When you come home from work on a Monday night in need of chocolate, sure, it might be easy to run to the store and buy a bag of Oreos (particularly if you were running there anyway to stock up on parchment paper as, ahem, one of us was).
But trust me, this is better.
When you are driving down the street the next night, lowering your windows because the weather has finally cooled down and the fall breezes have arrived, but just as your window slides down, it pops off its track and falls deep into the insides of the door, and you think, wow, I could go for a cookie right now – trust me, these are the ones you’ll be glad to have beside you.
There aren’t a lot of times when baking up a batch of these cookies wouldn’t make sense.
I ate them while my brother was visiting, and I brought some to work the next day to share with Becky. We finished the small stash before 11 a.m. and had to make toast to tide us over until lunch. I ate them again with Michele and Wendi last night, after we enjoyed organic locally made pizza and pored over the largest map of Colorado I’ve ever seen in preparation for my upcoming trip to Denver (!).
These pretty little cookies are as simple to make as can be. After a little mixing, chilling, rolling, and baking, and they turn out soft, sweet, and covered in shiny bits of crystallized sugar.
Based Martha Stewart’s recipe for Grammy’s Chocolate Cookies, the product of one contest-winning Anne Feldman who’d inherited the recipe from her grandmother Ivyle Phinney Morrow, my adapted version is made with dark chocolate cocoa powder.
This rich and delicious ingredient creates cookies that are almost pitch black with the look of potting soil, the kind you’d half expect a geranium to pop out of when you arrange them on a plate.
This recipe claims to be easy enough for kids to make, which it is. But, hello? You have to chill the dough for a whole hour before you get to bake them! What kid (or yours truly…) likes that?
I may or may not have eaten some of the raw dough because I just couldn’t wait, raw eggs and all. Can you blame me?
These are perfect for Monday mornings, Wednesday nights, or really any time.
Wherever you are today, whatever you’re doing later, I hope you’ll set a few minutes aside, find something fun to occupy your time for an hour of chilling, and give them a shot. One tray out of the oven, it will be worth it. You’ll see.Print
When you take your first bite of pillowy soft, absolutely perfect dark chocolate cookies, you’ll melt away on a cloud of chocolatey goodness
- In a medium bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
- In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in eggs and vanilla on medium speed until combined.
- Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet, combining on low speed until fully incorporated.
- Smooth the dough into a large disc, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and chill for about 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line two baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
- Roll dough into 1.5-inch balls and then roll them in demerera or sanding sugar. Place them on the baking sheets about 1.5 inches apart.
- Bake for about 8 minutes. Cool on the sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks. Once cool, seal them up in an airtight container with a paper towel to keep the cookies soft.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 8 minutes
- Category: Cookies
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Dessert
Keywords: dark chocolate, cookie, holiday baking
Cooking By the Numbers…
Step 1 – Soften Butter and Measure All Remaining Ingredients
Leave refrigerated butter out at room temperature for 30 to 60 minutes to soften. If you want to speed up the process, you can soften it in the microwave for 15 seconds on 30% power.
Measure out all remaining ingredients and set them out in the order they are listed, to make it easier to create the recipe.
Step 2 – Sift Dry Ingredients
Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.
Step 3 – Make Dough
Add the sugar and butter to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Cream them together by beating on medium-high speed until fluffy, for about 2 minutes.
Add the eggs and vanilla, and beat on medium speed until combined.
Slowly add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet ingredients on low speed. Continue to beat until fully incorporated.
Step 4 – Chill Dough
Remove the dough from the bowl and dump out onto a sheet of plastic wrap.
Form the it into a large disc, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, and chill for at least 1 hour.
Step 5 – Shape and Bake
When you are ready to bake, preheat your oven to 350˚F. Line two large baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
Place a few tablespoons of sanding or raw sugar on a small plate or saucer. Set aside.
Roll dough into 1 1/2-inch-wide balls. Roll the dough balls in your choice of decorative sugar, coating on all sides. Place on the baking sheets, being sure to set them about 1 1/2 inches apart.
Bake for 8 minutes. The cookies should be puffed up, and the edges should be set. Note that the center will still be soft – don’t overbake them. The puffiness will sink after they are removed from the heat, so don’t be alarmed when this happens. You’ll notice this with other cookies with a similar texture, like our big and soft ginger cookies.
Remove from the oven and cool on the baking sheets for about 3 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.
Place in an airtight container with a paper towel to keep the cookies soft.
When You’re Craving Chocolate…
It’s okay to give in to that chocolate craving from time to time. When you don’t have chocolate chips in the house, forget about the classic chocolate chip cookie and go for these bad boys instead.
I honestly can’t believe how soft these cookies stay. I’ve had them stored for a handful of days, and they are still melt-in-your-mouth perfection.
You’ll love the satisfying chocolate flavor, and these cookies are so simple to make. They are ideal for any holiday baking you have coming up, and the extra twinkle from the sugar coating is lovely on a dessert tray.
For even more chocolatey delicious recipes, you can check out our tasty combinations here.
Want even more tasty cookie recipes? Then check out some of our other chocolate ones:
Who will you bake these tasty morsels for? Tell us in the comments below, and be sure to rate this incredible recipe the moment you try it for yourself!
Photos by Meghan Yager, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on September 16, 2009. Last updated: December 13, 2022 at 13:22 pm. With additional writing and editing by Meghan Yager and Allison Sidhu.
Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Shanna Mallon
Shanna Mallon is a freelance writer who holds an MA in writing from DePaul University. Her work has been featured in a variety of media outlets, including The Kitchn, Better Homes & Gardens, Taste of Home, Houzz.com, Foodista, Entrepreneur, and Ragan PR. In 2014, she co-authored The Einkorn Cookbook with her husband, Tim. Today, you can find her digging into food topics and celebrating the everyday grace of eating on her blog, Go Eat Your Bread with Joy. Shanna lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with Tim and their two small kids.