Alfajores I Recipe - Traditional Argentine Cookies with Ground Almonds

Alfajores I

Alfajores I Recipe - Traditional Argentine Cookies with Ground Almonds
Region / culture: Argentina | Preparation time: 45 minutes | Cooking time: 20 minutes | Servings: 24


Alfajores I
Alfajores I

Alfajores are a delightful treat that originated in South America, known for their soft, crumbly texture and sweet, indulgent filling. This recipe offers a step-by-step guide to creating these delicious sandwich cookies, filled with your choice of jelly, dulce de leche, or melted chocolate, and coated with a light dusting of shaved coconut. Perfect for any occasion, these alfajores are sure to impress with their exquisite flavor and elegant presentation.


The history of alfajores dates back to the Moorish occupation of Spain, from where it traveled to South America during the Spanish colonization. The name "alfajor" is derived from the Arabic word "al-hasĂș", which means "filled". Over the centuries, the recipe has evolved, with each South American country adding its own twist. The version presented here is inspired by the traditional recipes, with a focus on simplicity and authenticity.


How to prepare

  1. Mix the butter, sugar, and essences together.
  2. Add the eggs one at a time.
  3. Add the flour and almonds, then lightly knead the mixture.
  4. Place the dough in the fridge for about 35 minutes.
  5. Flatten the dough and cut it into small circles, similar to the size of cookies.
  6. Bake the circles for approximately 20 minutes on greased and floured baking sheets.
  7. Take one circle and spread jelly, dulce de leche, or melted chocolate on it.
  8. Use another circle to cover the alfajore, creating a sandwich-like structure.
  9. The moist edges can be coated with shaved coconut.


  • There are many ways to vary this recipe to suit your tastes. For a chocolate version, add cocoa powder to the dough. Alternatively, for a nut-free version, omit the almonds and use a different essence, such as vanilla or orange, to flavor the dough.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To ensure your alfajores have the perfect texture, it's crucial to chill the dough before rolling it out. This makes the dough easier to handle and helps maintain the shape of the cookies during baking. Additionally, when spreading the filling, be careful not to overfill to prevent it from oozing out the sides. For a uniform look, use a round cookie cutter or a glass with a sharp edge to cut out the dough.

Serving Suggestions

Alfajores are best served at room temperature, allowing the flavors to fully develop. They pair wonderfully with a cup of coffee or tea, making them an excellent choice for an afternoon treat or dessert after a meal.

Cooking Techniques

The key technique in this recipe is the creaming of butter and sugar, which introduces air into the mixture, resulting in a lighter cookie. Additionally, gentle kneading of the dough is crucial to avoid developing too much gluten, which would make the cookies tough.

Ingredient Substitutions

For those looking to make substitutions, coconut oil can be used in place of butter for a dairy-free version. Similarly, gluten-free flour can be substituted for plain flour to make the recipe gluten-free.

Make Ahead Tips

The dough for alfajores can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to a month. Simply thaw overnight in the refrigerator before rolling out and baking.

Presentation Ideas

For an elegant presentation, dust the finished alfajores with a light layer of confectioner's sugar or drizzle with melted chocolate. They can also be wrapped in decorative paper or placed in a pretty box for a beautiful gift.

Pairing Recommendations

Alfajores pair beautifully with a variety of beverages. For a traditional South American experience, enjoy them with a cup of yerba mate. They also complement the flavors of espresso, hot chocolate, or a sweet dessert wine.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Alfajores can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. For longer storage, they can be refrigerated for up to two weeks or frozen for up to three months. There is no need to reheat them, but if desired, they can be gently warmed in the oven.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A single serving of alfajores contains approximately 300 calories. The majority of these calories come from the butter and sugar, making these cookies a decadent treat best enjoyed in moderation.


Each serving of alfajores contains approximately 45 grams of carbohydrates. The primary source of these carbohydrates is the plain flour and confectioner's sugar, which provide the cookies with their structure and sweetness.


Alfajores are rich in fats, with each serving containing about 20 grams. The butter not only contributes to the fat content but also gives the cookies their tender, crumbly texture.


Each alfajore serving provides around 3 grams of protein, mainly from the eggs and almonds. While not a significant source of protein, these ingredients help to bind the dough and add a slight nutritional boost.

Vitamins and minerals

Alfajores offer a range of vitamins and minerals, including calcium from the butter and eggs, and vitamin C from the lemon zest used in the dough. Additionally, almonds provide a good source of vitamin E and magnesium.


This recipe contains common allergens such as eggs, nuts (almonds), and gluten (flour). Those with allergies or sensitivities to these ingredients should exercise caution.


Alfajores are a high-calorie, indulgent treat rich in carbohydrates and fats, with a modest amount of protein. They also provide some vitamins and minerals, making them a delicious, if not particularly health-focused, option for dessert or a special occasion.


This alfajores recipe offers a delightful journey into South American cuisine, presenting a treat that is both rich in history and flavor. With its buttery, crumbly cookies and sweet, indulgent filling, it's a recipe that invites experimentation and is sure to become a cherished addition to your baking repertoire.

How did I get this recipe?

The first time I saw this recipe, I was filled with a sense of excitement. It was a hot summer day, and I was visiting my dear friend Maria in Buenos Aires. We were sitting in her sunny kitchen, sipping on mate and chatting about life when she suddenly pulled out a tattered old recipe card from her recipe box.

"Have you ever tried Alfajores?" Maria asked me, her eyes sparkling with excitement. I shook my head, not quite sure what she was talking about. Maria laughed and explained that Alfajores were a traditional Argentinean dessert - delicate, melt-in-your-mouth cookies filled with dulce de leche and dusted with powdered sugar. My mouth watered just thinking about it.

Maria handed me the recipe card and pointed to the instructions. I scanned the list of ingredients - flour, butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla extract - it all seemed simple enough. But it was the method that intrigued me the most. It called for the dough to be rolled out, cut into rounds, baked until golden brown, and then filled with dulce de leche. It sounded like a labor of love, but I was up for the challenge.

Over the next few hours, Maria patiently guided me through the process of making Alfajores. We measured, mixed, rolled, cut, and baked until we had a tray full of golden cookies cooling on the counter. The sweet scent of caramelized sugar and butter filled the kitchen, making my stomach rumble in anticipation.

Once the cookies had cooled, Maria showed me how to fill them with dulce de leche and sandwich them together. She then dusted the tops with powdered sugar, creating a delicate snow-like coating that made the cookies look like little pieces of heaven. I couldn't wait to sink my teeth into one.

As I bit into my first Alfajor, I was transported to a world of pure bliss. The buttery, crumbly cookie melted in my mouth, while the rich dulce de leche oozed out from the center, leaving a sweet, sticky trail on my fingers. It was a taste sensation like no other, and I knew I had to learn how to make these delicious treats for myself.

I spent the rest of my time in Buenos Aires perfecting my Alfajor-making skills. Maria taught me all her tips and tricks - how to roll the dough out thin, how to fill the cookies evenly, how to dust them with just the right amount of powdered sugar. By the time I left Argentina, I felt like a true Alfajor expert.

Back home, I couldn't wait to share my newfound recipe with my family and friends. I whipped up batch after batch of Alfajores, each one better than the last. They became a staple at family gatherings and holiday celebrations, with everyone clamoring for more of my delicious cookies.

Over the years, I've made countless Alfajores, each one a labor of love and a tribute to my dear friend Maria. The recipe may have originated in Argentina, but it has become a part of my own culinary repertoire, passed down from generation to generation.

As I sit here now, with a fresh batch of Alfajores cooling on the counter, I can't help but feel grateful for the journey that led me to this recipe. It's a reminder of the power of friendship, of shared experiences, and of the joy that comes from creating something delicious with your own two hands.

So, if you ever find yourself in need of a little taste of Argentina, just whip up a batch of Alfajores and transport yourself to a sunny kitchen in Buenos Aires, where the scent of dulce de leche and powdered sugar fills the air, and the memories of good times shared with loved ones linger on. Enjoy!


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