Pfeffernüsse (German spiced biscuit)
30 minutes
Preparation time
15 minutes
Cooking time
30 servings


125 g unsalted butter
110 g dark brown sugar
1 lemon, zested
1 orange, zested
90 g honey
1 egg
80 g candied citrus peel, finely chopped
350 g plain flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bi-carb soda

2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp ground black pepper
¼ tsp crushed aniseed
½ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground cloves
½ tsp ground allspice
125 g candied citrus, finely chopped, extra

Icing (optional)

120 g pure icing sugar, sifted
60 ml water
2 tbsp white rum
125 g pure icing sugar extra to dust
1 tbsp pink peppercorns, extra


  1. Preheat the oven on Fan Plus at 160°C.
  2. Place butter, sugar and zest in a bowl of a freestanding mixer with paddle attachment, beat until pale and creamy. Add the honey and mix until just combined.
  3. Add the egg and beat until mixed thoroughly, followed by the candied citrus peel.
  4. In a separate bowl, sift flour, bicarb soda, baking powder and spices.
  5. Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter and mix on low speed until ingredients are just combined to form a soft dough.
  6. Roll the dough into 15g balls, top with candied citrus or bake plain for iced version. Place onto baking tray leaving space between the biscuits as they will spread.
  7. Place in the oven on shelf positions 2 and 4. Bake for 15 minutes.
  8. Allow to cool and dust with icing sugar.


  1. Place icing sugar into a bowl, make a well in the centre and gradually whisk in water and rum until forms a smooth icing.
  2. Dip baked biscuits into the icing and roll in sifted icing sugar. Place on baking paper lined tray and top with candied fruits or pink peppercorns.

Hints and tips

  • Pfeffernüsse is traditionally served during Christmas.
  • Store biscuits in an airtight container, they will keep for up to 3 weeks.
  • The uncooked dough will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Roll and bake straight from the refrigerator.


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