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stack of chocolate orange cookies

Italian Chocolate Orange Cookies with Orange Icing

Beautiful Italian chocolate orange cookies with a glorious orange icing and orange zest infused into the dough. These tender, chewy chocolate cookies are simple to make and stay soft for days. If you love the combination of chocolate & orange, then this cookie is for you!

Course Cookie, Cookies, Dessert, Nut Free
Keyword chocolate orange cookies, italian chocolate orange cookies, italian cookies
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 14 cookies
Calories 152 kcal
Author Monique of AmbitiousKitchen.com


  • Wet ingredients:
  • 6 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • Zest from 1 medium orange
  • 1 egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Dry ingredients:
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ¼ cup good-quality unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • Optional to add into the dough:
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • For the icing:
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 1 tablespoon softened cream cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter, sugar and orange zest for 1 minute until well combined. Turn mixer to medium-low speed and add in egg (make sure it’s at room temp -- you can do this by running the egg under warm water for 1 min); beating until well combined. Next beat in the vanilla extract.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix together on medium-low speed until just combined.

  4. Use hands to grab one heaping tablespoon full of dough and roll into a ball. Place on baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Slightly flatten cookies with the palm of your hand so they are about ¼ inch thick. (If you like very fat, puffy cookies, no need to flatten them at all.) Bake for 10-13 minutes until just barely golden brown on the edges.

  5. Remove and allow to cool on baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling completely. Repeat with remaining dough.
  6. To make the icing: Once cookies have cooled, make the icing: add the powdered sugar, orange juice, zest, melted butter and softened cream cheese to a bowl. A drop of almond extract is also delicious in the icing, but please only do one drop if you'd like. Spoon the icing onto the cookies or you can dip of the top of the cookies in the icing then place back on the wire rack to allow icing to harden. Garnish with a little extra orange zest to make them pretty. Makes about 14 cookies.

Recipe Notes

How to freeze cookie dough for later:

  1. Roll the cookie dough into balls and place them on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Chill the dough in the freezer for 30 minutes. This is known as a flash freeze.
  2. Once the cookie dough balls firm up, you can transfer them to a reusable freezer-safe bag or container. Cookie dough will keep well for up to 3 months.
  3. When ready to bake, simply bake cookies as directed in the recipe. For these cookies, I suggest letting the dough thaw at room temperature while you preheat the oven so that you can slightly flatten the cookies as directed.
Nutrition Facts
Italian Chocolate Orange Cookies with Orange Icing
Amount Per Serving (1 cookie)
Calories 152 Calories from Fat 59
% Daily Value*
Fat 6.6g10%
Saturated Fat 4g25%
Carbohydrates 22.5g8%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 12g13%
Protein 2.2g4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.