These Dark Chocolate Sugar Cookies are a chocolate lover's dream! They are soft and chewy chocolate sugar cookies that are loaded with mini chocolate chips! Double the chocolate! If that wasn't enough, they're gluten free, nut free, eggless and easily vegan!
If you love sugar cookies and chocolate, these dark chocolate sugar cookies are for you! The richness of the chocolate pairs beautifully with the sweetness of the sugar cookie, creating a perfect match! They get their darkness thanks to us using two types of cocoa powders just like in my dark chocolate chip cookies!
The first day these cookies are soft and chewy in the middle with crisp edges. Once stored in an airtight container, the cookies are soft throughout.
If you're looking for more sugar cookie recipes try Chocolate Chip Sugar Cookies (the vanilla version of this recipe), Sprinkle Sugar Cookies, Chocolate Blossom Cookies and Sugar Cookies with Chocolate.
Reasons to Love these Cookies
- Allergy Friendly- These cookies are gluten free, nut free, egg free and can easily be dairy free (vegan).
- Soft & Chewy- These cookies are the most perfect texture.
- Covered in Sugar- The sugar coating gives a nice sweetness!
- Mini Chocolate Chips- These cookies are loaded and topped with allergy friendly mini chips!
- Double The Chocolate- These cookies have a chocolate cookie base and chocolate chips!
- Dark Chocolate- These cookies are super dark thanks to using to types of cocoa powders!
- Gluten Free Flour- If you also have nut allergies, make sure to use a brand that’s made in a nut free facility. I really love to use this one because it’s nut safe but it does contain dairy.
- Milk of Choice- If there are no dairy allergies or if you’re not vegan, you can use regular whole milk. For non dairy, use a non dairy milk of your choosing.
- Unsalted Butter or Vegan Baking Sticks- Don’t use melted; the cookies will spread.
- Dark Brown Sugar- Using dark brown gives the cookies the softness we need to offset the dryness from the cocoa powders.
- Cornstarch and Water- These cookies have no egg so this mixture helps bind everything together.
- Mini Chocolate Chips- Make sure to use gluten free/nut free/vegan if you want this recipe allergy friendly.
See my recipe card below for a complete list of the ingredients with measurements.
Substitutions and Variations
How to Make these Cookies Vegan
- Use a gluten free flour that’s free from dairy.
- Make sure to use vegan baking sticks instead of butter.
- Only use a non dairy milk of choice.
- Read the label on your mini chocolate chips to ensure they’re gluten free, nut free and vegan.
This recipe has not been tested with these substitutions and/or variations due to celiac disease and food allergies. If you change any of the ingredients, please let us know how the recipe turned out in the comments below!
How to Make Dark Chocolate Sugar Cookies
Here are the step by step instructions to make these cookies!
Step 1: Whisk Together the Dry Ingredients
In a large bowl, whisk together the gluten free flour, cocoa powders, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
Step 2: Make the Cornstarch Water
In a small bowl, using a spoon, mix together the cornstarch and water until thin and watery. It will be thick and tacky at first. Set aside.
Step 3: Beat the Butter/Vegan Baking Stick and Sugar
In a large bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter or vegan baking stick and 1 ½ cups of the dark brown sugar until it is soft and creamy. About 2-3 minutes.
Step 4: Mix the Wet Ingredients
Slowly beat the cornstarch water mixture, the vanilla and milk into the creamed butter and sugar. It will look chunky.
Step 5: Beat in the Dry Ingredients
Slowly beat in the dry ingredients until just combined.
Step 6: Add in the Mini Chocolate Chips
Pour in ¾ cup of the mini chocolate chips into the dough and use a spatula to mix all through the dough.
Step 7: Chill the Dough
Form the dough into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. You MUST chill the dough.
Step 8: Scoop the Dough
After the 30 minutes of chilling, scoop the dough. I use an ice cream scoop. It makes 12 scoops.
Step 9: Press Dough in Mini Chocolate Chips and Roll in Sugar
Press the top of each dough ball into the extra ¼ cup mini chocolate chips.
Then roll each dough ball in the ¼ cup of granulated sugar.
It must be in that order or else the mini chocolate chips will not stick to the dough.
Step 10: Chill Again
Put the completed dough balls on a freezer safe plate and pop them in the freezer for 15 min. This will help prevent them from spreading.
Step 11: Bake the Cookies
Place dough balls about 3-4 inches apart on the parchment lined baking sheet. Bake the cookies at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for 13 minutes.
Store extra dough balls in the fridge while the rest are baking if they don't all fit. I only bake 6 at a time.
Immediately reshape the cookies into a circle with a spatula when they come out of the oven and let cool on the baking sheet for 5 min before transferring to a cooling rack.
If you don't let them cool on the baking sheet, the cookies will break apart into a giant mess.
Expert Baking Tips
- Use Room Temperature Butter- Using butter that’s room temperature is great when making these cookies. However, make sure you DO NOT melt the butter. These cookies have no egg in them and already have a tendency to want to spread out when baking. If you use melted butter, the cookies will be a giant mess.
- Use 2 Types of Cocoa Powder- The 2 types of cocoa powders give the cookies their dark hue. If you only have one type on hand, use natural unsweetened or dutch...just know their color will not be as dark as mine. DO NOT use dark alone; it will make your cookies too chalky dry and bitter.
- Chill the Dough- I know this seems like a step you could skip if you’re in a rush but please don’t. Cookies without eggs spread way more than cookies with eggs. If you don’t chill the dough for at least 30 minutes, the cookies will spread and be flat and thin.
- Reshape the Cookies- If you want your cookies nice and round, reshape them as soon as they come out of the oven. Use a spatula to push them back into a circle shape or use a large circle cookie cutter. If using a cookie cutter, place it over the cookies and rotate quickly in a circle.
There is no egg in these cookies to hold everything together when they're heated in the oven.
If you don’t chill the dough, the cookies will spread in the oven into a mess.
Most gluten free baked goods are best made the same day, but you can make these cookies a day before!
Unlike most gluten free cookies, they’re actually so soft they stay fresh for several days!
If you want your cookies nice and round, reshape them as soon as they come out of the oven.
Use a spatula to push them back into a circle shape or use a large circle cookie cutter.
If using a cookie cutter, place it over the cookies and rotate quickly in a circle.
You can make the dough the night before. Keep it shaped in a disc, wrapped in plastic and place in a zip top bag.
If doing this, there is no need to chill it again, prior to baking.
Or, you can make the dough and freeze it for up to 30 days. See the section titled, "storing and freezing".
Yes, of course! Add as little or much as you like.
Yes! You can use a small cookie scoop.
Bake the cookies at the same temperature but for 11 minutes. Reshape as needed. Should make around 24 cookies.
No you don't.
Cocoa powder is quite dry. And dark is even drier than dutch or natural unsweetened is.
If you only used dark, your baked goods would be way too dry and bitter.
If you don’t have both types of cocoa powders on hand, just use dutch or natural unsweetened; just keep in mind they won’t be as dark as my cookies are.
Storing and Freezing
Since gluten free baked goods are best the first day, we want to try to keep these dark chocolate sugar cookies as fresh as possible.
Once the cookies have cooled, store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
If you want them warm and gooey, heat the cookie in the microwave for a few seconds prior to serving.
You can freeze the dough of these cookies.
Simply wrap the dough in a disc in plastic wrap then pop it in a zip top bag.
You can keep the dough frozen for up to 30 days.
Thaw the dough in the fridge the night prior to using.
Other Chocolate Cookie Recipes You'll Love
Did you try this recipe? Please leave me a ⭐ review below!
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Dark Chocolate Sugar Cookies
- 1 ¼ cups gluten free flour (I use 1:1 gf flour)
- ½ cup cocoa powder ( I used ¼ cup natural unsweetened and ¼ cup dark)
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter or vegan baking stick (1 stick)
- 1 ½ cups dark brown sugar , packed
- 2 heaping tablespoons cornstarch mixed with 3 tablespoons of water
- 2 tablespoons milk of choice
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup mini chocolate chips reserve ¼ cup for rolling
- ¼ cup granulated sugar for rolling
- In a large bowl, whisk together the gluten free flour, cocoa powders, baking powder and the kosher salt. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, using a spoon, mix together the cornstarch and water until thin and watery. It will be thick and tacky at first.
- In a large bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or using a hand held mixer, beat the room temperature butter or vegan baking stick and the light brown sugar until soft and creamy. About 2-3 minutes.
- With the mixer on low speed, beat in the cornstarch water mixture. Then beat in the vanilla and milk. The mixture might look slightly chunky and that’s ok.
- Still on low speed, beat the gluten free flour mixture into the wet ingredients, a little at a time until just combined.
- Once combined, scrape down the sides of the bowl using a spatula.
- Pour in ¾ cup of the mini chocolate chips and use a spatula to mix into the dough.
- Shape the dough into a disc, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. This is very important. There are no eggs and if you don't do this step, the cookies will spread into a giant mess while baking.
- After 30 minutes, preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Take the dough out of the fridge. Using an ice cream scoop, scoop the dough out. You should have 12 scoops.
- Push the top of each dough ball into a small bowl of the remaining ¼ cup of mini chocolate chips. The drop the dough ball into the remaining ¼ cup granulated sugar and coat completely.
- Place the dough balls on a freezer safe plate and pop them in the freezer to chill for an additional 15 minutes. This will help prevent spreading.
- Space the cookies 3-4 inches apart on the lined baking sheet. I bake 6 at a time. Put the other 6 dough balls back in the fridge until they're ready to bake
- Bake the cookies in the middle rack for 13 minutes.
- When the cookies come out of the oven, reshape. Immediately use a spatula to push the cookies back into a circle shape or use a large circle cookie cutter. If using a cookie cutter, place it over the cookies and rotate quickly in a circle.
- Do not take the cookies off the baking sheet for 5 minutes. If you try, they will fall apart. After 5 minutes, transfer cookies to a cooling rack and cool completely before storing.
I do love sugar cookies, especially with double the chocolate! These don’t disappoint!! Delicious!
If we do not have an egg allergy, how many eggs would I use instead of cornstarch? Also we do have dairy allergy what’s your next fave option for another 1:1 gf flour?
Thank you these look delish and can’t wait to make them!
Sent you an email!
I would also like to know what to do if you don't have an egg allergy.
Hi Lisa! Sent you an email!
I have to tell you...MONTHS after making these for my NON GF coworkers and they are STILL begging me to make them again...and I bake/bring in GF treats all the time...and they love them all but these apparently are the BEST!!!
These are an absolute hit. I made these and they were finished in one sitting.
SO glad to hear that! Thank you!
Hi! I’d also love to know how many eggs to use 🙂 these look amazing
Hi Jess. Thank you! Sadly due to my son's severe allergy, I cannot test this recipe with eggs and the recipe has a lot of extra moisture added in to make up for the lack of eggs. So, I am unsure as to how it will come out with eggs. If you wanted to try, I would do: packed cups of flour, packed cups of cocoa powder, one egg and no cornstarch water and only 1 tablespoon of milk. Hope it works out!
I want to know can we use all purpose flour or maida instead of gluten free flour.
Yes ideally you can use AP flour. I sadly cannot test it due to celiac disease. I would make sure to use 1 1/4 packed cups of flour (210 grams) and I would only use 1 tablespoon of milk. Hope this helps!
These were so good! The crunch on the outside was great but so soft on the inside!
These sound delicious! Would potato starch be a good substitute for cornstarch?
I haven't tried it but I read you would use the same ratio. Simply replace the cornstarch with potato starch or arrow root starch. Still mix with the water. Hope this helps!
The cookies turned out great! I used AP flour per Lee's response to another commenter. My boys raved about them!! Will surely make again. Thanks!
I'm so glad they worked out with the AP flour!!! Thank you!!!