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Checkerboard Cookies

Checkerboard cookies are so fun to make for the Holidays and year around for many celebrations. They are so festive looking, buttery, and utterly delicious.

checkerboard cookies

During Christmastime last month, while my brother and his three kids were visiting, we decided to go ice skating in San Francisco’s Union Square.


While the kids were skating, my Mom and I peeled off to take a breather at the beautiful lobby area in the St. Francis Hotel across the street.

We headed for the cafe and ordered hot teas. We also grabbed a bag of freshly made Christmas cookies. There were two checkerboard cookies in the bag that looked delicious.

I ate the other cookies, but saved my checkerboard cookie for last, because I knew it would be the best, and, of course, it was.  Such a simple tasting cookie, yet very unique at the same time.

I have wanted to learn how to make checkerboard cookies for so long, but never slowed down enough to figure it out. So glad to report, I FINALLY know how to make buttery and decadent checkerboard cookies.

checkerboard cookies

There are a few more steps to these cookies than your typical cookie, but so worth it, and the extra steps are actually fun.

I found it was similar to playing with playdough, with the forming of the logs of vanilla and chocolate dough, and placing them just so, to create the perfect checkerboard pattern.

 This checkerboard cookie recipe yields 80 cookies, which is awesome, because they disappear quickly.  I noticed my three kids taking three or four at a time.  They’re so light and airy, yet buttery and decadent at the same time.

Next time, I’m going to try to be more precise with the stacking of the vanilla and chocolate doughs, so the checkerboard pattern has more defined, straighter lines.  But for now, I’m super happy with my checkerboard cookie experiment.

Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we did!

You might also like:

Whipped Shortbread Cookies

Brown Sugar Cookie Recipe

Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

Soft and Chewy Chocolate Sugar Cookies

Checkerboard Cookies

Checkerboard cookies are so fun to make for the Holidays and year around for many celebrations. They are so festive looking, buttery, and utterly delicious.

Course cookies
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 80
Calories 49 kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggs

Vanilla Dough

  • 10 tbsp unsalted butter (1 1/4 stick), softened
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp table salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Chocolate Dough

  • 10 tbsp unsalted butter (1 1/4 stick), softened
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp table salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 dutch processed cocoa

Instructions

Prepare hard boiled eggs for the dough

  1. Place eggs in a small saucepan and cover with water.  Bring the water to boiling, then remove from heat, and cover pan.  Let the eggs sit in the pan for 10 minutes.  During this 10 minute waiting time, place ice cubes in bottom of small bowl with cold water.  After the 10 minutes, scoop eggs out with slotted spoon and place in ice bath.  Let eggs sit in ice bath for 5 minutes, then carefully remove yolks, and discard egg whites.  Using two small bowls (I used ramekins), strain the yolks.  Place strainer over ramekin, and push egg yolk through strainer.  Use a separate ramekin for each yollk, so you have the yolks ready for the vanilla and chocolate doughs.

Vanilla Dough

  1. In bowl of stand mixer, on high speed, beat butter, sugar, salt, and one cooked egg yolk, until light and fluffy.  This should take about 3-4 minutes.  Note:  You will want to scrape the bowl several times as the dough is very sticky at this point.  Turn the speed to low, and add in vanilla extract until incorporated.  Turn mixer off.  Add in flour to bowl and mix on low speed, just until combined. (about 30 seconds).  Using your spatula, bring dough together in one mass.  Place mass of vanilla dough on plate.

Chocolate Dough

  1. In bowl of stand mixer, on high speed, beat butter, sugar, salt, and one cooked egg yolk, until light and fluffy. This should take about 3-4 minutes. Note: You will want to scrape the bowl several times as the dough is very sticky at this point. Turn the speed to low, and add in vanilla extract until incorporated. Turn mixer off. Add in flour and cocoa to bowl and mix on low speed, just until combined. (about 30 seconds). Using your spatula, bring dough together in one mass. Place mass of chocolate dough on plate with vanilla dough.

Create Checkerboards and Bake

  1. Cut the vanilla and chocolate dough masses into two pieces.  Roll each of the vanilla dough pieces into a 3x5 inch brick of dough.  Do the same for the chocolate dough.  You will have 2 bricks of vanilla and 2 bricks of chocolate.  Place the vanilla dough on top of the chocolate dough, until you have two stacked bricks of dough with vanilla and chocolate.

  2. Cover the plate of 2 dough bricks with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

  3. Using a sharp chef's knife, slice extra dough off sides and ends of logs to ensure square corners.  Then, slice each dough brick into 4 strips, lengthwise.  Create a checkerboard pattern, by placing 2 sets of vanilla/chocolate strips together where you have a chocolate strip on same level as vanilla and vice versa.  At the end of this, you should have 4 vanilla/chocolate logs.  Cover each log lightly with plastic wrap and chill in fridge for 1 hour.

  4. Position oven racks, so there is one upper rack, and one lower rack.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.  With a sharp chef's knife, cut 1/4 inch thick width wise cookies.  You should cut about 20 cookies per log for a total of 80.

  5. Place cookies on prepared baking sheet, about 1 inch apart.  Bake for 15 minutes, or until the centers of cookies are a pale golden brown, with edges slightly darker.  Halfway through the baking time, you will want to rotate the baking sheets top to bottom rack and front to back.  This ensures even cooking, and helps maintain delicate texture of these delicious cookies.  

  6. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer cookies to wire rack for further cooling.  Enjoy!!

Recipe Notes

Adapted from Cook's Illustrated

Nutrition Facts
Checkerboard Cookies
Amount Per Serving
Calories 49 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 5%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 11mg 4%
Sodium 41mg 2%
Potassium 6mg 0%
Total Carbohydrates 5g 2%
Sugars 1g
Vitamin A 1.9%
Calcium 0.2%
Iron 1.2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

 

Checkerboard cookies are so fun to make for the Holidays and year around for many celebrations. They are so festive looking, buttery, and utterly delicious.

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