Made with the simplest of ingredients, these beauties are flourless, making them ideal for anyone needing to avoid gluten or grains. If you use a dairy-free chocolate, they will also be dairy-free. Even though they are free of gluten and dairy, they're definitely not free of flavor. Even those without food intolerances will find them irresistible.
Chocolate Almond Cookies Dough
I love the dough for these cookies because it actually feels, looks, and tastes like cookie dough. If you're a fan of sneaking a few bites of raw cookie dough before the cookies go into the oven, you will not be disappointed.
Made with almond butter, dark brown sugar, egg, baking soda, vanilla, and a pinch of sea salt, the dough for Chocolate Almond Cookies can be mixed and ready to bake in just a few minutes. Once the dough is made and shaped, I like to chill it for 5-10 minutes. This helps the cookies keep their shape better when baking.
Although I made this dough with almond butter, you can make it with any kind of nut butter for a variety of flavor sensations. Peanut butter is a favorite in our house, but we've also made them with sesame butter and liked them a lot. Cashew butter, walnut butter, or hazelnut butter would be worthy and scrumptious variations.
You can also make Chocolate Almond Cookies with light brown sugar, but I like them best with a rich, dark brown sugar like muscovado. The earthy richness of the nuts can hold its own with the strong molasses flavor.
Vanilla extract brings a buttery mellowness to the cookie dough that I love, but if you want to add a deeper nutty dimension, swap it out for almond extract if you're using almond butter.
If you're not a chocolate lover, you can easily skip it and still enjoy a mighty fine almond cookie. I am a fan of bittersweet chocolate, the darker the better, and its slight bitterness is a beautiful companion to the nutty cookie.
You can top each cookie with a Hershey kiss, mix a handful of semi-sweet chocolate chips in with the dough, or do as I did and roughly chop a bar of bittersweet chocolate into chunks and press a generous amount into the top of each cookie.
I've never tried it, but I think white chocolate might be a good option as well. Since white chocolate is so much sweeter than bittersweet, I'd cut back on the brown sugar in the dough so the cookies remain tasty and not sickly sweet.
Shape and Bake
If you're skipping the chocolate step, simply scoop the dough out with a teaspoon, place each mound onto a parchment-lined baking sheet 2 inches apart, and gently press with a fork in a cross-hatch pattern.
If you're adding a piece of chocolate on top, roll each scoop of dough in your hands until it forms a smooth ball, then place on the baking sheet 2 inches apart and gently flatten each ball slightly as you press the chocolate in the top.
Place the cookies in the fridge to chill for 5-10 minutes, then bake for 10-12 minutes or just until the edges begin to brown. Remove the tray from the oven but leave the cookies on the tray to cool completely. If you remove them while they're still warm they will fall apart and you will be sad.
Tea and Cookie Pairings
Although Chocolate Almond Cookies are delightful on their own, they also enjoy the company of other cookie varieties on a well-appointed cookie tray. Consider adding our Dark Chocolate & Sour Cherry Scone Cookies, some Italian Tea Cookies, or these Coconut Lime Cookies with Cream Cheese Filling.
This afternoon I paired my cookies with a cup of Reading Nook black tea with rose, lavender, and chamomile. They went together so beautifully that I didn't even need to sweeten the tea. Other great tea options would be Huckleberry Happiness black tea with hints of elderberry, aronia berry, and black currant, or Fireside Chat smoky black tea with notes of chocolate and walnut.
Chocolate Almond Cookies
- 1 cup almond butter
- 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon finely ground sea salt
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 bar dark chocolate, cut in 1/2- to 1-inch chunks
Preheat oven to 350F.
In large bowl, mix together almond butter, sugar, baking soda, and sea salt until well-blended.
Add egg and vanilla and stir until smooth.
Using teaspoon, scoop out portions of dough and roll into balls. Place 2-3 inches apart on parchment-lined baking sheet (cookies will spread when baking). When tray is filled, top each ball with a chunk of dark chocolate, pressing down to slightly flatten each ball.
Baking 10-12 minutes, just until edges of cookies begin to brown. Remove from oven and let cookies cool on the tray. When cool, store in air-tight container until ready to use.