Pretty, easy to make lemon-scented glazed cookies made with Italian polenta (or cornmeal), fresh rosemary and pine nuts.
What are your favorite homemade holiday cookies?
My best cookie recipes are the ones that are simple and unfussy, but at the same time they have to deliver that “Oh, wow, that’s so good!” factor.
As much as I tend to have an all-in spirit in the kitchen, I also have a serious lack of patience when it comes to decorating or otherwise fussing over food.
If you’re one of those people who can spend hours perfecting the finer details of beautiful desserts, I am in awe of you!
I love baking, though, so during the holiday season these delectable buttery cookies are an absolute favorite. If you love the rustic crunch of cornmeal, you’ll fall in love with these cookies.
Along with that irresistible cornmeal texture, the cookies have a lovely fresh lemon scent, backed up with a hit of piney rosemary.
As a finishing touch, the cooled cookies get a simple creamy lemon glaze topped with a pine nut and rosemary garnish.
They’re pretty and look festive on a holiday cookie plate, as a bite-sized dessert or alongside a cup of tea.
The procedure for making these cornmeal cookies is easy — just mix, scoop, drop, and bake.
I also briefly chill the dough before scooping, which helps the cookies keep their cute button shape.
However, I’ve also baked them straight from the mixer and they turn out just fine.
You can use either Italian polenta or stoneground cornmeal that has a coarser texture than fine cornmeal — either will work perfectly.
More easy cookie recipes:
Rosemary Lemon Polenta Cookies
Yield 3 dozen cookies
These easy to make scoop-and-bake cornmeal cookies are scented with the seductive combination of rosemary and lemon. You'll love their delicious rustic texture and tender crumb.
- 10 tablespoons butter, softened
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest
- 2 eggs, at room temperature
- ¼ teaspoon lemon extract (optional)
- 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
- ¾ cup coarse ground cornmeal (polenta)
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary, plus a few sprigs for garnish
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¼ cup pinenuts, plus extra for garnish
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
- Beat the butter and sugar in a standing mixer until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes on medium high speed. Add the lemon zest and the eggs, one at a time, beating until incorporated. Stir in the lemon extract, if using.
- Mix the flour, cornmeal, rosemary, baking powder and salt in a bowl until blended together.
- Add the dry mixture to the butter on low speed in 2 parts, just until the dough comes together. Stir in the pine nuts. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for an hour or two, until the dough is firm and scoopable.
- Heat the oven to 325 degrees and line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Scoop the dough into tablespoon-sized balls (I like to use a cookie scoop so they come out even) and arrange on the cookie sheets about 2-inches apart.
- Bake 12 minutes, or until the cookies are puffed and slightly golden on the edges. Cool the cookies on the baking sheet 5 minutes before transferring to a rack to cool completely.
- To make the glaze, stir together the powdered sugar, cream, lemon juice and zest until smooth. Spread some glaze on each cookie. Put a few rosemary leaves and a pine nut on the top.
The unglazed cookies can be frozen up to a month. Once glazed, keep them at room temperature 3 - 5 days.
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Hi there! I’m Karen, a mother of two and a professionally trained cook certified in holistic nutrition.
Have a question or feedback? Get in touch or leave me a comment below — I love hearing from you!