Angel Eyes Cookies – German Christmas Cookies

A classic German Christmas cookie said to resemble the eyes of an angel, these buttery shortbreads are traditionally made with red currant jam, but you can use any jam or preserve you like.
Course Cookies, Dessert
Keyword Christmas
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 40 cookies


  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened (1 stick plus 3 tbsp.)
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar plus extra for dusting finished cookies (optional)
  • pinch salt
  • zest of 1 lemon finely grated
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 6 tbsp red currant or other jam well-stirred or strained to remove large pieces of fruit


  • Combine all ingredients except for jam and vanilla sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer with the paddle attachment. Mix until thoroughly combined.
  • Chill dough for at least two hours up to overnight.
  • Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Using floured hands, shape the dough into balls about the size of a walnut and place 1-inch apart on prepared baking sheet.
  • With the floured end of a wooden spoon, form an indentation in the center of each ball to hold the jam, being careful not to go all the way through.
  • Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes, just until they are a light golden color. Using a piping bag or a small spoon, fill the indentation of each cookies with jam.
  • Remove to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely. Dust with powdered sugar before serving (optional).