Get your espresso jolt in this cookie

It’s a cookie, but it’s not sweet. It’s flavored with espresso, but it’s not coffee. It’s the perfect bite of rich espresso flavor in a buttery crunchy cookie. And if that’s not enough, these cookies will take you less than 30 minutes to make — really!

So, get into the kitchen and bake up a batch to celebrate National Coffee Day today.

I used to be able to purchase instant espresso powder in the coffee aisle at my local grocery store. It’s no longer available there, so my last jar came from Williams-Sonoma.

If you haven’t tried cocoa nibs, you will fall in love with their bittersweet flavor and big crunch. Cocoa nibs are the crushed form of cleaned and roasted cocoa beans. Some places I’ve seen them include kitchenware and gourmet food stores, natural food stores and chocolate shops. They can be ordered from The Spice House, one of my favorite spice stores, too. I use the nibs to make my favorite homemade ice cream. Cocoa Nib Ice Cream is a family favorite. I use the recipe in Alice Medrich‘s book, “bittersweet.”

If you just can’t wait to make these cookies and you don’t have cocoa nibs in your pantry, use chocolate chips chopped very fine.

When I baked the cookies this morning, I saved a little of the dough to press into a small (4-inch) springform pan. I baked it and this evening I’ll fill the little round espresso shortbread crust with a big scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. I’ll drizzle it with some warm homemade fudge sauce and serve it to my husband for dessert. He will love it.

So, here’s to you on National Coffee Day.

Espresso-Cocoa Nib Shortbread Bites

  • 6 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • ¾ cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, chilled
  • ¼ cup cocoa nibs, finely chopped

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Cut butter into small chunks.  Measure powdered sugar and flour into medium mixing bowl.  Add salt and instant espresso powder.  Mix. Add butter.  Cut with pastry blender or two knives.  (This process of mixing dry ingredients and incorporating butter can also be done by pulsing in the food processor.) When it begins to form a crumbly mixture, use fingers to mix.  When mixture begins to hold together, add cocoa nibs and mix in.  Use #100 portion scoop to form balls of dough. Place on parchment-lined baking sheet.  Flatten with hand.  Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes.  Transfer from baking sheet to cooling rack.  Makes about 2 dozen dainty cookies.

2 thoughts on “Get your espresso jolt in this cookie

  1. Just today I wondered what I could bake with my huge can of cocoa, but cocoa nibs? I guess I will have to look for cocoa nibs. And I will use cocoa for good-old fashion hot chocolate. And happy National Coffee Day to you.

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