Russian Tea Cakes : I’m Lovin’ It


We always called this melt in your mouth cookie Russian Tea Cakes, but they are also known as Wedding Cakes, Pecan Balls, Russian Tea Cakes, Snowballs, Pecan Sandies, Swedish Tea Cakes and many more!



One of my favorite cookies since childhood, is a cookie with many names.

They are light, delicate shortbread with pecans all rolled in to powdered sugar for extra sweetness!

We always called them Russian Tea Cakes, but they are also known as Wedding Cakes, Pecan Balls, Russian Tea Cakes, Snowballs, Pecan Sandies, Swedish Tea Cakes and many more!

What ever you call them, they are a MUST on any holiday cookie table!


Russian Tea Cakes

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 36

Russian Tea Cakes

A melt in your mouth cookie that goes by many names.


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar


  1. Pre-heat oven to 325°
  2. In large mixing bowl, beat butter for 30 seconds, add granulated sugar and beat until fluffy.
  3. Add vanilla and water, beat well.
  4. Stir in flour and pecans.
  5. Shape into 1-inch balls.
  6. Place on ungreased cookie sheet, and bake for 20n minutes.
  7. Cool completely.
  8. Gently roll cookies in powdered sugar.


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We always called this melt in your mouth cookie Russian Tea Cakes, but they are also known as Wedding Cakes, Pecan Balls, Russian Tea Cakes, Snowballs, Pecan Sandies, Swedish Tea Cakes and many more! These holiday cookies are perfect for bake sales, cookie trays and holiday gifting. recipe at

 More holiday cookies to enjoy!


What’s your favorite cookie?



TidyMom I'm Lovin' ItI’m Lovin’……Russian Tea Cakes

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Cheryl Sousan

A self-proclaimed neat freak, Cheryl chronicles her journey through homemaking on her blog,, where she shares recipes, tutorials, crafting and her ever-growing love for photography. This St. Louis mom juggles her passion for life, her daughters and her tiger-loving husband, all while her obsession with tidiness cleans up the trail blazed behind her. Google+

46 Responses to “Russian Tea Cakes : I’m Lovin’ It”

  1. Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga posted on December 22, 2011 at 8:20 pm (#)

    Great post, Cheryl, and I grew up making and eating Russian tea cakes. My grandmother was a little old Russian/Polish woman who taught me how to make these gems. They run in our blood!

  2. Jenny posted on December 22, 2011 at 8:30 pm (#)

    We make something similar to this called Pecan Puffs. There’s no water and I believe it involves a lot more butter! LOL!

  3. Taryn @ Design, Dining + Diapers posted on December 22, 2011 at 8:37 pm (#)

    Thanks for hosting and have a fabulous holiday weekend!

  4. Jenn posted on December 22, 2011 at 9:10 pm (#)

    My Grandma used to make those. So yummy! Thanks so much for the party. Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas!
    Jenn 😉

  5. lorishreveport posted on December 22, 2011 at 10:31 pm (#)

    YAY!! My hubby loves these and I wasn’t exaclty sure what they were before now…I always buy them, now I can make them! Can’t wait! Thanks!

  6. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar posted on December 22, 2011 at 10:36 pm (#)

    These are just the cutest!

  7. Sue posted on December 23, 2011 at 1:21 am (#)

    My mom made these yummy cookies every year also, but my favorite cookie is her candy cane cookie:)

  8. Shari Brooks posted on December 23, 2011 at 6:47 am (#)

    so happy I came by today for the link up. I am going to make these cookies this weekend with my kids. I linked up my: gingerbread, earthquake cookies and peppermint bark! enjoy and happy holidays!

  9. a spoonful of yumm posted on December 23, 2011 at 7:05 am (#)

    tea cakes sound elegant…..chocolate chip cookie is my favorite ! merry christmas ! thanks for hosting

  10. Notyet100 posted on December 23, 2011 at 7:35 am (#)

    Mmm feel like picking one

  11. Paula posted on December 23, 2011 at 8:22 am (#)

    I had a *few* of these last night while watching a Christmas movie. Safe to say that I’m pretty much addicted to them 😉 Love your photographs of them…is anyone going to finish that one with the bite taken out of it…just asking 😉

  12. Alicia posted on December 23, 2011 at 9:30 am (#)

    These are my all time favorite cookies! My grandma always made extra in my cookie box at Christmas and now I make them every year to carry on tradition. but Russian Teacakes always get an extra batch made! ha ha

  13. Peggy posted on December 23, 2011 at 11:57 am (#)

    I would like to say THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!! I know I’m yelling but I am so excited!!! I make these and so does my MIL but she calls hers Russian Teacakes and in our family they have ALWAYS been called Pecan Sandies. Well when she gave them to us our 1st Christmas (22 years ago!) I said thank you for the Pecan Sandies and was informed they were not Pecan Sandies but Russian Teacakes and by the way they had NEVER been called Pecan Sandies! Umm… ok… I still call them Pecan Sandies (its really funny as my MIL’s name is Sandy!) So now I have been vindicated!! :-)
    twice over recently…. the other being an old recipe book. LOVe this recipe by the way! And I have to laugh because we never use pecans in our pecan sandies any longer… we use chopped hazelnuts and a little bit of chopped chocolate. LOL but we still call them Pecan Sandies! Crazy, huh!?!

  14. Tickled Red posted on December 23, 2011 at 1:48 pm (#)

    I just adore Russian Tea Cookies! I remember my mom and I making these when I was little, such fun 😀

  15. Jeanette posted on December 23, 2011 at 2:28 pm (#)

    These were one of my favorite cookies to make as a kid, brings by fond memories. Happy Holidays!

  16. Jennifer posted on December 23, 2011 at 3:17 pm (#)

    Thanks so much for having a fun link party! I linked up the stenciled wall I did in our dining room. Hope you’re having a great Friday!

  17. Lisa @ Stop and Smell the Chocolates posted on December 24, 2011 at 12:06 am (#)

    Love those cookies! So pretty too! I make a version that has chocolate and coffee added – yummy! Thanks for hosting and have a Merry Christmas! :)

  18. Loy posted on December 24, 2011 at 1:33 pm (#)

    That is a wonderful cookie. No wonder it is baked by so many different people and has so many different names. It should be in everyone’s recipe file no matter what the name. Today I bring Coconut Pecan Cake Balls. Thanks so much for hosting this party each week even if I don’t always get here. I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas.

  19. Joan posted on December 26, 2011 at 3:38 pm (#)

    Always love your Friday posts and always find inspiring new recipes! Thank you!!!

  20. MaryB posted on December 30, 2011 at 6:12 pm (#)

    In Greece we call them “kourabiedes” and we use roasted almonds instead of pecan. YUMMY!!!!!!!!

  21. Debbi posted on June 27, 2012 at 3:07 pm (#)

    We have a recipe for Russian tea cakes but with 2 tsp Almond Extract and 1tsp of Vanilla. They don’t last long in our household

  22. Kris Strand posted on November 13, 2012 at 4:16 pm (#)

    LOVE your website and will be following for more great recipes/ideas. I have a question for you, I would like to make the Russian Tea Cakes ahead and freeze them for an event in a week or so. What is the best way to freeze them, making the balls and freezing them raw to bake later, or baking and rolling in powdered sugar and then freezing? Thanks so much!!

  23. Colette @ JFF! posted on December 10, 2012 at 3:59 am (#)

    This is the most useful way to spend 5 minutes….well, maybe the 0.5 of a second to inhale these li’l cuties, actually!

  24. Sanjeeta kk posted on December 13, 2012 at 10:24 pm (#)

    Lovely..looks like plump shortbread cookies!

  25. Kim posted on December 23, 2013 at 8:59 pm (#)

    can you double this recipe? Already made one batch and it was a huge hit. I tried to double the recipe and the cookies crumbled….going to try again tomorrow. Love them!


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