Gluten-Free Almond Flour Crescent Cookies

These gluten-free almond flour crescent cookies are a healthy take on my nanny’s crescent cookie recipe. Each cookie only has about 60 calories and 2 grams of sugar plus they can easily be made vegan!

Oh my! I think I’ve found my new favorite healthier holiday cookie recipe. I know I say this every year (in 2015 I was hooked on these healthy no bake cookies and last year the whole EBF team was going gaga over these almond butter espresso cookies, but honestly this cookie recipe is near and dear to my heart because it’s a remake of my nanny’s crescent cookies.

Gluten-free almond flour crescent cookies rolled in powdered sugar, on a snowflake plate. A festive oven fit and bowl of pecans are on the table.

This is a recipe we’ve made every single year for Christmas since I was a little girl and I’ve always adored the crispy pecan shortbread texture paired with the sweet and fluffy powered sugar coating.

Gluten-free almond flour crescent cookies on a plate being rolled in powdered sugar.

Gluten-free almond flour crescent cookies on a cooling rack, and being rolled in powdered sugar on a plate. A bowl of pecans in a bowl.

All the ladies in my family including my mom, sister, nieces and nanny get together to do holiday cookie baking each year and nanny’s crescent cookies are a mainstay. Although she doesn’t make her way around the kitchen the way she used to nanny still has the energy to help out by rolling all the cookies in powered sugar for us. And she’s a hoot too. If we’re not watching closely she’ll end up munching on cookies the whole time she’s rolling them.

Snowflake plate filled with gluten-free almond flour crescent cookies. A glass of almond milk, bowl of pecans, and a whisk are next to the plate.

Over the years I’ve moved away from using regular white flour when baking so I’m really excited to have a grain-free, gluten-free version of these cookies to enjoy. You’ll notice in the recipe that the cookies can be made with organic butter, ghee or vegan butter. I opted to go the vegan route and used Earth Balance buttery sticks, which worked amazingly well. They’re delicious either way so feel free to use whatever you have on hand.

Snowflake plate with gluten-free almond flour crescent cookies.

The best part is that these cookies are a pretty healthy option when it comes to holiday cookies because they’re low in calories, sugar and carbs! Each cookie has about 60 calories, 2 grams of sugar and 3 grams of carbs. Not too shabby!

Snowflake plate with gluten-free almond flour crescent cookies.

Plus, they only require one bowl, six ingredients and about 30 minutes to whip up! How’s that for a win-win cookie situation?

More Healthy Cookies To Try:

If you make these gluten-free almond flour crescent cookies, be sure to leave a comment and star rating letting me know how they turned out. Your feedback is so helpful for the EBF team and other readers who are thinking about trying the recipe.

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Gluten-Free Almond Flour Crescent Cookies


  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 23

Description

Simple almond flour crescent cookies — each cookie only has about 60 calories and 2 grams of sugar plus they’re gluten-free and easily made vegan! 


Ingredients

  • 1 cup finely ground almond flour
  • 3 Tablespoons softened organic butter, ghee or vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
  • 56 Tablespoons organic confectioners’ sugar (divided)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped pecans

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or grab an ungreased baking stone.
  3. Mix almond flour, softened butter, 3 Tablespoons confectioner’s sugar, vanilla and salt in a small bowl until a cohesive dough forms. It will seem a little dry at first, but just keep mixing. Once combined, mix in chopped pecans. You can use your hands to help mix the pecans in if needed.
  4. Roll tablespoons of the dough into a small log and then shape into a crescent shape. Arrange the crescents about 1 inch apart on the sheet as they will spread a bit. Bake the cookies for 20 minutes or until they start to turn light golden brown on top.
  5. Remove from the oven and let cool on the pan for about 5 minutes. Transfer them to a rack to cool 10 minutes more. Place 2-3 Tablespoons confectioners’ sugar in a shallow bowl and roll each cookie until coated. Let cookies cool and enjoy.
  6. Store any leftover cookies in the fridge. I’ve found that this helps the cookies keep a crisp texture and ensures that the powdered sugar doesn’t soak into the cookies.
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Cookies

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cookie
  • Calories: 63
  • Sugar: 2g
  • Sodium: 13mg
  • Fat: 5g
  • Saturated Fat: 2g
  • Carbohydrates: 3g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 1g

Keywords: almond crescent cookies, almond flour cookies

Want more healthy holiday cookie recipes? Check out the recipes below from some of my favorite healthy bloggers:

Healthy Holiday Cookie Recipes

These simple almond flour crescent cookies are a healthy take on my nanny’s signature crescent cookie recipe. Each cookie only has about 60 calories and 2 grams of sugar plus they’re gluten-free and easily made vegan!

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    42 comments
  1. I am looking forward to trying these, but haven’t baked with Almond flour yet. I love almond flavoring though and wondered if you can taste the almond when using the flour or do you suggest using almond extract in addition to enhance that flavor?

    • The almond flour lends a sweet, nutty aroma to baked goods, but it doesn’t have a distinct flavor like almond flavoring would. You can definitely sub almond extract for the vanilla extract to give it more of an almond flavor. Let me know if you end up making these and how they turn out! 🙂

  2. Absolutely amazing!! Totally reminds my husband of the cookies his Hungarian grandma used to make. Gluten free is a bonus for me!! I either leave out the pecans or use almonds instead. Definitely a keeper!!

    • Hi and welcome! I haven’t tested this recipe with all-purpose flour, but my Nanny’s original recipe uses AP flour so you could try that instead:

      1 cup butter, softened
      2 cups all-purpose flour
      2 cups grated pecans
      5 T granulated sugar
      1 T water
      2 t pure vanilla extract
      1/2 t salt
      3/4 cup powdered sugar for rolling

      Preheat oven to 325°
      Cream together the butter, sugar, vanilla and water until fluffy.
      Mix flour and salt together in a separate bowl and gently stir into the butter mixture.
      Stir in pecans.
      Roll tablespoons of the dough into a log and then shape into a crescent shape.
      Bake at 325° for 20 minutes, cool cookies for 5-10 minutes and roll them in a bowl of powdered sugar while they’re still a bit warm.
      Cool and enjoy!

      • How sweet of you to include your Nanny’s recipe, too! Am going to try both your gf version and your nanny’s ( for my gluten eating crew).
        Absolutely love your recipes. Thanks, Brittany!

  3. I made these cookies for the first time. They are amazing! My husband works nights and I went to bed only to wake up with one cookie left from my bake.

    I will have to make a triple batch in the future to ensure that I get at least two cookies. LOL

  4. I added a bit of cardamom powder to mine to spice (these were a little bland for my taste) and they worked out perfectly! Thanks for the recipe 🙂

  5. Thank you! Thank you! Finally a gluten free cookie that tastes like a cookie! I’ve made these 4 times now, they are perfect. This is the first cookie that I’ve enjoyed since going gluten free 7 years ago. They are delicious, with just the right texture and crumb. They hold up great for several days in the fridge in an airtight container (if they last that long!). So glad I found your site, and again, thanks for this recipe.

    • Ahhh!! This comment just made my day, Sue. I’m so happy to hear that you’re loving these cookies. They’re a favorite over here too! <3 Thank you so much for leaving a comment and star-rating as well. It's so helpful for me and other readers who are thinking about making the recipe! 🙂

  6. I made these the other day with regular butter and they were absolutely delicious. I used organic cane sugar to make confectioners’ sugar and forgot the directions to divide it. I ended up using about 5 tablespoons in the recipe (and it still wasn’t very sweet). I sprinkled about a tablespoon on top. I also used 1/2 teaspoon of rose water (as I was out of vanilla) but there was absolutely no taste of it in the cookies. I’ll use more tomorrow when I plan on doubling up the recipe.

  7. These were excellent. I made two batches – the first with earth balance vegan butter and the second batch with 4th and Heart vanilla ghee, and I highly recommend trying that! Both were great. Thank you for your low carb recipes!

  8. I was so excited to try the recipe when I saw it on Instragram and so glad I did. They are absolutely delicious! I spared myself the mess of cleaning up confection sugar with a 3 yr. old eating so the end result is not as pretty but they are wonderful. Thank you so much for all the lovely recipes, I’m making my way through them. You have a wonderful presence on Instagram and enjoy all your tips and inspiration as we navigate food, health and wellness as a society. Keep it up!

  9. Hello,
    Just wondering what the self life is once made please. I am so excited to find a gf version of this recipe. I have missed making the originals since being diagnosed Coeliacs 10 years ago!

  10. I’ve made these cookies at least twice and they are absolutely delicious! They are not too sweet either. Thank you for such a great recipe!

  11. Oooh, Vanillekipferl! That’s what we call these over here though ours don’t contain any chopped nuts. I really like your version of them, too, and might try them some time. Right now, all of our cookie tins are filled to the brim :).

  12. Could this recipe be used for cookie cutters? Looking for a recipe that is healthy and fun to make with kids. I love the ingredients in this recipe but want to make other shapes too! Thank you for sharing!

  13. Brittany, I made these tonight and about cried when I ate one, they were so amazing! I change my diet drastically this year, cutting out refined flour, cutting way back on sugar, etc, and I thought I wouldn’t be able to enjoy Christmas cookies this year. These cookies proved me wrong! Can’t wait to share them!

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