Easy Traditional Italian Almond Biscotti Recipe

 Welcome!  Here’s an Italian almond biscotti recipe from my family that is so simple and easy to make. If you’re looking for a recipe for biscotti with almonds that is quick and takes 30 minutes start to finish, this is not that recipe. 

But, if you’re looking for a traditional almond biscotti that is tried and true and produces an authentic biscotti cookie that is perfect for dipping in your espresso or coffee, you’ve come to the right place.

almond biscotti recipe

About this Almond Biscotti Recipe

The Italian word for biscotti, is literally cookie. But most people use the word biscotti to refer to the long slices of dry cookies which are perfect for dunking in coffee.

Although this recipe uses almonds which provide the right balance of almond flavor without becoming overbearing, it isn’t required. I offer some substitutions towards the end of this post if you fall into this category.

My family’s almond biscotti recipe uses what is called a double-bake process. That means that the biscotti is baked twice at two different temperatures.

This extra step is what turns a subpar biscotti recipe into the classic crunchy and hard biscuit that softens instantly as you dip it in your espresso or coffee of choice.

The secret to any biscotti recipe is to achieve that dry texture and keep to traditional ingredients – almonds, sugar, eggs, flour, and well… keep reading I’ll just show you.

You don’t need much to bake these biscotti. Here’s some kitchen baking supplies that you’ll need.

A Traditional Almond Biscotti Recipe

This traditional almond biscotti recipe comes from my Italian in-laws. It’s their original recipe, so it’s the real deal. 

I’ll be honest here, I’ve never made another person’s biscotti recipe. I should for comparison reasons, but this one is one that I love and I’m not sure it can be improved upon.

This recipe will come out perfect for you as long as you follow the instructions (which are very easy!). 

About the Almond Biscotti Dough

wet almond biscotti dough

As you can see in the image, the batter used in this recipe for almond biscotti is very sticky and wet. It is not runny, it is just sticky and wet, unlike other Italian cookies such as my Italian chocolate toto cookies or my Italian anginetti lemon cookies recipe.

I originally didn’t talk about this when I first posted this recipe. But as more people commented on this issue I’ve updated this post with actual dough images and a video. 

They thought the dough was wrong and I must have messed up the portions, but that is not the case.

The sticky batter will make it difficult to work with if you’re expecting the batter to have the consistency and feel of bread or pizza dough or cookie dough. I give tips later on for how to deal with this.

The biscotti dough will turn into a very wet ball which you drop on a cookie sheet and shape into your two logs which I explain below.

Here’s a video to show it in action:

Video of how I mix my sticky dough.

Recipe Ingredients

Here is the list of simple ingredients that you’ll need. Specific measurements are provided in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

  • Eggs. Large eggs will work great.
  • Sugar.Use white or raw sugar.
  • Vanilla extract. We do not use almond extract because we have the almonds themselves. The vanilla adds a nice balanced flavor.
  • All purpose flour. This should be sifted for best results. If you don’t have a sifter, beat it with a whisk.
  • Baking powder.
  • Baking soda.
  • Salt.
  • Almonds. You need sliced or slivered almonds. I’ve used both and either way it turns out great so don’t stress over this.

Step by Step Recipe Instructions

Here are the steps I follow every time I make these classic almond biscotti.

Step 1. To get started, preheat the oven to 325F.

biscotti egg mixture

Step 2. In a medium mixing bowl, beat the eggs, sugar and vanilla until they are creamy and fluffy. Use an electric mixer or hand held mixer.

flour mixture for biscotti

Step 3. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. These are your dry ingredients. We’ll add the almonds shortly.

combine egg with dry ingredients

Step 4. Next, add in the egg mixture along with the almonds to the flour mixture. Knead or mix the dough until it is well incorporated. I use my hands – remember the picture above?

PRO TIP: Remember that the dough is very wet and sticky! If it’s too sticky for the mixer, then do it manually.

Step 5. Once your biscotti dough is mixed, you will want to make two narrow logs with it. Since this recipe for almond biscotti uses very sticky dough, we literally just drop it on the cookie sheet as best you can.

You can also use parchment paper which I try to remember to use – it makes for easier clean up!

PRO TIP: To shape the biscotti dough into logs, use either a wet spatula or wet hands and just have fun with it. At this point you’ll be doubting the recipe. Don’t! This is normal.

See my picture below.

forming almond biscotti dough

Do not attempt to use a single log, it will not cook evenly.  Two smaller logs come out much better. 

Here’s a picture of my attempt to cut corners and create a single log. It did not turn out well at all, and did not cook evenly. You can from the image how wet the biscotti dough is.

almond biscotti dough as a log

Don’t make the almond biscotti logs high in height. If you look at an authentic biscotti cookie, they are not big and tall.

Here’s a picture of a spoon right next to the log – as you can see it’s not much higher.

classic almond biscotti dough recipe

Step 6. After shaping the biscotti dough into logs, we bake them in the oven twice. These are twice-baked cookies. Do not skip this step, follow all the almond biscotti recipe instructions below.

almond biscotti recipe first bake

First Biscotti Bake

Step 7. Bake the biscotti logs at 325F for 30 minutes. This allows the biscotti dough to harden enough so you can slice them.

Step 8. Remove them from the oven and using a sharp serrated knife, slice the logs into thick slices. About 1 inch in width. I do not use a cutting board, I cut them right on the baking sheet.

PRO TIP: If you wait until after the second bake to slice the biscotti, they will be too hard to slice and will crumble. It is critical to slice them after the first 30 minutes.

Step 9. Once you have finished slicing the biscotti, place them back in the oven and bake them for another 30 minutes.

Second Biscotti Bake

Step 10. After the 2nd 30 minutes, lower the oven temperature to 275F and bake for a second time for the final 30 minutes.

This lower temperature is crucial for ensuring the biscotti aren’t over-baked and have very little remaining moisture.

Remember, traditional biscotti are meant to be dry!

almond biscotti baked

The above picture is the biscotti in the oven after they are fully baked. Remove them from the oven and transfer them to wire racks to cool at room temperature.

Benefits of Homemade Almond Biscotti

The bottom line with any recipe is that when you make it at home you have full control over the quality of ingredients. It is no different when you choose to make these lovely classic almond biscotti.

homemade almond italian biscotti

You don’t have to worry about high fructose corn syrup, GMO soybean oil (thanks Monsanto – you suck), invert sugar, or other crazy stuff.  

You can even go organic with most, if not all, of the ingredients.  From organic flour to organic slivered almonds you can take this Italian almond biscotti recipe and bring it into the 21st century.     

In addition, you can also use these homemade treats for making a homemade Italian gift basket for Christmas or other gift giving occasion or as an Italian breakfast idea along with some delicious Italian coffee.  

So if you have ever wondered how to make traditional Italian biscotti, now you know. 🙂

Italian Almond Biscotti Recipe Tips

Here are some tips for making this classic almond biscotti recipe.

Use store-bought slivered almonds, not chopped

I’ve made this recipe enough to know what works and what doesn’t.

First, always use store-bought slivered (or sliced) almonds and never try chopping the almonds.

Trying to slice whole almonds by hand is nearly impossible and does not produce consistent widths of the almond slivers. I tried this once and it was a big fail.

This negatively impacts cooking and achieving your desired result.

Recipe Substitutions & Variations

Even though the almonds provide extra depth to the flavor and taste, there may be reasons you want to omit them. Here are some options for substituting almonds from your biscotti.

  1. For a nut-free variation, try turning half the batch into dipped chocolate biscotti which I explain below how to do.
  2. Add in a handful of chopped cranberries to the dough.
  3. Substitute pistachios, pine nuts or pecans for the almonds.

How to Store Italian Almond Biscotti?

These can be made in advance and are easily stored. The biscotti can be kept in an air tight container on a countertop, and don’t need to be kept in the fridge.

For long term storage, you can freeze them for up to 3 months in air-tight containers.

Easy Recipe, but not Quick

This recipe uses simple ingredients and the most challenging to find is probably the almonds. If you’re not sure if your local grocery store has them, you can easily purchase organic slivered almonds through online stores and have the ingredients delivered to your home. 

But is this Italian recipe for almond biscotti a fast recipe? My answer is no, but it is easy and very simple. Recipes that only require a single baking period create more of a cookie texture.

A true authentic Italian biscotti is always twice-baked so they have very little remaining moisture. The outside is crunchy, just like the inside. But once you dip it in your favorite coffee, it softens immediately.

So this recipe isn’t the quickest dessert in the world, I understand.  It takes time, but it is so well worth it! 

Warn Guests Biscotti are Meant for Dipping

Just remember to tell people who aren’t familiar with biscotti to dip them in their coffee, otherwise they may be surprised when they try to take a bit and it’s super hard!

I had this happen at a party with guests that were not Italian. I learned later that they complained about how hard they were. I felt so bad and I wish I had a little sign that said – “these are made for dipping in coffee and will soften”.  

How to Make Almond Biscotti Dipped in Chocolate

almond biscotti dipped in chocolate

If you’d like to make your presentation fancier and even more impressive, try dipping half of your almond biscotti into chocolate.

The best way to do this by purchasing chocolate dipping sauce at the store. I simply dipped each biscotti and let them dry on a drying rack with wax paper or parchment underneath to catch the drippings.

Once dried, serve on a nice plate.

Other Italian Dessert Recipes

Here are some additional recipes for Italian cookies and desserts you may also like.

butterball cookies

Try this recipe for Italian pecan butterball cookies. They can be made in 20 minutes, plus cooling.

italian lemon ricotta pie

Italian Ricotta Pie is a delightful dessert for any holiday.

italian lemon cake

If you like lemon, try my Italian Lemon Cake recipe.

I hope you enjoy this traditional Italian almond biscotti recipe. It’s my favorite version and I hope it becomes yours too. Let me know in the comments beneath the recipe card!

Ciao Friend! I’d like to send you my FREE mini-digital cookbook featuring 5 Italian Holiday Cookies & Desserts. Plus, you’ll receive easy and delicious Italian recipes every week just for signing up!

If you want in please use this form. I’d love to start sharing my recipes with you!

almond biscotti th

Traditional Almond Biscotti Recipe

Here's a traditional almond Biscotti recipe I love to make every Christmas for the holidays. Enjoy this simple Italian biscotti recipe from my kitchen to yours.
4 from 23 votes
Print Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours
Servings: 20 people

Ingredients

  • 4 eggs uova
  • 3/4 Cup Sugar zucchero
  • 2 tsp. vanilla vaniglia
  • 2 1/2 Cups sifted flour farina
  • 2 tsp. baking powder lievito in polvere
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda lievito soda
  • pinch of salt sale
  • 3/4 Cup slivered almonds mandorle

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 325°F.
  • Using a whisk, beat eggs, sugar and vanilla until creamy and fluffy.
    4 eggs, 2 tsp. vanilla, 3/4 Cup Sugar
  • In separate bowl mix flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda
    2 1/2 Cups sifted flour, 2 tsp. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. baking soda, pinch of salt
  • Add the egg mixture and almonds to the dry ingredients and knead the dough until incorporated. It will be VERY sticky and wet!
    3/4 Cup slivered almonds
  • When done, shape into 1 or 2 logs on a greased baking sheet. Parchment paper is good too and makes for easy clean up. The dough is VERY sticky and this is normal. Use a wet spatula to help shape the logs.
  • Bake at 325°F for 30 minutes then remove and slice to size, about 1"inch thick.
  • Return them to the oven and bake for 30 minutes more.
  • Reduce heat to 275°F and bake a final 30 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and let cook on wire racks. They will harden as they cool.
  • Serve plain or dip in chocolate and serve.

Notes

Tip#1 : Cool on cookie racks.
Tip #2: If dipping in chocolate, make life simpler by using store bought chocolate dipping sauce for fruit. Otherwise, melt chocolate chips over the stove with a little bit of milk. But if you use too much milk it will make the biscotti soggy.
Tip #3: These are great for parties or holidays such as Christmas.

This recipe was originally posted on May 28th, 2016 and updated December 9th, 2022.

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Easy Traditional Italian Almond Biscotti RecipeEasy Traditional Italian Almond Biscotti Recipe

48 Comments

  1. Followed instructions to the letter yet me batter is to wet to form dough. Not sure what to do now.

  2. 2 stars
    Me three the recipe was so wet it was ridiculous. No ended up adding one more cup of flour and still too wet. I thought perhaps I didn’t stir the eggs long enough but looked at another tecipe that said becareful to not stir eggs too much.

  3. Hi! The dough for this biscotti recipe IS very wet and should be. It’s a little wetter than a cookie dough. You don’t want it to be like a bread or pizza dough at all.

    One tip I use is to dip your spatula or hands in water to help when shaping the logs. The dough will be sticky on your fingers. You want the logs NOT to be high, because they will cook better and according to the time in the recipe when they are lower and thinly sliced.

    I think I will update the post with a video and extra images as this appears to be a “Sticky” issue..(pun intended!) LOL. 🙂 I’ll update this thread when I have it completed.
    Thanks for commenting!

  4. Cute pun. I did refrigerate the dough, as throwing all organic out didn’t sit well. Then I baked half of it. It wasn’t the dry texture but had a nice flavor. I wouldn’t say it was “simple and easy” but hopefully the video might help
    Good luck with it!

  5. 1 star
    Why does it had vanilla twice? Had wet handS and wet spatula and mixture was imposible to work with … Half went to the sink 🙁 – what a waste!

  6. 5 stars
    Liz your recipe is AMAZING!!! This has to be the best biscotti I ever made or eaten Definitely my to from now on. Thank you for sharing

  7. Yes, very sticky but perfect loaves. The first time I’ve made any kind of biscotti that didn’t crack on top. Thank you. One tip. Put a bit of flour on the board when you dump out the dough. How about 2 wide pastry scrappers for forming loaves?

  8. The consistency of the batter is very much like a thicker cake batter that will hold a mound. It will spread while on the sheet. Because it is so messy and wasteful, I have only ever seen it combined with the spoon. I use a spatula to get all the dough off the bowl and shape it on the cookie sheet. If you add too much flour, the cookie will come out too dry, tasteless, and not at all as it is intended. After the first bake the cookies will taste tender and cake-like, it is after the second bake they are dried out, roasted a little, think toast, and get their characteristically dry crunch that sends you back for another, and another…. Last hint, if you want a bigger cookie, cut them on a slant, and voila, the nice big cookies like nonna used to make.

  9. Yes pastry scaraper might work but it will still be messy and sticky so making sure they are wet might help, but I have only ised my hands. My sister in law uses a wet spatula and that seems to help, but it has to be wet. Glad you enjoyed the recipe and thanks for sharing!

  10. 1 star
    These are SO hard they could break your teeth if you have any dental issues!
    They look beautiful but be careful eating them. Definitely dunk them in your coffee!

  11. 5 stars
    I tried this recipe for my first time making any type of biscotti. The recipe was easy to follow and my biscotti turned out perfectly! I did use the wet hands and it was easy to form into the logs. Not a single problem. I do like some chocolate, so I dipped mine in melted semi-sweet chocolate chips. It worked perfectly. My family was suspect to start with, then requested a second batch as they got low. This is my forever recipe! Thank you!

  12. 2 stars
    Dough was not at all workable . Extremely difficult to work with . Finally added more flour . Loaves came out fine. Tasted just ok . Fine with tea or coffee . Would not use this recipe again though .

  13. 5 stars
    Great recipe. My first time making biscotti and they turned out so good. Easy to follow recipe with no complaints!!

    Thank you

  14. you mentioned in one comment “You do not want to use whole almonds”, but did not give an explanation why. WHY?

  15. This recipe worked very well for me . . thank you for posting! Quick question though . . I made two logs as you suggested. However, my biscotti came out taller than the photo at the top of the recipe on your website. They look more like the picture you provided in the detailed recipe instructions in step 9. Can you possibly tell me what you did differently between those two pictures that caused the finished biscotti to look so different? Thanks! 🙂

  16. 5 stars
    First time trying this recipe and had no problem they came out beautiful. I only did one log and then split it in half.
    They are a little hard but they are good.
    Per farli venire più soffici cosa posso cambiare.
    Grazie

  17. 3 stars
    It was very sticky but I always wet my hands when a dough is too sticky and I have experienced this before with other biscotti recipes. It was very bland though. I am going to add almond extract next time to see how it comes out.

  18. Hi…I am making these Biscotti and I have an electric oven (I need a gas stove) and this is my first time baking in it and it seems the first bake at 325° dried the cookies up somewhat consistently, therefore the 2nd bake I went to 275° and they came out wonderful. I am thinking I am not calibrated right or electric cooks differently than gas…But they are great. Thanks for sharing and quick note I used vanilla as well as almond extract and almond emulsion.

  19. 5 stars
    I’m gluten intolerant so I had to use gluten free flour to make these, but they still came out great. I thought shaping the sticky dough was hilarious, I don’t know what everyone is complaining about. My husband and I visit Italy a lot and these taste just like biscotti I get there, thank you for sharing your recipe! I tried a different recipe first that was terrible, I’ll definitely be making yours from now on.

  20. i love biscotti and i am going to try these, however i need a bit of clarification: you are using the terms “slivered” and “sliced” almonds interchangeably. They are actually two different things. The pictures look like you are using sliced almonds – thin, flat slices about 1 milimeter thick; slivered almonds are usually blanched (no skin) and cut in long thicker pieces similar to a matchstick about 3-4 milimeters thick on all sides.

    Which do you use?

  21. Hi Kathleen – Thanks for pointing that out. I’m not sure I have preference now that I think about it. When I updated the post with newer images last year it looks like I was using slivered (thicker) almonds. Although in the video made a few years prior (plus some original images) it was slivered so I can see the confusion. But honestly, either way would be fine. I don’t remember ever noticing a difference. If you’re still unsure – go with the slices since they are a bit thinner. 😀

  22. 5 stars
    I was looking for authentic biscotti’s and found your recipe. They are absolutely amazing. I was eating them after the first bake and they taste like ladyfingers. I used a stand mixer with the paddle attachment and did not have to touch the batter with my hands. Thank you for the great recipe!

  23. I want to try your recipe, but am not sure about the number of times it is baked. The instructions say after the 2nd time bake 30 minutes. Also, after baking the first 30 minutes at higher temperature, and slicing them, do you leave them in a log shape, or spread out single file (like cookies) on the baking sheet.

  24. Hi JoAnn, thanks for the question! The 2nd bake happens when you lower the temperature to 275F and you’ll for a final 30 minutes. So the First baking is at 325F for 60 minutes total, slicing them half way through. Then the 2nd bake takes place at 275F for a final 30 minutes. The entire baking time is 90 minutes from start to end. Make sense? I’ll see if I can reword it a little clearer in the post.

    For your second question, I leave them in the log shape, there’s not need to spread them out – but you certainly can, and I should try that next time to see if there’s a difference. But honestly, I’ve always just kept them in the log shape and it’s been fine. 🙂

    I hope that helps and let me know how they turn out!
    Liz

  25. 5 stars
    It’s almost unbelievable how good these taste with so little effort! I will definitely use this recipe again!

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