These fudgy orange chocolate cookies are chewy with a rich chocolate and orange flavor. The dough is filled with orange zest, cocoa powder, chocolate chips and a hint of cardamom.
The baked cookies are topped with an optional sprinkle of orange sugar at the end.
These cookies are based on one of my favorite inside-out chocolate cookies. They are best cookies and I've used the same dough a few times now. In these peppermint chocolate cookies, and now in these orange chocolate cookies.
It's a really easy dough that requires minimal chill time and it makes chewy cookies, perfect for the holiday season. The addition of orange zest and ground cardamom makes the most flavorful and delicious dough.
Find the amounts for these easy orange-chocolate cookies in the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post. Here is a rundown of what you will need.
- Butter. This can be salted or unsalted butter. Soften the butter to room temperature before using. This means soft enough so that a finger pressed into the butter leaves an indentation, but not so soft that the butter is greasy.
- Granulated sugar.
- Light brown sugar. A mix of brown and white sugar brings the right amount of moisture and chewiness to the cookie, with ever so slightly crisp edges.
- Large egg
- Vanilla extract or vanilla paste.
- All-purpose flour.
- Unsweetened cocoa powder. This can be natural or dutch processed cocoa.
- Baking soda.
- Orange peel. For the cookie dough and a little to top the cookies after baking. The orange-chocolate combo is delicious. You could add in finely chopped candied lemon peel for extra flavor.
- Ground cardamom. This magic ingredient brings the best flavor. It really enhances the hint of orange in the dough.
- Chocolate chips (or use chopped chocolate and chop up a bar of dark chocolate into small chunks.)
In a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, cardamom and salt. Whisk together to combine the dry ingredients well, then set aside.
In a separate bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add in the egg, orange zest and vanilla extract and beat on medium speed until combined.
Tip the flour mixture into the wet ingredients and fold them together with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until nearly combined. There should still be flour streaks remaining. Add in the chocolate chips.
Use a rubber spatula to mix the chocolate chips into the dough. Cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to slightly stiffen. (It can also be chilled for up to 2 days)
Preheat the oven to 350°F/176°C and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Use a cookie scoop or spoon, to scoop around 1.5 tablespoons of dough for each cookie ball.
Space the balls of dough around 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake the cookies in the preheated oven for around 10 minutes until baked around the edges but the middles are still soft. The exact baking time will depend on your own oven.
You can press in a few extra chocolate chips into the tops of the cookies while they are still hot. Let the cookies cool on the baking tray for 5-10 minutes to firm up before removing and placing them on a wire rack to cool further. Enjoy a still slightly warm cookie with a cold glass of milk.
Top tip: If you would like to achieve the extra round cookie look for perfect cookies, you'll need a circle cookie cutter or glass that's bigger than your cookies. Once the cookies are baked, and still hot from the oven, use the cutter or glass and place it over the hot cookie, then swirl it gently around the cookie.
This is optional, but I like to top the cookies with a little sugared orange zest. Combine sugar and orange zest in a small bowl and use your fingertips to rub the zest into the sugar. Rubbing the zest into the sugar helps to release the orange oil in the zest.
Sprinkle this over the warm cookies.
This chocolate cookie base is such a good one to add different flavors too and create new cookie recipes. Next time you can add in some extras or switch up the flavors.
- Christmas cookies - Omit the orange and add peppermint extract, white chocolate and crushed candy canes to make christmas cookies.
- Add nuts - Toast pecans, walnuts or almonds and add those to the dough for extra crunch.
- Spices. There is already cardamom in the dough, but you can add in a hint of cinnamon and even cayenne pepper or chili to bring some heat.
A handheld electric mixer or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment is helpful to beat butter and sugar.
These delicious cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. The baked cookies can also be frozen for up to three months, wrapped in plastic wrap or a freezer-safe bag.
The unbaked cookie dough balls freeze really well too. Roll the dough into balls and freeze them in an air-tight container or freezer bag for up to 3 months. They can be baked from frozen with no need to thaw. They will need a little longer baking time.
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- 125g (1 cup*) all-purpose flour
- 45g (½ cup) unsweetened cocoa powder
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 113g (½ cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 100g (½ cup) granulated sugar
- 100g (½ cup) soft brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 Tablespoon orange zest, finely grated
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 170g (1 cup) semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 Tablespoon orange zest, finely grated
- In a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, cardamom and salt. Whisk together then set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, add the room-temperature butter and granulated sugar and brown sugar. Beat the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and creamy.
- Add in the egg, orange zest and vanilla extract and beat on medium speed until combined.
- Tip the flour mixture into the wet ingredients and fold them together with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until nearly combined. There should still be flour streaks remaining. Add in the chocolate chips.
- Use a rubber spatula to mix the chocolate chips into the dough.
- Cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to slightly stiffen. (It can also be chilled for up to 2 days)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F/176°C and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- Use a cookie scoop or spoon, to scoop around 1.5 tablespoons of dough for each cookie ball.
- Space the balls of dough around 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake the cookies in the preheated oven for around 10 minutes until baked around the edges but the middles are still soft. If you want extra round cookies, use a large circle cookie cutter to gently swirl around the hot cookies.
- In a small bowl add the sugar and orange zest. Use your fingertips to rub the zest into the sugar to release the orange oils.
- Sprinkle the top of the still-warm cookies with this orange sugar.
*The cup sizes given are for US cups. Note that these are smaller than metric cup sizes. For best results, use grams.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 18 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 180Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 24mgSodium: 89mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 1gSugar: 18gProtein: 2g
This is an informational estimate only. I am not a certified Dietitian or Nutritionist