Espresso Martini Cookies

November 22, 2021
8 Ratings
Photo by Julia Gartland. Prop Stylist: Alya Hameedi. Food Stylist: Anna Billingskog.
  • Prep time 45 minutes
  • Cook time 15 minutes
  • makes 3 dozen cookies
Author Notes

Ahh, the beloved espresso martini. I may be dating myself here, but I remember when these were all the rage in clubs. As soon as I was able to order them at the bar, I was there, feeling super fancy with my coffee-flavored drink. Excited to re-create this recipe and revisit a classic, I wanted to focus on the espresso flavors and how well they complement chocolate.

I’m a huge fan of espresso, and I drink my one cafecito daily, so I had a good time really testing this recipe out and putting a twist on my favorite drink. And two failed batches and a big win later, I ended up with these beauties! Tender and rich dark chocolate cookies get a hit of espresso in each bite thanks to instant espresso powder and chopped chocolate-covered espresso beans folded throughout the dough. Finished with a small hit of flaky sea salt, each bite is similar to the sweetness and depth you’d taste in an espresso martini.

Personally, I’m not fond of cloyingly sweet desserts, so I really enjoy these cookies, since they're not super sweet—the bitterness from the espresso definitely helps balance things out. I find that these cookies are a great compromise for those who want a little something sweet without fully indulging their epic sweet tooth. I actually enjoyed a cookie with a hot cup of coffee for a quick bite one afternoon, but that’s definitely something optional for those who don’t want to partake in too much caffeine!
Reina Gascon-Lopez

What You'll Need
  • 2 1/4 cups (270 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup (20 grams) unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder (such as Hershey’s Special Dark)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup (226 grams or 2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups (320 grams) light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste or extract
  • 1/2 cup (85 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (90 grams) dark chocolate espresso bites or chocolate-covered espresso beans (if using beans, roughly chop them into small pieces), plus more for garnish if desired
  • Smoked flaky sea salt, for garnish
  • Melted white chocolate, for garnish (optional)
  1. Sift or whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the softened butter, granulated sugar, light brown sugar, and instant espresso powder until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs one at a time and then the vanilla, beating until fully combined.
  3. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then carefully mix in the dry ingredients until the flour mixture is just absorbed and there are no patches left in the dough. Use a silicone spatula to fold in the semisweet chocolate chips and the dark chocolate espresso beans until just combined. Place the cookie dough into a clean bowl and cover loosely with plastic film or foil. Place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to chill (preferably overnight).
  4. Heat the oven to 350°F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  5. Portion the cookies with a heaping tablespoon or cookie scoop from the chilled dough and place on lined baking sheets 3 inches apart (about 6 cookies per baking sheet). Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until the edges are slightly crisp and the centers puffed. Remove the baking sheets from the oven and let sit for 2 minutes before transferring the cookies to a wire baking rack to cool completely. Garnish with smoked flaky sea salt or dip in melted white chocolate and garnish with more dark chocolate espresso bites.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • VintageCowbabe
  • elisemakesdinner
  • Bridgetorourkee
  • Callie Sumlin
    Callie Sumlin

5 Reviews

VintageCowbabe December 11, 2023
Loved these cookies! I made them last Christmas and will be making them again this year. I see other reviews mentioning that these cookies got too thin but I didn’t have that issue. In my opinion, they were perfect with a both crunchy edge and a slightly chewy center. I dipped half of mine in the white chocolate and they were both beautiful and delicious. 10/10
elisemakesdinner December 12, 2022
I only had an hour to chill the dough, and the texture of the cookies was perfect. The taste was even better the next day.
Bridgetorourkee December 11, 2022
What a fun idea! Like the other reviews I noticed when I baked on the bottom rack they came out flatter but the top rack worked great! About the thickness of a chocolate chip cookie- I also added a shot of Kauloa to mine (and a little bit more flour to counter balance) and loved the outcome! Definitely a trial and error cookie. With these adjustments ^^8.5/10
Callie S. December 11, 2022
Same as the other review—followed directions to a T and chilled dough overnight and cookies were spread and flat. Not enough flour in the recipe. I’m attempting the second batch in a muffin tin to see if that turns out better.
skind December 31, 2021
These cookies came out weirdly flat despite dough being chilled multiple hours. It almost seemed like the cookies didn't have enough flour, though I followed the recipe exactly. They were too thin and flimsy to dip in white chocolate.