grammy’s chocolate cookies

grammy's chocolate cookies

You know how sometimes you’ll see a beautiful chocolate cookie at a café or bakery, and it’s such a gorgeous dark brown colour you know it must be really chocolatey. And your tastebuds are all geared up for an explosion of chocolate flavour. But then you buy it and take a bite and… it’s flavourless. The only thing even remotely chocolate about it is the colour. This is why I tend to never buy chocolate cookies. They’re almost always a disappointment.

This is not one of those cookies. It has a beautiful dark colour and a lovely chocolate flavour. Even before baking, I knew this was going to be a good one because the dough had such a strong chocolate aroma – it reminded me of hot chocolate. I’ll admit, I prefer my chocolate cookies to be more intense than this, but all my coworkers seemed happy with these. 

grammy's chocolate cookies

All the flavour in these cookies comes from the cocoa powder, so be sure to use a good one. I made these with Valrhona Dutched cocoa. I’m very lucky in that there’s a little chocolate shop in my neighbourhood that sells smaller bags of high-quality cocoa powders and chocolates for home baking so I get to experiment with some really good ingredients.

grammy's chocolate cookie unbaked dough

The dough starts out really sticky, but after refrigerating for an hour it’s great to work with. It actually has a nice silky smooth texture and rolls into balls really cleanly.

grammy's chocolate cookies unbaked rolled in sugar

They’re pretty puffy when they first come out of the oven, but they flatten out as they cool. Fresh from the oven they’re crisp on the outside and gooey inside. After they cool, they’re soft and chewy.

grammy's chocolate cookies

grammy's chocolate cookies

<h2>grammy's chocolate cookies</h2>

Adapted from Martha Stewart's Cookies. Originally submitted to a contest by Anne Feldman (it was her grandmother Ivyle Phinney Morrow's recipe). The recipe says it makes 3-1/2 dozen, but I rolled them a bit small and ended up with almost 90 cookies. And these are still good-sized cookies.


2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3/4 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1-1/4 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 cups granulated sugar

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For Coating

about 1/2 cup sugar

Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt into a bowl.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla. Turn mixer down to low and gradually add the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined.

Form dough into a flattened disc, wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Form dough into small balls, about 1-1/4" diameter. Roll each in sugar and place about 2" apart on baking sheet. Bake for about 10-12 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through, until cookies are set. Allow to cool on wire rack before removing from the cookie sheet.

Comments: 11

  1. Rosie @ Blueberry Kitchen May 16, 2013 at 12:48 pm Reply

    Your cookies look so delicious! I really love the look of the sugar coating too!

  2. Candida May 23, 2013 at 7:16 am Reply

    Do you think these would work with chocolate chunks embedded in them? I don’t think they’d look as good, but I have a dark chocolate bar to use!

    • laurel @ wannacomewith May 23, 2013 at 9:23 am Reply

      I think you’re right – they won’t have that lovely flat crackly top – but they’d have CHUNKS OF CHOCOLATE. How could more chocolate possibly not be a good thing? 😀 I hope you’ll come back and let us know how they turn out!

      • Candida June 13, 2013 at 5:55 am Reply

        Hello! I’m a bit late as I made these some weeks ago, but they were delicious!! (obviously) The chocolate pieces actually didn’t ruin the look at ALL. They also weren’t as obvious, flavor-wise, as I expected, I think all the chocolatey goodness of the base means you don’t get that extra bite. Still delicious though, and really yummy dipped in a cup of peppermint tea.

        Love this recipe, it worked perfectly! I baked some for slightly longer and got crunchier cookies, which are my personal preference.

        • laurel @ wannacomewith June 13, 2013 at 11:32 am Reply

          Thank you so much for reporting back! I’m with you on the preference for crunchier cookies – I always have to force myself to take them out “early” for the people who prefer softer ones. 🙂

  3. Will October 20, 2013 at 9:42 am Reply

    Hey Laura!

    Just wanted to ask, are you sure you have to put baking soda in? The first time I tried this recipe, I had used baking powder, and he cookies turned out perfect, but the baking soda caused them to go extremely flat and overlooked at the listed times and temps. What’s wrong? 🙁

    • laurel @ wannacomewith October 20, 2013 at 11:51 am Reply

      Hi Will!

      I just followed the original recipe, and they worked fine for me (although it IS a fairly flat cookie). 🙂

      Baking soda works as a leavener when there’s an acidic ingredient in the recipe. Baking powder is essentially baking soda with an acidic ingredient already added (usually cream of tartar).

      Cocoa would normally count as an acid, but the original recipe specifically called for dutch-process cocoa, which has a more neutral or alkaline pH (natural cocoa is an acid). I’m honestly not sure what the acid would be in this recipe, or even if there is one at all. You’ve made me google now! There’s actually a whole discussion about this particular recipe and the use of baking soda here –

      But is it possible your baking soda is just too old? You can test it by putting a few tablespoons of vinegar in a small bowl and adding a teaspoon of baking soda. It should bubble up a LOT and take awhile to die down. If you only get a few bubbles, you should replace your baking soda.

      Then again, if you’re happy with the result you get with the baking powder? Why not just stick with that?

  4. […] The recipe, not the cookies, I wants them all for myself!! (Oh me hips) Here’s a link for a chocolate crinkle recipe. I doctored it up with chunks of Ghirardelli dark chocolate. I’m going to have to hide these […]

  5. Nicole October 29, 2017 at 10:43 pm Reply

    I was thinking of adding peanut butter to my batch….what do you think of that idea?

    • laurel @wannacomewith November 21, 2017 at 11:29 am Reply

      Hi Nicole, sorry for the late reply! Life has been a bit crazy lately. I’d worry that adding peanut butter might make these spread out too much. I have a couple other recipes that already combine chocolate and peanut butter together that you might want to check out – here and here. Good luck!

  6. Lauren December 6, 2020 at 7:17 am Reply

    These are very, very good. I was looking for a thin, flat cookie with cracks that would provide a satisfying chew with rich flavor, and this is it. It doesn’t need extra chocolate—it’s quite chocolatey as-is—and is scrumptious and clean in taste without being overly indulgent. A very nice recipe, and perfect for the holidays!

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