Top 10 Spanish Dessert Recipes with Almonds

The Spanish love to flavor desserts and other dishes with almonds. This list of favorite, traditional Spanish desserts including St. James cake, bienmesabe (Spanish almond cream), polvorones and panellets.

  • 01 of 10

    Mallorcan Almond Cake Recipe - Gató de Almendras Mallorquin

    Mallorcan Almond Cake - Gato de Almendras Mallorquin
    (c) 2013 Lisa Sierra Licensed to Inc.

    Almonds are a traditional crop, used in desserts, sauces and more on the island of Mallorca, where people have been growing and cooking with almonds for many centuries. This cake is a combination of French and Mallorcan cuisines, and it is easy to prepare in a little less than one hour.

    Eggs, almonds, a lemon, and sugar are all that's needed to make the cake. Grind almonds, grate lemon peel and beat with the yolks and mix in the whites. Bake, and you have a lovely dessert. Serve with almond ice cream, as is tradition In Mallorca. Easy recipe for almond ice cream included.

  • 02 of 10

    St. James' Cake Recipe - Tarta de Santiago

    Tarta de Santiago - St. James' Cake
    (c) 2007 L. Sierra Licensed to Inc.

    Named in honor of Santiago (St. James), the patron saint of Spain, this is a moist and list almond cake, with less than one cup of flour. St. James Cake is sold in Santiago de Compostela, and all around Galicia, and is very popular with tourists and pilgrims.

  • 03 of 10

    Pantxineta Recipe - Basque Pastry Cream Pie with Almonds

    Pantxineta - Panchineta
    (c) Lisa Sierra 2013 Licensed to Inc.

    Pantxineta in Basque, or Panchineta in Spanish, this delicious dessert is a ​traditional pie from the Basque Country (Pais Vasco) of Spain. With an elegant presentation, it is a deceptionally simple dessert to prepare. Bake the pastry cream between two puff pastry sheets, and cover with coarsely chopped almonds and hazelnuts and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

  • 04 of 10

    Panellets Recipe - Catalan Almond Sweets

    Panellets (c) 2008
    Lisa Sierra (c) 2008 Licensed to

    Panellets are a traditional sweet from the region of Cataluña, prepared for All Saints Day, or in Spanish Dia de Todos los Santos. They are often served with moscatel wine, or cava, Spanish sparkling wine. Panellets are made of equal parts of ground almonds and sugar, then formed into balls and decorated with pine nuts, or rolled in cocoa powder, candied cherries, or coconut flakes. Panellets can be flavored with espresso coffee or ground cinnamon.

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Crumbly Polvorones Recipe - Almond Cookies

    Polvorones - Spanish Almond Cookies
    (c) 2007 Lisa Sierra Licensed to

    Rich, crumbly polvorones or "Dusty" Almond Cookies are a traditional and tasty cookie, popular in Spain during the Christmas season. This traditional recipe is softer and more crumbly than the other version below.

  • 06 of 10

    Crispy Spanish Almond Cookie Recipe - Crispy Polvorones

    Polvorones - Almond Cookies
    (c) 2006 Lisa Sierra licensed to, Inc.

    Polvorones or Almond Cookies are a delicious cookie, full of almond flavor. They are very popular at during Christmas, and this version is less crumbly and more crispy than other versions. Since the dough is less ​crumbly and denser, it is easier to prepare at home.

  • 07 of 10

    Almond-Filled Puff Pastry Shells Recipe - Volovanes Rellenos de Almendras

    Spanish Almond-Filled Puff Pastries - Volovanes Rellenos de Almendras
    (c) 2013 Lisa Sierra - Licensed to Inc.

    Small, buttery, puff pastry crust shells, which when baked will puff up, expanding to 2 to 2.5 inches high. Prepare the filling of ground, blanched almonds, then mix them with sugar, eggs and lemon zest. These little ​volovanes are easy to make; and can be served for brunch, for afternoon merienda with hot coffee or tea, or for dinner.

  • 08 of 10

    Spanish Fardelejos Recipe - Almond-Filled Pastry from La Rioja

    Spanish Almond-Filled Desserts - Fardelejos
    (c) 2013 Lisa Sierra - Licensed to Inc.

    First, make the buttery crust, then make the filling of ground almonds, sugar, eggs , and lemon. Roll out the pastry crust, dot with a tablespoon of almond filling, and seal well. Fry in hot oil until golden, then drain. Dust with powdered sugar. In Arnedo, La Rioja these pastries are made especially for Arnedo's Patron Saint festival in September.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Chocolate and Almond Cake Recipe - Pastel de Chocolate y Almendras

    Pastel de Chocolate y Almendras - Chocolate and Almond Cake (c)
    Lisa Sierra (c) 2009 Licensed to Inc.

    Mix shaved chocolate and ground almonds with ladyfingers that have been soaked in liqueur, then bake. The result is a rich-tasting, but light chocolate cake, with almond flavor. Serve for brunch, for afternoon tea, or a divine finish to dinner. Serve with espresso coffee.

  • 10 of 10

    Spanish Almond Cream Recipe - Bienmesabe

    Spanish Almond Cream with Ice Cream - Bienmesabe con Helado
    (c) 2008 Lisa Sierra Licensed to

    Spanish Almond Cream, in Spanish is called "Bienmesabe." It is made of ground almonds, a simple syrup, and a touch of ground cinnamon and lemon zest. Serve by itself or with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. "Bienmesabe" is a very traditional dessert of Arabic origin, and is still a very popular dessert in the Canary Islands.