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Chocolate Wafer Cookies

These thin, crispy chocolate wafer cookies are dark, rich, and delicious. Enjoy them just as they are for a rich chocolate indulgence, or use them to make icebox cakes and cookie crusts.

chocolate wafer cookies scattered on white parchment paper

Homemade Chocolate Wafers

As much as I enjoy baking with lots of flavors, there’s something magical about making something delicious out of a short list of basic baking ingredients. That’s just what you get with these chocolate wafer cookies.

They’re made with ingredients you may very well already have in your kitchen. Add to that the fact that the dough mixes, rolls, and cuts easily, and you’ve got a keeper of a recipe that you’ll come back to again and again.

If you’re familiar with Nabisco Famous Chocolate Wafers, then these cookies may look similar to you. Those thin, crispy cookies were a popular pick for icebox cakes, cookie crusts, and more. And these thin, crispy cookies are much the same. They’re a great substitute to use in your recipes that need those chocolate wafer cookies.

overhead view of chocolate wafer cookies scattered over a white surface

Here are just a few of the reasons to love these chocolate cookies:

  • Simple ingredients. You’ll just need some basic baking ingredients to make these cookies.
  • Forgiving dough. This dough is lovely to handle and roll. It also holds up well to gathering and re-rolling so you won’t have to waste any dough.
  • Wonderful flavor. The rich, deep flavor is fantastic!
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What You’ll Need

Scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions. Here are some notes about the ingredients needed to make homemade chocolate wafer cookies.

overhead view of ingredients for chocolate wafer cookies
  • All-purpose flour – Measure by weight or use the spoon and sweep method. Learn more: How to Measure Flour
  • Dutch-process cocoa powder – Use this type of cocoa for that deep chocolate flavor and dark color. (See my note below.)
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Unsalted butter – Let the butter soften at room temperature before mixing. It should be soft but hold a thumbprint when pressed. Learn more: How to Soften Butter
  • Granulated sugar
  • Egg – Set out the egg along with the butter so it can come to room temperature.
  • Vanilla extract

What Kind of Cocoa Powder Should I Use for Chocolate Wafer Cookies?

To get deep, rich chocolate flavor, use Dutch process cocoa powder to make chocolate wafers. That type of cocoa powder has been treated to be made more neutral than the usual acidity of cocoa powder. That process gives it a smoother flavor and a darker color.

There’s also a cocoa called black cocoa. That type of cocoa has had additional processing done that makes it ultra-Dutch processed. The result is a deep chocolate flavor and a very dark color. Many people like it for these kinds of cookies, but I find that regular Dutch process cocoa powder works well and provides a nice, dark color. If you do want to use black cocoa powder, try using a combination of equal volumes of it and Dutch process cocoa for a more pleasing, balanced flavor.

stack of six chocolate wafer cookies on a wire rack along with more cookies

How to Make Chocolate Wafers

These chocolate cookies are easy to make, and the dough is a dream to roll and cut. Be sure to allow time for chilling when making your baking plans. Here’s what you’ll need to do:

Combine the dry ingredients. Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt.

Combine the wet ingredients. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy and lightened in color. Mix in the egg and vanilla.

Finish mixing. With the mixer on low speed, gradually add the flour mixture, and mix just until combined.

Chill. Cover the dough, and refrigerate for 30 minutes. You can chill it longer, but you may need to let it sit at room temperature before rolling it.

Prepare for baking. Heat the oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners.

Roll and cut the dough. Lightly dust a work surface and a rolling pin with cocoa powder. Place the cookie dough on the surface, and roll to about 1/8-inch thick. Use a 2 & 1/2-inch round cookie cutter to cut the dough into rounds. Gather and re-roll the dough, and continue cutting out cookies.

Bake. Place the cut cookies on the prepared pans. Bake one pan at a time for 15 to 18 minutes, or until the cookies appear just set.

Cool. Place the pans on wire racks, and allow the cookies to cool completely.

overhead view of chocolate wafer cookies on a wire rack

Tips for Success

Here are some tips to help ensure chocolate wafer cookie success!

  • Use good quality cocoa powder. With the flavor focus solidly on chocolate, using a good quality cocoa powder will provide the best result.
  • Don’t skip the chilling time. That time in the refrigerator lets the dough relax so your cookies won’t be tough, and it also helps the dough be more easily handled. If you need to chill the dough longer than 30 minutes, you will likely need to let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes before rolling and cutting it.
  • Watch the thickness of the dough. Use a ruler to check how thick the dough is when rolling it. Aim for 1/8-inch thick or slightly thicker. Thinner dough won’t hold together well.
  • Don’t over-bake. The dark color of these cookies can make it difficult to tell when they’re done. The tops should look just set or almost set. Also, use your nose! When you start to smell the chocolate strongly, they’re likely ready to come out of the oven.
overhead view of chocolate wafer cookies in a towel-lined basket with more cookies alongside

Serving Suggestions

These thin, crispy cookies are certainly tasty on their own, but they also lend themselves to many other uses. If you’re looking for a substitute for Nabisco chocolate wafers, you can use these cookies much like you would use those. That means icebox cake, cheesecake, and cookie crusts, just to name a few. You can also use these cookies to make homemade Oreos!

How to Store

Place the cooled cookies in an airtight container, and store at room temperature up to 5 days. They’ll be at their best within a couple of days, but they should be useful for icebox cakes and cookie crusts a bit longer.

Can These Cookies Be Frozen?

Yes, you can freeze these chocolate wafer cookies. Place them in an airtight, freezer-safe container. Properly stored, they should keep in the freezer up to 3 months.

stack of nine chocolate wafer cookies surrounded by more cookies

Video Tutorial: Chocolate Wafer Cookies

Chocolate Wafer Cookies

Yield about 36 cookies
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Additional Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 18 minutes

These thin, crispy chocolate wafer cookies have such wonderfully rich dark chocolate flavor!

overhead view of chocolate wafer cookies scattered over a white surface

Ingredients

  • 1 & 1/2 cups (180g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (42g) Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (113g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  2. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla, and mix well.
  3. Reduce the mixer speed to low. Gradually add the flour mixture, mixing just until combined.
  4. Cover and refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
  5. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners.
  6. Place the dough on a work surface lightly dusted with cocoa powder. Roll the dough to 1/8-inch thick, and then use a 2 & 1/2-inch round cookie cutter to cut into rounds.
  7. Transfer the cut cookies to the prepared pans. Bake, one pan at a time, for 15 to 18 minutes, or until the cookies just appear set.
  8. Place the pans on wire racks, and allow the cookies to cool completely.

Notes

Recipe adapted from King Arthur Baking.

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    16 Comments on “Chocolate Wafer Cookies”

  1. Thank you so much for this recipe. I couldn’t believe that Nabisco discontinued the wafer cookies. What were they thinking? No worries now that I have your recipe:)

    • My pleasure! I hope they work well for you!

    • Well, perhaps my egg was too small, but my dough was a bit dry, horrible to roll out, broke, stuck to the rolling pin etc. and yes, I dusted with the cocoa. After the first few rolls, I decided to use waxed paper over the dough. Worked like a charm. So if anyone is having trouble rolling, use waxed paper!
      P.s. I am not a novice, I happen to be quite a good baker. Been at it for about 50 years. 

      • Hi, Mary Ann. I’m sorry you had troubles with the dough! A splash of water may help if you think the dough is dry. And waxed paper is a good trick for rolling delicate doughs!

  2. Thank you so much for this recipe! I wanted to make the ice box cake but was not sure what I was going to use since Nabisco discontinued their chocolate wafers.

  3. Yayy! They were fantastic chocolate wafer cookies. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Can you use this as a pie crust or tart shell, or is it better to bake the cookies and then process them into a crust?

  5. We found it was easiest to roll the dough between two sheets of waxed paper. That allowed us to lift up the sheet to get the cookies off with our them becoming misshapen Also, we cooked them for about 10 minutes and they were done just right. I’m so glad you posted this recipe because the cookies are part of our holiday traditions and I was very sad to see they were discontinued.. We really like the Holiday Log made with these and whipped cream. Thank you gaind for the recipe.

  6. So frustrating that you  publish recipes with no “jump to” option. I will never open a link to your advertisers, or read your recipes again.  You have no respect for the readers’time.

  7. Great flavour- really problematic to roll. As an experienced baker- I eventually resorted to making a log and slicing them. Had hoped to avoid that. which is why I tried your recipe. And for a change- I followed the recipe exactly. Really mixed feelings- glad they were for an ice box cake so the appearance din’t matter too much.

    • I’m sorry you had troubles, Anna! I’ve found that this dough is a bit sticky but still capable of being rolled. Another reader suggested rolling it between sheets of wax paper to make it easier. Maybe that would help?

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