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Black and White Cookies

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Black and white cookies recipe just like you would find in a New York Bakery. Decorated black and white cookies for the holidays are so fun!
black and white cookies

Black and White cookies always remind me of my trip to NYC as a kid.  Such a unique taste with the spongey cake and vanilla and chocolate icing combo.

I have ALWAYS wanted to learn to make black and white cookies.  Living in California, they are definitely not a treat you see often in our bakeries.  When I do see them in a bakery once in a blue moon, its a happy day.

Wikipedia says that black and white cookies history is that they are known as a “New York snack”.  And, of course, they are mentioned in the black and white cookies Seinfeld episodes.  I miss Seinfeld.

I remember when I first came across black and white cookies, I was in high school.  My family was taking our “east coast trip”, and we stopped in New York City for a few days.  I was in awe of the incredible delis and the black and white cookies everywhere.

I fell in love at first bite with the deliciousness of the chocolate and vanilla frosting adorning a cookie that also tasted like the texture of a cake.

black and white cookies

Most black and white cookies are very large in diameter.  I chose to make mine a little smaller by using a cookie scoop instead of an ice cream scoop to dish out the dough.  The recipe listed here will only make 8 large black and white cookies.

I wanted and needed more for my family of five.  I made eighteen cookies using the cookie scooper.  They disappeared in approximately 5 hours. 🙂

black and white cookies

A few tips for preparing your black and white cookies:

  1. Make sure to fully cool your cookies before frosting.  Otherwise, the frosting process will be difficult, since the cookies have a cake-like texture.
  2. Use a mini spatula to frost.  This made the process easy and fun.  I felt like I was painting.
  3. The dough is sticky – rub vegetable shortening on your cookie scooper for easier scooping.

This is now my favorite black and white cookies recipe and I’m sure it will be on heavy rotation in our future cookie making endeavors.

I can see these black and white cookies working well for different occasions with the addition of easy festive toppings including the following:

  1. Red and Green sprinkles for Christmas
  2. Red cinnamon drops for Valentines Day
  3. Pastel bunny and egg shaped sprinkles for Easter
  4. Blue and red sprinkles for 4th of July
  5. Orange pumpkin candies / sprinkles for Halloween
  6. Brown, orange and yellow sprinkles for Fall/Thanksgiving

As you can see, I’m thinking of all the ways to justify making these delectable treats again and again.  We love them.  I think you will too.

If you enjoyed this recipe, I bet you will love these too:

Chocolate Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting

Rocky Road Cookies

black and white cookies

Black and White Cookies

Black and white cookies recipe just like you would find in a New York Bakery. Decorated black and white cookies for the holidays are so fun!
Course cookies, Dessert
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 30
Calories 81 kcal
Author Five Silver Spoons


  • cup unsalted butter softened
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • cup well-shaken buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons water
  • ¼ cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder



  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and position your baking rack in the middle of the oven.
  2. In a stand mixer cream the butter and sugar together for 2-3 minutes on high until light and fluffy (important don't skimp on the time here).
  3. Add in the egg until fully combined.
  4. In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. In a measuring cup add your buttermilk and stir in the vanilla.
  5. To the stand mixer alternate the flour and buttermilk mixture starting with the flour first until all combined (I do about a third of the flour, then half the buttermilk, then ⅓ of the flour, then the rest of the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour).
  6. Place parchment paper on a cookie sheet and scoop ¼ cups of batter for each cookie. You will want to leave 2 inches of space between each cookie.
  7. Bake for 15-17 minutes or until the tops are golden brown and puffed up in the center. When you touch the center of the cookie,it should spring back like a cake. When this happens, you know they are done.
  8. Cool on your cookie sheet completely. You will want the cookies to be fully cooled, so icing does not melt. It took about 40 minutes for mine to cool.


  1. Add the powdered sugar, corn syrup, lemon juice, vanilla, and 1 tablespoon water in a small bowl until smooth.
  2. Put half the icing into a second bowl and add in the cocoa powder. Add about 3-4 tablespoons of water to cocoa mixture until it is the same consistency as the vanilla icing.
  3. You will want to ice the flat side of the cookie first.
  4. I put the vanilla frosting on first, then waited about 5 minutes for vanilla frosting to set before spreading chocolate frosting on the other side.

Recipe Notes

Adapted from Dinner Then Dessert

Nutrition Facts
Black and White Cookies
Amount Per Serving
Calories 81 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 11mg 4%
Sodium 63mg 3%
Potassium 22mg 1%
Total Carbohydrates 14g 5%
Sugars 9g
Vitamin A 1.5%
Vitamin C 0.1%
Calcium 0.6%
Iron 2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.







Black and white cookies recipe just like you would find in a New York Bakery. Decorated black and white cookies for the holidays are so fun!
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