How To Prepare Pfeffernusse In English Simple

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Pfeffernusse (pronounced pfeffer-nooss-eh) are delightful little German Christmas cookies traditionally enjoyed during the festive season. These bite-sized treats boast a complex flavor profile – a delightful blend of warm spices like ginger and cinnamon, balanced with a hint of black pepper. Their name translates to “pepper nuts,” a nod to the subtle peppery kick that lingers on the palate.

Unlike many other Christmas cookies, pfeffernusse are not overly sweet. Their unique flavor profile makes them perfect for those who prefer a more sophisticated cookie experience. They are also surprisingly easy to make, requiring minimal effort and readily available ingredients.

Pfeffernüsse - Wikipedia
Pfeffernüsse – Wikipedia


1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • Directions:

    1. In a large bowl, cream together the softened butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
    2. Beat in the eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla extract.
    3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, spices, and salt.
    4. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined. Be careful not to overmix!
    5. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or up to overnight.
    6. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
    7. Roll out the chilled dough on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of about 1/4 inch.
    8. Use a cookie cutter to cut out pfeffernusse shapes. Traditional pfeffernusse are round, but any fun Christmas-themed cookie cutter will work.
    9. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheets, leaving a little space between them for spreading.
    10. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the edges are lightly golden brown.
    11. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

    Nutrition Facts (per serving):

    Calories: 120

  • Fat: 6g
  • Saturated Fat: 4g
  • Cholesterol: 30mg
  • Sodium: 40mg
  • Carbohydrates: 18g
  • Sugar: 10g
  • Protein: 1g

  • Please note: This is an approximate nutritional value based on a single cookie. The actual nutritional content may vary depending on the specific ingredients used and the size of the cookies.


    Pfeffernusse are a delicious and unique addition to your Christmas cookie spread. Their warm spices and subtle pepper kick are sure to surprise and delight your guests. They are also surprisingly easy to make, requiring minimal effort and readily available ingredients. So why not give them a try this holiday season?

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1. Can I substitute black pepper with another spice?

    Yes, if you’re not a fan of black pepper, you can substitute it with an equal amount of white pepper or even omit it altogether. However, the black pepper adds a unique depth of flavor that sets pfeffernusse apart from other Christmas cookies.

    2. My pfeffernusse cookies seem too dry. What can I do?

    If your cookies seem a bit dry, you may have overbaked them slightly. Try reducing the baking time by a minute or two next time. You can also add a tablespoon of milk or cream to the dough for a slightly moister consistency.

    3. How long do pfeffernusse cookies last?

    Pfeffernusse cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks. They can also be frozen for up to three months.

    4. Can I make pfeffernusse ahead of time?

    Absolutely! The dough can be prepared and refrigerated for up to overnight. This makes them a great option for busy holiday seasons when you want to get ahead of baking.

    5. What can I do with leftover pfeffernusse dough?

    If you have leftover pfeffernusse dough, you can use it to make gingerbread cookies or other spiced cookie shapes. Simply roll out the dough and cut out your desired shapes. Bake according to the package instructions for gingerbread cookies or your specific recipe.