Rainbow cookies are bakery quality cookies made from scratch. These soft, tri-colored cookies have a fruity almond flavor and taste delicious. An excellent addition to any cookie platter.
I have worked in the health care field for over twenty years. As the years have gone by, we have had patients drop us off platters of cookies from time to time. Usually there are only a few of these rainbow cookies included in a bakery platter and this is my top choice.
These cookies are known as Venetians, Italian Rainbow cookies, rainbow cookies, and even seven layer cookies. I looked up the recipe for these cookies a couple years ago, but at the time it seemed too daunting of a task to actually make.
Rainbow cookies aren’t really that difficult to make. It’s just one simple dough with two different food colorings. Once the cakes are baked, assembling the layers are actually pretty easy. The only slight downside is the wait time. This dessert is like a cheesecake – it requires at least four hours to overnight to chill in the refrigerator. I would recommend starting the cookies on one night to allow for the layers to meld together in the fridge and then finish with the chocolate glaze the next day.
Here’s how to make Rainbow Cookies:
In large bowl, add in almond paste (broken up into small pieces), butter, and granulated sugar. Blend with electric mixer on medium speed for 4 to 5 minutes, or until well blended. (The smell of the almond paste in the batter smells so good)
Add in eggs, one at a time followed by almond extract and salt. Blend until well-combined.
Add in flour and blend with mixer until combined.
Divide dough evenly between three different bowls. Use red food coloring in one bowl and green food coloring in the other. Even though red food coloring is used, the baked cookie layer will look pink. (I used gel and a little goes a long way)
You’ll need three, 9 x 13 inch baking pans for this recipe. Line with parchment paper and lightly grease with oil or butter.
Spread batter onto parchment paper with back of spoon. I’d suggest placing the parchment paper on the countertop first to spread dough and then fit into pan. Otherwise, the parchment paper is moving all over the pan while you try to spread a very thin layer of sticky batter. (Batter has a paste like consistency)
You’ll only be able to fit two pans into oven at a time so I baked the colored layers first at 350 degrees F for 10 to 12 minutes. While these are cooling on wire rack, place the uncolored layer of dough into oven and bake for same amount of time.
Allow at least ten minutes to cool. Cakes will remain relatively flat since there is no baking soda or baking powder in this recipe.
Line a large baking sheet with piece of saran wrap (allow enough saran wrap to wrap around bottom and top of cake). Place large piece of parchment paper on top of saran wrap. Place inverted layer of green cake onto parchment paper.
Spread thin layer of apricot jam or preserves on top of the green cake.
Invert the uncolored layer of cake and press into the apricot jam layer. Spread thin layer of raspberry jam or preserves on top of the uncolored cake.
Invert the pink layer of cake and press on top of the raspberry jelly.
Cover the cake layer with saran wrap. Place a heavy cookbook or heavy cans on top of cake. Place the large baking pan in refrigerator for at least four hours or overnight. (This allows the jam to soak into the layers of the cookie)
On the next day, prepare the chocolate glaze. Use double-boiler over medium-low heat to melt semisweet chocolate chips, butter, and heavy whipping cream until smooth in consistency.
Spread glaze over pink layer of cake.
Place pan back in fridge for thirty minutes for glaze to set. Cover with saran wrap. Flip cookie layers over to opposite side and apply glaze. Add sprinkles if desired and then return to fridge again for another thirty minutes.
Once chocolate glaze has set, use large knife to cut edges by 1/4 of an inch on each side. Proceed to cutting one inch vertical rows followed by one to two inch horizontal rows.
These cookies taste best served at room temperature. Store in an airtight container. They also freeze well. Hope you enjoy!
Rainbow Cookies are soft, tri-colored cookies with a fruity almond flavor.
- 8 oz almond paste
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup apricot jam or preserves
- 1/4 cup raspberry jam or preserves
- 1/8 tsp red gel food coloring
- 1/8 tsp green gel food coloring
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line bottom of 9 x 13 inch baking pan with parchment paper and then lightly grease. (Will need two to three baking pans)
2. In large bowl, break up almond paste into small pieces. Add in butter and granulated sugar. Blend with electric mixer on medium-high speed for 4 to 5 minutes.
3. Add in eggs, one at a time followed by almond extract and salt. Blend until well combined.
4. Add in flour and blend until combined.
5. Divide dough evenly between three bowls. Add red food coloring to one bowl. Add green food coloring to second bowl. Stir until combined. (Leave one bowl plain)
6. Spread paste like batter onto parchment paper to fit 9 x 13 inch baking pan. Place two of the pans into oven to bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Let pan cool on wire rack. Place third pan of batter into oven to bake for same amount of time.
7. Allow cakes to cool for at least 10 minutes. Place saran wrap followed by parchment paper onto large baking sheet. Invert green cake layer and place onto parchment paper. Spread thin layer of apricot jam on top of cake.
8. Invert plain cake layer and press on top of apricot jam layer. Spread thin layer of raspberry jam or preserves on top of cake.
9. Invert pink cake layer and press on top of raspberry jam layer. Wrap all layers securely with saran wrap. Place heavy book or heavy cans on top of cake and place into refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours or overnight.
10. Apply chocolate glaze to chilled cake as directed. Trim edges by 1/4 inch on all sides with large knife. Proceed to cut one inch rows vertically followed by two inch horizontal rows.
11. Store in airtight container at room temperature.
Add semisweet chocolate chips, heavy whipping cream, and butter to top of double boiler. Heat on medium-low, stirring frequently until chocolate has melted and mixture is smooth in consistency.
Spread glaze over chilled cake layer. Return cake to refrigerator for thirty minutes to chill.
Flip cake over to opposite side and apply glaze to top layer of cake. Add sprinkles if desired. Return to refrigerator for at least thirty minutes.