Italian Christmas Cookies with Chestnut Chocolate Filling | Chestnut Tortelli Recipe

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Try this authentic Italian recipe for Chestnut Tortelli – little pasta-shaped Italian Christmas cookies filled with a spiced rum, chocolate & chestnut filling. 

Authentic Italian Christmas Cookies with Chestnut Chocolate Filling - Chestnut Tortelli served on a silver platter

A note about affiliate links in this post: some of these links will take you to Amazon where I may receive a small percentage of sales, at no extra cost to you. 

These Italian Christmas Cookies filled with a spiked Chestnut puree should be on your to-bake list this Christmas!

May I introduce to you my latest cookie obsession – little Italian Christmas Cookies, known as chestnut tortelli! 

These dainty little pasta-shaped cookies took my heart by storm and I want to share the recipe for this Italian Christmas treat with all you lovers of all things chestnut and chocolate!

Imagine a tender, buttery cookie filled with a spiced, rum-spiked chocolate and chestnut filling! Sounds delicious, no?

I was looking for creative, exciting new Christmas cookie recipes to add to my holiday baking rut and found this great recipe for Italian chestnut tortelli cookies! SOLD!

I do so love chestnuts and chestnut puree, especially in desserts and cakes (check out my chestnut chocolate cake).

They take me back to Christmas time in Germany, where no visit to the Christmas Market would be complete without a paper bag full of steaming hot, roasted chestnuts! The best hand-warmer there is, in my opinion.

In Italy, you find the same chestnut stands during the cold season and many Italian Christmas recipes use them – either as a chestnut puree or chestnut flour.

Italian Chestnut Cookies "Chestnut Tortelli" dusted with powdered sugar

How to make Italian Christmas Cookies with Chocolate Chestnut Filling:  

These Italian Chestnut cookies look rich, but they are not overly sweet.

The dough calls for no sugar at all, and don’t be tempted to add any. As you can tell from the list of ingredients, the chestnut filling is quite rich. Plus, we are gonna roll the freshly baked chestnut tortelli in a bowl of icing sugar.

They will be just perfect along with a little espresso and they make for the best little Italian Christmas treat.

We make the olive oil- and butter-enriched pastry in the food processor and it comes together quite easily.

Make sure to let the pastry rest for a minimum of 1 hour. You can also prepare it up to 48 hours in advance. I found, that the chestnut cookie dough was easier to roll out when I let it sit on my counter for about 5 minutes, before rolling.

For my Italian Chestnut Tortelli Cookies, you will need whole roasted or cooked chestnuts. You can buy Whole Peeled Chestnuts or use the same amount of unsweetened Chestnut Puree for the cookie filling.

Variations on these Italian Christmas Cookies:

In Southern Italy, chickpeas are used instead of chestnuts, which sounds like something I might want to try next year. Use them as a substitute, if you cannot find chestnuts.

Likewise, you can skip the rum and add some espresso or strong coffee to the sweet chestnut filling.

Italian Christmas cookies with chocolate chestnut filling on a silver tray

It took a whole lot of self-control to not eat the yummy chestnut chocolate filling by the spoonful! The texture reminded me a bit of marzipan. So if you like the sound of chocolate chestnut marzipan, you will definitely love these cookies.

Apart from chocolate, we add some cocoa, rum, vanilla and cinnamon to the chestnut puree, for that Christmassy touch. As a further addition, I added a tbsp of espresso to the chestnut cookie filling, which worked really well with the rest of the ingredients. I would even up the amount from one to two tablespoons next time I bake these.

I really hope you get to try this authentic Italian Christmas treat!

Actually, I have started to enjoy a Chestnut Tortelli cookie with my first coffee or a little morning-espresso and am loving my little Italian Christmas breakfasts. Try them yourself and be prepared to fall in love!

Tips for making Italian Christmas Cookies With Chestnut Filling: 

  • Make sure to let the pastry dough rest for a minimum of 1 hour.
  • You can make the dough up to 48 hours in advance and store it in the fridge.
  • I found, that the chestnut cookie dough was easier to roll out when I let it sit on my counter for about 5 minutes before rolling.

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A note about affiliate links in this post: some of these links will take you to Amazon where I may receive a small percentage of sales, at no extra cost to you. 

Like my recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies with Chocolate Chestnut Filling aka. Chestnut Tortelli? Pin it:

Italian Christmas Cookies with Chestnut Filling {Chestnut Tortelli} | Try this traditional recipe for buttery baked mini hand pies with a homemade chocolate and chestnut filling - it's the perfect cookie for the holidays #Christmas, #holidaybaking, #Italianrecipes

Did you make and love this Italian Christmas Cookies recipe? Give it your review below and make sure to share your creations by tagging me on Instagram!

Italian Chestnut Tortelli Recipe for cookies with chestnut filling and chocolate
5 from 2 votes

Italian Christmas Cookies with Chestnut Filling | Chestnut Tortelli Recipe

These dainty, sugar-dusted Italian Christmas Cookies come with a rum-spiked chocolate & chestnut filling! Try this Italian Christmas recipe this winter!

Course cookie, Snack, sweet
Cuisine italy
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 40 pieces
Calories 100 kcal
Author Kiki Johnson


For the dough

  • 350 g AP flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 115 g butter ice cold and cut into cubes
  • 2 large eggs
  • 60 ml olive oil
  • 2 tbsp cold water

For the filling

  • 350 g chestnuts, cooked or roasted or same amount of unsweetened chestnut puree
  • 130 g sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp rum or 2 plus 1 more tbsp pf espresso
  • 1 tbsp espresso
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder, unsweetened
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 - 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 130 g dark chocolate, finely chopped or grated

To finish

  • powdered sugar


  1. In the bowl of your food processor, combine flour, baking powder and salt and blitz quickly. Add the cubed butter and pulse until coarse crumbs form. In a small bowl, stir together eggs, oil and water and add to the dry mix. Pulse until the dough comes together in clumps. Take out and knead very quickly. Divide the dough into 4 parts, shape it into individual disks, wrap in cling film and let rest in the fridge for about an hour, better for 2.  You can prepare the dough 2 days ahead of time. 

  2. Preheat the oven to 375 F, or 180 C . Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Let dough sit on the counter for about 5 minutes, so that it is easier to roll.  In the meantime, blend all the ingredients except for the chocolate in your food processor until a coarse, thick paste forms. If it is too dry, add some more espresso or rum. It should hold together when squeezed between your fingers. Stir in the chocolate.

  3. Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface until 3 mm thin.Cut out rounds of about 8 to 10 cm. 

  4. Place about a teaspoon of the filling on the lower half of each round. Moisten the edge of the round with water, then fold the round in half and seal the edges with a fork or your fingers. Place the chestnut cookies on the baking sheets.

  5. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until just starting to brown.Transfer them to a bowl filled with the confectioner's sugar as soon as they come out of the oven. Roll them in the icing sugar and let cool on wire racks. The chestnut cookies should be stored in airtight containers in a cold room. Properly stored, they keep for at least 2 weeks.



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  1. 5 stars
    I love the combination of chestnut and chocolate! I have a chocolate crostata recipe that uses chestnut jam and I absolutely love it! I am sure I’d love these cookies, so pretty and with a delicious filling. They remind me of the ricotta filled ravioli my mom would make at Carnival in Rome. You are right, paired with espresso, divine!

  2. 5 stars
    Hi Kiki! I love this recipe! I just tried to email you but couldn’t find your address. I am a fellow blogger who writes for Shape Magazine and am working on a chestnut roundup! Would it be possible to link to your recipe, full credit to you, and use your image in my piece? It’s due Tuesday so please let me know if you can by Monday afternoon! My email is shawsimpleswaps@gmail.com. Thank you!

  3. Can you fry this dough? My Mom makes a version of this but fry’s the cookies and uses anice liquor instead of rum. Thanks!

  4. 5 stars
    Hi Kiki, I made two batches of these cookies this Christmas and they were so delicious. I keep them without the powdered sugar and re-bake in oven to crisp them up before serving as they do go soggy over time. these cookies will be on my yearly bake list from now on. thank you.

  5. Thank you for this recipe that has been lost to my family. My grandmother made a similar cookie but it had both chickpea and chestnut puree along with the chocolate. Have you heard of it?

  6. 5 stars
    Perfect! I made them for my clients and they loved this so much as me and my family too! Instead rum, I put prosecco.

  7. 5 stars
    A must try… The dough is so nice and flaky the recipe is super easy and comes together really well. The only thing I would charge is that I would flip them halfway through for even browning. Thank you for sharing, it is definitely a keeper 🙂

  8. So ein wunderbares Rezept! Ich suchte schon lange so etwas und werde es demnächst nach backen. Ich liebe Rezepte mit Maronen, für die Füllung braucht es weniger Zucker; ich kürze alle Rezepte um ein Drittel. Daher ist mein Gebäck besonders beliebt.

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