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Kardamon Plätzchen Recipe – German Christmas Cookies

Kardamon Plätzchen is a type of German Christmas cookie that is popular world wide in the winter time. The shortbread cookie gets its warm, comforting flavor from the ground cardamom that is its hallmark.

The dough is very crumbly and must be refrigerated like an icebox cookie before baking. After baking, the cookies are cooled and dipped in melted chocolate. I used Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Baking Chocolate to coat the cookies. It’s a rich chocolate and slightly overpowered the flavor of the cookie. Milk chocolate may be better.

Still, didn’t stop Farmboy from eating several.

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The word plätzchen is actually German for cookie, so there are a variety of plätzchen recipes out there. I like these because the cardamom gives the a more complex flavor that the Christmas cookies we typically get here in the states. Plus, everything is better dipped in chocolate.

This Platzchen recipe makes a light shortbread cookie that is perfect for gifting at Christmas time. They keep well in an airtight container, and it’s something different that most people won’t be gifting this season.

Plaetzchen recipe

Kardamon Plaetzchen

Yield: 24
Prep Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 42 minutes

This Platzchen recipe makes a light shortbread cookie that is perfect for gifting at Christmas time. They keep well in an airtight container, and it's something different that most people won't be gifting this season.


  • 12 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 1/2 c + 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp rum
  • 2 c flour
  • 3/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 4 oz melting chocolate, for dipping


  1. Beat butter and sugar together until fluffy. Mix in vanilla extract and rum.
  2. Sift flour with cardamom, baking powder and salt. Mix into the creamed butter to make a stiff dough.
  3. Divide the dough in half. Form into two rolls about 2" in diameter. Wrap in plastic wrap. Twist the ends of the wrapping to press the dough together. Chill in the freezer or refrigerator for 2 or more hours.
  4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  5. Unroll the dough and place on a cutting board. Slice the dough into 1/4 inch thick cookies.
  6. Place the cookies on a cookie sheet. You can place them fairly close together, but not touching. These cookies didn't have any spread.
  7. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until set and starting to brown slightly. Remove the cookies immediately to a cooling rack. Let cool.
  8. Melt the chocolate according to package directions. Chocolate can commonly be melted in the microwave or a double boiler on the stove. Dip the cookies half way in the chocolate, place on wax paper and allow to harden.
  9. Once the chocolate has set up, the cookies can be stored in an airtight container.

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