What can I possibly say about cookies that hasn’t already been said a thousand times before? They’re fun. They’re simple. They’re crowd-pleasers. They may not be the fanciest or most sophisticated treat out there, and sometimes they aren’t even pretty, but we love them anyway.
At least I do.
Cookies are my saving grace when I need a dessert in a pinch. Another thing I love about them? They’re extremely adaptable and hard to mess up (but if you do mess up, I guess the punishment is you get to just eat the dough, bummer).
I came up with these chocolate hazelnut cookies on the fly in one such pinch situation. I had just an hour to bake something to take along with me to a dinner party. I didn’t have time to go to the store, or to browse through my expansive collection of recipes to try. I needed something fast and easy, and so cookies seemed like a logical choice.
But I wanted something different from the usual chocolate chip cookies that those around my have likely grown tired of. I remembered the Scharffen Berger cocoa in my pantry and chopped hazelnuts (leftover from this chocolate hazelnut ice cream) in my freezer. Our family’s chocolate cookies came to mind and seemed like the perfect recipe to play with.
These chocolate cookies are very soft and almost cake-like. The chopped hazelnuts that I used were ground so small that they almost disappeared in the cookie once baked, leaving behind just their flavor. I’m telling you, these cookies taste just like nutella in cookie form. After the first bite I thought, I’m rich!
Well, I may have gotten a little carried away in that moment, but it’s always fun to come up with a successful new recipe. The cookies are wonderful just as as they are using the recipe below, but next time I might try adding some bigger chunks of hazelnut, or perhaps some dark chocolate chips.
One downside to cookies, perhaps the only one, is that it sure is hard to stop eating them. I gave all of these cookies away and I cannot tell you how much I’ve regretted it ever since.
Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies
Makes approximately 2 1/2 dozen cookies
View printable recipe
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (not dutch process)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup hazelnuts, very finely chopped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together the butter and sugar on medium high speed until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing after each. Add the vanilla.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to the wet mixture in the stand mixer and mix on low until combined. Add the chopped hazelnuts.
Spoon onto the prepared baking sheet by rounded tablespoons. Bake until cookies are firm and cracked on top, about 10 minutes. Cookies will be very soft. Use a spatula to transfer them to a cooling rack and cool completely.