Chocolate Walnut Shortbread Cookies (Video)

slice and bake chocolate walnut shortbread cookies
Chocolate Walnut Shortbread Cookies ~ if a cookie and a brownie had a baby they might come up with a delicious buttery cookie like this! ~

Chocolate Walnut Shortbread Cookies ~ if a cookie and a brownie had a baby they might come up with a delicious buttery cookie like this! Keep a log of this slice and bake cookie dough in the fridge for last minute visitors (or snack attacks!)

Chocolate Walnut Shortbread Cookies ~

Chocolate walnut shortbread cookies are a sophisticated treat

Chocolate and walnuts were made for each other. These slice and bake cookies are like little brownie bites, only not quite as sweet, and the slightly bitter walnut flavor holds its own against the chocolate. There is a nice background of vanilla, too. They have that famous shortbread texture, which melts in your mouth, and they’re ridiculously easy to make.

Chocolate Walnut Shortbread Cookie dough slices, before baking.
Slice and bake cookies are one of the best concepts ever, one of my favorite ways to use this dough is to slice off a few at a time to bake up when the urge for fresh cookies warm from the oven strikes.

TIP: You can freeze this dough, just be sure to wrap it well and use it within a month or two.

Slices of Chocolate Walnut Shortbread Cookie dough.

After you chill the dough it slices up neatly. Use a sharp knife and you’ll reveal a kaleidoscope of chocolate walnut gorgeousness.

TIP: Be sure your butter is at room temperature and you get the dough thoroughly combined, with no dry flour or dry crumbles, before rolling it into a log. 

Chocolate Walnut Shortbread Cookie dough slices on a baking sheet.


3.45 from 164 votes

Chocolate Walnut Shortbread Cookies

Chocolate Walnut Shortbread Cookies ~ if a cookie and a brownie had a baby they might come up with a delicious buttery cookie like this!  Keep a log of this slice and bake cookie dough in the fridge for last minute visitors (or snack attacks!)
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Chill time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 22 minutes
Yield 14 cookies
Calories 121kcal
Author Sue Moran


  • 1/4 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, regular or extra dark
  • 1 stick, (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • heaping 1/2 cup walnuts, rough chopped


  • Whisk together the dry ingredients. You can use a wooden spoon or a stand mixer. I use my mixer. Add in the butter and the vanilla, and stir until completely mixed and a soft dough forms.
  • Fold in the walnuts and turn the dough onto a piece of parchment paper. Form the soft dough into a rough log, about 7-8 inches long.
  • Roll up in the paper, smoothing the log and twisting the ends firmly to form a secure package.
  • Refrigerate for 2 hours, or freeze for 1 hour if you're in a hurry, then unwrap and slice into thin slices, about 1/4-1/3 inch.
  • Preheat oven to 325F
  • Place on a silpat or parchment lined baking sheet and bake for about 10 to 12 minutes. Just until set.
  • Cool for a minute on the tray, then transfer to a cooling rack.

Cook's notes

  • Toast your walnuts to bring out a deeper flavor.
  • Pecans would also work well in this recipe.


Calories: 121kcal
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.


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    Please rate this recipe!

  • Reply
    Joanne B
    May 17, 2021 at 3:50 pm

    This recipe would be good but you forgot the salt

  • Reply
    Sue Gregg
    December 7, 2020 at 1:47 pm

    1 star
    Did not enjoy these cookies. They were so dry that I baked 2 first- we did not like them. Added 1 egg and another 1/4 granulated sugar and they are much better.

  • Reply
    November 21, 2020 at 7:52 am

    5 stars
    I made these and was just looking for a basic cookie dough and saw this and was so excited to try them. I did them just as written and they are perfectly delicious!! I did freeze some but unfortunately ended up making them two days later because everyone ate them up. Perfect cookie

  • Reply
    Luquita Kroll
    May 1, 2020 at 8:52 pm

    Sounds wonderful. I will be trying this using pecans and raw peanuts home roasted. I get my pecans and raw peanuts at We’re Nuts in middle Ga. They are south of me and fresh too. Love the peanuts I can roast fresh in about 15 cooking time from the freezer..

  • Reply
    June 10, 2019 at 3:11 am

    Thanks for your great post… I’d love to do a few different flavour logs ahead for overnight guests in a couple of weeks.. do you recommend freezing as a log or as sliced & uncooked. Look awesome to go with morning coffee ?

    • Reply
      June 10, 2019 at 7:02 am

      I usually freeze as a log, and then let defrost enough to be able to slice ~ hope everybody loves them!

      • Reply
        Joanne B
        May 5, 2021 at 11:23 am

        You’re missing the salt in the recipe

        • Reply
          Sue Moran
          May 5, 2021 at 12:30 pm

          Definitely add 1/4 tsp, or use salted butter if you like.

    • Reply
      December 13, 2019 at 7:22 pm

      I was disappointed . We love shortbread cookies but these were real dry and just wanted to fall apart. I also would add more sugar. They were bitter tasting

      • Reply
        December 13, 2019 at 9:56 pm

        You really have to make sure the butter and flour comes together in this dough, but shortbread dough definitely has a crumbly texture. It should melt in your mouth, though.

  • Reply
    July 8, 2018 at 6:50 am

    Hi, looks great!
    How much gr. Is 1 stick b 1/2 cup unsalted butter..?

    • Reply
      July 8, 2018 at 7:50 am

      1 stick or 1/2 cup butter is equal to 4 ounces, or 113 grams Elinor.

  • Reply
    April 28, 2018 at 8:56 pm

    Hi Sue I made these today and followed your instructions but they taste chalky. I froze them for an hour and they cut nicely.

    • Reply
      April 29, 2018 at 7:46 am

      Not sure about the chalky taste, Tina, but I do know that shortbread in general is very different from regular cookies, and maybe that’s what you’re experiencing? There is a little bit of a ‘flour’ taste to shortbread, and that could be interpreted as chalky. Hope you try my other cookies 🙂

    • Reply
      February 14, 2019 at 2:11 pm

      I recently used what turned out to be stale confectioner’s sugar. Although it was in frosting, it definitely left a bad taste. I can see how that might affect other recipes.

  • Reply
    January 16, 2018 at 10:13 am

    5 stars
    Great recipe! My Mom made these cookies in the 1950’s and they were my favorites!
    Thank you for sharing the recipe and bringing back wonderful memories!

    • Reply
      January 16, 2018 at 11:09 am

      You’re welcome Jean!

  • Reply
    May 15, 2017 at 6:21 pm

    5 stars
    I love this recipe! I added a little bit more powdered sugar, and it was a very nice and semi-sweet buttery cookie! Melted in my mouth! Kept each batch in for 12 minutes and removed from the tray to the cooling rack after about 30 seconds. Had minimal problems with cracking, just treated each cooking carefully. Easy recipe and very satisfying results. Thanks for sharing this Sue!

    • Reply
      May 15, 2017 at 7:29 pm

      You’re so welcome Nanda ~ thanks for taking the time to come back and comment 🙂

  • Reply
    M King
    December 22, 2016 at 5:19 pm

    I made these for my annual Christmas cookie exchange. I loved the flavor and they looked so good until I took them off the cookie sheet. they all fell apart and were too crumbly. I was so disappointed and had to throw them all away. I followed the recipe so I don’t know what I did wrong. any suggestions? I’d like to try them again. Thanks!

    • Reply
      December 22, 2016 at 5:26 pm

      Shortbread does need time to cool completely so it sets up. Is it possible you moved them while warm? Shortbread does have a ‘crumbly’ texture, but they shouldn’t fall apart. Hope this helps 🙂

    • Reply
      December 8, 2018 at 1:38 pm

      Crumbled cookies are fabulous over ice cream. They can frozen and used later.

  • Reply
    December 20, 2016 at 3:19 pm

    These cookies sounded great and look pretty, but they are not sweet at all. I put a glaze on them to make them palatable.

    • Reply
      December 20, 2016 at 4:14 pm

      These aren’t super sweet cookies, that’s true Susan. You can add a little more sugar to the dough next time without a problem.

  • Reply
    July 22, 2016 at 4:36 pm

    I too made them as directed yet they were super crumbly. Not too sweet. I didn’t mind but they sure would not hold together. ?

    • Reply
      November 24, 2017 at 5:22 pm

      Kristina make sure your butter is at room temperature and you work the dough until it is thoroughly combined, with no dry flour, etc., before you roll it.

  • Reply
    June 24, 2016 at 4:59 am

    So… don’t set your oven then place dough in fridge for 2 hours… ?

  • Reply
    March 6, 2016 at 1:06 pm

    I made these as directed and they tasted very dry and bitter. Is the 1/4 cup sugar correct?

    • Reply
      March 11, 2017 at 8:46 am

      Did you use Black Walnuts if so that is probably where the bitterness came from, but it could be the cocoa you used. Shortbread cookies are never sweet just a bit sweet, but you can add extra powder sugar 1/4 cup and it should not affect them.

    • Reply
      December 18, 2019 at 12:52 pm

      Bitter that’s the word I am looking for. Unbaked dough tastes great. Baked not so much.

  • Reply
    Judy Ernst_Hopp
    December 1, 2014 at 4:21 pm

    Thanks for sharing your recipe. Looks yummy, can’t wait to bake.

    Looking forward to other recipes.

  • Reply
    November 21, 2012 at 1:31 am

    oops! Just saw it at the top!

  • Reply
    November 20, 2012 at 11:31 pm

    yum! I’m making these for thanksgiving! One question..what temperature do you bake them at? Thanks!

  • Reply
    shannon @ a periodic table
    October 10, 2012 at 9:04 pm

    i love love LOVE the idea of a chocolate walnut shortbread; shortbread cookies in general drive me crazy with delight, but these look like GLOBES! those walnuts are like little countries…beautiful. and i’m sure delicious. Definitely on my holiday cookie list this year.

  • Reply
    Tricia @ saving room for dessert
    October 9, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    Sue you are the shortbread queen – please put ME on your Christmas cookie list 🙂 Chocolate shortbread and walnuts. Absolutely – MFEO (made for each other!)

  • Reply
    From Beyond My Kitchen Window
    October 8, 2012 at 8:27 pm

    I’m putting these on my Christmas cookie list. I love the look of the walnuts in the chocolate.

  • Reply
    The Café Sucré Farine
    October 8, 2012 at 11:21 am

    I’m the ultimate shortbread sucker so I will have to try these! Love the pretty shapes the walnuts give when cut!

  • Reply
    SavoringTime in the Kitchen
    October 8, 2012 at 1:55 pm

    Oh my, these do look delicious! And, even healthy with the walnuts 🙂

  • Reply
    October 8, 2012 at 10:19 am

    oh boy–now i’m excited! thanks so much, sue!
    these cookies look great–walnuts are beautiful, aren’t they!

  • Reply
    October 7, 2012 at 11:54 pm

    Grace is going to love thsi cookbook!

    The chocolate shortbread cookies look awesome. You could not just a couple, it would be devoured.


  • Reply
    Linda in Waterloo, Ontario
    October 7, 2012 at 9:41 pm

    These look amazing! They will be on my cookie-baking list this Christmas! Thank you for the recipe. 🙂

  • Reply
    Magnolia Verandah
    October 7, 2012 at 3:56 am

    Congrats Grace. These shortbreads look heavenly.

  • Reply
    October 7, 2012 at 10:02 am

    Now this is my type of cookie. I agree tenfold that chocolate and walnuts were made for each other. Beautiful stuff.

  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    October 6, 2012 at 8:17 pm

    Sue these look so good! I love the mosaic-like appearance of those walnuts peering back at me! So pretty and love the EASE of the recipe!

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