So named because recipes typically include black pepper, pfeffernüesse (fef-ER-nyoos-uh) means "peppernuts" in German. These small spice cookies are known by many different names throughout Europe, where they're a popular treat during the holiday season.

  • Yield: 18 cookies (serving size: 1 cookie)


  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour (about 3 1/3 ounces)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 none large egg white
  • 1/4 cup ground hazelnuts
  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar


Preheat oven to 350°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 6 ingredients (through cloves), stirring well with a whisk.

Place butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 4 minutes). Add 2 tablespoons water and egg white to butter mixture; beat well. Add flour mixture and nuts; beat on low speed just until blended. Spoon batter evenly into 18 mounds (about 2 teaspoons each) 2 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Bake at 350° for 12 minutes or until lightly browned and almost set. Cool on pans 2 minutes. Remove from pans; cool completely on a wire rack. Sprinkle cookies evenly with powdered sugar.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 65none
  • Calories from fat: 44%
  • Fat: 3.2g
  • Saturated fat: 1.7g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 1.1g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.2g
  • Protein: 0.9g
  • Carbohydrate: 8.3g
  • Fiber: 0.3g
  • Cholesterol: 6.7mg
  • Iron: 0.4mg
  • Sodium: 68mg
  • Calcium: 13mg

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Pfeffernüesse Recipe