This easy Italian Pizzelle Waffle Cookie recipe, made with olive oil, traditionally flavored with anise or fennel seed or vanilla, is one my children have loved since they were little.
Having grown up in a Mediterranean cuisine influenced home, we were close with a very large Italian community in our town.
The first time I saw my friend’s mother making her traditional Pizzelle recipe, I knew I had to learn from her.
She used a single waffle cookie iron, with a long handle, and cooked the waffle cookies on top of the stove.
It looked much like something you would use for cooking at a campfire.
This old fashion waffle iron worked on both an electric stove and a gas stove.
Vintage Pizzelle Iron vs Electric Pizzelle Irons
The vintage iron had a design pressed into the metal plates, which turned the Pizzelle cookie into what looked like a snowflake or a thin waffle.
This type of iron, made the waffle cookies one at a time.
I never minded the process of making Pizzelles this way because they cooked fast and the aromas that rose from the hot iron, made the wait, worth the sensory pleasure.
My very first iron was like this and my kids, when they were little, enjoyed the fun of making these with me.
Fast forward to when my kids grew up, and they gave me a new electric pizzelle maker, non-stick finish and it made two at a time!
Every holiday season, now, my kids and my grandkids look forward to these special holiday cookies.
Best Italian Pizzelle Waffle Cookie Recipe
Where do you suppose the best Pizzelle recipe can be found for a fabulous traditional Italian cookie?
That’s right! Right from a grandma who was born in Italy, speaks very little English, even though she has lived in America for a very long time.
You simply go to her kitchen, watch her cook and write it all down.
That is exactly what I did, more than 40-years ago!
Pizzelle Waffle Cones
A beautiful thing about this Pizzelle recipe is that the second the waffle cookie comes out of the Pizzelle iron, it is still soft, for a brief time.
Take the warm soft Pizzelle waffle cookie and quick wrap it around a small cone shape, and you’ve got the best ice cream cone you’ve ever had!
Metal cones, for baking, are a fun tool to have in the kitchen and are very inexpensive but you can also make your own cones out of cardboard and wrap parchment paper around them.
Have you ever had a Cannoli? Oh my, they are scrumptious!
Imagine taking an already fabulous Italian style Pizzelle recipe for a waffle cookie, and making it into a Cannoli shell!
Simply lay the soft cookie (the second it comes out of the Pizzelle iron), over a broomstick handle, let is get firm and harden into a cylinder (in about a minute), and you have the perfect cannoli mold!
You need only to fill with sugared mascarpone and tiny chocolate chips!
Talk about a traditional dessert known everywhere in Italy!
Pizzelle Dessert Bowls
I will tease you with one last idea for elevating this easy Italian Pizzelle recipe into a gourmet dessert.
When the Pizzelle is hot and soft, out of the Pizzelle iron, quick lay it over an upside-down cup or small bowl.
Let is harden (in minutes).
These can be filled with custard, ice cream or whipped cream and berries.
While this easy Pizzelle recipe can be turned into so many other yummy desserts, the waffle cookie, all by itself, lends to becoming a dessert cookie you won’t forget.
Throw a little brandy or rum in the Pizzelle recipe instead of the extract, for a gourmet pizzelle waffle cookie.
Sprinkle a little cocoa into the dry ingredients and turn these traditional Italian Pizzelle cookies into a big ole chocolate snowflake, then dip those in melted chocolate.
Speaking of snowflakes, the Pizzelle waffle cookie adds such pizzazz to a holiday dessert table simply by dusting them with a little confectionery sugar.
Make them look like snowflakes!
- Olive oil
- Baking powder
- Fennel or anise seeds, or vanilla
- Sambucco Liquor (optional, for glaze)
- Chocolate (optional for glaze)
- Pizzelle Iron
- Cooling racks
- Parchment paper
- Mixing bowl
- Measuring cup
- Measuring spoons
- Electric mixer
- Mixing bowl
How To Make Italian Pizzelle Waffle Cookies
This Pizzelle recipe is about the easiest cookie recipe you will ever make. Why?
Because the batter comes together fast, is easily spooned into little balls, then squished flat in the hot Pizzelle iron.
In some ways, they are like making waffles, only these are thin, crunchy and definitely a cookie!
They cook in 60 seconds and poof… You’ve suddenly got a couple a dozen gorgeous, traditional Italian, very fancy looking cookies!
Pizzelles are delicious and festive, right out of the iron.
For a fancier cookie, you can dust with powdered sugar, dip in chocolate or even make a glaze with a favorite liquor and confectioners sugar, for a more grown up flavor!
Italian Pizzelle Waffle Cookies
- Pizzelle Maker Electric or single stovetop iron
- 3 Eggs
- 1/2 cup Olive oil
- 3/4 cup Sugar
- 2 cups All Purpose Flour
- 2 tsp Baking powder
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 1/2 tsp Fennel or Anise Seeds or vanilla
- 1/4 cup Chocolate for garnish (optional) melted
- Get the iron hot. If using an electric Pizzelle maker, it will indicate when it is hot and ready to add the batter. If using a traditional, cast iron stovetop iron (which makes one at a time), get it hot on top the stove, just as you would a pan for making pancakes. Follow the manufacturer's instructions on either type.
- Mix the wet ingredients first, in a large bowl. Really whisk the olive oil and eggs well. Whisk in the sugar really well. Gently whisk in the dry ingredients. The batter will not be runny, but rather come together into a cookie-like dough.
- Take a heaping tablespoon of batter and roll into little balls, then flatten them slightly before placing them onto the Pizzelle iron. Press down. 60 seconds and they are done, so don’t walk away!
- At this point, the Pizzelles can be cooled on a rack or quickly formed into a cone shape, if using to fill, while they are hot off the iron. Once the cookies are cooled, a drizzle of melted chocolate can be made across the tops, and let sit until the chocolate hardens.