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Chocolate Coffee Cookies (Reindeer Print Cookies)

Chocolate and coffee are always popular, so why not combine them into chocolate coffee cookies? Around the holiday season, I do a fair amount of baking – for gifts, parties and family. Cookies are always part of the plan, and we have a wide mix of family favorites from over the years.

chocolate coffee cookies - "reindeer prints"

These coffee flavored cookies include cocoa in the dough, combined with semi sweet or dark chocolate coating. You can use chips, chunks or a broken up chocolate bar – your choice.

Tips for Baking Your Chocolate Coffee Cookies

I use instant coffee granules, but if you want your cookies to be a little more high octane, you can use instant espresso powder.

This year I used Mount Hagen Organic Freeze Dried Instant Coffee, and was surprised by the kick. I had two small cookies after supper and was up half the night, so be warned.

For more “coffee” and less “chocolate”, stick to one tablespoon cocoa. (I prefer two, but I mention using one in the video.) Two tablespoons of dark cocoa powder gives the cookies a deeper color, closer to a real coffee bean.

coffee bean cookies

Shaping and Baking the Cookies

In the video, I press the chopstick into the top of the cookie while it's on the pan so it looks more like a coffee bean. This year (2019), we tried pressing the chopstick into the cookie while holding it (since real coffee beans have the line on the flat side).

When I shared the resulting cookies on Instagram and Facebook, lots of folks said they looked like moose prints or reindeer tracks, so I figured I'd officially add it to the recipe. You can call them whatever you like, as they are yummy either way.

Airbake cookie sheets are helpful, since it's a little tricky to tell when a dark cookie is done baking, but not not absolutely necessary. Just watch your timer and don't burn the cookies.

coffee bean cookies

Dipping the Cookies

The coconut oil helps the melted semi sweet chocolate to flow more easily for coating the chocolate coffee cookies. If your melted chocolate is still a little thick, it's okay to add a little more oil.

I prefer unrefined coconut oil for the slight coconut flavor, but you can use refined coconut oil or responsibly grown palm shortening if you don't like coconut flavor.

Always melt your chocolate gently, with low heat. Chocolate chips or mini chips melt quicker than chocolate chunks. If you crank up the heat too much, your chocolate can seize into a hard lump and become unusable.


Chocolate Coffee Cookies Recipe

Chocolate Coffee Cookies – These coffee flavored cookies include cocoa in the dough, combined with semi sweet or dark chocolate coating.

  • Author: Laurie Neverman
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 48 cookies 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Units Scale
  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee crystals
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 three ounce package of cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips or chocolate chunks
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil


  1. Combine the coffee crystals and milk. Stir until the coffee crystals dissolve. If your coffee is older and doesn't dissolve easily, warm the milk a bit. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix butter and cream cheese until well blended. Add brown sugar, vanilla, and milk-coffee mix to the butter mixture. Stir until well combined. Add flour and cocoa and stir until blended. Cover and chill for one hour, or until dough is firm and easy to handle.
  3. Preheat oven to 350Β°F. Shape dough into 1 inch ovals. Press a notch in each cookie with a chopstick (or something similar) so that it resembles a coffee bean.
  4. Place cookies one inch apart on baking sheets with parchment paper.
  5. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until edges are firm and bottoms are a bit darker. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. You can leave these β€œas is”, but I recommend half dipping them in chocolate.
  6. To prep chocolate for dipping, melt chips together with coconut oil in a small saucepan. Dip cookies one at a time until about 1/3 to 1/2 covered, and place on wax paper or freezer paper to set. To speed chocolate set, place dipped cookies in a cool area or in the refrigerator. Makes about 48 cookies.

Keywords: cookies, coffee, chocolate

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chocolate coffee cookies

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Baking Tips for Perfect Cookies

  1. Set out butter in a covered container at room temp the night before baking to allow it to soften evenly.
  2. To measure flour more evenly, use the “scoop, level, pour” method. Scoop your flour, level the top with a butter knife, and pour it into your dough.
  3. Watch for lumps in your brown sugar and cocoa. Sift before use, if needed.
  4. If a recipe uses a lot of eggs, add them one or two at a time for easier mixing.
  5. If a recipe uses several cups of flour mixture, add it a little at a time to prevent flour spilling all over.
  6. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicon mat to keep cookies from sticking and make cleanup a breeze.
  7. Keep cookies roughly the same size, and space them evenly on the pan. This helps to promote even baking.
  8. Keep in mind that cookies will continue cooking for a short time after they are removed from the oven. Cookies that are already hard when you take them out may be “one tough cookie” by the time they've cooled enough to eat. Slightly soft cookies will firm up as they cool.
  9. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely before dipping in chocolate. The chocolate mix won't stick well to warm cookies.
  10. Store cookies in an airtight container with sheets of wax paper between layers so they don't stick together. Keep at room temp for up to a week, or freeze for longer storage.

Do you have any questions, recipe requests or tips you'd like to share? Leave a comment below.

chocolate coffee cookies - "reindeer prints"

Originally posted in 2018, updated in 2019.

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  1. These are my favorite cookies ever! I make these every 3 weeks,I try not to share them, but everyone loves them πŸ˜‹πŸ˜‹πŸ‡¨πŸ‡¦πŸ‡¨πŸ‡¦πŸ‡¨πŸ‡¦

    1. Can you see the video in the article? If so, I show how I usually make the cookies. We roll them into oblong shapes, and then press in the line on the top with a chopstick. You can press the chopstick into the top while they are on the pan, or hold the cookies and press it in, and then set the side with the divot down on the pan to make it flat.

    1. The cookies are very rich, so yes, we don’t make them huge. If you wish to make them larger, go ahead and try it and see how it works for you. It’s your kitchen, so you should do things the way you like. For a larger cookie, you’ll need to increase bake time.

      They increase slightly in size during baking, but not a lot.

  2. Definitely look like coffee beans… But does anyone else see reindeer hoof prints?! Just saying! Can’t wait to make this cookie!

  3. Thanks for the yummy recipes! I tried this yesterday and it is really delicious.I can’t wait to read your next recipes. Keep sharing

  4. I am going to try a few of these tomorrow – thanks for the yummy recipes!
    I make shortbread snowflakes and decorate them with this white icing, large sugar sprinkles and silver balls. It’s funny to watch folks picking off the silver balls, not knowing they are sugar πŸ™‚
    Happy baking!

    1. Technically, in the US they’re labeled as “inedible – for decoration only” and the FDA says you shouldn’t eat them, but in other countries are sold as food. There have been no recorded cases of silver dragee poisoning. πŸ™‚