These Air Fryer Italian Cookies are perfectly crunchy and crispy with only 2 tablespoons of oil. A no fry method to make a healthy chiacchiere di Carnevale recipe!
These delicious Italian fried cookies are some of the exceptions to my no-fry rule.
I’m probably biased because they also happen to be family recipes from my Italian upbringing.
There is no denying that fried foods have a lot of flavors. Unfortunately, as a dietitian, I can also tell you that studies continue to demonstrate that eating fried foods regularly is not healthy.
I’m sure most of you are aware of this.
With the holidays coming up, I was curious to see if I could make an air fryer version of some of my favorite cookies.
I’ve already shared an Air Fryer Stuffed Chestnut Cookies and today, it is these Italian carnival cookies.
Why make Italian cookies in the air fryer?
- It’s healthier than the fried version.
- It’s cheaper to make.
- They are easy to make.
- No need to get the smell of deep-frying out of your kitchen.
Preparing the dough
The first thing we need to make is the dough.
Naturally, I used my mom’s recipe for these Italian ribbon cookies. A step-by-step photo tutorial and a video on how to make the dough can be found here.
While waiting for the dough to rest, prepare the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Simply combine 2-3 tablespoons of sugar with 1½ teaspoons of cinnamon. Alternatively, skip this and simply dust them with powdered sugar when ready to serve them.
Heat the air fryer to 400° F (200° C). My oven has a super convection mode.
Once the dough is ready, work with one-sixth of the dough at a time while keeping the rest covered with plastic wrap.
Flatten the piece so it fits in your pasta roller’s widest setting.
Start at the widest setting of your pasta roller and begin to thread the dough through the rollers. Fold the piece of dough and pass it through again. Repeat this process 6-8 times (at the widest setting) to remove the air pockets in the dough.
Begin to reduce the thickness until you reach number 3.
Place the stretched piece of dough on your wooden board and with a fluted pastry wheel, shape into a long rectangle. Place the “scrapes” of dough in a bag to be re-rolled.
Sprinkle about 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon-sugar mixture over the surface and gently press in the dough.
With a fluted pastry wheel, cut into rhomboid shapes (or whatever size you want); make a slit in the center of the pieces of dough.
Place the dough on the air fryer basket and air fry for 4½ minutes or until golden and puffy looking.
Remove from and transfer on a wire rack to cool off.
Continue in this manner until all the dough has gone through this process.
- The total number of portions depends on how they are cut. These were approximately 2 x 3 inches for 72 cookies.
- Keep the dough covered at all times.
- The scrapes of dough can be re-rolled, keep them in a plastic bag, or covered with a piece of plastic wrap.
- If desired, eliminate the sugar-cinnamon mixture and replace it with a dusting of confectioners’ sugar when serving.
Italian cookies we love
How to store
Place in a tin box for up to 3 days or longer storage period freeze for up to one month.
Some Final Thoughts…
It’s almost impossible to compare these “cracker-like” crostoli to the traditional fried version of this Italian Cookie.
But, I will tell you this, my family loved them! Especially with this cannoli dip recipe.
This is for you if you want a crunchy, crispy, lightly sweetened treat.
Would I make these again?
I will continue to experiment with this recipe and test different flavors.
They really are the perfect treat for when you get the munchies.
THANKS SO MUCH for following and being part of the She Loves Biscotti community where you will find Simple & Tasty Family-Friendly Recipes with an Italian Twist.
Ciao for now,
★★★★★ If you have made this Air Fryer Cookies recipe, I would love to hear about it in the comments below and be sure to rate the recipe!
Air Fryer Italian Cookies Recipe
- 1¾ cups flour all-purpose, 250 grams
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- Pinch salt
- 2 eggs lightly whisked, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2-3 tablespoons liquor grappa, brandy, rum, white wine, etc...
- 1 zest of lemon organic
- 2-3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1½ teaspoon cinnamon
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the dry ingredients.
- Add the lightly beaten eggs and use the dough hook to combine. The mixture will resemble small breadcrumbs.
- Add the oil, liquor and lemon zest. Mix together for a few minutes. Remove dough hook and knead gently a few times. Alternatively, can knead by hand.
- Once the dough is formed, shape into a ball, cover with a piece of plastic wrap and let it rest for about 1 hour.
- Heat air fryer to 400° F (200° C).
- Work with one sixth of the dough at a time while keeping the rest covered with plastic wrap.
- Flatten the piece so that it fits in the widest setting of your pasta roller.
- Start at the widest setting of your pasta roller and begin to thread the dough through the rollers. Fold the piece of dough and pass it through again. Repeat this process 6-8 times (at the widest setting) in order to remove the air pockets in the dough.
- Begin to reduce the thickness until you reach the number 3.
- Place the piece of dough on a flat surface or wooden board.
- Trim the ends with a fluted pastry cutter.
- Place the "scrapes" of dough in a bag to be re-rolled.
- Sprinkle about 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon sugar mixture over the surface and gentle press in the dough.
- With a fluted pastry wheel, cut into rhomboid shapes (or whatever size you want); make a slit in the center of the pieces of dough.
- Place the dough on the air fryer basket and air fry for 4½ minutes or until golden and puffy looking.
- Remove from air fryer and place on wire rack to cool off.
- Continue in this manner until all the dough has gone through this process.
- The total number of portions depends on how they are cut. These were approximately 2 x 3 inches.
- Keep the dough covered at all times.
- The scrapes of dough can be re-rolled, just keep them in a plastic bag or covered with a piece of plastic wrap.
- If desired, eliminate the sugar cinnamon mixture and replace with a dusting of confectioners' sugar when serving.