Almond Rugelach - The Midnight Baker - Easy Rugelach Recipe (2024)

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by Judith Hannemann





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If you love rugelach but found them intimidating to make, you’ll love this recipe.

Almond Rugelach - The Midnight Baker - Easy Rugelach Recipe (1)

Everyone Loves Rugelach

We all love rugelach, but most of us are reluctant to make it. Some recipes are involved and so complicated that it’s just easier to buy them.

This rugelach recipe has no complicated ingredients. They’re easy to shape too. Even the almond filling is easy to make and uses common ingredients you can buy in any store.

And another great thing about these rugelach is they are considerably cheaper (and better) than anything you can buy.

They’re so easy, you’ll make them often.

Almond Rugelach - The Midnight Baker - Easy Rugelach Recipe (2)

Rich Almond Filling

I love all things almond, so naturally, I love rugelach with an almond filling.

You can buy it in a can, but it’s hard to get. The more readily available “almond filling” really isn’t useable for these rugelach because it’s way too liquidy. What you need is called “schmear.” That is what it’s called too but it’s not easy to get. Plus, it’s pretty expensive. Therefore, I make my own almond schmear copycat. That recipe will be enough for two batches of cookies. Don’t worry, that recipe is easy too!

If you’re not fond of almonds or are allergic, other fillings may be used too. A common filling is apricot. For that you can use the pastry filling you find in the baking aisle. But make sure it’s pastry filling and not pie filling. Pie filling won’t work because it’s not the proper consistency.

I wouldn’t advise using jams or jellies either. They’re likely to burn and would be way too sweet.

A simple cinnamon sugar is very nice for filling too. You do it just like you do for cinnamon rolls–brush the dough with melted butter then roll it up and cut it.

Almond Rugelach - The Midnight Baker - Easy Rugelach Recipe (3)


Most of the time you see rugelach in crescent shapes. I split the dough up into 3-4 equal portions so I can chill/save what I’m not using.

I eliminate that complicated rolling and shaping simply by rolling out the dough in a rough rectangle then spreading the filling over the top. Then I just roll it up, jelly roll style–and it doesn’t matter if you roll from the short or long end–and cut it in 1-2-inch (2.5-5 cm) slices. Be careful to set the rugelach on the baking sheet with the plain dough side down. Don’t place them with the rolled side down!!!

The Recipe

Almond Rugelach - The Midnight Baker - Easy Rugelach Recipe (4)

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Almond Rugelach

Rich and delicious cookie for the holidays or any time

Prep Time20 minutes mins

Cook Time20 minutes mins

Chill time1 hour hr

Course: Dessert, Snack

Cuisine: American

Keyword: almond cookie recipe, chanukah cookies, Christmas cookies, rugelach recipe

Servings: 20

Calories: 274kcal

Author: Judith Hannemann


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 8 oz cream cheese cut into chunks
  • 8 oz unsalted butter butter cut into chunks
  • 1 recipe copycat almond schmear
  • 1/2 cup toasted sliced almonds optional
  • sanding sugar optional

US Customary - Metric


  • Preheat oven to 350F/180C. Line a large baking sheet with parchment

  • Place the flour, salt, cream cheese and butter in bowl of food processor with metal blade. Process until a smooth dough forms, about 10 to 20 seconds.

  • Divide dough into 3 or 4 equal pieces and wrap in plastic and chill at least 1 hour before using.

  • on a lightly floured surface, roll a portion of dough to about 1/8-inch (0.32 cm) in a rough rectangle. Spread with about 3 tbs of the almond schmear. Sprinkle with about 2 tbs toasted almonds, if desired.

  • Roll up jelly roll style and cut into 1-2-inch (2.5-5 cm) slices. Place on prepared sheet plain dough side up—not the filling side. Sprinkle with additional toasted almonds and sanding sugar, if using.

  • Bake in a preheated 350ºF oven until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Cool on wire racks. I got about 10 rugelach per dough portion.


Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 274kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 61mg | Sodium: 97mg | Potassium: 57mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 719IU | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 1mg

Tried this recipe?Mention @midnitebaker or tag #midnitebaker!





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Reader Interactions

Copyright © Judith Hannemann aka The Midnight Baker 2022. All Rights Reserved. No part of this website may be reproduced without The Midnight Baker's express consent.


  1. Amy I says

    16 Oz of butter seems like a lot! Is it supposed to be 16 Tbsp?

    • Judith Hanneman says

      Yes, you are right–I have corrected it. What happened was I *doubled* the recipe and put the wrong amount in when I wrote it up. Thanks for catching that!

Almond Rugelach - The Midnight Baker - Easy Rugelach Recipe (2024)


Should you refrigerate rugelach? ›

Serve warm or at room temperature. Store leftover rugelach in an airtight container at room temperature for several days. Freeze for longer storage.

What is rugelach dough made of? ›

Satiny soft dough made with butter, cream cheese, and sour cream wrapped around a filling of sugar, nuts, and dried fruit: that's rugelach, which in Yiddish means "little twists." Beloved in many Jewish communities, these cookies flake like a Danish or croissant with its buttery flavor the perfect foil for the sweet ...

What is a fun fact about rugelach? ›

These croissant-shaped treats are believed to have originated in the Jewish communities of Poland and are also popular in Israel as well as the Jewish diaspora. They make the perfect treat for Rosh Hashanah because we eat sweets in the hopes of a sweet new year.

How long does rugelach stay good? ›

These Rugelach are the absolute best when eaten fresh and warm from the oven. However, they can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days at room temperature. They can also be frozen in an airtight bag for up to 1 months.

How long can I keep rugelach dough in the fridge? ›

Storage: Rugelach will keep at room temperature for 3 days (wrapped tightly) or 1 to 2 weeks longer in the refrigerator. Freezer: Freeze the discs of dough for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before proceeding with the recipe. Or freeze the shaped Rugelach cookies for up to 3 months.

Why do Jews eat rugelach? ›

Rugelach are often served on Jewish holidays like Hanukkah and Shavuot, though of course they can (and should!) be made throughout the year. Our family typically serves them during Rosh Hashanah, when sweet foods are made to signify a sweet new year.

What country is rugelach from? ›

Rugelach (/ˈruːɡələx/ ROO-gəl-əkh; Yiddish: ראגעלעך, or Yiddish: רוגעלעך, romanized: rugelekh and Hebrew: רוגלך rōgalaḵ) is a filled baked confection originating in the Jewish communities of Poland.

What does rugelach mean in Yiddish? ›

The name rugelach means “l*ttle twists” or “l*ttle corners” in Yiddish, because of the shape of the pastry. Rugelach can be made with different kinds of dough, such as sour cream, cream cheese, or yeast.

Does rugelach go bad? ›

Our Rugelach are very hearty, they stay fresh unrefrigerated for about three days. However, If you want them to last longer, putting them in a plastic bag in the fridge will keep them fresh for from 8 to 10 days. Or, place them in the freezer in a sealed container and they will freeze really well for up to 8 months.

Is babka the same as rugelach? ›

Israeli style babka (עוגת שמרים) is made with a laminated dough, enriched with butter, which is then folded and rolled multiple times to create many distinct layers, similar to that used for Israeli style rugelach, and also croissant dough. Israeli style babka is available with a wider array of fillings and shapes.

What is the difference between rugelach and babka? ›

Babka is a yeast bread that is rolled with chocolate filling. It's usually made in a loaf pan. Rugelach is rolled like croissants. The main differences between the two of them are their shape and the type of dough they use.

When should I eat rugelach? ›

Traditionally, Rugelach is eaten on the Jewish Sabbath, but it can also be enjoyed all year round, and makes a lovely gift to give to celebrate Hannukah or any other holiday.

Can you reheat rugelach? ›

Storage: Store in an airtight container, at room temperature, for up to 3 days. To refresh, place the rugelach on a sheet pan and reheat at 300 degrees until warm.

Do bakery pastries need to be refrigerated? ›

There is no need to refrigerate most pastries if you are planning to consume them within the day, as the moisture from the fridge can turn them soggy. But for pastries with custard and other fillings, it is recommended that you store them in the fridge if you are not consuming them within 12 hours.

How long do pastries last unrefrigerated? ›

Most baked goods keep well at room temperature. That goes for cookies and brownies (which can be stored in an airtight containers for up to five days) as well as muffins, breads, and pastries (which will start to stale in two to three days but will keep better here than anywhere else).

What desserts do not need to be refrigerated? ›

These easy sweet treats are portable, delicious, and require no refrigeration.
  • Picnic Bars. ...
  • Open Face Blueberry Pie: Fresh and Easiest Pie Ever. ...
  • Easy Apple Hand Pies. ...
  • Anytime Fudgy Picnic Chocolate Cake. ...
  • Blackberry Bakewell Squares. ...
  • Homemade Oreo Brownies. ...
  • Summer Apple Pie. ...
  • Melt in Your Mouth Blueberry Cake.
Jun 3, 2022

Is it better to refrigerate pastries? ›

Refrigerated Baked Goods Stale Rapidly; Frozen Ones Don't

It's what happens when their starch molecules crystallize and lock away the crumb's water into their crystalline structure, leaving the crumb hard and dry. Storage temperature dramatically affects how quickly this process happens.


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