These Chocolate Espresso Shortbread Cookies are buttery, crisp, loaded with dark chocolate and will give you a little extra pep in your step!
There are a ton of great chocolate chip cookie recipes on this website, but if you love an ultra crisp, buttery cookie with a hint of coffee, these are the cookies for you.
Why this recipe works
- Beginner friendly - anyone can make these!
- Only 8 ingredients
- Egg free
- A mix of granulated and brown sugar for richer, more complex flavor
- Uses chopped dark chocolate instead of chocolate chips so it melts better and creates different size pieces for added interest
- Easy slice and bake technique
- Chocolate and coffee both enhance each other's flavor - a classic pairing
- Adapted from the great Dorie Greenspan
- Butter - These cookies turn out best when made with a European style butter with at least 82% butterfat and even better if the butter is cultured. Regular unsalted butter will still work great, the European butter just adds even more richness.
- Chocolate - For the best cookies, use the best quality chocolate you can find. I typically use Ghiradelli 60% bars because that’s what my grocery store stocks. I prefer bittersweet chocolate because it balances the sweetness of the toffee, but semisweet works well too.
- Light Brown Sugar - Adds a slight caramel note to the cookies. Dark brown sugar will work in a pinch.
- Instant Espresso Powder - You can also use instant coffee, but Instant Espresso Powder has a more intense flavor.
Step by step instructions
- Using an electric or stand mixer, cream the butter until soft.
- Add the granulated sugar, brown sugar, espresso powder, salt, and vanilla extract, then beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
- Add the flour and mix on low speed until it's just barely incorporated, then mix in chocolate. Do not overmix.
- Scrape the dough on to a large piece of plastic wrap and form it into a log about 3 inches in diameter. Wrap tightly, then chill for at least 2 hours. (Dough can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 2 months.)
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and line two sheet pans with parchment paper.
- Slice the cookies into ½-inch rounds, then place them on the pans about one inch apart.
- Bake until they just start to turn golden around the edges, about 16-18 minutes.
- Allow the cookies to cool completely on the baking sheet.
Tips for success
- When chopping the chocolate, aim for some big chunks and some finely chopped pieces for the best flavor and textural variation.
- Make sure you take the time to really cream the butter and sugar before proceeding. It should look like fluffy buttercream.
- Spoon the flour into your measuring cups rather than scooping it, and use a butter knife to level out the top to ensure the most accurate amount of flour is used.
- Be careful not to over-mix the dough or it could make the cookies tough. Once the flour is incorporated, stop mixing.
- Once the dough has been rolled into a log and wrapped in plastic, store it in an empty paper towel roll to keep it from flattening on the bottom while it chills. This helps the cookies stay in a perfectly round shape.
- The cookies will be easier to slice when the dough is cold. Keep them refrigerated until ready to slice.
- Use a very sharp knife when slicing your cookies.
Faq about Chocolate Espresso Shortbread Cookies
Yup! Once baked and cooled, transfer cookies to an airtight container and freeze for up to 2 months. Defrost at room temperature and enjoy. Alternatively, the dough can be frozen for up to 2 months. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator, slice and bake!
Yes, chocolate chips will work, but I recommend giving them a rough chop with a sharp knife before adding to the batter in order to achieve the different sized flecks that make these cookies so delicious. Substitute 1 cup of chocolate chips.
Totally! Since there are no eggs in this recipe, simply swap in a good quality vegan butter and use dairy free chocolate chips.
Did you make this recipe and LOVE it? Please leave a star ⭐️ rating and/or comment to help other readers. I absolutely love hearing from you and do my best to answer all questions and comments. I love seeing when you make my recipes, so please tag me @ColeyCooks on Instagram and I will repost!Print