Polvorones: Mexican Wedding Cookies

Mexican wedding cookies (polvorones)

 The Spruce

  • Total: 35 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 20 mins
  • Yield: 4 dozen cookies (serves 12)
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
330 Calories
27g Fat
21g Carbs
1g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 dozen cookies (serves 12)
Amount per serving
Calories 330
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 27g 35%
Saturated Fat 15g 74%
Cholesterol 61mg 20%
Sodium 218mg 9%
Total Carbohydrate 21g 8%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Protein 1g
Calcium 26mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

These delicate shortbread-style cookies—made with chopped, roasted pecans, and rolled in powdered sugar—are an elegant addition to any fiesta. They look beautiful by themselves or arranged with darker-color treats on an elegant cookie tray.

Where their English name came from is a mystery, for while these cookies certainly are popular in Mexico, they are not particularly associated with weddings there. Their name is Spanish is polvorones, which translates very loosely to crumbly, an accurate description of their texture.

Less mysterious, however, is the fact that buttery, nutty treats very similar to these are known the world over and are called by names such diverse as pecan balls, Russian tea cakes, snowdrops, Italian butter nuts, Southern pecan butterballs, pecan sandies, Swedish tea cakes, Viennese sugar balls, and more.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup butter (room temperature)
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar (divided)
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (divided)
  • 1/2 cup pecans (chopped and roasted)

Steps to Make It

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F/177 C.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies or Cakes (Polvorones) Recipes
     The Spruce
  2. Place the butter, 3/4 cup of the powdered sugar, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Stir vigorously, or beat with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until completely combined.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
     The Spruce
  3. In a separate bowl, combine flour and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
    The Spruce 
  4. Add the flour to the butter about 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition, until well incorporated.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
    The Spruce 
  5. Carefully fold in the nuts.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
    The Spruce 
  6. Take a small amount of dough, and roll it into a 1- to 2-inch ball. Place it on a on a lightly greased cookie sheet.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
     The Spruce
  7. Repeat with more dough, leaving about 2 inches of space between balls. Bake for about 15 minutes.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
     The Spruce
  8. Stir together the rest of the powdered sugar and salt.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
     The Spruce
  9. After taking cookies out of the oven, roll them one by one in this mixture.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
     The Spruce
  10. Place on rack to cool. If desired, roll cookies in sugar again once they have cooled completely.

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
    The Spruce 
  11. Serve and enjoy!

    Mexican Wedding Cookies (Polvorones) Recipes
     The Spruce

Tips

  • Store your buttery Mexican Wedding Cookies in an airtight container. While tasty right away, they are even more delicious the day after they are made.
  • These cookies can be successfully frozen, if tightly-wrapped, for several weeks, so they are a great choice for a make-ahead treat.
  • To roast the pecans: Place pecan halves or pieces on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake at 350 F/178 C for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring once or twice during that time. Keep an eye on them, as nuts tend to burn easily. Cool pecans completely before chopping.