Gluten free Mexican cookies

Gluten free Mexican cookies in a cake tin

Writing my blog has really fuelled the fire I have for new foodie discoveries. These gluten free Mexican cookies are my latest food discovery. And I love them!

I spotted the recipe for these Mexican cookies (galletas con grageas) as I was flicking through the December 2021 Waitrose & Partners Food magazine (a fabulous publication and free if you hold a My Waitrose card). The colourful sprinkles drew me in, along with how Adriana Cavita’s (who shared the recipe) said that these delightful cookies can be found all over Mexico throughout the festive season. I loved the thought of these jolly cookies being so readily available in another part of the world.

If you are wondering just what these cookies are like, I’d describe their texture as cross between shortbread and cake. The generous scattering of sprinkles gives the cookies a delightful crunchy sweet topping and they’re rather wonderful with a nice hot cup of tea! 

I really didn’t expect the sprinkles on the cookies to retain their colour when baked, but they did. I debated too, as to whether to use gluten free self-raising flour or plain, as ASDA gluten free self-raising flour that I use, tends to have just the right amount of xanthan gum added. But I decided to go with what the original recipe suggested and used gluten free plain flour and added xanthan gum and baking powder. My theory behind this was to follow the original recipe as close as I could and also to ensure you’d be able to replicate the cookies, should you only be able to get your hands on gluten free plain flour.

Ingredients (makes 20 – 24)

140g margarine, cubed and softened (I used stork block) 
60g unsalted butter, cubed and softened
150g caster sugar
3 large eggs (2 for the mixture and 1 to brush over the cookies before baking)
400g gluten free plain flour or mix (I used ASDA)
1 level teaspoon gluten free baking powder
½ teaspoon xanthan gum (only add if your flour doesn’t already contain this or guar gum) 
Pinch of salt
Approximately 150g hundreds and thousands (check gf and no may contain warning on the pack – I used Sainsbury’s)

Flatlay of ingredients for Mexican cookies


Place the margarine, butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and whisk with an electric mixer until pale and creamy. 

Creamed butter, margarine and sugar in a large pyrex mixing bowl

Beat two eggs into the mixture, adding one egg at a time. 

Creamed margarine, butter , sugar and eggs in a large pyrex mixing bowl

Sift in the flour, baking powder and xanthan gum and add a pinch of salt.

Ingredients in a pyrex bowl for gluten free Mexican cookies

Mix everything until combined. 

Gluten free Mexican cookie dough in a large pyrex bowl

Wrap the cookie dough in greaseproof paper and pop it into the fridge for about 30 minutes to chill.

Gluten free Mexican cookie dough lying on a sheet of greaseproof paper

Preheat the oven 180C/ 350F/Gas 4/160C Fan.

Line 2 large baking trays with greaseproof paper. 

Dust the worktop (or pastry mat) and rolling pin with gluten free flour. Roll out the dough to 1cm thick. 

Rolling out gluten free Mexican cookie dough

Using a cookie cutter cut out the cookies. You can use whatever cutter size you fancy. I went with a 6cm one, as recommended in the original recipe. This proved to be the perfect size.

Lay the cookies on the prepared trays.

Gluten free Mexican cookies on a tray prior to having sprinkles added

Brush the top of the cookies with beaten egg mixed with a drop of cold water. Scatter the hundreds and thousands over the top of the cookies. I was extremely generous with the sprinkles but you can of course use less.

Gluten free Mexican cookies prior to being baked

Slide the trays in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. You will need to adjust the cooking time should you decide to make a different size cookie. 

Once baked (you will find they are slightly risen and golden around the edges) remove the cookies from the oven and leave them to go cold before tucking in. 

A tray of gluten free Mexican cookies

Recipe notes and suggestions:

Store the cookies in an airtight tin. They will keep really well for a good week.

If like me you only have one large tray, just use half the dough (pop the other half back in the fridge) to make one batch of cookies and repeat once the first batch has been baked.

I think these gluten free Mexican cookies would make the most perfect gift when popped into a jar or fancy tin. The recipe makes a LOT…so I’m sure you will have a few spare to give away.

Try making an *ice-cream sandwich with these colourful cookies. What a delightful pud this would be to serve up.

This gluten free cookie dough was a dream to work with and could be used to make any shape or size of cookie. I did consider cutting out Christmas trees, stars etc but on this occasion I wanted to stay true to the recipe and bring a little bit of Mexico into our home!

Thanks so much for checking out this recipe for gluten free Mexican cookies. Of course, full credit and thanks for the original recipe I used to rustle up a gluten free version of these delicious cookies goes to Adriana Cavita’s.

For now,
Liz x 

*Check this product out to ensure no gluten containing ingredients or ‘may contain’ or ‘not suitable’ warnings on the pack. If in doubt leave it out.

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