Oh these cookies!
I like to jokingly refer to them as Italian chocolate “kitchen sink” cookies because they are a combination of so many flavors that it results in a deep and varied flavor profile.
And they are delicious! The flavor comes from double chocolate (cocoa powder and chocolate chips), a hint of citrus (orange zest), cinnamon, liquor, and Amaretto (or Frangelico).
My mother used to make these cookies when I was younger and we lost the recipe. Imagine my excitement when someone recently shared a very similar recipe on social media. I tweaked it a bit and voila! They are baaack!
These are NOT the usual “meatball” cookie or the Italian spice cookies that are popular in Italy. Very similar but without the black pepper, nutmeg and cloves. And so if you’re not a fan of black pepper or cloves, try these.
The frosting is optional – if you don’t like cookie that is very sweet, you can certainly skip it or opt for a light dusting of powdered sugar. My mom served them without frosting but they look so cheery with the topping don’t they?
Overview of Method
Tips and Storage
- Refrigerating dough before baking will help prevent spreading.
- Refrigerate from 30 minutes to 24 hours (in bulk or shape and place on a cookie sheet).
- For thin, crispy cookies, refrigerating the cookie dough is not recommended.
More Italian Cookies
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Italian Chocolate Cookie Recipe
- Baking or cookie sheet
- 1 cup white flour
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup sugar
- Zest of 1 orange
- 2 tbsp orange juice
- 3/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp + 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/3 cup grated 80% coca chocolate optional for extra chocolate richness
- 6 tbsp oil
- 2 tbsp milk
- 2 tbsp Amaretto or Frangelico
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 cup (72 g) chopped nuts (optional)
- Begin by gathering your dry ingredients and placing them in a large mixing bowl. Use a whisk to thoroughly blend and combine these dry ingredients until they are well mixed.
- In a separate container, combine all of the liquid ingredients. Once they are fully mixed together, pour this liquid mixture into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Use a wooden spoon to stir and combine the ingredients until a cohesive dough or batter forms.
- Take small portions of the dough and roll them into balls, using about a teaspoon-sized amount for each. If you’d like to enhance the flavor, you can refrigerate the dough balls overnight to allow the flavors to meld and develop.
- When you're ready to bake, preheat your oven to 325°F (160°C) and prepare a cookie sheet by greasing it to prevent sticking.
- Place the dough balls on the prepared cookie sheet and bake them in the preheated oven for approximately 10 minutes. The cookies may appear slightly underdone when you remove them from the oven; this is intentional.
- Allow the baked cookies to sit for about 10 minutes after taking them out of the oven. During this time, they will firm up and reach the desired texture.
- Baked cookies should keep well in the freezer for 3 to 4 weeks, with the USDA saying 8 to 12 months.
- At room temperature, baked cookies should keep well for 3 or 4 days.
- For more tips on storing cookies at room temperature vs the refrigerator vs the freezer, see this article by Real Simple.
- Most cookie doughs will freeze well for 2 months. See more here about how to bake after freezing cookie dough.
- Homemade cookie dough can be stored in the refrigerator for 2 to 4