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Italian Chocolate Orange Cookies

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!

close up view of Italian chocolate cookies with powdered sugar

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

top view of italian nut cookies
Unfrosted baked Italian Chocolate cookies for a less sweet treat 🙂

Tips and Storage

Before Baking:

  • 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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📖 Recipe

close up view of Italian chocolate cookies with powdered sugar

Italian Chocolate Cookie Recipe

Reminiscent of my childhood, these boozy chocolate cookies are flavored with chocolate, orange, cinnamon, and liquor. Very unique and delicious cookies! A must-try!
5 from 2 votes
Author: Marie
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Italian
Servings 24 cookies
Calories 118 kcal


  • 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.


Nutrition estimate is without frosting and sprinkles. 


Calories: 118kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 1gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.02gCholesterol: 7mgSodium: 27mgPotassium: 66mgFiber: 1gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 11IUVitamin C: 0.03mgCalcium: 14mgIron: 1mg
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  1. 5 stars
    Hi Marie,
    I just tried your Italian Chocolate Nut Cookies recipe and I have to say, they are amazing! I love Italian desserts and I have always been a fan of nutty cookies, so I was excited to see this recipe on your blog. I was not disappointed, the cookies turned out perfectly.

    The combination of the chocolate and nuts was just perfect, it gave the cookies a great texture. I also loved the hint of coffee in the dough, it added a nice depth of flavor. I made these cookies for a family gathering and they were a hit, everyone loved them. I had a few people ask for the recipe, so I pointed them in your direction.

    I just wanted to thank you for sharing this recipe, it has become one of my favorites. Your blog is a treasure trove of delicious recipes, I can’t wait to try more of your creations. Keep up the great work, you have a big fan in me!

    – Helen Knight from https://solvekitchenissue.com/

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