Black Cat Cookies

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These Black Cat Cookies are spooky sugar cookies flavored with black cocoa powder! They use zero food coloring and are perfect for Halloween!

Black Cat Cookies

These Black Cat Cookies are a combination of three of my favorite things: cats, cookies and Halloween! These sugar cookies are flavored with black cocoa powder to naturally turn them black without the need for any food coloring. The black cocoa powder also gives them a unique chocolate taste similar to Oreos! They’re such a fun and easy treat to celebrate Halloween!

For more spooky Halloween treats try my Halloween Ghost Sandwich Cookies, Black Cocoa Cupcakes or Halloween Sprinkle Cookies!

Ingredient Breakdown

All-purpose flour – this gives the cookies structure.

Black cocoa powder – flavors cookies and turns them black without the need for any food coloring. My go to black cocoa powder is made by Wincrest but any brand should work fine!

Baking powder – a little bit of baking powder helps the cookies rise slightly. Do not use baking soda!

Butter – provides flavor and structure. I always recommend using unsalted butter but salted butter works if that’s all you have on hand, just be sure to omit the 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Do not use cold or melted butter.

Granulated sugar – sweetens and softens cookies. Do not substitute it with brown sugar.

Eggs – helps bind the ingredients.

Vanilla extract and salt – enhances flavor. Always use pure vanilla extract instead of imitation for best flavor.

Black Cat Cookies on a plate

How To Make Black Cat Cookies

1. Make the Sugar Cookie Dough: in a small bowl whisk the all-purpose flour, black cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

2. Use a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment to cream softened butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy.

3. Add eggs one at a time and vanilla until just combined. Scrape the sides of the bowl.

4. Add the dry ingredients all at once and mix on low speed until just combined. The dough will be soft but not sticky.

5. Divide dough in half then shape into flat discs. Wrap each tightly with plastic wrap then refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 3 days.

6. On a floured surface, roll out one disc of dough to about 1/8 inch thick. Cut out cats and place on a baking sheet then freeze for at least 5 minutes.

7. Bake cookies at 350°F for 9 minutes then allow to cool completely. Repeat with the second disc of dough. You can reroll the dough scraps up to 2 more times.

Black Cat Cookies on a baking sheet

Pro Tips For Black Cat Cookies

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate.
  • Don’t over mix the dough! Only mix until the dry ingredients are just combined. Over mixing = more gluten development which means tough cookies. We don’t want any tough cookies here!
  • Bake one tray at a time on the middle oven rack. This ensures that there is even heat circulation.
  • Don’t over bake them! They will continue to bake as they cool on the baking sheet.
  • Keep the sugar cookie dough cold! If you put warm cookies in the oven they will spread so I recommend freezing the cookies for a few minutes before baking them.

Frequently Asked Questions


What Is Black Cocoa Powder?

Black cocoa powder is cocoa powder that has been super Dutch processed which just means that it has been treated with an alkaline solution to reduce its acidity. This results in a mellower flavor and darker color. It’s actually the ingredient in Oreos that give them their unique flavor and color!

Thanks to the magic of black cocoa powder, these cookies use zero food coloring but if by some chance your dough doesn’t turn out dark enough then I recommend using a few drops of black gel food coloring. Gel food coloring is the best because it yields a deeper color without using a ton of dye and throwing off the consistency and taste of the cookies the way liquid food coloring does.

My go to black cocoa powder is made by Wincrest but any brand should work fine!

Can You Make Sugar Cookie Dough In Advance?

Yes! Once you make this sugar cookie dough you can either refrigerate it for up to 3 days wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or freeze it for up to 3 months wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and placed in a zip-top bag.

Why do you have to chill sugar cookie dough?

You need to chill sugar cookie dough in order to make the dough easy to work with and to prevent your cookies from spreading too much. If you’re dough is warm then it will become sticky and difficult to handle. I recommend chilling your dough for at least 2 hours before rolling it out and chilling your cookies in the fridge or freezer right before baking them.

How Do Sugar Cookies Keep Their Shape?

Sugar cookies have a high ratio of flour to fat which makes the dough sturdy enough to roll out and cut into shapes. Additionally, the dough is always kept cold which aids in cookies maintaining their shape. My favorite trick to prevent sugar cookies from spreading is to freeze your cookies for 5 minutes before baking them!

What’s the difference between sugar cookies And Shortbread?

Unlike sugar cookies, shortbread is made without eggs or any leavening agents. Shortbread also has a more crumbly texture as a result of the dough’s high fat content. If you’re looking for shortbread recipes try my Mini Chocolate Chip Shortbread Bars or Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies.

My Favorite Cookie Tools

Black Cat Cookies

If you try this recipe then please leave a rating/comment below to let me know how you liked it and feel free to ask any recipe questions you may have! 🙂

Black Cat Cookies

Maria Azzarelli
These Black Cat Cookies are spooky sugar cookies flavored with black cocoa powder! They use zero food coloring and are perfect for Halloween!
5 from 1 vote
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Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 9 minutes
Refrigeration Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 29 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 18 4 inch cookies
Calories 224 kcal

Equipment

  • Stand mixer or hand mixer
  • Baking sheets
  • Rolling Pin
  • Cat cookie cutter

Ingredients
  

  • 390 g (3 1/4 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 40 g (1/2 cup) black cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 226 g (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 200 g (1 cup) granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions
 

  • In a small bowl whisk the all-purpose flour, black cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  • Use a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment to cream softened butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy.
  • Add eggs one at a time and vanilla until just combined. Scrape the sides of the bowl.
  • Add the dry ingredients all at once and mix on low speed until just combined. The dough will be soft but not sticky.
  • Divide dough in half then shape into flat discs. Wrap each tightly with plastic wrap then refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 3 days.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F and line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  • On a floured surface, roll out one disc of dough to about 1/8 inch thick. Cut out cats and place on a baking sheet then freeze for at least 5 minutes.
  • Bake cookies for 9 minutes then allow to cool completely. Repeat with the second disc of dough. You can reroll the dough scraps up to 2 more times.

Notes

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate.
 
 
  • Butter: I recommend using unsalted butter. You can use salted butter, just be sure to omit the 1/2 tsp salt.
 
 
  • Store Black Cat Cookies in an airtight container for up to 5 days at room temperature or up to a week in the fridge. 
 
  • Sugar cookie dough wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and placed in a zip-top bag can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before rolling and baking.
 
  • Nutrition: the provided nutritional information is an estimate per serving. Please read my Nutrition Disclaimer for more information.
Calories: 224kcalCarbohydrates: 29gProtein: 3gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.4gCholesterol: 45mgSodium: 86mgPotassium: 67mgFiber: 1gSugar: 11gVitamin A: 341IUCalcium: 19mgIron: 1mg
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