notes

Adapted from Everyday Food July/August 2006

  • Author: Paige Adams
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20-25 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 35-50 minutes + cooling & icing
  • Yield: Makes 34 dozen 1x

WHAT DID YOU THINK?

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Recipe rating

  1. I made your recipe for my bookclub -everyone raved about how wonderful they were. Maybe the best cookies I’ve ever made, plus they were easy. I especially liked that I could make the dough ahead. Thanks you!

  2. While these cookies did come out great….the amount of blood orange, in my opinion, needs to be increased. It’s way to subtle. Just tastes like an almond cookie. Which is still great! But I was hoping for more of the blood orange taste. Also, pics of your personal process of the molding of the dough and cutting of the cookies would be appreciated.

  3. Thank you for this inspiring receipe! I love blood oranges, and I love to bake. I haven’t tried this yet, but I have the idea that this will come in tasty and handy when blood oranges are in season in this country.

    XXX.- Love from the Netherlands. (A small country in western Europe.)

  4. These look delicious and I’m looking forward to making these! I don’t see the measurement for the sliced almonds. Would you please add that to the recipe? Thank you!