After an indulgent and comforting platter of Giada’s sheet pan lasagna, I may not have had room for a slab of tiramisu, but her lemon ricotta cookies sounded like the perfect finish to my Italian feast.

Lighter than air, infused with fresh lemon juice and zest, and finished with just the right amount of sweet lemon glaze, it’s no wonder why Giada De Laurentiis‘ lemon ricotta cookies have gone viral.

What is lemon ricotta made of?

If you’ve never made cookies with ricotta cheese and lemon before, you’re in for a treat. In baking, ricotta cheese works similarly to cream cheese or sour cream. It adds extra fat to the batter, contributing moisture and tenderness. The resulting cookies are incredibly soft, with a texture reminiscent of a cake or muffin.

Why are Giada’s lemon ricotta cookies so popular?

People love Giada’s lemon ricotta cookies because they transport you straight to the Amalfi Coast with just one bite. Their bright lemon flavor and melt-in-your-mouth, tender crumb is very different from other lemon cookie recipes. Beyond being unique and downright delicious, her lemon ricotta cookies are easy to make, so they’re perfect for beginner bakers.

Giada De Laurentiis’ Viral Lemon Ricotta Cookies

This recipe makes about 4 dozen cookies.


2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
2 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
1 container (15 ounces) whole milk ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 lemon, zested


1-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 lemon, zested


Step 1: Combine dry ingredients

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

Step 2: Beat together the wet ingredients

Combine the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Cream the butter and sugar together on a medium speed until light, fluffy and pale in color (about 5 minutes). Next, beat in the eggs, 1 at a time, mixing after each addition until fully incorporated. Add the ricotta cheese, lemon juice and lemon zest and combine.

Editor’s Tip: Don’t skip the fresh lemon. While bottled lemon juice is convenient, it misses the mark in recipes where lemon is the primary flavor. For this recipe, grab a citrus juicer and zester—or try this easy lemon juicing hack.

Step 3: Combine and chill

Gently fold in the dry ingredients, mixing until they’re just combined into the dough. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate the dough overnight.

Editor’s Tip: Take care not to overmix the cookie dough as it will develop the gluten in the flour too much and result in dense cookies with a tough texture.

Step 4: Bake

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and scoop the dough (about 1-1/2 tablespoons) onto the baking sheets. Heaping mounds is fine; no need to roll the dough into balls. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until cooked through but still pale. Remove from the oven and let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 15 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling. Repeat with the remaining dough.

Step 5: Mix up the glaze

While the cookies finish cooling, combine the powdered sugar, lemon juice and lemon zest in a small bowl and stir until smooth.

Step 6: Decorate and devour

Once the cookies are completely cool, spoon about 1/2 teaspoon of glaze onto each cooled cookie and spread over top into an even layer. Let the glaze harden for about 2 hours (or enjoy immediately if you simply cannot wait).

Editor’s Tip: If you’re feeling fancy, you could also drizzle ribbons of glaze over the cookies using a piping bag fitted with a small round tip.

Here’s What We Thought

Yum! If you love a soft-baked cookie with a pillowy, lighter-than-air texture, you’re going to love these easy lemon ricotta cookies. Actually, we’re not sure we would call these cookies. They’re more like a cross between a soft muffin top and a lemony French madeleine. At the end of the day, call them what you like. Personally, I think I’ll just call them heaven!

The post I Made Giada De Laurentiis’ Viral Lemon Ricotta Cookies, and They’re Heavenly appeared first on Taste of Home.