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Apricot almond rugelach recipe

Apricot almond rugelach recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Biscuits and cookies
  • Fruit biscuits and cookies
  • Apricot biscuits and cookies

These dainty and delicious biscuits freeze well either baked or unbaked. You can also sprinkle the tops with demerara sugar right before baking.

25 people made this

IngredientsServes: 24

  • Pastry
  • 125g (4¼ oz) plain flour
  • 125g (4¼ oz) unsalted butter, chilled
  • 125g (4¼ oz) cream cheese, cold
  • Filling
  • 250g (9 oz) apricot preserves
  • 4 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 75g (3 oz) toasted and chopped almonds
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • Garnish
  • 1 egg
  • 5 tablespoons chopped almonds
  • 5 tablespoons sifted icing sugar

MethodPrep:25min ›Cook:25min ›Ready in:50min

  1. To make pastry: Place the flour in a bowl. Rub the butter into the flour and blend until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Cut the cream cheese into small cubes and rub into the flour-butter mixture. Knead until the dough forms a ball. Cut dough in half, wrap each half in cling film and refrigerate.
  2. To make filling: Stir the apricot preserves until it is spreadable. In a bowl combine the sugar with the toasted, chopped almonds and lemon zest.
  3. To assemble: On a lightly floured surface roll out each half of dough. The larger and thinner the circle the crispier the biscuits will be. Each circle should be at least 23cm (9 in) in diameter. Spread each circle with preserves and sprinkle with the almond mixture.
  4. Cut each circle into twelve wedges. Roll each wedge up tightly from the outside edge. Turn edges slightly to form a crescent. Place crescents on a baking parchment lined baking tray about 2.5cm (1 in) apart.
  5. Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas mark 4.
  6. Beat egg and brush biscuits with beaten egg. Sprinkle with chopped almonds. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Let biscuits cool on wire racks, then dust with sifted icing sugar.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(25)

Reviews in English (24)

Tasted good, but quite time consuming and the cakes deformed during baking and filling split out all over baking tin.-15 Sep 2017


dough is the same ratio as the rugalach II, the filling uses almonds and lemon zest instead. the baking temp is better here, it will not burn the jam if overfilled. also i roll this in a rectangle rather than a circle, spread the filling then cut the "triangles" using a pastry cutter in a "zig zag" fashion across the short side of the rectangle. also i fine grind my almonds, toast then measure, then mix using an electric blending wand. it makes for a more homogenous filling. finally, bake on parchment paper, nothing sticks to that, and the product bakes to a more uniform color.signed an alumni from culinary institute of america '89-24 Dec 2001

by Susie Z

Delicious recipe and not too hard to make even though there are several steps.One thing that the recipe did not make clear is which nuts to use inside and which to use outside. I used the toasted ones inside since the baking would toast the untoasted ones on the outside. Also, 1/2 cup of jam is plenty for the filling. 20 minutes was the perfect baking time in my oven.-17 Feb 2005

Apricot & Almond Rugelach

Firstly, let me tell you what a Rugelach is. It is a traditional Jewish sweet treat made from sour cream/cream cheeses dough to form a little pastry. They are usually formed into either a crescent or spiral shape and contain a filling of either nuts, spices, chocolate or dried fruits.

No, I am not Jewish. But, I have always loved Jewish food. So, on a trip to New York a few years ago I most certainly made the most of all the chopped liver, Reuben sandwiches, salt beef, pastrami and pickles not to mention the lox bagels.

But that has got nothing to do with this recipe. This came about before Christmas, when I was trying to come up with an alternative to the traditional mince pie. Not because I don’t like them, just because I like putting my own spin on recipes.

If you read my post on Little chestnut pastries, you will have noticed that I made a pastry that I totally fell in love which used cream cheese . So, when I saw these Rugelach on Tim Mazurek’s Lottie & Doof blog I knew they were for me. Tim did a really fun 12 days of cookies during December and I looked forward to reading each entry. The Rugelach were Day 4.

What I did was to follow the Rugelach pastry but then use my own filling. So whether this is still deemed to be a Rugelch I have no idea, but they taste sublime. As an alternative to the filling I am going to post, you could use any leftover mincemeat as a filling. I tried this too and it was a big hit. But seeing as it is now a New Year, I feel the jammy version is more appropriate!

I am also entering these into TeaTimeTreats hosted by Karen at Lavender & Lovage this month.

Start with the Dough

This recipe starts with a cinnamon-laced dough made with butter and cream cheese. It’s so rich and delicious.

After combining flour, sugar, salt, and cinnamon in a food processor, whirl in the butter and cream cheese until the dough looks likes coarse meal.

You want to see small pieces of butter and cream cheese in the mix these provide a layered, flaky texture. If the crumbs hold together when you pinch them between your fingers, it’s ready!

If you don’t have a food processor, simply mix in the butter and cream cheese with your fingers or a pastry cutter as you would when making pie dough or biscuits by hand.

Turn out the crumbs and press them together into a mass of dough. Divide the dough in three equal pieces and press each one into a flat disk. Wrap the dough and chill it for at least two hours until completely firm.

Things I use:

Cookie Dough

Weigh or measure the flour, salt and add to a food processor. Pulse 1 or 2 times. Next, cut up the butter and cream cheese and add to the flour. Pulse till it looks like small little balls. Take the egg yolk and the vanilla and mix it with a fork before adding it to the flour, butter, cream cheese mixture. Pulse till it looks like large balls starting to come together. Dump onto a pastry mat or just a clean counter and mold it to a flattened rectangle shape.

Cut the flatten ball into four parts. I find it easier to mold the quarters into a disk shape after I flatten it to about a 1" thick and wrap it with plastic wrap. You want them to be as round as you can make it, so it is easier to roll out. The disks need to refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 3 days. I put 2 in the refrigerator, and I froze the other two disk to make later. The frozen cookie dough disks will last for three months, but I will be using mine sooner than that. (Here is an update I added how to make the dough, but I used for this week's cookies the two disks that I had frozen from last weeks Cranberry Orange and Walnut Rugelach.)


Depending on how many disks you are making at a time, I pulled 2 out of the refrigerator that had thawed overnight so they could warm up just a little. I added the dried apricot, almonds, sugar, and pulsed in a food processor until they are in small pieces. They should look like a crumble. Flour a hard surface and your favorite rolling pin. Since I am using a pizza cutter and do not want to damage my countertop, I use a pastry mat. The trade-off means it could slightly cut into your pastry mat, but I figure it is cheaper to replace the pastry mat than my countertop. Roll out the disk to about a 12 inch round. Take 1/2 jar of apricot preserves and heat in a microwave for 30 seconds then stir till smooth. I take a pasty bush and paint the cookie dough with the preserves, leaving the outer rim without any preserves.

Next, I add the apricot and almond crumble on top of the preserves and smooth out any crumble clumping. Don't overfill, or it will be hard to roll and pick up to move to a parchment-lined cookie sheet pan. Taking a sharp knife or using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 10 or 12 triangles. Start from the outside edge, roll the dough towards the center to form a crescent style shape. After filling the cookie pan, stick the whole pan with the rolled cookies into the refrigerator for 20 minutes to firm up the cookie dough. Then place into the oven at 350° for 20 - 25 minutes. Gently move to a cooling rack after taking the pan from the oven. After the cookies completely cooled, sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy.

Recipe Summary

  • 1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, cut into pieces
  • 2 tablespoons cold buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3 tablespoons apricot jam
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1/3 cup almonds, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons sanding sugar

Place flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine. Add butter, and pulse 10 times. Pulse in cream cheese until the mixture becomes crumbly. Sprinkle in buttermilk and pulse until the mixture comes together when pressed. Transfer the dough to a work surface, and divide into thirds. Wrap each third in plastic, and shape into a disc. Refrigerate discs for at least 3 hours, or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a Silpat baking mat or parchment paper. In a small bowl combine apricots, sugar, and nutmeg set aside.

On a floured board, roll out one of the discs to 1/8-inch thickness. Using an inverted bowl, cut dough into a 7 1/2-to-8-inch circle. Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into wedges, dividing it first in half, then into quarters, then into eighths. Brush each section lightly with jam, and sprinkle with about 1/2 teaspoon of apricot mixture, leaving the narrow ends clear. Roll each cookie into a crescent shape, beginning at the wide end, and place on the prepared baking sheet. Brush each cookie with egg white, and sprinkle with almonds and then sanding sugar. Refrigerate until firm, about 15 minutes.

Bake until golden brown, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool, and store in an airtight container. Repeat with remaining 2/3 of dough.


  • 1 Cup softened butter
  • 6 Ounces softened cream cheese
  • 2 ¼ Cups flour
  • ½ Cup sugar with 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¾ Cup jam (Apricot or raspberry)
  • ¾ Cup raisins
  • ½ Cup ground walnuts

In a large bowl beat butter and cream cheese on medium speed until smooth.

On low speed gradually add flour beating just until dough forms.

Divide dough in thirds and flatten into disks wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour.

PREHEAT OVEN to 350F degrees line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Take out 1 disk of dough at a time roll into a 14 inch circle.

Take out 2 tablespoons of the sugar cinnamon mixture and reserve.

Sprinkle the circle with ¼ cup preserves leaving ¼ inch border.

Sprinkle with 1/3 of the remaining cinnamon sugar mixture and 1/3 of the raisins and nuts.

With knife or pizza wheel cut circle into 16 wedges roll up from wide side to point.

Place point down on tray and shape into crescent sprinkle each with 1/8 teaspoon of reserved cinnamon mixture.

Bake 18 to 22 minutes until golden brown cool completely on rack.

Recipe: Rugelach

Note: From Times test kitchen director Donna Deane. You can choose two fillings for one recipe of dough.

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, each stick cut into 8 pieces

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, cut into quarters

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon powdered sugar

2 tablespoons melted butter

3 tablespoons sugar, plus 1 1/2 teaspoons additional if

making chocolate-hazelnut rugelach

2 recipes filling, any combination of chocolate-hazelnut, cherry-almond or apricot (see accompanying recipes)

1 tablespoon chopped hazelnuts, if making chocolate-hazelnut rugelach (reserved from making filling)

1 tablespoon chopped toasted almonds, if making cherry-almond rugelach (reserved from making filling)

1. In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and cream cheese on low speed until blended, about 2 minutes. Mix in the vanilla until incorporated.

2. In a medium bowl, stir together the powdered sugar, salt and flour. With the mixer at low speed, slowly incorporate half of the flour mixture into the butter mixture until blended repeat with the remaining flour mixture. Mix just until dough forms, about 1 minute.

3. Turn the dough out of the mixing bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Knead once or twice, then divide the dough in half. Shape each part into a half-inch-thick rectangle and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill 2 hours or overnight. While the dough is chilling, make your choice of fillings.

4. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.

5. Roll one rectangle of chilled dough out on a lightly floured surface so that it is a one-eighth-inch thick rectangle. Trim the dough to a 13 1/2 -by-10-inch rectangle, then cut it into thirds crosswise. Brush each with melted butter.

6. In a small bowl, combine 3 tablespoons sugar with the cinnamon. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon-sugar mixture evenly over each rectangle of dough. (Reserve the remaining cinnamon-sugar mixture to sprinkle over the top of cookies with apricot or cherry filling.)

7. Spoon one-third cup filling along the edge of each rectangle closest to you. Roll each rectangle of dough into a log. Place the logs, seam side down, on baking sheets covered with parchment paper.

8. Repeat steps 5 to 7 with the remaining chilled dough. You will have 6 logs, 3 on each baking sheet.

9. In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg yolk with one-half teaspoon water. Brush the top and sides of the logs with the egg yolk mixture. Lightly score the top of each log so that it is easier to cut into eight equal pieces after it is baked.

10. For cookies with chocolate-hazelnut filling, sprinkle one-half teaspoon sugar over the top of each log, then sprinkle 1 teaspoon chopped hazelnuts (reserved from making the filling) over the top. For cherry-almond-filled cookies, sprinkle the top of each log with about one-fourth teaspoon cinnamon-sugar mixture, then 1 teaspoon chopped toasted almonds (reserved from making the filling). For apricot cookies, sprinkle about one-half teaspoon of the cinnamon-sugar mixture over the top of each log.

11. Bake 30 to 35 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove to a wire rack to cool. When cool, cut each log into 8 pieces with a sharp or serrated knife.

Servings: Makes about 1 1/4 cups to fill 3 rugelach pastry rolls (see accompanying recipe)

Note: From Times test kitchen director Donna Deane

1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon blanched hazelnuts

1/3 cup chopped top-quality bittersweet chocolate, such as Valrhona

1/2 cup chopped dried figs

3 tablespoons light brown sugar, packed

1. Toast the hazelnuts in a 350-degree oven until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Remove the nuts from the oven cool to room temperature.

2. Chop the hazelnuts. Set aside 1 tablespoon of the chopped hazelnuts to sprinkle on top of the finished rugelach. In a bowl, combine the remaining chopped hazelnuts with the chocolate, figs, brown sugar and cinnamon.

Each cookie: 73 calories 1 gram protein 7 grams carbohydrates 1 gram fiber 5 grams fat 3 grams saturated fat 11 mg. cholesterol 14 mg. sodium.

Servings: Makes about 1 1/4 cups to fill 3 rugelach pastry rolls (see accompanying recipe)

Note: From Times test kitchen director Donna Deane

1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon slivered almonds

3/4 cup dried cherries, chopped

2 tablespoons dried unsweetened coconut

1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest

2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed

1. Toast the almonds in a 350-degree oven until lightly browned, about 8 minutes. Remove the nuts from the oven and let cool to room temperature. When the almonds have cooled, chop them. Set aside 1 tablespoon for sprinkling on top of the cookies.

2. In a small bowl, combine the remaining chopped almonds, the cherries, coconut, lemon zest and brown sugar.

Each cookie: 70 calories 1 gram protein 8 grams carbohydrates 1 gram fiber 4 grams fat 2 grams saturated fat 36 mg. cholesterol 15 mg. sodium.

Total time: 15 minutes

Servings: Makes about 1 1/4 cups to fill 3 rugelach pastry rolls (see accompanying recipe)

Note: From Times test kitchen director Donna Deane

1/2 cup dried apricots, chopped

1/2 cup golden raisins, chopped

1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest

2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar

1. Toast the walnuts on a baking sheet in a 350-degree oven 6 to 7 minutes or until lightly browned and fragrant. Let cool, then chop.

2. Combine the chopped walnuts, the apricots, raisins, orange zest and brown sugar.

Each cookie: 75 calories 1 gram protein 10 grams carbohydrates 1 gram fiber 4 grams fat 2 grams saturated fat 11 mg. cholesterol 17 mg. sodium.

Steps to a delicious finish

- FILL: After rolling the dough and cutting it into rectangles, place the filling along the edge nearest you.

- ROLL: Even out the filling and carefully roll the pastry around it to form long logs.

- GLAZE: Brush the top and sides of the rolled-up pastry log with a mixture of egg yolk and water.

- FINISH: Score the logs to make them easier to cut into cookies, then sprinkle with topping.

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Apricot Rugelach

These bite-sized, rolled-up, pastry-style cookies have a deliciously fruity filling that makes 'em the perfect go-along with a cup of your favorite tea. Simple and sweet our Apricot Rugelach are a great treat!

What You'll Need

  • 1 pound (4 sticks) butter, softened but not melted
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 pint vanilla ice cream, softened
  • 1 1 / 2 cups sugar
  • 3 / 4 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1 / 4 cup ground cinnamon
  • 1 1 / 4 cups apricot preserves, divided

What to Do

  1. In a large bowl, cut butter into flour. Add ice cream and work it into mixture with your hands. (Add more flour, if necessary, to make dough easier to handle.) Cover and refrigerate dough overnight. (It will become hard.)
  2. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine sugar, nuts, and cinnamon. Sprinkle about 1/2 cup mixture onto a clean, smooth surface. Separate dough into 5 equal pieces. Place one piece of dough on the sugar-nut mixture and refrigerate remaining pieces of dough until ready to use. Roll out dough with a lightly floured rolling pin to form a circle 1/8- to 1/4-inch thick. Spread 1/4 cup of apricot preserves over the rolled dough,then cut dough into 12 to 14 small wedges. Starting at wide end, roll up dough and place seam-side down on baking sheet.
  4. Repeat entire process, placing more sugar-nut mixture on the smooth surface each time before rolling out dough.
  5. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, or until bottoms turn golden.


Make these a little different every time! All you have to do is change up the fruit flavor of your preserves.


Anyone who thinks celebrating Hannukkah properly involves getting out a frying pan can think again.

Yes, potato latkes are wonderful. And yes, jelly doughnuts, which have become traditional for the holiday too, are superb. But before there were doughnuts or latkes, there was cheesecake.

No, we’re not going to suggest cheesecake this Hanukkah, though that would be absolutely in line with tradition. As Joan Nathan reminds us in her “Jewish Holiday Cookbook,” cheesecake was essential in the Hanukkah story: Judith gave cheesecakes to Assyria’s Gen. Holofernes, which made him thirsty, so she gave him wine, which made him swoon and she was then able to slay him, saving the Jews.

“They weren’t sweet cheesecakes they were savory,” explains Nathan by phone from her Washington, D.C., home.

In any case, Judith’s cheesecake is why rugelach, the wonderful little cookies-cum-mini-coffee cakes that have cream cheese in the dough and are rolled up with fillings made of any combination of nuts, dried fruits, preserves, spices and chocolate, have come to be traditional for Hanukkah.

Short of coming up with a delicious savory cheesecake, nothing could be more true to the spirit of the holiday than rugelach. Not even potato latkes. (Potatoes didn’t travel from the New World to the Old World until the 1550s.)

Rugelach weren’t always associated with Hanukkah, though, because the pastries didn’t always include cheese. “Rugelach have always been made in Eastern Europe,” Nathan says. “There might have been some that were buttery, but most were made with a yeast dough rolled out very thin.”

In the 19th century, immigrants brought rugelach to America, and the cream cheese innovation, Nathan says, may have come courtesy of the Philadelphia cream cheese company, around the time the product was launched in 1890.

“They had to make up recipes with their products, and they saw the Jewish customers were really receptive.” One of those recipes may have been for rugelach made with cream cheese dough.

Who knew? And further, who knew that the word rugelach comes from the Yiddish rugel, which means “wrinkle”? (Perhaps that comes from the Latin ruga, also meaning wrinkle.) So rugelach means “wrinkles” or “folds,” which makes sense because they’re rolled up in a wrinkly, folded sort of way.

When I was growing up, my grandmother baked decent rugelach when she came to visit. Otherwise, it came in a pink box from Viktor Benes. That was fine, but I always dreamed of finding a recipe for homemade rugelach to die for. I dreamed, for this Hanukkah, of rugelach filled with the best dark chocolate and maybe hazelnuts, or wonderful dried cherries and the freshest almonds. I asked Donna Deane, The Times’ test kitchen director, to make my holiday dreams come true, and she did, creating recipes for three of the most amazing rugelach I could have imagined.

Choose one or two of the fillings, make a batch of the dough, and let ‘em roll.

Apricot almond rugelach recipe - Recipes

I must have some Jewish blood in me because these are one of my favorite cookies. They are so easy to make and look so complicated. People think you are a real artist and baker when presented with a plate of these for afternoon tea.

I like to bake rugelach at this time of the year for those I call the weary travellers. You know, the ones who arrive by car or plane in the middle of the day, too late for lunch and too early for a drink. I always feel I have to offer them something but not too much to spoil the evening cocktails just around the corner. These and a cup of tea or coffee fit the bill.

This recipe is a mix of an old one I had and Dorie Greenspan's method for making the dough.

Almonds and apricots are a match made in heaven, but feel free to substitute your favorite jam.

Almond And Apricot Rugelach

For the Dough
4 ounces cold cream cheese, cut into 4 pieces
1 stick (8 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
grated zest of 1/2 lemon
2 tsps fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp almond extract

For the Filling
1/2 cup apricot jam or marmalade
3/4 cup slivered almonds finely chopped

For the Glaze
1 large egg beaten
Confectioner's sugar for dusting


Let the cream cheese and butter rest on the counter for 10 minutes — you want them to be slightly softened but still cool.

Put all the dough ingredients in a food processor, scatter over the chunks of cream cheese and butter and pulse the machine 6 to 10 times. Then process, scraping down the sides of the bowl often, just until the dough forms large curds — don't work it so long that it forms a ball on the blade.

Turn the dough out, gather it into a ball and divide it in half. Shape each half into a disk, wrap the disks in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or up to 1 day. (Wrapped airtight, the dough can be frozen for up to 2 months.)

Line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats. (Silicone baking mats are great for rugelach.)

Pull one packet of dough from the refrigerator. If it is too firm to roll easily, either leave it on the counter for about 10 minutes or give it a few bashes with your rolling pin.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into an 11- to 12-inch circle. Spoon (or brush) half the apricot jam over the dough, and sprinkle over half of the almonds. Cover the filling with a piece of wax paper and gently press the filling into the dough, then remove the paper and save it for the next batch.

Using a pizza wheel or a sharp knife, cut the dough into 16 wedges, or triangles. (The easiest way to do this is to cut the dough into quarters, then to cut each quarter into 4 triangles.)

Starting at the base of each triangle, roll the dough up so that each cookie becomes a little crescent. Arrange the roll-ups on one baking sheet, points side up, and refrigerate.

Repeat with the second packet of dough, and refrigerate the cookies for at least 30 minutes before baking. (The cookies can be covered and refrigerated overnight or frozen for up to 2 months don't defrost before baking, just add a couple of minutes to the baking time.)

Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Beat the egg and using a pastry brush paint this glaze over each rugelach.

Bake the cookies for 20 to 25 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point, until they are puffed and golden. Transfer the cookies to racks, sprinkle with confectioners sugar and cool to just warm or to room temperature.

STORING: The cookies can be kept covered at room temperature for up to 3 days or wrapped airtight and frozen for up to 2 months.

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