If you have jumped on the black cocoa* train yet, what are you even doing? It's a super fun, all-natural way to dye food completely black without staining teeth or clothes! Not to mention, nothing says Halloween like these black cocoa skeleton cookies!
Tips & Tricks
You don't have to use black cocoa powder for these cookies, but regular cocoa just won't give you the same fun effect, so I highly recommend it! I've bought it from The Cocoa Trader* on Amazon and from King Arthur Flour. Both are great!
I personally don't own any Halloween specific cookie cutters, so I just used my favorite gingerbread man cookie cutters and my dog bone cookie cutters to make these skeletons!
There are a ton of ways to make royal icing, but my preferred method is with meringue powder*. It creates a very stable royal icing that hardens quickly on top of cookies. It's usually less than $10 and will last you FOREVER.
Here's a quick video showing how I decorate my skeletons!
If you make these black cocoa skeleton cookies, please leave us a star rating at the bottom of the page! This provides helpful feedback to both me and other readers. I’d also love to see your cute little skeletons, so feel free to drop a photo in the comments! Happy baking!Print
These black cocoa skeleton cookies are super fun and easy to make!
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- ¾ cup powdered sugar
- 1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
- ½ cup unsweetened black cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoon meringue powder
- 2-3 teaspoons water
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and powdered sugar until fully combined. Add in the flour, black cocoa, vanilla extract, and salt and mix until fully combined and smooth. The dough will feel a bit dry but should come together.
- Transfer the dough into an airtight container and refrigerate overnight (but a minimum of 2 hours if you can’t wait all night).
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough ¼ inch thick and then cut out your cookies.
- Place the cookies 1-2 inches apart on your baking sheet (they won’t spread much). Place the baking sheet in the fridge or freezer for a minimum of 20 minutes before baking to allow the butter in the dough to firm back up. If you don't chill the cookies again they will spread!
- While the cookies are chilling, preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the edges are set. Bake on the middle rack of the oven and rotate the pan halfway through baking for the best results. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for 2-3 minutes, then remove and let them finish cooling on a cooling rack.
- Let the cookies cool completely before decorating.
- To make royal icing, whisk together the meringue powder, powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon of water. Slowly drizzle in more water until the icing flows slightly, but still holds its shape.
- Transfer the icing to a piping bag fitted with a small round tip and draw on some bones!
Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.
The meringue powder helps stabilize the royal icing and allows it set quickly, but is totally optional! Especially if you're making cookies that will be eaten the same day or you don't really care if they get smudged. Aka if this is a fun activity for kids, just skip the meringue powder.
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: halloween cookies, black cocoa cookies, fun halloween treats, chocolate shortbread cookies, skeleton cookies, skeleton cutout cookies
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