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Italian Pillow Cookies

By December 17, 2010December 16th, 2020Dairy Free, Desserts, Holiday Recipes, Vegetarian, Weight Loss

Testimony of the Day

Leah lost 60 pounds from when we started in February!  No gimmicks, just eating right!

“Dear Maria,

I had to write to tell you just how much you have changed my life. When I came to you for a consultation I was at the heaviest I had ever been in my life. I was depressed and scared for my health. Seeing my Mom go through a stroke at age 57, I guess you can say “scared me straight.” I had been checking out your blog on and off for quite a while before I finally decided that I HAD to make a change, and I felt compelled to seek out your help. I was nervous, scared, and excited. I had tried so many different methods of weight loss over the years that I wasn’t sure if this was going to work or not. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that my life would be transformed the way it has been because of all you have taught me. When I first met with you, we found numerous health concerns, besides being obese, I also had a high estrogen level, sinus issues, severe eczema, asthma, intense cramps during my period, episodes of severe heartburn, and gas and bloating. Through all the changes you suggested, and all of your amazing support I am so thrilled to say all of these things have disappeared and on top of that I have lost 60 pounds, and I am still losing! I feel incredible, and I couldn’t have done it, and keep doing it without you. Even after our month has been done you have continued to be my number one supporter. Whenever people ask how I am doing it, I sing your praises. Many have asked to see before and after photos of me, and when I finally agreed, I was in shock.  I knew I had lost the weight, but actually seeing it was unbelievable.  I will never let myself get that size again.  I not only feel great physically, but for the first time in my life I am happy and confident in my body, and I’m healthy!  You not only know what you are doing, you know what people need as far as caring and support. A million thank yous,


If you too want to start healing your body, click HERE for a consult. With the right diet and supplement plan, you can feel like a new person!



1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup cream cheese
3/4 cup confectioners Swerve (or powdered erythritol and 1 tsp stevia glycerite)
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 egg
1 tsp extract (orange/lemon/vanilla/almond)
1/2 tsp Redmond Real Salt
2 cups blanched almond flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/2 lb walnuts (or pecans/macadamia nuts/almonds)
2 TBS butter or coconut oil
1/2 cup Swerve (or erythritol and 1/2 tsp stevia glycerite)
1 tsp cinnamon
2 egg whites
1 cup confectioners’ Swerve (or powdered erythritol and 1 tsp stevia glycerite)
1 tsp almond extract (or other extracts… orange maybe!)
2 TBS unsweetened almond milk


Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. In a large bowl, cream the butter and the cream cheese for 1 minute. Add the natural sweetener and continue mixing until creamy. Add the egg, extract and salt and mix again. Stir in the flours, baking powder, and salt. Combine until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.

To make the filling, either process the nuts through a food processor until finely chopped (just a little larger than all-out ground), or chop by hand. Combine the chopped nuts with the natural sweetener and cinnamon and then add in the melted butter or coconut oil. Mix well, making sure there are no large clumps. Add the egg whites and again, mix well.

Roll out a piece of dough into a rectangle on a greased piece of parchment paper, measuring about 6 inches by 18 inches. Spread ¼ of the nut filling onto the dough, leaving a small border around the perimeter of the dough. Roll up as you would a jelly roll, with the short ends to the left and right of you, and seal the ends. Cut the roll into 1-inch pieces and place them on the cookie sheet. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the tops are just slightly starting to turn brown. Cool completely. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough and remaining filling. Once the cookies are cooled, prepare the icing by mixing together the confectioners’ Swerve, extract, and enough milk to achieve the desired consistency. You’ll want the icing to be thick enough to not be runny, but still easily spreadable. Ice the tops of the cookies and let set completely before storing in an airtight container.  Makes 32 servings.

Traditional Cookies = 209 calories, 10g fat, 3g protein, 28.1g carbs, 0.8g fiber
“Healthified” Cookies = 137 calories, 12g fat, 4g protein, 2.9g carbs, 1.6g fiber (79% fat, 12% protein, 8% carbs)

Maria Emmerich

Maria is a wellness expert who has helped clients follow a Ketogenic lifestyle to heal and lose weight for over 20 years. She has helped thousands of clients get healthy, get off medications and heal their bodies; losing weight is just a bonus. She is the international best selling author of several books including "Keto: The Complete Guide to Success on the Ketogenic Diet.".


  • France says:

    Wow! Tell Leah she looks amazing!!! This is so encouraging for those of us who started a bit later than her.
    Those cookies, Maria, they look amazingly delicious!! 🙂

  • shannon korczynski says:

    So, for the cookie, I am going to replace the cream cheese for goats cheese and an equivalent egg replacement. But for the filling you use 2 egg whites, what can I use to replace just the whites?

  • Great job Leah! So happy for her! love all your posts and can’t wait to get some more almond flour to make these cookies, we made the Christmas cookies in orange flavor and my hubby adored ’em!

  • Molly Marie says:

    Great job Leah, you look amazing!

  • chrysta says:

    Great job Leah! and good god do these coolies look amazing, yummers!

    I wanted to mention too, I made the pop “corn” from you savory book and it was AMAZING. I think I found my new favorite snack! and it was so easy to make too. So good. Had a quick q about it, and this is a total fail on my part, but I dont think I whipped my egg whites enough? I have a hand mixer but it never got too fluffy or hard. Any tips?


  • Wow, Leah looks great & so do those cookies!! 🙂

  • rosemike089 says:

    How delicious is this Italiano cookies, I felt hungry when I saw this cookies, I baked this on on my own.
    herbal incense

  • Anonymous says:

    Way to go Leah! You are an inspiration to us all. Just refused an invite to come have cake in a co-worker’s office. WHOOOO HOOOOO, can’t believe I would ever turn that down. What a difference eating right makes.

  • Margarita says:

    Good morning Maria, I am wondering if you ever heard of G6PD anemia. My son was diagnosed with this as a newborn, he was fighting a severe case of jaundice and they had to take a spinal fluid sample because the “blue lights” were not working successfully. He was in the hospital for 2 weeks and then just suddenly one day he was better. I was told that he should stay away from Fva beans and asprin at all cost and to not consume to much vitamin K. Fast forward 13 years and I had to take him to the ER because he was complaining of a headache and his left arm hurting, when we saw the doctor he immediately seem to be disinterested in helping us find out why my son’s head was hurting so bad. But he told the nurse to check for Strep and the flu, when the nurse came in I asked her to please check his blood levels. When the test results came back, his liver enzymes were elevated and I was instructed to take him to his pcp and to make sure he did not ingest anymore fava beans (um, I have never gave him this) and to just give him oc meds for his headache. Well when I came home my sis-n-law and I started doing research and what I found shocked me, he was not to consume asorbic acid, no flour, sugar, legumes, menthol, dried fruits, potataoes..I mean the list was overwhelming. I was only told to watch out for the things I listed earlier. And I have always been concerned with the Vitamin K issue because it is found in green veggies, so now I am feeling lost as far as what to feed my child and I don’t want him to miss out on things such as peppermint sticks(Christmas) do you or any readers have suggestions? I don’t know if I need to make a consult with a nutritionist (you) or what, I just found out that part of G6PD side effects are high liver enzymes and it seems not very many people know about this, when I told the doctor about it at first he looked at me as if I was crazy then he left the room and came back with “all this verbal info”. I have been feeding my child wrong for all these years and he was diagnosed with Asperger’s 5 years ago, makes me wonder if he had been eating a proper diet…? Thank you to all who read this.

  • Anonymous says:

    Margarita,I highly recommend a consult with Maria. Her “healthifed” way of eating is anti-inflammatory so it is great for everyone but especially so for those with neuro-inflammatory disorders! Researchers want to rename Alzheimer’s “Type 3 Diabetes”!!!! Has your son been evaluated for methylation pathway mutations? See MTHFR SUPPORT for info. 23andMe testing has dropped to $99 plus shipping. Sterling Hill of MTHFR Support (see her website and Facebook) charges a small fee to look into your raw data to look for other mutations influencing the methylation pathway and immune system and she’ll teach you how to use SnPedia to learn more from the 23andMe raw data. Please read about CBS mutations because if present, they need to be addressed first. Sensitivities to sulur rich foods, sulphites, and/or sulfa antibiotic allergies mày be clues to the presence of CBS mutations. See “heartfixer nutrigenomics” and autismntidotcom for more info on methylation. Blessings to you and your son!

    • Anonymous says:

      23andMe also tests for hemochromatosis which can cause elevated liver enzymes. It is a very common iron-loading disorder also called “the Celtic Curse.” It is one of the most common genetic disorders in the US but usually goes undiagnosed. See irondisordersdotorg for more info. You can be anemic and still loading iron. Print out the diagnostic checklist to discuss with your doctor. An iron panel is not included in a so-called complete blood test.

    • Margarita says:

      Thank you so much, I just suddenly became overwhelmed with all the info that the peds never told me when he was younger. I mean foods such as peas and peanuts were even on the list and I have been letting him snack on peanuts and have peas for sides at dinner, I am also thinking of switching docs, and trying to find someone who has a bit more knowledge about this. I feel like all this time I have been setting him up for poor health! So thank you again and happy holidays to you!

    • Anonymous says:

      Healthifying your eating Maria style is something you can start today. Don’t look back and beat yourself up cuz you’ve done your best with the knowledge you had. Be kind to yourself! I did a consult with Maria and it has improved the health of my whole family. Don’ t underestimate the power of diet. My son’s teachers commented on his improved attention and cognitive functioning since healthifying our home. PEACE AND JOY!

  • I stumbled onto your site today because of a cross posting from Wheat Belly FB page – and I’ve got to say – you got me girl! WTG Leah!! The caption is perfect because several years ago, I took on a weight loss effort just a couple of weeks before Christmas (when people thought I was crazy) and managed to lose weight over the holidays without being deprived. I was doing well with that until this year. I’ve battled with the weight again. I even tried vegan just before latching on to wheat free. I drank pretty much just green smoothies, but I also consumed still lots of grains – and not an ounce of weight loss in 3 weeks.

    I’ve been reading Dr. Davis’ book and implementing some of his recipes and others that I have found. Struggling just a tiny bit, but really it’s not that bad. Only “officially” started this past Saturday, so just 4 days in and have lost a couple of pounds already.

    I have a weight loss goal of 40lbs, but my main goal is to not have the joint pain.

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge with the world. I have ordered up your books off Amazon.

  • Anonymous says:

    Way to go, Leah! You inspire me!!!!!

  • frankweir says:

    hi maria…i actually made these cookies and they turned out very well. ran out of erythritol so used splenda for filling. crisp on outer edges chewy inside. wonderful. can i ask do you find swerve to be superior to erythritol/stevia and if so in what way? Less cooling sensation? I need to start buying your cookbooks. Your recipes match my sense of taste verywell. My wife loved them too saying they taste very close to the almondette commercial cookie. happy holidays and thanks for all the help you give to people.

  • Anonymous says:

    Maria, I’ve been on this journey just two weeks and am loving all your info. on your blog. The recipes have kept me going! I’m wondering if you have any suggestions. I’ve only lost 1 pound in two weeks, which isn’t awful, but I was hoping for more. Do you know of some common reasons some people don’t lose as easily eating gluten/sugar free? Does it take awhile for some bodies to adjust to this or do you think I need to do something differently? Thanks for any advise you might have!

    • Thanks! It depends on a few things. How much weight you have to lose. If you have 100 pounds to lose it will be easier to lose weight right away than if you have 20 pounds to lose. If you are following 100% is a big deal too. Some clients think that if they follow me 90% of the time and cheat in weekends, etc that they will see 90% of the benefit. It really has to be 100% to see all the benefits. Supplements can help also (L-Carnitine, etc). Also, if you have a sensitivity, that can hold things back too (dairy, nuts, etc). It is hard to know exactly without doing a health assessment. 🙂

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