Chocolate Pinwheel Cookies are crisp, light, mildly sweet and delicious. They are easy to make yet impressive with chocolate and vanilla swirls.
Chocolate Pinwheel Cookies
Holiday baking continues with Chocolate and Vanilla biscuits. These are simple, easy to make, can be made days, weeks or even couple of months ahead, eggless, looks impressive and tastes amazing.
These go by several names like Shortbread pinwheels, Chocolate swirl cookies, Roll up cookies, Spiral cookies, Slice and bake, Cookie rolls, Black and white pinwheel cookies, Half vanilla Half chocolate, Chocolate and vanilla swirl cookies or Pinwheel biscuits.
They are delicious any time of the year - A basic shortbread that is perfect with milk or coffee or just a pick me up when you are craving something sweet and light.
What are pinwheel cookies?
These are a simple slice and bake recipe with two colored dough, rolled into a log and then sliced to give a beautiful pinwheel pattern. They can be made with different colors, like festive red and green for Christmas, red and vanilla for valentines day or black and white like these.
Why You'll Love These?
- Make ahead - The dough and baked pinwheels can be frozen for up to a month, making it perfect for the busy Holiday season.
- Impressive - The cocoa and vanilla swirls make a beautiful pattern without much effort.
- Nut free - These are nut free making it great as school treats or for play dates.
- No Eggs - Perfect for your vegetarian friends.
- Tastes amazing - These are mildly sweet, crisp, buttery and perfect with coffee or tea.
Freeze the Dough
The rolled logs can be frozen for up to a month. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and then transfer into a freezer safe zip lock bag, seal well and then freeze. More slice and bake recipes to enjoy - Santa’s Whiskers Cookies, Cardamom Shortbread or 3 Ingredient Brown Sugar Cookies.
- Flour - Regular unbleached all purpose flour.
- Butter - Unsalted butter at room temperature. Adjust salt is using salted butter.
- Sugar - Regular granulated sugar.
- Cocoa powder - Dutch processed cocoa powder.
- Flavorings - Vanilla extract and Salt.
- Use good quality butter, if possible.
- Chill the log - You want the dough to be solid when baking. Else, they might spread more and loose the pretty swirl pattern.
- Cut even sized discs - If the discs are of different thickness, then the thinner ones will be brown by the the time the thicker one bake.
- End pieces - The end pieces will not look as pretty, but you can still bake and enjoy them.
- If the dough starts to crack while rolling into a log or slicing - Let it sit at room temperature for 2-3 minutes to start to just soften before rolling the rest of the way.
- Dip in melted chocolate - Melt semi sweet chips with a dash of vegetable oil in the microwave and dip half of each biscuit in the melted chocolate and place on a parchment paper to set.
- Make filled pinwheel sandwiches - Spread Nutella or chocolate filling between two pinwheel.
- Fill with jam - Spread your favorite preserves like strawberry, raspberry or apricot jam between two pinwheels.
- Make it with almonds - Spread finely minced sliced almonds between the rolled vanilla and cocoa sheets. Roll, chill and bake.
- Peppermint - Add a dash of peppermint extract to the dough.
HOW TO MAKE?
- Make base vanilla dough - Cream butter, sugar, vanilla extract and salt for about couple of minutes, until smooth and creamy. Mix in all purpose flour, until it comes together.
- Make Chocolate dough - Divide vanilla dough in half, and mix cocoa powder to one half of the dough.
- Roll into a log - Roll each dough separately between sheets of parchment paper to about ¼-inch thickness. Place one dough on top of the other and gently roll tightly into a log. Wrap dough with parchment paper or plastic wrap and chill overnight or up to 2 days.
- Slice and Bake - Cut cold log into ¼-inch discs and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees, until golden in color.
How to make ahead?
Cookie dough - Rolled log (wrapped well) can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.
At room temperature - Baked and cooled ones can be stored in an air tight container for up to a week.
In the freezer - Place in a freezer zip lock bag, seal well and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight at room temperature.
How to package for the holidays?
These make a great homemade gift giving idea for the holidays since they store well at room temperature -
- Perfect for Christmas
- Wrap them in clear cellophane bags and tie a cute ribbon ---> Great for friends / family / teachers
- Stack 3 to 4 cookies in cupcake liners and arrange them in a cookie tin
More Cookie Recipes to Try
Chocolate Pinwheel Cookies
- ½ cup unsalted butter 1 stick, room temperature
- ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon white granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup + 3 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 1 and ½ tablespoons cocoa powder
- Add butter, sugar, vanilla extract and salt into a medium bowl. Beat with a hand held electric beater, for about 2 minutes, until smooth and creamy.
- Beat in flour, until just combined. Divide dough in half and remove one half to a plate (this is the vanilla dough). Add cocoa powder to the remaining half in the bowl and continue beating with the beater (begin low and increase to medium), until it is evenly combined to make chocolate dough.
- Roll - Shape vanilla dough into a rectangular disc and roll between two pieces of parchment paper to ¼-inch thickness. Similarly, roll chocolate dough separately to ¼-inch thickness.
- Gently transfer vanilla dough on top of the chocolate dough. Beginning on the long side, roll the dough up tightly jelly-roll style. Using both hands, roll the log gently to make it a bit longer (this helps to make both doughs adhere well and make medium sized cookies), refer video.
- Chill - Wrap log with the parchment paper or plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight (or up to 3 days).
- Bake - Pre heat oven to 350°F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Remove dough from refrigerator, unwrap and cut into ¼-inch slices using a sharp knife. Place on the prepared baking pan, spacing about 1 and ½ inches apart (cookies will expand slightly but not too much).
- Bake cookies for 20 to 25 minutes (rotate pan half way through baking), until cookies are golden in color. Place pan on a wire rack to cool completely.
Nutritional information, based on third-party calculations, should be seen as estimates, not guarantees, as various factors like product types, brands, processing methods, and more can alter the nutritional content in recipes.
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