These coffee cookies are truly the best! They are crispy on the edges, chewy in the middle, and flavored with a hint of cinnamon, cardamom, and vanilla. They’re one of my go-to recipes for holidays, game nights, or casual dinner parties. If you’re a coffee person, you need to make these ASAP!

A round cooling rack topped with coffee cookies on a grey speckled table next to a dark green linen, cup of coffee, and Chemex.

Here is your friendly reminder to just go ahead and set a couple of sticks of unsalted butter on the counter. It’s cookie season, and you’re probably going to need it. I have to say, as a trained pastry chef, I have tested many a cookie in my lifetime. But this recipe is one of the few contenders that made it past the initial testing stage. They are so. damn. good.

Also, they’re the kind of cookie that is best around Christmas but can be made any time of the year. I’m into this, because yeah December is cookie season, but sometimes you need a cookie in July and gingerbread will just not cut it. But coffee will! Coffee is always a good idea.

(Is that line probably on a vinyl-scripted wood sign from Home Goods? Perhaps. But let’s roll with it anyways).

P.S. If you’re a fan of coffee desserts, make sure to save the recipes for coffee crème brûlée, coffee crumble ice cream, vanilla coffee cupcakes, & Irish coffee brownies!

The best coffee dessert

These cookies are basically like if a cappuccino and a Snickerdoodle had a baby. I really wanted to make a version that didn’t have chocolate, cause I just think it overpowers the coffee flavor (don’t hate me). So instead, I added some cardamom and cinnamon because I was feeling inspired by coffee hawaij. Here’s just a few more highlights!

  • These cookies are pan-banged for that crispy edge, gooey interior situation.
  • The cookies are so chewy, soft, and have the best combo of vanilla and warm spice.
  • There is no chilling time. (But also, you can chill the dough if you want a deeper flavor).
  • They’re lovely in a cookie box, shared with friends at a party, or as a casual after-dinner treat.

All you need is staple ingredients

Various white bowls filled with baking ingredients on a grey speckled table next to two sticks of butter, an egg, and a bottle of vanilla.

Like I said earlier, the ingredients in this recipe are super simple to find. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Flour – all-purpose flour will add structure to the cookies.
  • Baking powder – a hint of baking powder will help the cookies puff up but not too much.
  • Baking soda – the baking soda is a key ingredient because it helps the cookies spread.
  • Salt – I use Morton’s Kosher salt in this recipe.
  • Spices – cinnamon and cardamom will add a hint of warmth.
  • Butter – unsalted and very soft so it’s easy to whip with the sugars.
  • Brown sugar – we use mostly brown sugar to make the cookies extra chewy. Light or brown will work.
  • Sugar – a bit of white sugar will add sweetness and moisture to the cookies. You will also want some sugar to roll the cookie dough in for a little crunch!
  • One egg – bring it to room temperature so it mixes well with the other ingredients.
  • Vanilla – use pure vanilla extract for the best flavor.
  • Instant coffee – try to find a higher-quality instant coffee for the best flavor. It will make a big difference! You can find this in the coffee or baking aisles at the grocery store.

Let’s make cookies

Three steps to mixing dough. In photo 1, a hand uses a whisk to mix a white bowl of flour and spices. In photo 2, a hand is pouring espresso powder into a white bowl of butter and sugar. In photo 3, a hand is pouring a white bowl of flour in a white bowl of butter and sugar.
  1. To start, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and cardamom. Set aside.
  2. Next, use a stand mixer or hand mixer to cream the butter and sugars together until they are light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Then, add the egg, vanilla extract, and instant coffee and mix until combined.
  3. Add the dry ingredients and mix the dough just until it comes together. At this point, you can refrigerate the dough if you want to help the flavor develop a bit more!

Don’t over-mix!

Don’t over-mix the dough! Otherwise, you will add too much air to the dough which will leave you with crispy, flat cookies. You want to mix the dough just until there are no more streaks of flour.

Three steps to baking cookies. In photo 1, a white bowl is full of dough. In photo 2, a hand uses a scoop to scoop cookie dough. In photo 3, a hand rolls cookie dough in sugar.
  1. Next, use a #40 cookie scoop to scoop the dough into balls.
  2. Roll the balls into some granulated sugar, and set them on a parchment-lined baking sheet a few inches apart.
Two steps to baking coffee cookies. In photo 1, cookie dough balls are on a sheet pan. In photo 2, hands are gripping a pan of cookies.
  1. Bake the cookies at 350°F (177°C) for about 7 minutes. Using oven mitts, bang the pan on the oven rack until you have ripples on the edges and the air escapes from the cookies. Rotate the pan and bake the cookies for another 1-2 minutes, until the edges are just lightly golden brown.
  2. Lastly, remove the cookies from the oven. If they have puffed up again, give them another pan-bang on the counter. Let them cool for a few minutes. Then, transfer the cookies to a rack to cool completely. Enjoy with some hot coffee!

How to know when the cookies are ready

The cookies may look a tad underdone in the centers. That’s ok! When I was testing this recipe, I found that underbaking them just a tad helps keep the cookies nice and chewy.

To chill or not to chill

I tested these cookies multiple times – sometimes, I chilled the dough and sometimes I didn’t. And here’s the pros of each!

No Chill – One of the highlights of these cookies is that you totally don’t have to chill the dough for them to look and taste amazing. If you want to just go ahead and scoop the dough right away, the texture and flavor will be absolutely delicious!

Chill – On the other hand, if you want to make the dough in advance, these cookies are definitely chill-friendly. I actually left the dough in the fridge for two days while I was testing it and they came out so delicious. The time in the fridge lets the flavors and color develop. However, you definitely don’t have to chill the dough for more than a day! Overnight or even just a couple of hours would work too.

TL;DR: These cookies are very forgiving. The dough can chill for a couple of days or be scooped and baked straight away.

A note on instant coffee

Let’s get this out of the way – I am a loud and proud, self-proclaimed coffee snob. But, as much as I usually detest instant coffee, it does have its place in the world. It’s in baked goods. Brewed coffee, and even coffee concentrate, will have far too much liquid and will ruin the texture.

Also, I really mean it when I say that choosing high-quality instant coffee matters here. Since it’s our main flavoring agent, you want something good. Look for a good-quality version at your local grocery store or head over to your favorite local coffee shop. Some of them sell specialty instant coffees that will add a lot of great flavor to this recipe!

Two overhead images; on the left a woman's hands are grabbing a white cup of coffee and a cookie on a white and black plate placed on a speckled gray table next to another cup of coffee, Chemex, tray of coffee cookies, and dark green linen. On the right, rows of cookies with one cookie that has a bite taken out of it.

Storing & freezing the cookies

Once the cookies are completely cooled, store them in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days. After 3-4 days, they will start to lose their chew. If you need them to last a little longer, you can always freeze them!

To freeze the cookies, place them in a single layer in an airtight container. Place a piece of parchment paper in-between each layer of cookies so they don’t stick. Finish off with a piece of parchment paper to help protect them from freezer burn. Freeze the cookies for up to 2 months. Let them defrost uncovered at room temperature for 30-60 minutes before serving.


If you want to make these cookies extra fancy with add-ins, go for it! Chocolate chips, hazelnuts, coconut, or toffee would all be excellent additions. However, you don’t want to go too crazy or it will affect the texture of the cookies. For larger add-ins, like chocolate chips or nuts, I would go with about 1 cup total. For smaller add-ins like coconut or toffee, start with 1/2 a cup and add more to taste.

Just a few recipe tips

  • Room temperature ingredients are key to making evenly-mixed dough. Make sure to bring the unsalted butter and egg to room temp for at least 30 minutes before baking.
  • Scoop the cookie balls with about 2 Tablespoons of dough. I use a #40 cookie scoop! This is my favorite cookie size for optimal spreading and chewiness.
  • Slightly underbake the cookies for the ultimate chew-factor. The edges should be lightly browned and the centers should still be a little doughy. Don’t worry, they’ll finish baking as they cool on the sheet pan!
  • To decorate the cookies for the holidays, you can roll them in colorful sanding sugar instead of granulated sugar. Or add holiday sprinkles on top!
A very closeup overhead photo of various coffee cookies stacked together.

“This is by far the best recipe for coffee cookies I have found. Easy and available ingredients and a very detailed instructions that really help for success in baking these wonderful cookies.”

If you make this recipe, I would love if you left a star rating and review! I read every single comment and love hearing what you think about my recipes. Thank you for supporting Sunday Table!

A very closeup overhead image of coffee cookies stacked together.
4.92 from 23 votes

Chewy Coffee Cookies

Yield: 26 cookies
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
If you're a coffee-lover, you're going to want to make these cookies ASAP. They're mixed with cardamom, cinnamon, and vanilla for a little warmth and extra flavor. And, they're super chewy and great any time of the year!


  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup white sugar, divided
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 Tablespoons instant coffee


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Adjust the rack to the middle position. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, table salt, cinnamon, and cardamom. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, and 1/2 cup of white sugar until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla extract, and instant coffee until thoroughly mixed.
  • Add the flour mixture in two batches just until the dough comes together. Avoid overmixing or you will end up with tough cookies. At this point, you can cover the bowl and refrigerate the dough for 1 hour or up to two days to let the flavor and color develop. This is totally optional!
  • Roll the dough into 1 1/2-2 Tablespoon balls. I use a #40 cookie scoop. Roll each dough ball in the remaining 1/4 cup of white sugar. Place 6 balls on each sheet pan, leaving 3-4 inches between each ball (they will spread out quite a bit).
  • Bake the cookies for about 7 minutes, until the cookies are puffy in the center. Using oven mitts, grip the sides of the sheet pan and give the sheet pan a few firm taps against the oven rack until the edges are wrinkly and the centers of the cookies fall and flatten. Flip the pan and bake the cookies for another 1-2 minutes, until the cookies are spread out, the edges are golden brown, and the centers are just slightly underdone. Remove the cookies from the oven, and give them another tap against a counter or another firm surface until the edges are wrinkled the centers are flat and crinkled.
  • Allow the cookies to cool on the sheet pan for about 5-10 minutes. Then, transfer them to a cooling rack to cool completely.


Adding the instant coffee straight to the dough will leave little bursts of coffee flavor! If you don’t want those little chunks, mix the instant coffee with 2-3 tsp. of water just until the coffee is dissolved. Avoid adding too much water or it will affect the texture of the cookies.
You definitely do not have to chill the dough if you don’t want to. The cookies will still come out amazing! But, if you want to develop the flavors and color a bit, letting them chill for a few hours or up to 2 days will just deepen the flavor a bit. Plus, it’s a great make-ahead option!
Don’t worry about slightly underbaking the cookies, because the residual heat from the sheet pan will continue baking them. Underbaking them just slightly will create a chewy flavor!
Cuisine: American
Course: Dessert
Serving: 1cookie, Calories: 143kcal, Carbohydrates: 18.3g, Protein: 1.4g, Fat: 7.4g, Saturated Fat: 4.6g, Cholesterol: 25mg, Sodium: 125mg, Potassium: 34mg, Fiber: 0.4g, Sugar: 9.9g, Calcium: 14mg, Iron: 1mg
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xo Sara Lynn

Song of the day – Golden Days by Whitney