Filed under: Cookies / Sugar Cookies
April 19, 2024

Chocolate Frosted Cookies

Frosted cookies, and make them double chocolate. Soft, slightly crumbly chocolate sugar cookies topped with a rich chocolate frosting.

5 from 4 votes
Yield: 16 cookies
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A random photo of a cookie I saw once led to one of the most beloved recipes on this site: lemon sugar cookies with raspberry buttercream. Those cookies have become one of my own favorites to adapt: there was a daisy topped blue frosted cookie, a meyer lemon cookie topped with cream cheese frosting; over the years I kept playing with them (can you tell I love a frosted sugar cookie??? They remind me of being a kid =) ) and a couple times I tried ‘chocolating’ the dough but tbh, it wasn’t until this recipe when I could stop and say, that’s it – that’s the one to share. 

Now I get to give you a double chocolate frosted sugar cookie! Not only does the cookie live up to its lemon sugar cookie mother by being soft and a bit crumbly, but instead of a subtle lemon flavor this one has the depth of dutch process cocoa. 

I topped mine with a melted chocolate frosting but, and I must emphasize this, the topping is your choice. Melted chocolate frostings can be a bit intense (my kids don’t like it!) so if you want something lighter please see the section titled “other toppings”. 


Recipe Ingredients 

Butter: unsalted, any butterfat percentage. Note that a european butter will have the cookies spread a bit more than pictured here. 

Sugar: fine granulated sugar. Reducing it will lead to drier cookies. 

Vanilla: pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste. 

Salt: fine sea salt. 

Egg: one whole large egg. 

Baking soda: cannot be swapped with baking powder which will cause the cookies to rise up and be more ‘cakey’. 

Cocoa: dutch process cocoa. This has been alkalized to reduce its acidity and has a deeper, richer chocolatey flavor. 

Flour: all purpose flour of a medium protein content like 11%. 

Cornstarch: Optional, this softens the cookies slightly. Add one tablespoon with the flour. 

How to make frosted chocolate cookies 

Melt the butter until it’s almost fully melted then whisk in the flavorings: 

Whisk in the sugar: it’s going to start out very loose and separated but as you whisk you’ll see it thicken:

Whisk in the egg: 

Sift in the dry ingredients: 

Then stir until the dough is well mixed 

Cover and let chill for an hour.

Preheat the oven & prep the pans. Then scoop the dough onto the pan in 1.5 tablespoon portions

Use the bottom of a measuring cup to flatten them in the center

Bake the cookies until they are matte colored all over and set at the edges.

If they have puffed up a bit you can use the measuring cup to press them down again.

When they are cool, you can top them with the frosting.

Topping options 

Melted chocolate frosting: You might recognize the frosting recipe from this ‘ombre chocolate buttercream’ recipe (gosh can you picture the cookies with two or all three of those colors?! So pretty). Basically you’ll melt chocolate, set aside to cool, make a buttercream base then beat them together.This frosting sets a bit firm so you’ll want to use it right away.  

Basic chocolate frosting: the frosting recipe I’ve listed in the recipe box below is for melted chocolate buttercream but a cocoa based buttercream is much more common (also wonderfully delicious). Simply beat together 1 stick of softened butter (113g) with 1 cup powdered sugar (130g) and add 25g or ¼ cup dutch process cocoa, a pinch of fine sea salt, a dash of vanilla and just enough milk to make it spreadable. More details here

Basic vanilla frosting: or vanilla buttercream; simply butter, vanilla, salt and powdered sugar. Recipe is here

Raspberry & chocolate: Have I pictured my raspberry buttercream on top of these? I mean that’s what inspired this cookie recipe! If you’re a fan of raspberry & chocolate I’d make that frosting to top this cookie. 

Strawberry & chocolate: substitute the raspberries for freeze dried strawberries in the raspberry frosting recipe. 

Cream cheese frosting: find the cream cheese frosting recipe here. I’d make half of it though, you won’t need as much for the cookies. 

Storing the frosted chocolate cookies 

Store in an airtight container. Because of the buttercream/frosting on top these aren’t great for stacking (at least not until the buttercream has stiffened and sometimes not even then) so keep them in one layer. 

The cookies are best eaten within 3 days of baking. 


Make ahead options

Once the dough is made, chilled briefly in the fridge then divided into scoops, you can set the dough balls on a parchment lined plate or tray and flash freeze them for 10 minutes until solid. Then, transfer them to a ziplock bag for longer storage. 

Before baking, set each frozen cookie dough ball on the baking tray and bring the dough to room temperature – then press them and bake. 

Most of the frostings listed in the ‘other topping’ section can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge although you’ll want to bring them to room temperature and stir them well before spreading them on the cookies. 

The only one that cannot be made ahead of time is the one listed in the recipe box. A melted chocolate frosting will set quite stiff and will chill to completely hard, it needs to be spread onto the cookies immediately. 

Double Chocolate Frosted Cookies Recipe 

Chocolate Frosted Cookies

Frosted cookies, but make them double chocolate. Soft, slightly crumbly chocolate sugar cookies topped with a rich chocolate frosting.
Prep Time: 22 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Chill: 1 hour
Yields: 16 cookies
5 from 4 votes


Chocolate Sugar Cookie Dough

  • 226g or 1 cup butter unsalted
  • 200g or 1 cup granulated sugar fine
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 large egg
  • 50g or ½ cup dutch process cocoa
  • 300g or 2 ¼ cups all purpose flour

Option 1: Cocoa Chocolate Frosting

  • 170g or ¾ cups unsalted or salted butter softened to room temperature
  • 260g or 2 cups organic powdered sugar sifted
  • cup dutch process cocoa sifted if lumpy
  • Pinch fine sea salt two if using unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2-3 tablespoons whole milk just enough to thin it so it’s spreadable

Option 2: Melted Chocolate Frosting

  • 113g or ½ cup unsalted butter softened
  • 130g or 1 cup powdered sugar
  • Pinch fine sea salt
  • Dash pure vanilla extract
  • 100g semi-sweet or dark chocolate


To make the cookies

  • Put the butter in a large, microwave safe bowl and heat it until almost but not fully melted (if you wait for it to fully melt it can sputter and you’ll lose some of the fat needed in the dough).
  • Add the sugar, salt and vanilla and whisk very well - for at least a full minute. Then add the egg and whisk again, vigorously, until the mixture is shiny and light.
  • Sift in the cocoa, flour and baking soda then mix with a rubber spatula until there are no flour or cocoa bits visible (you might need to use your hands to get it fully mixed).
  • Cover the dough with plastic wrap to seal and set in the fridge for about an hour to chill.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line two greased cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  • Scoop the cookies using a disher (or an ice cream scoop) into mounds of about 1.5 tablespoons. Roll each dough ball between your palms to smooth it over then use the bottom of a small glass or a measuring cup (I use a ¼ cup) and press gently down to flatten slightly.
  • Bake the cookies for 9-10 minutes. Since this is a dark dough you won’t see any browning but the cookies will have flattened, spread and not have a ‘wet’ look.
  • If they’ve puffed up a bit you can gently press them down again with the measuring cup.
  • Let them cool fully before frosting.

Option 1: cocoa chocolate frosting

  • Set the softened butter in a bowl and add the salt and vanilla, beat it to just incorporate the flavors.
  • Add the powdered sugar and cocoa and beat until combined. Add milk, a tablespoon at a time while beating, until the consistency is spreadable (but not thin - if it gets too thin you’ll need to add more powdered sugar).

Option 2: melted chocolate frosting

  • Over a double boiler or in the microwave (in increments, stirring in between) melt the chocolate. Remove the chocolate from the heat before it’s fully melted then stir it until the rest of it melts (this way you avoid burning it). Set aside to cool.
  • Beat together the butter, sugar, salt and vanilla until smooth. Pour in the cooled chocolate and beat until just mixed.
  • Spoon or pipe the frosting on top of the cooled cookies. Leave them as is or decorate with flaked sea salt, or sprinkles or chocolate shavings.

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Recipe Reviews

  1. 5 stars
    These were delightful, chocolatey cookies! A nice rich texture with a dense, cocoa-forward buttercream. I made with 1 T scoop for more miniature/thumbprint cookie size, and adjusted the bake time accordingly.