Buttery Hamantaschen

Earlier today I posted my Dairy Free Hamantaschen recipe. I also wanted to offer a butter-based dairy hamantaschen dough for those who prefer a more buttery flavored cookie. This dough produces a tender, sweet hamantaschen. While many who keep kosher prefer dairy-free cookies (so they can be served with a meat meal), others don’t mind adding butter to the mix. This dough provides a dairy hamantaschen option for your Purim menu.

I like this dough because it produces a rich, buttery, orange-scented cookie that is full of flavor. The dough will work with any hamantaschen filling, and it won’t open up/expand in the oven during baking, as long as you don’t overfill your cookies and your filling has the proper texture. There are a few drawbacks–it needs to be thoroughly chilled before rolling out (it’s too sticky to roll at room temperature), and it is not as flexible to work with as my dairy free dough. That is the nature of butter doughs; when cold, butter becomes stiff, which in turn makes the dough somewhat stiff and tougher to shape. That said, if you have some experience with baking and working with butter dough, this one should pose no problems for you… in fact, it’s one of the easier butter doughs that I’ve worked with. Note: if this is your first time making hamantaschen and/or butter dough, I recommend starting with my Dairy Free dough. It’s easier to work with than the buttery one, and the flavor is similar.

You can use any hamantaschen filling you like with this dough; I’ve linked to the filling recipes available on my site below. The key to a good filling is to make sure it is thick enough to prevent running, but not so thick that it bakes up dry or tough. All of these filling recipes are tasty, and they all have the proper texture for use in hamantaschen. I will update this list of fillings as I add new ones to the site.

Hamantaschen Fillings

Caramel Apple Filling

Poppyseed (Mohn) Filling

Prune (Lekvar) Filling

Apricot Filling

Nutella Filling

Rabbi Olitzky’s Chocolate Chip Cream Cheese Filling

For my Dairy Free Hamantaschen dough, click here. To learn more about the holiday of Purim, click here.

Recommended Products:

Rolling Pin

Biscuit Cutter

Baking Sheet

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Buttery Hamantaschen

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp grated orange zest
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1-5 tsp water (if needed)

You will also need

  • Large mixing bowl, electric mixer, sifter, pastry scraper, rolling pin, 3-inch cookie cutter or drinking glass with 3-inch diameter rim
Servings: About 35 hamantaschen
Kosher Key: Dairy
  • Slice room temperature butter into small chunks and place in a large mixing bowl.
  • Add sugar to the bowl. Use an electric mixer to cream the butter and sugar together for a few minutes till light and fluffy.
  • Add the egg, vanilla, and orange zest to the bowl. Beat again till creamy and well mixed.
  • Sift flour and salt into the bowl.
  • Mix with the electric mixer on low speed till a crumbly dough forms.
  • Begin to knead dough with hands till a smooth dough ball forms. Try not to overwork the dough, only knead till the dough is the right consistency. If the crumbles are too dry to form a smooth dough, add water slowly, 1 teaspoon at a time, using your hands to knead the liquid into the dough. Knead and add liquid until the dough is smooth and slightly tacky to the touch (not sticky), with a consistency that is right for rolling out. It can easily go from the right consistency to too wet/sticky, so add water very slowly. If the dough seems too wet, knead in a little flour till it reaches the right texture.
  • Form the dough into a flat disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Place in the refrigerator to chill for 3 hours to overnight.
  • Before you begin to assemble the hamantaschen, choose and make your filling and have it on hand to work with. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly flour a smooth, clean surface. Unwrap the dough disk and place it on the floured surface. The dough will be very firm after chilling.
  • Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out to 1/4 inch thick. At the beginning, it will be tough to roll out-- you may need to pound it a bit. A heavy rolling pin works best. As you roll, cracks may form on the edges of the dough. Repair any large cracks with your fingers and continue rolling.
  • When the dough reaches 1/4 inch thickness, scrape the dough up with a pastry scraper, lightly reflour the surface, and flip the dough over. Continue rolling the dough out very thin (less than 1/8 of an inch thick). The thinner you roll the dough, the more delicate and crisp the cookies will turn out-- just make sure that the dough is still thick enough to hold the filling and its shape! If you prefer a thicker, more doughy texture to your cookies (less delicate), keep the dough closer to 1/4 inch thick. Lightly flour the rolling pin occasionally to prevent sticking.
  • Use a 3-inch cookie cutter (not smaller) or the 3-inch rim of a glass to cut circles out of the dough, cutting as many as you can from the dough.
  • Gather the scraps and roll them out again. Cut circles. Repeat process again if needed until you've cut as many circles as you can from the dough. You should end up with around 35 circles (unless you've kept your dough on the thicker side, which will result in less cookies).
  • Place a teaspoon of filling (whichever filling you choose) into the center of each circle. Do not use more than a teaspoon of filling, or you run the risk of your hamantaschen opening and filling spilling out during baking. Cover unused circles with a lightly damp towel to prevent them from drying out while you are filling.
  • Assemble the hamantaschen in three steps. First, grasp the left side of the circle and fold it towards the center to make a flap that covers the left third of the circle.
  • Grasp the right side of the circle and fold it towards the center, overlapping the upper part of the left side flap to create a triangular tip at the top of the circle. A small triangle of filling should still be visible in the center.
  • Grasp the bottom part of the circle and fold it upward to create a third flap and complete the triangle. When you fold this flap up, be sure to tuck the left side of this new flap underneath the left side of the triangle, while letting the right side of this new flap overlap the right side of the triangle. This way, each side of your triangle has a corner that folds over and a corner that folds under-- it creates a "pinwheel" effect. This method if folding is not only pretty-- it will help to keep the cookies from opening while they bake.
  • Pinch each corner of the triangle gently but firmly to secure the shape. If any cracks have formed at the places where the dough is creased, use the warmth of your fingers to smooth them out.
  • Repeat this process for the remaining circles.
  • When all of your hamantaschen have been filled, place them on a lightly greased baking sheet, evenly spaced.
  • Place them in the oven and let them bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, till the cookies are cooked through and lightly golden.
  • Cool the cookies on a wire rack. Store them in a tightly sealed plastic bag or Tupperware.

Comments (131)Post a Comment

  1. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    Yes, men do like to cook. Next time I make these I am definitely going to use a little more water as my dough did crack while folding the triangles. It also got a little warm and soft, so I might work one half of the dough at a time. Nevertheless, they came out wonderful. I had a batch of lemon curd (Ida Garten’s recipe) and tried filing some with that. The lemon curd puffed up while baking then collapsed, but the result was delicious. I also used a microplane grater for the orange zest.

  2. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    Just did a marathon sesssion with my 5 year old daughter: both doughs and the apricot and prune fillings. Loved everything. Both fillings were the perfect consistency and not too sweet. My daughter could help more with the dairy-free dough which was fun and so easy to roll. The butter dough was my favorite once baked. We gave up on your tri folds and just did the more traditional ‘pinch-up’ I grew up with. Faster and easier for both of us. Thanks so much for these recipes. I’m going to print and put in my Jewish cookbooks – they are better!

  3. I subsituted the orange zest with pinapple juice and i couldnt have been happier with the result. My husband said they were the best hamentaschen he has ever tasted.

  4. What would happen if you didn’t grind the poppy seeds? Can you leave them whole? Will the answer come to my email?

    1. Hi Marian– the only way you’ll get the answer in your inbox is if you subscribe to comments on this post, unfortunately I don’t have time to respond to each reader individually (as much as I wish I could!). If you’re talking about my poppy seed filling recipe, you need to grind the seeds. If you don’t, the filling will turn out too liquid and won’t be thick enough to use as a cookie filling.

  5. So, we followed the recipe very closely and they look great however once cooled are hard as rocks! Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Staci– you likely baked them too long, or over-kneaded the dough. It’s also possible your oven runs hotter than mine, which made them bake faster. They should be tender, not soft but not hard. You may be able to soften them up a bit by putting them into a sealed Tupperware container with a slice of bread or a small slice of apple. Next time you make them, try not to overwork the dough and bake them a little less– hopefully that will help.

  6. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    holy smokes these were so good. i almost gave up on making hamantaschen after a few years. after yesterday’s purim, this recipe is now officially in the family. thank you.

  7. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    Thank you! Thank you!! We were a week late, but these were snatched up in an hour at our Hebrew class last night (where we celebrated Purim, and read all of Esther). We used a healthy apricot jelly, and a healthier nutella purchased at Wegman’s, and we’re still talking about them today. Great recipe, as is!!

  8. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    I tried the recipe and they turned out incredible! Thank you Tori. This was my first attempt at hamantashen and they could not be more tasty. In fact my husband and I tried them side by side with all the grocery store produced pareve hamentashen and these are from another planet. Just worth mentioning i left the dough in the fridge over night, it was very hard and needed my husbands help to pound it down. I’m making them again even though Purim’s over and will try it for just a few hours in the fridge. The cheesecake filling was delicious. Also did a filling with raspberry jelly and melted ghirardelli chocolate chips which was wonderful too. Thank you so much for including the photos and important details.

    1. Hi Susie, I have never frozen either dough but I’m guessing they would both freeze well, as long as the filling you use is freezer-safe.

  9. Hello,

    I was wondering if you think a good all purpose gluten free flour blend would work in this recipe? I know it will change it a bit, but do you think it would change it too drastically?

    Thanks!

    1. Hi Andrea, I have tested this for my gluten free readers, unfortunately I cannot recommend it. The brands I tried (King Arthur and another one I can’t remember) made the dough too crumbly and I was unable to fold the cookies into triangles. I think some readers may have had success with it (read through the comments and you might find some advice on this) but personally I was unable to make it work.

    1. Hi Lori, I’ve never frozen this dough but my guess is that it will freeze just fine. I can’t promise because I’ve never tried it, but I can’t really see why it wouldn’t work.

    1. Elisheva, in the post above there are links to all of the filling recipes on this website. Just click on the name of the filling you like and it will take you to the recipe.

  10. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    Hi , I made the dairy free hamentashen recipe this week with my children with homemade Prune filling that I added some cinnamon to. They were out of this world and I usually won’t make/ don’t like a cookie without butter ;)
    I was planning on doing a Nutella batch tomorrow and figured…dairy filling, may as well have a dairy dough.

    Just wondering why the fat content in the buttery ones is so much higher for the same amount of flour ? What causes the need for so much more butter than oil?

    Thanks !!

    1. So glad you liked the hamantaschen Klila! Honestly the dairy-free and buttery boughs taste very similar, so if fat content is a concern stick to the dairy-free dough. My main concern in developing both doughs was a proper consistency for folding and shaping, it worked out that this ratio of butter to flour worked well. I wasn’t worried about the nutritional aspect. I count my blessings, not calories. :)

  11. Very good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 stars
    Hi there, we just made this recipe this evening, and they turned out pretty well. We just had one problem: when we took the dough out of the fridge, it was nice and hard and chilled. It slowly softened, and we rolled it out on parchment paper with flour sprinkled on it, and then started cutting the circles. When we went to take the circles off though, they were all sticky and stuck to the paper – we couldn’t get a single one off successfully, so we ended up rolling dough into balls, and re-rolling them directly on the pan to fill. They taste good, but they’s hard on the eyes. Do you know what we did wrong? Not enough flour? The parchment paper?

    1. Hi Mira– as the recipe states, you should have rolled the dough out on a floured surface, not directly on parchment. It also helps to flip the dough at 1/4 inch, re-flour the surface, and roll again until thin. When following the recipe exactly as written, you shouldn’t have any trouble. The surface needs to have a nice coating of flour on it. Better luck next time.

  12. Very good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 stars
    I made the recipe on Sunday. It came out great–just too sweet. I would take out about 1/3 or 1/4 of the sugar. These also would hold up well if giving out in mishloach manot.

  13. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    Yummy! Just out of the oven and I could hardly wait to taste! I used the Buttery dough recipe and finally a hamantashen that stayed folded. Thank you Tori. They are just delish. Can I freeze the apricot and poppy filling?

    1. Great to hear that Aleece! The apricot filling will probably freeze fine (I haven’t tried it though). Not sure about the poppy seed, that’s pretty iffy due to the dairy involved.

  14. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    This dough is amazing! Made my hamentaschen with it and it came really delicious, not too sweet, orange zest really adds a nice flavor and just the right amount of crunchiness

  15. This is my third year using your fab hamantaschen dough! Thank you! unfortunately, this year my dough is crumbly and impossible to work with… i never had this problem before! I added water but it makes a sticky mess. Where did i go wrong???

    1. Hi Ilana– it sounds like you didn’t add the correct amount of water. Sometimes it only takes a few more drops for it to come together, and if you add too much you’ll get that “sticky mess.” It’s really something you have to get a feel for. So sorry it didn’t work out this time, better luck next time!

  16. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    This is my favorite hamentaschen recipe yet, and I have tried many different ones over the years, but this will be the one I stick with.

    I used nutella to fill some, and then apple butter I had made in the fall to fill the rest. They were a huge hit with my family and coworkers.

    Thank you!

  17. What a mess. And,yes, I’m a proficient baker. Hard dough to work with, cracked, impossible to fill. Waste of time and butter. Went in garbage.

    1. B, it sounds like you didn’t add enough liquid to the dough. Butter doughs can be quite tricky, even for those who bake frequently. As I’m sure you read, many have had great success with this recipe. I’m sorry you didn’t have a better experience!

  18. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    Best Hamentashen recipe yet. My daughter’s been nagging me since the beginning of the month of Adar… And easy if you’re lucky enough (like me) to own a Thermomix….

  19. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    This was my 3rd year making this recipe! I make the dough, then have friends bring fillings and we all assemble and bake together. It’s become such a loved yearly tradition for us, and the recipe always gets rave reviews!

  20. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    I was surprised when my older son who lives clear across the country requested hamantaschen when I asked what I could bake and send for his 30th birthday (he loves my rugelach, but wanted something different). I had some older recipes from their days in religious school, but decided to do a new internet search. I am SO HAPPY to have found your recipe, and your site! I loved your recipe, your detailed instructions, your pictures, and did I mention I loved your recipe (haha)! I, my husband, both of my sons, and all others I have shared these delicious hamantaschen with LOVE them.

    So, a couple of things – I noted someone posted that they were not fond of orange and substituted almond extract – I will have to try that at some point as that describes my husband, but everyone else loved the orange – as a matter of fact, I used a couple teaspoons of OJ instead of the water to add even more orange flavor.

    I made both your apricot and prune filling – our favorite was the apricot. I had to make 4 batches of dough to use up all the filling I made (next time I’ll read your directions a little more carefully, but the more hamantaschen the merrier !)

    Lastly, for my second and subsequent batches of dough, I skipped the refrigerating overnight – your dough was easy to work with immediately – I rolled out with a little dusting of flour between wax paper sheets and used a glass to cut out the circles – AND, I even experimented with replacing a slightly lesser amount of flour with 1/2 cup chopped walnuts in the dough – DELISH !

    Thank you so much Tori for this delicious recipe – I think I will revisit your site often!

    ~ Shari

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