This post contains referral links; all opinions expressed are completely our own.
Ok, these cookies are kind of magical.
For one thing, they require very little preparation or fuss. I made them in the amount of time my 5-month-old was happy to sit in her bouncer. .
They’re also gluten free. I know, that’s not always the best advertisement for baked goods, but it’s undeniably handy to have a couple GF recipes in your collection, like if you have a GF friend or relative … or if you set out to make cookies but you have no flour (yes, real life story, don’t ask, it has been a long week and it’s only Tuesday). But these cookies are so delicious that you would never even guess it. .
And they are cookies, but they taste like brownies. Fudgy, chewy, chocolatey brownies. But no flour or butter needed!
Like I said, magic.
I might add that I found this recipe in Food52’s Genius Desserts cookbook.
Magical AND genius.
fudgy chocolate walnut cookies
makes 12 large cookies
4 egg whites, room temperature
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups (350g) confectioner’s sugar
generous 1/2 cup (70g) Dutch processed cocoa powder
1/4 tsp kosher salt
scant 3 cups (275g) walnuts
optional: espresso powder, almond extract, mint extract, fleur de sel (see notes)
Preheat oven to 350. Toast walnuts until toasty and fragrant, 8-10 minutes. Let cool to touch, then chop coarsely. Reduce oven to 325 and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Sift together the cocoa, powdered sugar, and salt in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Whisk in the chopped walnuts
In a small bowl, stir together the egg whites and vanilla.
Add the egg white mixture to the dry ingredients and beat on medium high speed for 2-3 minutes.
Drop in large spoonfuls, 3 inches apart, 6 per pan. Sprinkle with fleur de sel, if using. Bake 14-16 minutes or until shiny, set, and crackly on top. Let cool on the pan for a few minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
I could see these being really good with a teaspoon of instant espresso powder and/or almond or even mint extract to deepen the flavor. I sprinkled fleur de sel on top to get a little sweet and salty going.
Sometimes walnut skins can make baked goods a little bitter. If you don’t want that, try rubbing the walnuts together between your hands after toasting to get most of the skins off. Then chop and proceed as directed. I personally don’t mind the bitter.
I took mine out at 14 minutes and they were set but very moist and probably a little underbaked. No complaints around here because they were just that much more fudgy, but I think next time I’ll keep them in a minute or two longer!
I imagine these would freeze really well, like brownies. And I imagine they’ll keep well in an airtight container for a few days. But I can’t say for sure because they didn’t make it longer than a few hours in my house.