Chocolate Crinkle Cookies are one of our most loved traditional Christmas cookies. These crinkle cookies have a fudgey brownie like center and a soft crisp outside. Add these delightful cookies to your Christmas cookie tray!
- Why you'll love these Italian Chocolate Cookies:
- Brownie Crackle Cookies
- Ingredients in brownie crackle cookies
- How to make Chocolate Crackle Cookies
- Expert Tips to make the best chocolate crackle cookies:
- More tips on how to work with sticky crinkle cookie dough
- Variations and substitutions
- How long do chocolate cookies last?
- Can you freeze chocolate crinkles?
- Recipe FAQ's
- Some other holiday cookies to enjoy:
- The BEST Chocolate Crackle Cookies
Why you'll love these Italian Chocolate Cookies:
- Irresistible Texture: These cookies have a perfect balance of crunch and chewiness, creating a delightful mouthfeel with every bite.
- Decadent Chocolate Flavor: Indulge your taste buds with the rich, deep chocolate flavor that permeates every morsel of these cookies.
- Stunning cookies: The crackled surface of these cookies adds a visual appeal that is sure to impress your friends and family.
- Simple yet Impressive: Despite their gourmet appearance and complex flavor, these cookies are surprisingly easy to make, making them a go-to recipe for both novice and experienced bakers.
- Crowd-Pleaser: Whether you're hosting a party or looking for a sweet treat to share, these cookies are guaranteed to be a hit. These are always the first to go on the holiday cookie tray!
These are a staple every Christmas. Either nonna or I will bake these leading up to Christmas.
There are some cookies that are holiday staples. The holidays are not complete unless we make our favorites, like these delightful Chocolate Crackle Cookies! The texture of these cookies is irresistible. Fudgy cookies with a crackly and little bit crispy exterior. Really hard to eat just one! They take a little time to put together, but are really easy to make!
Brownie Crackle Cookies
These chocolate crackle cookies (or you may call them Chocolate Crinkle Cookies) are one of these very special cookies. We do a lot of cookie baking every holiday. Some favorites are our Italian Lemon Knot Cookies and also our Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies!
I normally don’t get too excited about chocolate desserts. Apple desserts are my favorite most of the time. But these little cookies are chocolate perfection.
What are some of your favorite cookies to bake?
Ingredients in brownie crackle cookies
- Bittersweet chocolate: Rich and indulgent, the melted bittersweet chocolate adds a deep, intense flavor to the cookies.
- All-purpose flour: The main dry ingredient that provides structure and texture to the cookies.
- Dutch cocoa powder: This high-quality cocoa powder enhances the chocolatey taste and dark color of the cookies.
- Baking powder: The leavening agent that helps the cookies rise and become light and fluffy.
- Sea salt: You could also use kosher salt. Adds a subtle balance of flavor and enhances the sweetness of the cookies.
- Unsalted butter: The butter provides richness and moisture to the cookies.
- Firmly packed light-brown sugar: Along with the butter, the brown sugar contributes to the chewy and caramel-like taste of the cookies.
- Eggs: Bind the ingredients together and add moisture to the dough.
- Pure vanilla extract: Enhances the overall flavor profile of the cookies with its sweet and fragrant notes.
- Milk: Adds moisture and helps to achieve the desired consistency of the dough.
- Confectioners' sugar: The confectioners' sugar creates the crackle effect on the cookies' surface and adds a touch of sweetness.
How to make Chocolate Crackle Cookies
- Preheat the oven: Heat oven to 350 degrees.
- Prepare the chocolate: Chop bittersweet chocolate into small bits, and melt over medium heat in a heat-proof bowl or the top of a double boiler set over a pan of simmering water.
- Mix dry ingredients: Set aside to cool. Sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt.
- Mix wet ingredients: In the bowl of a heavy-duty electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and light-brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla, and beat until well combined. Add melted chocolate. With mixer on low speed, alternate adding dry ingredients and milk until just combined.
- Chill the dough: Divide the dough into quarters, wrap with plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator until firm, about 2 hours.
- Roll the dough: On a clean countertop, roll each portion of dough into a log approximately 16 inches long and 1 inch in diameter, using confectioners’ sugar to prevent sticking. Wrap logs in plastic wrap, and transfer to a baking sheet.
- Chill for 30 minutes.
- Form the shapes: Cut each log into 1-inch pieces, and toss in confectioners’ sugar, a few at a time.Using your hands, roll the pieces into a ball shape. If any of the cocoa-colored dough is visible, roll dough in confectioners’ sugar again to coat completely. Place the cookies 2 inches apart on a parchment paper or Silpat-lined baking sheet.
- Bake the cookies: until cookies have flattened and the sugar splits, 12 to15 minutes.
- Transfer from oven to a wire rack to let cool completely. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
Expert Tips to make the best chocolate crackle cookies:
- You have to make sure the dough is very cold before you start to roll them into balls. If you don't chill them long enough, it will be one sticky mess!
- Rolling them in the powdered sugar before baking gives the cookies the most beautiful crackled look. The snow white powder exterior is a stunning contrast to the chocolate cookie interior.
- I always end up making enough for both kids to make on their own.
- Of all the cookies we bake each year, this is the chocolate crackle cookie is the most requested. They also make a really sweet gift idea and look so pretty all wrapped up.
More tips on how to work with sticky crinkle cookie dough
This cookie dough is known to be very sticky. But do not let that stop you from baking them. I highly suggest baking them with kids. Yes, it's messy, but so worth the little bit of clean up. Here are some of nonna's suggestions. She is the cookie queen and always right!
- If you have a cookie scoop, you could use one to scoop out portions of the cookie dough.
- Whether you use a scoop, or your hands to pull out portions of dough, you need to keep moving and move fast.
- Nonna likes to roll a few cookies at a time in the powdered sugar. Start with one cookie ball, and do more as you get the hang of it.
- Rinse off your hands after you prep one tray of the cookie balls to bake.
Variations and substitutions
- For a minty twist, add 1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract to the dough.
- Substitute the bittersweet chocolate with semisweet or dark chocolate for a different flavor profile.
- Add a cup of chopped nuts, such as walnuts or pecans, to the dough for added crunch and texture.
- For a gluten-free version, replace the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend of your choice.
How long do chocolate cookies last?
The cookies will keep in an airtight container for up to three days or in the freezer for up to two months.
Can you freeze chocolate crinkles?
The cookies can be soft or crisp and chewy. It depends on how long you bake them. If you would like to freeze the cookies, roll them into the balls without dipping them in the confectioner's sugar.
Place them on a baking sheet and freeze until they are firm. Once they are firm, store the cookies in an airtight container or plastic bag until you are ready to bake them.
These famous cookies were created by Helen Fredell in St. Paul, Minnesota in the early half of the 20th Century. The recipe were in a very popular Betty Crocker cookbook called, "Cooky Carnival." With the recipe is the story that Betty Crocker was actually served the cookies by Helen Fredell in her home and she begged her. for the actual recipe. And chocolate crinkle cookie history was made!
The powdered sugar in the dough forms a crust when the cookies are baked, and that crust cracks as the cookies cool.
If you want your Chocolate Crinkle Cookies to be puffy rather than flat, make sure to chill the dough for at least 3 hours before rolled into balls. Also, put them in the oven as soon after being rolled so they don't have time to flatten out at room temperature.
The crinkles are done baking when you see cracks on their tops and the center looks glossy. However, they will stay warm from being on the baking sheet, so keep that in mind.
For a bright white confectioners' sugar topping, coat the cookie dough balls in granulated sugar first. Lightly layer it on, then pour on the confectioners' sugar.
Chocolate crackles cookies can be frozen before or after baking. If you want to freeze baked cookies, let them cool entirely first. Place the cookies in single layers on sheets of parchment paper, and then put them in the freezer for up to 3 months. To thaw, either leave them in the fridge overnight or set them out on the counter until they're soft again.
Dry crinkle cookies could be causes by using too much flour, over mixing, or overbaking.
In case your cocoa or the flour hasn't been used for a while, give it stir and loosen it up. Spoon the flour or cocoa into the correct size measuring cup. Now using the back edge of a table knife, level it off, pushing the excess back into the canister.
Dutch process cocoa powder has a more mild chocolate flavor and also darker color as it is treated with an alkali to neutralize its acidity. If all you have on hand is regular cocoa powder, to take out some of the acidic flavor, add 3/4 of a teaspoon of baking soda, to get a more mellow chocolate flavor like Dutch cocoa powder.
Yes, you sure can. If you have an electric mixer, use that. If you don't have any sort of mixer, use your arm power! The butter will be softened, so you will be stirring that with the sugar until combined (it doesn't have to be whipped).
A great tip is to prep the dough 2-3 months ahead of time and freeze. Roll the balls of dough out and transfer to zipped lock freezer bag. Mark the date on the bag and store until you're ready to bake them. Simply thaw them for a few minutes while heating up the oven. Roll in the powdered sugar and bake. Cookies may need 2 minutes of extra bake time.
If you are in the States, you can find light or dark brown. If you're somewhere that you can only find 'regular' brown sugar, that is fine.
Some other holiday cookies to enjoy:
- Italian Rainbow Cookies
- Cuccidati-Sicilian Fig Cookies
- Italian Lemon Knot Cookies
- Sicilian S Cookies
recipe from Martha Stewart 2003
Did you make this? Please RATE THE RECIPE below:)
The BEST Chocolate Crackle Cookies
- 1 bowl
- 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate melted and cooled
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup Dutch cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 ⅓ cups light-brown sugar firmly packed
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup milk
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar plus more for rolling
- Heat oven to 350 degrees. Chop bittersweet chocolate into small bits, and melt over medium heat in a heat-proof bowl or the top of a double boiler set over a pan of simmering water. Set aside to cool.
- Sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt.
- In the bowl of a heavy-duty electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and light-brown sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add eggs and vanilla, and beat until well combined. Add melted chocolate. With mixer on low speed, alternate adding dry ingredients and milk until just combined.
- Divide the dough into quarters, wrap with plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator until firm, about 2 hours.
- On a clean countertop, roll each portion of dough into a log approximately 16 inches long and 1 inch in diameter, using confectioners’ sugar to prevent sticking.
- Wrap logs in plastic wrap, and transfer to a baking sheet. Chill for 30 minutes. Cut each log into 1-inch pieces, and toss in confectioners’ sugar, a few at a time.
- Using your hands, roll the pieces into a ball shape. If any of the cocoa-colored dough is visible, roll dough in confectioners’ sugar again to coat completely.
- Place the cookies 2 inches apart on a parchment or Silpat-lined baking sheet. Bake until cookies have flattened and the sugar splits, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Transfer from oven to a wire rack to let cool completely. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
Please keep in mind that the nutritional information presented below is an approximation and may vary depending on the exact ingredients used.