My oldest son LOVES almond cookies. Not the normal Chinese almond cookies that you get at a restaurant, but more of a shortbread type of almond cookie. He loves them even more than chocolate chip cookies. Yes, I said it…more than chocolate chip!

Almond Cookies

So years ago, when we first moved to California, I realized that I didn’t have my favorite almond cookie recipe. I tore through all my recipe books, folders, and even tried searching the web. I was in a bit of a panic. How could I not have my favorite recipe?

I finally had to call my grandmother in Hawaii to see if she could find it for me. Luckily, she knew exactly which recipe I wanted.Honestly, I don’t remember where the original recipe came from, but it may have come from an old Hawaii Hongwanji cookbook. These were some of the best cookbooks ever! Most of the recipes in these cookbooks are a blend of the different cultures in Hawaii. Unfortunately, these cookbooks are no longer in print and none of my relatives in Hawaii are willing to part with their copy.Here are some pictures of the prep process.

Almond Cookies Recipe

Almond cookie dough

Dough should not stick to the hands or be gooey.

Flattened almond cookies
Flatten one inch round balls with the palms of your hand.
Almond Cookie designs

Gently press almond slices into the cookie or make designs with food coloring.

Almond Cookies
Bake and eat! But be careful, it’s hard to stop at just one or two 🙂
Almond Cookies

Almond Cookies

Yield: 36
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes

Melt in your mouth buttery flavored almond cookie recipe


  • 1 1/2 cup butter flavored Crisco shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 - 3 tsp. almond extract I prefer 3 tsp. for a stronger almond flavor
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • optional - almond slices
  • optional - red food coloring


1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Combine shortening, sugar, almond extract, and egg in a large bowl. Set aside. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, salt, and baking soda. Add the flour mixture to the shortening mixture and mix well.
3. Make one inch balls and place onto ungreased cookie sheet.Flatten balls with the palms of your hand.Optional - Place an almond slice or food color dot in the center of each cookie. Bake for 11 - 13 minutes. Let cool for 1 minute and move to a cooling rack to cool completely. Enjoy.


  • Do not under bake or they will taste like shortening. These cookies should be crispy around the edges and slightly soft on the inside.
  • Adjust cooking time to your oven. It takes about 12 minutes for my oven to bake these cookies, but your oven time may be different. 

Did you make this recipe?

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  1. Finally, I too have been searching for that melt in your mouth Almond cookie I used to have on Maui. You nailed it. I have tried about a half dozen other recipes with no luck until I found yours. Perfection!! My Portuguese mother was raised on Maui and my grandmother used to make these as well as Portuguese sweet bread. Most of these recipes have been lost thru the years. PS. your mac salad is exactly how my mom made it too!