An Introduction to Italian Panettone

The halls are decked, the antipasti's arranged...all that's left is the panettone. Celebrate panettone in all its glory with these fascinating panettone facts!


The legend of panettone

Panettone has been a hallmark of Italian holiday celebrations for centuries. According to legend, it all started with a botched cake. The personal chef of the Duke of Ludovico burned a cake and was frantically searching for a back-up plan. Luckily, Toni, a boy working in the dish room, was around and had just made a sweet bread with leftover dried fruits. The Duke was happy, the chef saved his job, and Toni was recognized by the court as the creator of panettone...right? Whether you believe this tall tale or not, it certainly is a fun anecdote to pass around the holiday table (and the panettone's pretty good too!).


What is panettone?

Panettone starts with a few simple ingredients: eggs, milk, flour, sugar, and natural yeast starter. Actually, panettone has more in common with bread than cake; the dough must be allowed to proof for several days, giving panettone its famous, fluffy texture. Next, more butter and sugar is added, along with essential oil flavorings (aroma panettone). Bakers may also choose to mix pieces of dried fruit, nuts, chocolate, and other delicious sweets into the dough. The dough is then placed inside a round paper mold and allowed to proof even more. After baking, the finished panettone cakes are dried upside down; this allows the heavy, moist dough to air out. Some panettone, like Chiostro's famous panettone, even have delicious cream-fillings infused into the middle after baking!


Our favorite panettone


Filippi Traditional Panettone

Filippi has made panettone in Veneto for decades. Filippi's traditional panettone is naturally leavened, with soft raisins and candied Calabrian oranges sprinkled throughout the cake. Wrapped in distinctive red paper, this panettone is perfect as a gift or as a holiday party dessert.








Filippi Mandorlato Cologna Veneta Panettone with Torrone Nougat
This special Mandorlato panettone pairs crunchy, honey-almond nougat from Cologna Veneta with a soft, traditional panettone. The pieces of torrone nougat melt while the panettone bakes, releasing honey and soft almond flavors. One of our favorites!



Filippi Gran Frutta Panettone 

Filippi Gran Frutta Panettone is made for fruit lovers, with candied lemons, Sicilian oranges, apricots, and sour cherries sprinkled throughout the cake. Soft and perfectly sweet, Gran Frutta is a citrusy twist on a holiday favorite.


Find the perfect panettone


1 comment

I somehow accidentally (?) ordered 4 more panettone that I thought I did. I live in a small west central Minnesota town surrounded by Scandinavians.
I am gifting the extras and boy am I making friends!!! Many tell me that it is similar to their mother’s Julekaka. The only problem people seem to have is avoiding eating the whole load at one sitting.

Your online chat service helped me with my order and I cannot praise them enough. They are not responsible for the extra 4 loaves. I managed that all by myself. I have ordered from you for 3 or 4 years now. I have always had great service with excellent quality. I would be lucky to find salumi and great cheese driving 90 miles to St Cloud. It might take 150 miles to the twin cities to get really great Italian ingredients. Thank you for being there for me!!!!
Buon Natale to you and yours.

Karen Howell December 08, 2018

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