It’s time to get festive the healthy way: German Cinnamon Stars AKA Zimtsterne are traditional gluten free German Christmas cookies. This version is low carb, sugar free and diabetic-friendly.
That time of year has arrived again.
The festive spirit has been going strong in the shop windows since Halloween’s been over, so I should have seen it coming. But I have to admit, December always creeps up on me. Shock horror! I have not got any presents sorted! Where did I put the lights for the Christmas tree? What, only 3 weeks to go? And thank God for my mother, who surprised the children with an advent calendar just in time. One tick off the list, without a last minute panic shop.
I admire the people that have a Christmas spreadsheet and schedule all tasks so it’s done by the first of December (yes, they exist! Right here in London). As a newspaper journalist in Berlin I once did a story about people who buy their Christmas presents in the summer sale. They existed, too. These are clever, nifty human beings that are just that little bit more evolved than me. When I fight my way through the crowds on Oxford Street and queue for the last turkey at the butchers’, they can sit back in front of their fires, admire their beautifully decorated Christmas tree and sip mulled wine.
Writing Christmas to-do-lists is just not very me. I secretly know it would stress me out seeing the amount of stuff that needs to be done all in one place and improvisation has always been one of my strengths. So I get on with things one by one as I remember them and hope it’ll be all right by the time it’s Christmas eve. Denial is a beautiful thing and this method of wingin’ it, tried and tested over many years, always works out fine and gives me plenty of time to sip mulled wine in between.
There’s one thing though I never forget about. German Cinnamon Stars.
Cinnamon Stars are perhaps the most traditional Christmas cookies in Germany. They are the Mince Pies of Deutschland; the ultimate festive baked good. Plus, they taste absolutely delicious.
The original recipe requires ground almonds, which makes the cookies gluten free. Unfortunately though, regular cinnamon stars are packed with icing sugar, which erases all the benefits of using nuts as opposed to wheat flour. I remade our favourite family recipe using Sukrin Icing, which is a blend of erythritol and stevia, and am pleased to say they came out tasting super nice.
German Cinnamon Stars are
- delicately spiced with cinnamon and ground coffee
- sweet and nutty
- gluten free
- sugar free
- low carb and keto
- tasting of Christmas with every bite.
The Christmas period can be tricky to navigate when you’re sugar free. If you work in an office, there’s probably a bowl with festive sweets on every desk. December is the month of parties and get-togethers, which inevitably involves eating more than you normally would, including the temptation of desserts. These German cinnamon stars make a great homemade gift. So make a bumper portion and share the sugar free love 🙂
Why not try my other sugar free, low carb cookie recipes?
Yields 50 stars
It's time to get festive the healthy way: German Cinnamon Stars AKA Zimtsterne are traditional gluten free German Christmas cookies. This version is sugar free and diabetic-friendly.
20 minPrep Time
25 minCook Time
45 minTotal Time
5 based on 2 review(s)
- 300g / 3 cups ground almonds
- 100g / 1 cup Sukrin icing or powdered erythritol
- 3 egg whites
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground coffee
- Separate the eggs and whip the egg whites until they form stiff peaks. Use a glass or ceramic bowl for this and make sure it's totally dry and squeaky-clean. A stick blender with plastic does not give a brilliant result - best is an old-fashioned mixer with 2 steel attachments.
- Fold in the sweetener.
- Reserve 3 tablespoons of the egg white and sugar mix for the glaze
- Add the ground almonds and spices and stir until combined.
- Form a dough ball and roll it out around 1/2 cam thick between 2 sheets of baking paper
- Place in the freezer for around 15 minutes. This is an important step - it makes cutting out the dough much easier
- Remove from the freezer, lift the top baking paper sheet and use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes (just rename the recipe if you prefer hearts instead of stars!)
- Brush on the egg white mix we set aside earlier.
- Bake in an pre-heated oven at 120 Celsius for 25 minutes.
For a variation replace 100g/1 cup of ground almonds with ground hazelnuts.
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