Italian Rainbow Cookies

Italian Rainbow Cookies

A tri-coloured sponge cookie with homemade almond paste, layered with both raspberry and apricot jams and spread with melted chocolate.

Course Cookie
Cuisine Italian
Keyword Italian Rainbow cookies
Servings 5 dozen
Author Marisa



  • 1 1/4 cup blanched almonds To blanch your own see note below
  • 1 1/4 cup icing sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 3 tablespoons water


  • 1 1/4 cups almond paste
  • 1 cup butter softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 large eggs separated
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 10-12 drops red food colouring
  • 10-12 drops green food colouring
  • 1/2 cup seedless raspberry jam
  • 1/2 cup apricot jam
  • 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • chocolate sprinkles of your choice



  1. Place the almonds and 1/4 cup of the icing sugar in a food processor and pulse until the mixture has the appearance of coarse sand.

  2. Add in the remaining sugar and pulse until the mixture is very fine.

  3. Add the almond extract and water then pulse again until thoroughly combined. Set aside. 


  1. Butter three, 13 inch by 9 inch baking pans. Line the pans with parchment paper and grease the paper.

  2. Preheat oven to 350*F
  3. In a large bowl, cream together the almond paste, butter, sugar and egg yolks until fluffy and smooth. 

  4. Stir in the flour.

  5. In a small mixing bowl, beat the egg whites (with clean beaters) until soft peaks form. 

  6. Fold the beaten egg whites into the cake batter until it is thoroughly blended.

  7. Divide the cake batter equally among three small bowls. 

  8. Colour one portion with the red food colouring and one with the green and leave the third portion uncoloured. 

  9. Spread each portion of cake batter into the prepared pans, smoothing the top with an offset spatula.

  10. Bake in preheated oven for about 10-12 minutes, until the edges are a light golden brown.
  11. Transfer the pans on a cooling rack.
  12. Once cooled, invert the green layer onto a cookie sheet and peel off the parchment paper. Spread the raspberry jam evenly all over.  

  13. Top with the uncoloured layer and spread evenly with the apricot jam. 

  14. Top with the pink layer and cover with saran wrap or cling wrap.

  15. Set a cookie sheet on top to compress the layers together. Refrigerate overnight.

  16. The next day, melt the chocolate in the microwave, in 15 second intervals until melted. Spread the melted chocolate over the pink layer and top with sprinkles of your choice.

  17. Set aside and allow the chocolate to harden.

  18. Once the chocolate is set, trim off the edges with a sharp knife.

  19. When ready to serve, cut 1/2 inch strips across the width and then each strip into 4 pieces. Store in airtight container and keep refrigerated.

Recipe Notes

Blanching Almonds

Place the almonds in a pot of boiling water and allow to simmer for about 60 to 70 seconds. The almonds will start to rise and bob on the surface. The skin will have a shriveled up appearance.

Drain the almonds and run under cold water then pat dry with a clean dish towel.

One at a time, gently press on the almond between your thumb and index finger to release the nut from its skin.

Allow the blanched almonds to dry at room temperature, on a clean dish towel, before proceeding with the recipe. This can also be done overnight.

If your pressed for time you can dry the almonds in a low heated oven for 5 minutes or so.