It’s almost Chanukah! Or is that Hanukah? Who’s up for a cookie exchange featuring these Hanukkah Pinwheel Cookies? I love trading cookies at the holidays and my grandmother’s old fashioned icebox pinwheel cookies are a tried and true classic. We traded the chocolate (brown) dough for a colorful blue dough and whipped up a batch of “Dizzy” Dreidel Pinwheels to share with friends and family.
A dreidel is a top that is traditionally played with during Hanukkah. There are four letters on the sides of the top that are the first letters of the words in a Hebrew Phrase: “Nes Gadol Hayah Sham” – in English this means “A great miracle happened here.” These cookies are miraculously good and the spiral reminds me of the path of the spinning top.
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Dizzy Dreidel Hanukkah Pinwheel Cookies Recipe
Pinwheel Cookie Ingredients:
- 8oz butter
- 1 c sugar
- 2 egg yolks
- Blue gel food coloring
- 3 c flour
- 3 tsp baking powder
- about 6 TBSP milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- A boatload of sprinkles
- Waxed paper – at least 13 inches wide.
Combine butter, sugar & egg yolks in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat together till creamy. Add flour and baking powder alternately with milk. Add vanilla to dough last.
How to Construct Your Chanukah Cookies
Knead dough lightly by hand and divide into two balls. Add blue gel coloring to half of the dough. You may want to do this back in the mixer to avoid staining your hands.
Divide both balls in half, so you have two blue balls and two vanilla balls. These will form two slice and bake cookie logs.
Spread out waxed paper on counter, about 17 inches long.
Take one vanilla ball and one blue ball. Stack vanilla dough on the bottom, blue dough on top, on top of the waxed paper. Smash down gently. Cover with a second sheet of waxed paper and carefully roll out the two balls together evenly, to about 9 inches wide by 13 inches long. Be sure to leave extra wax paper on all edges.
Starting at a long edge, roll the dough up jelly roll style, into a 13 inch long log. Use the wax paper to lift the edge and assist you as you roll the dough into a log. Take care not to roll in the wax paper!
Roll Your Holiday Pinwheel Cookies in Sprinkles for Extra Sparkle
This year I perfected our SPIN-wheel cookies by simply rolling the logs in sprinkles prior to chilling and cutting.
I used an assortment of sprinkles including some fun blue and white Jewish stars, rainbow nonpariels in two sizes and white jimmies. It’s like glitter for a cookie. Don’t skimp! If you have a long bread pan, you can put the sprinkles in there, then gently shake to “toss” and rotate the rolled log of dough. This is super effective for evenly coating the log. You can see how I did this with my Tipsy Elf Christmas Pinwheel Cookies.
Wrap a fresh sheet of wax paper around the sprinkle coated log. Carefully twist the ends of the wax paper to secure. Repeat this process for the other two balls to make a second log.
Chill dough in fridge for at least 1 hr, or up to a day. When you are ready to bake the cookies, slice with sharp knife into 1/4 inch rounds.
Bake at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes, keeping a close eye on the cookies to ensure they just get barely golden. Do not allow them to brown as this changes the flavor and texture, and not in a great way. I mean, people will still eat them, but they won’t swoon.
Let them firm up for a few minutes before removing from baking sheet. Cool completely before serving. Preferably on a cookie cooling rack like this one .
I know… it’s hard to wait! Serve with milk, tea or coffee.
Side note – there is something extraordinarily rewarding about slicing these cookies. You never know what you’ll get inside. This batch came out extra swirly good.
The spirals remind me of a whirling dreidel’s path… get it?