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Multi-colored cookies: Do they have a name?

  • s

Jewish bakeries where I grew up usually had an item we called multi-colored cookies: chocolate on top and bottom with three layers of moist, dense cake separated by a thin layer of jam. Each layer of cake was a different neon-bright color.

At my local Kosher Mart, there is a brand called Lilly that calls them Rainbow cookies. But growing up I never saw a sign or anything saying what they were called. We just pointed and called them multi-coloreds.

Does anyone know if they have a traditional name?

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  1. Ha! - I was in NYC a couple of weeks and asked the same question. The counter guy called them "Italian wedding cookies."

    We had a WASP-y version of these growing up and we (rather cumbersome-ly) called them "those almoond cookie bar things."

    1. These sound exactly like the Italian cookies we have every Christmas and call Venetians.

      1. In NYC parlance, they are generically known as "rainbow cookies." Aren't "Italian wedding cookies" those mix of various sugar cookies with individual colors? Rainbow cookies are layers, usually red green yellow, covered in chocolate.

        1. http://www.gothamist.com/images/2003_...

          I've always referred to these as Tre Colore, or Italian Tri-Color cookies. Same thing?

          1. I tend to usually see them labeled as Rainbow cookies no matter what bakery I'm in.


            1. i've only heard of them referred to as rainbow cookies or seven layer cookies [2 layers of chocolate, 3 cake, 2 jam = 7 layers]

              6 Replies
              1. re: ericalloyd

                Same here and Epi has two recipes for them, one under each name. I think the one called Rainbow Cookies is the one I use. A little nit-picky, but tasty and impressive looking results.

                1. re: ericalloyd

                  At the deli I go to, they call them 7 layer cookies as well.

                  1. re: justagthing

                    That's so odd because I grew up w/ 7 layer bars a.k.a. dream bars referring to those that contain butter, graham crackers, chocolate chips, coconut, butterscotch chips, peanuts, and sweetened condensed milk...

                    1. re: Emme

                      That's what I think too every time this subject has been brought up. We called that bar cookie with the choc, butterscotch, coconut etc "Seven Layer Cookies", but I just looked up my handwritten recipe from back then and it says "Magic Cookie Bars". Maybe I should start a new thread, since now I'm curious (no info on Nestle site, is it too old fashioned? EVERYONE used to make these at Christmas in the 70s)

                      1. re: coll

                        If you google "Seven Layer" cookies or bars, you get recipes for the ones we associate... none for the italian ones, as I so call them. A few recipes call them Seven Layer Magic Bars, and I have also heard them called Nonaimo/Nanaimo Bars...

                        1. re: Emme

                          We used to call the coconut-y seven layer bars "Hello Dolly"s (actually, we still do).

                          But Nanaimo Bars (allegedly named after the British Columbia town) are altogether different. They have a choclate, graham, nut and coconut-y base, but then a layer of butter, icing sugar and vanilla custard powder. They are topped with a melt-y chocolate.

                2. In my house, we call them rainbow or tri-color, but I always thought the correct name was Neopolitan cookies.

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: coll

                    yup, i have always known them to be called neopolitan cookies, though i have no idea whether or not they actually originated in italy.

                    1. re: mshpook

                      I've heard rainbow cookies, but -- I guess I'm in the minority here -- also "Italian flag cookies." (White, red, and green layers)

                      1. re: Pia

                        Well, except that the "white" is usually a neon yellow.

                        1. re: Allstonian

                          (and the "red" is a neon pink. Actually, I've never seen a neon yellow "white" except in the supermarket version of this cookie.)

                          As for the recipe request below, I have successfully made these:

                          They're a little time-consuming because of the three layers (unless you happen to have three identical pans) and the waiting in between spreading chocolate and layering. But they're not hard, and I thought they were just as good as the bakery version. And everyone is impressed that you actually made these!

                  2. I have heard them called rainbow cookies and venetians--does anyone have a recipe????