Spiced Linzer biscuits

Healthier Linzer jam sandwich biscuits or cookies recipe! Glutenfree or not… With a jammy story! :)

Special everyday cakes and treats

Once upon a time there was a lady who had too much jam.  It was everywhere!  Jars in the fridge, jars in the larder, jars on the table.  ‘What shall I do?’ she exclaimed, looking distraught and pulling her hands through her hair, which felt strangely sticky.  Was that jam in her hair?!  Oh dear.  She wasn’t even that keen on jam!  She’d buy jars of it because it looked so fruity and beautifully coloured, would have one spoon then forget about it.  Except maybe…  what about some little jam sandwich biscuits?  A friend had made some recently.  That could be more tempting!  They looked so pretty with coloured jams glistening through the holes.  So she got the recipe from her friend, rolled up her sleeves and got to work.  And it wasn’t very hard work because cookies are pretty easy and fast to make.  So the sticky floury lady was soon munching happily on her own yummy linzer biscuits made with glutenfree flour, some flavoured with ground cinnamon and cardamom but others deliciously simple with lemon and vanilla!  Her favourite jams were the tart fruity ones, blackcurrant and blood orange.  Yum.

Spiced linzer biscuits

It was such a crumbly, pretty and delicious experience that she went out and bought another jar of jam even though she still had some at home!   In her defence it was a very appealing sugarfree raspberry jam.  And she already knew what to do with any extra jam…

Linzer jam cookies story

So she made more Linzer jam cookies.  She coloured some pastry pink to try making biscuit roses on the side.  They weren’t very successful and looked a bit odd but made her laugh and reminded her to plant real seeds now it was springtime!

rose biscuits

And she combined the leftover pink pastry with the plain one.  Her two-tone Linzer biscuits looked quite nice with a bit of blush!

Spiced linzer biscuits

Spiced linzer biscuits

She’d heard they were even better the next day so managed to save a few.  And yes, how curious!  The jam really did set a bit and become more jelly-like.  What a lovely texture!

Spiced Linzer biscuits

Spiced Linzer biscuits

They disappeared like the wind (a very yummy edible wind).  Soon she was making another batch and thought she’d try a simple vanilla version with a little lemon zest for child-like adults or adult-like children who say ‘I’d like a plain cookie please!  Nothing fancy!’

Vanilla and lemon Linzer jam cookies

Vanilla and lemon Linzer jam cookies

Everyone loved these too.  One friend said ‘It melts in the mouth!’ and ‘It’s the best cookie I ever had!’  Another descended from cookie heaven to dreamily make a thumbs up sign.

So everyone munched happily ever after.  And the lady went out to buy more jam.  🙂

True story.  Even if a bit exaggerated.  I mean, who gets jam in their hair? (sheepish look).  And who eats that many cookies?!!! 😉


The friend’s recipe can be found at Laurie’s ten.times.tea assorted cookie post which covers a variety of exciting cookies!  I’ve adapted them a bit so they’re gluten-free and healthier with pure maple syrup but you can use standard flour and sugar options.  I played around with the flavouring and spices a bit.  Also I didn’t strain the fruit bits out of the jam to make it smooth – a little voice in my head kept saying ‘Keep the fruit!  Keep the fruit!’.

Spiced linzer biscuits

Spiced linzer biscuits

Healthier options

Use good-quality jam with high fruit content (60 or 70% minimum) or sugar-free jam.  You can also make a healthy raspberry chia jam.

Equipment:  big baking tray and cookie cutters (or a glass and bottle top).

Cookie dough – makes about 14-18 cookies depending on size and thickness (my round ones are 5cm/2.5in diametre)

I’m going to be honest with you:  that amazingly crumbly melt-in-the-mouth texture comes from a cookie dough that can be amazingly soft and buttery so a bit tricky to handle.  There’s various ways to work with this:

  • consider using plain/cake flour and unrefined sugar options (the glutenfree flour and maple syrup probably create a softer dough).
  • chill your dough completely before rolling (first roll out 1/4 of the dough, then another 1/4 etc, while the rest stays safely in the fridge).  If the dough gets soft when rolling put it back in the fridge 10-15 minutes or more to harden up again.
  • roll on top of lightly floured baking paper or between two sheets of baking paper.
  • make the cookies a bit thicker (4-5mm) to make shapes easier to cut out and move around (2-3mm works but they’re delicate).
  • don’t make the hole in the middle too big as it makes the cookie more delicate to move around and possibly misshapen.  I also found putting the cookie on my fingers and cutting the hole there made it easier to do!Linzer cookies - cutting
  • use a flat spatula or metal cake scraper to move the cookies onto the baking tray.
  • stay patient.  Lightly knead softening lumps of dough together, flour a little, chill and roll out to keep making cookies – they’re totally worth it!


  • Line large baking tray with baking paper.
  • Preheat oven to 160ºC/320ªF (fan) or 180ºC/355ºF (static, non-convection oven).


  • 140g/1 cup + 5 and 3/4 tsp glutenfree flour mix (I use Doves Farm self-raising gf flour) or plain/cake flour
  • 35g/1/4 cup + 1 tbsp ground almonds (can replace with 35g/4 and 1/2 tbsp flour) – I ground my own with skins (if you’d like a paler version then blanch your almonds before).
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder (gluten-free if required)
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • Optional:  1/2 tsp ground cinnamon and/or 1/4 to 1/2 tsp ground green cardamom
  • 113g/1 stick good-quality unsalted butter, softened and creamed
  • 50g/2 and 1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup (or 1/4 cup granulated sugar)
  • grated zest of 1/2 organic lemon
  • 19-20g egg yolk, beaten (from 1 medium-large egg)
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Method – please follow the instructions in the illustration.

Linzer jam sandwich cookie dough illustrated recipe

Linzer biscuit dough

Shaping and baking Linzer cookies

With leftover pastry you can also make mini heart or round sablés biscuits and fit them in on the tray around your main biscuits.


  1. When the biscuits have cooled completely separate the ones with holes from the others.  Sieve a little icing sugar over these holey ones.
  2. Match the two halves of biscuits according to size and shape.  Assembling Linzer jam sandwich cookies
  3. Carefully spread a thin layer of jam (about 2 or 3 mm) over the bottom biscuit and place one with a hole on top.  Be careful or your biscuit will break and you’ll have to eat it.  Oh dear. 🙂Assembling Linzer jam sandwich cookies 2

Eating and Storing

Keep these biscuits in a jar, tin or airtight tupperware for up to 4 or 5 days at room temperature.  They soften after a day to become melt-in-your-mouth crumbly and delicious (eat on a plate).

Spiced Linzer biscuits

Spiced Linzer biscuits

Linzer history

Linzer torte and cookies are related and named after the city of Linz in Austria!  Linzertorte is one the oldest known tarts, with a recipe discovered in an Austrian abbey from 1653!  Traditionally the rich buttery dough’s accentuated by almonds, lemon zest and cinnamon, and the tart’s filled with black currant preserves (now raspberry in the US) then topped with a lattice crust.

For Linzer cookies, it’s the same recipe but different shape.  They’re also called Linzer sablés and in German  Linzer Augen ‘Linzer eyes’!  The traditional cutout is circular but other shapes like hearts are also popular.

Vanilla and lemon Linzer jam cookies

So hope you’ll join me for a real teatime treat!  Linzer jam cookies are a great ole’ delicious invention super for using up jam.  Though you’ll probably end up buying jam just to make them.  🙂

Spiced linzer biscuits - glutenfree or not...

Spiced linzer biscuits

Farewell for now sweet reader!  Have a lovely rest of the week and weekend ahead with some happy baking and eating of course! 🙂 Lili x

Posted by

Baking on Sundays with my French mum was a lovely part of my childhood. Later I experimented with baking books or internet recipes and did the pâtisserie course at Le Cordon Bleu Paris. Still trying out new recipes and inventing cakes with influences from all around the world, including some healthier ones. Yes, love cakes!!! Hope you'll love them too and have fun baking. :)

19 thoughts on “Healthier Linzer jam sandwich biscuits or cookies recipe! Glutenfree or not… With a jammy story! :)”

    • Thank you so much Mary, that’s so sweet and nice to know. 😍 I do find Linzer biscuits very inspiring generally! 🙂


  1. Loved the story! The cookies look delicious! I tried to make these once many years ago, and didn’t have success. I love them and look forward to Christmas when they’re made most here. Sometimes I’m lucky and a friend will make them and gift me some.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Deborah! 😍 So happy you’ve enjoyed the story and cookies! I can understand why you look forward to them every Christmas. Though have you thought about trying to make them again? Just an idea but otherwise I’m glad your friends are gifting them to you. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Neetha for your sweet comments! So happy you like the cookies and doodles. 😍 Hope you get to eat some Linzer cookies! 🙂


  2. Pingback: Healthier Linzer jam sandwich biscuits or cookies recipe! Glutenfree or not… With a jammy story! :) | homethoughtsfromabroad626

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