These Almond Crescent Cookies are a melt-in-your-mouth delicious and healthier re-creation of one of my childhood favorite cookies. This “guaranteed to please” recipe is now grain-free with a dairy-free & low-carb / keto option.
Perfect for every day, but they're also an extra-special option for the Holidays!
Today I have the sincere pleasure of sharing with you one of my favorite recipes of all time — Low-Carb Almond Crescent Cookies. This is a recipe that I have been working on for a long time, and it's finally perfected.
Yes, sharing great recipes is something that brings me a lot of joy. Isn't it fun to share something that you love whether it be a recipe, a movie, a place to go, a blog, or a good book? Sharing makes everything better.
Anyhow, there's just something special about baking cookies with your family.
Love for Almond Crescent Cookies
When I was little, I loved baking cookies. Any kind of cookie.
So Christmastime was particularly fun for me. I would bake all kinds of cookies–some for my family and some for gifting.
I would always have Chocolate Chip Cookies in the mix, and often there were Meltaways and Candy Cane Shortbread Cookies, and Biscotti (when I got old and was into more “complicated” cookies). My favorites were always the Peanut Butter Blossoms and the Almond Crescent Cookies.
Just. so. good.
And there's something about the shape — little crescent moons adorned with either powdered sugar or almond slices.
They make me happy.
Maybe that's because when you turn them so that they curve upwards, they look like a smile :).
Whatever the case, I love these cookies.
The almond flavor of these almond crescent cookies is complimented perfectly by the light texture and the buttery flavor makes it all just heavenly. Mmmmmmm…..
The Origin of Crescent Cookies–Vanillekipferl
These cookies originated as Vanillekipferl (pronounced VAN-el-eu-KIP-fuhl), which means “vanilla crescent” or “vanilla moon.” They were originally made in Vienna, Austria, where they continue to be a much-loved, traditional Christmas cookie, however, they are also quite common throughout Europe.
One legend is that their shape is modeled after the Turkish crescent moon to celebrate one of the victories of the Hungarian army over the Turkish army.
Others that believe that this treat evolved from the Hungarian kifli, a typically-savory, croissant-like pastry that is shaped like a crescent.
Traditionally these cookies are almond based, but hazelnuts and walnuts are often used as well.
Why Make Low-carb Crescent Cookies?
Anyhow, I was such a sugar addict when I was younger, but that had to change. Due to candida and other issues in our family like autism, thyroid disease, and adrenal fatigue, we had to change things up with out diet several times.
We've tried many diets, but going sugar free and moving more in the low-carb direction has been a great help for us in many ways.
I am not an advocate for eating low carb all the time. In fact, adding some carbs into my diet is one thing that I think was crucial in the healing of my thyroid disease. However, most of us eat way too many carbs and it's wreaking all kinds of havoc on our bodies and on our society.
Back to the almond crescent cookies.
I tried making these Almond Crescents several times, and while it was fun experimenting, it was hard to get the sweetness just right while not having the cookies expand like crazy when baking.
You can see my “Low-Carb Almond Crescent Cookies” fail here:
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ALMOND CRESCENT ? FAIL!! Working on recreating one of my favorite childhood cookies, but alas, I ended up creating an Almond Flour Crust instead! ? ??????? Back to the drawing board! #paleo #vegan #lowcarb #cookies #healthy #keto #dairyfree #glutenfree #fail #grainfree #cookie
Ugh. That version might work flattened out as a cookie base for a tart or something, but cookies they for sure weren't. Sigh.
So I had to go back to the drawing board. Several times.
I tried a bunch of different versions, but adding a bit of coconut flour to the dough seemed to do the trick.
The crescent cookies turned out perfect–perfect in taste and not flat as a pancake.
As noted in the recipe, you can roll them in almond slices, or sprinkle them with powdered sweetener, or do both. I think dipping these in melted chocolate or my melted Homemade Chocolate Chips or Homemade White Chocolate Chips (mmmmmmmm…white chocolate and almonds–yum!) would be a great option too.
These cookies are perfect for dunking into coffee or Hot Chocolate (like this Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate) or milk, or of course dairy-free milk (like this Easiest Coconut Milk or Easiest Almond Milk if you eat dairy free like we do). And of course you can also simply eat them on their own.
Believe me, you will have a hard time not eating every single one of these.
Ours were gone in a flash–even the ugly flat ones :).
Please pay attention to the important note on the baking time: The cookies will seem very soft when you remove them from the oven, but they will cool to be just the right texture.
I know. It's hard. You want to eat all of the cookies. Now. We did that. Ate a whole bunch and they were too soft.
I really thought that I had botched another recipe. But after they had cooled we realized that we missed out on the wonderful perfect texture of these cookies because we just couldn't wait! So wait. Let them cool. You can do it!
I know, I said that before, but you really need to remember this to avoid full blown soft cookie disappointment.
Recipe Notes and Special Diet Substitutions for Almond Crescent Cookies
- Butter Alternative: You can use coconut oil instead of butter for a vegan option.
- Sweetener: For a sweetener, I used xylitol. If you don't want to eat low-carb, you can substitute sugar or most alternatives. See How to Substitute Sweeteners.
- Vanilla: If you would like to make your own vanilla, see my Alcohol-Free Vanilla Extract.
- Powdered Sugar: Here is a recipe for Easy Homemade Powdered Sugar.
- THM: This recipe is an “S” for those on the Trim Healthy Mama plan.
Low-Carb Almond Crescent Cookies - vegan option
- 1 cup butter (softened--or alternative. See Recipe Notes)
- 3 3/4 cups almond flour
- 1/2 cups coconut flour
- 1 1/4 cup xylitol
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 tsp almond extract
- sliced almonds for coating (approximately 1 cup. This is a generous amount, but will ensure that you have plenty)
- powdered sweetener (optional for topping; my Low-Carb Powdered Sugar Substitute)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Beat butter, salt, and sweetener together until well blended.
- Add the extracts and beat well.
- Add remaining ingredients and combine well.
- Form into small logs, about 3 inches long.
- Place the sliced almonds into a bowl.
- Roll the logs in sliced almonds.
- Shape into crescents.
- Sprinkle with powdered sweetener if using.
- Bake at 350 for 10 - 15 min or until lightly browned.
- Let the cookies cool completely before eating or transferring to a container for storage.