Kinako Linzer Cookies

Kinako Linzer Cookies

Kinako is probably one of the most used dessert ingredients in Japan. Its unique golden hue and distinct nutty aroma reminds me of a ohagi that I’ve had once in Japan. If you recall one of my recent recipes, Sesame Caramel Kinako Butterscotch Bars, I used kinako as a supplementary flavour alongside the more pronounced black sesame. I am pretty sure some Japanese will have second thoughts about kinako and raspberries together. To be frank, I’ve never made a classic linzer cookie. Traditional ones are hazelnut cookies sandwiched with raspberry jam. I’ve just made a fresh batch of raspberry jam with a of hint of vanilla and crème de violette liqueur. My baker’s logic: bake a batch of linzer cookies so I can try the raspberry jam. The long gone kinako suddenly decided to catch my attention in the pantry, so I gave it the opportunity to shine. These kinako linzer cookies were unmistakably delicious, it might even go on my holiday cookie list this year.

Kinako Linzer Cookies


  • 150 g / 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 60 g / 1/2 cup kinako (roasted soybean flour)
  • 115 g / 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup / 66 g sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • vanilla seeds scraped from 1/2 a bean
  • 1/4 cup raspberry jam, for filling
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar, for dusting


  1. Combine dry ingredients in a small mixing bowl: flour, baking powder, salt, and kinako.
  2. In a mixer bowl with the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until well combined on medium speed. Add in egg yolk, mix to incorporate. Add the dry ingredients, mix on low speed to form a dough. Scrape bowl if necessary, do not over-mix. Chill dough for at least one hour or overnight before rolling.
  3. Preheat oven to 325 F / 170 C.
  4. Roll cookie dough in between two pieces of parchment paper to about 1/4 inch / 6 mm thick. Cut out desired shapes and cut small holes for cookie tops. Arrange on cookie sheet, they can be quite close to each other as they don't spread much. Bake in preheated oven for about 15 minutes until golden all over. Cool before assembly.
  5. Spread a thin layer to raspberry jam on the cookie bottoms. Dust tops lightly with icing sugar and sandwich together. Cookie sandwiches should be eaten the day they are assembled.

Kinako Linzer Cookies

I love the mildly sweet cookies with the bright tartness from the fruit. The nutty flavour of the kinako worked unusually well with the floral quality of the raspberry jam. It is like PB and J with a twist. I wonder if my Japanese friends would approve of this unconventional combination. The middle of summer might not be a cookie season, but is definitely a canning season thus these kinako linzer cookies were born. To me, any day is a cookie day.

Which reminds me, this raspberry plum jam would also work well with these cookies. The almond shortbread sandwiches with strawberry jam is another one of my favourite cookie recipes from the blog, check them out too!

Kinako Linzer Cookies

Making the little windows for the jam to show through was my favourite part of the recipe – linzer cookies’ signature design. Hope you will have as much fun as I did making these cookies!

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