Sour Cherry Amaretti Cookies placed in bowl on top of tea towel

Sour Cherry Amaretti – Gluten-Free

February 16, 2015

Sour Cherry Amaretti charms with its hand-made look and heaps of flavour. You?€?ll hardly believe they’re so simple to mix and bake. Once in the oven, the lemon and sweet almond perfumes the kitchen. Resist the urge to eat them all. Gluten-free too. This recipe comes from Ottolenghi: The Cookbook. For a complete reference, see below.

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Makes 24 amaretti
  • 1 2/3 cups 180 grams 6.3 ounces ground almonds
  • ½ cup + 1.5 tablespoons 120 grams 4.2 ounces superfine sugar
  • 1 tablespoon 1 tablespoon 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • ¼ teaspoon ¼ teaspoon ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • pinch fine salt
  • ½ cup 60 grams 2 ounces dried sour cherries coarsely chopped
  • 2 2 2 egg whites
  • 2 teaspoons 2 teaspoons 2 teaspoons honey
  • confectioners' sugar for rolling



  • 1 cookie tray lined with parchment, stand or hand mixer to whip the egg whites
  • Oven Temperature: 325 degrees
  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees on a setting that isn’t convection.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment.
  • Measure the ground almonds, sugar and salt together in a large bowl.
  • Grate the lemon zest. Click here to read more about zesting citrus.
Grated Lemon zest…beautiful.
Grated Lemon zest…beautiful.
  • Add the lemon zest to the almonds and sugar.
  • Then add the almond extract. With your fingers, rub the mixture to disperse the ingredients. Measure and coarsely chop the dried cherries and add them to the bowl with the almonds and sugar
Almonds, sugar, dried sour cherries and salt.
Almonds, sugar, dried sour cherries and salt.
  • Again, with your fingers, stir the cherries, breaking up any that are stuck together.
  • Separate the eggs. Click here to read The Finer Cookie’s post on how to separate eggs.
  • Ready the honey
  • Warm the egg whites in a microwave at very low power for 30-45 seconds.
  • Pour a small amount of confectioners’ sugar into a small, wide mouth bowl for rolling.


  • Put the warm egg white in a bowl of a stand mixer or a mixing bowl, and whip to break up the mass and create large foam bubbles. Consult The Finer Cookie’s How-To post on how to whip egg whites.
  • Continue beating until a delicate foam begins to develop.
  • Stop the mixer and add the honey one teaspoon at a time, being careful not to get any on the whisk.
  • Repeat with the second teaspoon of honey.
  • Continue whipping to very soft peaks. You are looking for a very flexible and soft peak. Careful not to whip the egg whites until very firm because they might break when you add them to the almond mixture.
The soft meringue just before it is folded into the almonds.
The soft meringue just before it is folded into the almonds.


  • Add the softly whipped egg whites to the almond mixture and fold gently until completely combined. The dough will press together easily.
  • Divide the dough in half and then in half again–four pieces.
The cookie dough cut in half.
The cookie dough cut in half.


  • With your fingers, form 5 irregular balls of dough from each quarter of dough.
  • Place all 20 balls on one sheet, as there isn’t too much spread when they bake.
  • Go back to your first cookie, and press it firmly together, then roll it generously in the powdered sugar.
  • Return it to the tray.
The tray of rolled and unrolled sour cherry amaretti before the oven.
The tray of rolled and unrolled sour cherry amaretti before the oven.


  • When all cookies are rolled in sugar, place the cookie on the lowest rack and bake for 15-20 minutes. They should take on some color, but remain relatively pale. The exterior will develop a light shell, and the interior will remain soft and chewy.
Baked Amaretti.
Baked Amaretti.
  • Cool completely before tasting.
  • Store in a sealed container or jar.
Sour Cherry Amaretti, The Finer Cookie.
Sour Cherry Amaretti, The Finer Cookie.


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