The very BEST Giant Salted Espresso Hot Fudge Cookies for your summer weekend baking. Easy homemade chocolate fudge sauce stuffed into the best buttery cookies. YES, it’s true, and they are SO VERY GOOD! Each cookie dough ball is hand stuffed with a ball of frozen fudge and sprinkled with espresso salt before baking them to perfection. There’s nothing not to love about these sweet hot fudge stuffed cookies. Each bite is slightly crisp on the edges with a warm center full of gooey melted fudge sauce. These are truly the very best cookie you will eat…maybe ever. You can even add vanilla ice cream with a cherry on top.
Happiest Friday you guys. Today is a great day because – we have cookies! Potentially the very best cookies I will ever share with you. And I promise, this is not an exaggeration. I actually surprised myself at how great they turned out. So I of course, have many, many words to say about them.
Jumping right into the inspiration…
Look, there’s a lot happening in the world right now. It’s challenging for just about everyone. And It’s not that cookies can solve all the problems of the world, but they can make things feel better. Ah, the power of a delicious cookie! So my goal today is to share a recipe that will make you all smile.
Enter these cookies. I drew inspiration from a cookie I shared way, way back during the very first year of HBH. They’re called hot fudge ice cream sundae cookies. Honestly? I’m not sure how well that recipe actually works…so maybe don’t try to bake them. But I took the idea of hot fudge on a cookie and applied it to these cookies you see here. And you guys? They are heaven.
Here is the thing, recipe testing…it can take time.
These cookies? They took some serious time, but you know? I got them just right and I’ve never been so excited to share a cookie with you guys. The recipe changed over the course of three days of testing. But I was able to use my creativity, and make these cookies truly worthy of the title “the best”.
Am I being slightly dramatic, sure, but these really aren’t your ordinary cookies, they really are The Best.
And an added bonus was that in the process, I found the perfect Father’s Day dessert that I know my dad will love.
Here are all the details you need to know.
Start with the chocolate fudge sauce. This is a simple mix of cocoa powder, sugar, milk, and chocolate chips. Melt everything together on the stove or in the microwave. Once melted, add a touch of butter for richness, and a splash of vanilla for the best flavor.
Simple, but so darn good. This sauce is rich, creamy, and perfectly sweet.
The sauce needs some time in the freezer, so freeze for thirty minutes, until firm. Once firm, roll the fudge sauce into balls and freeze another thirty minutes or until you’re ready to bake the cookies. The fudge balls need to be frozen. There’s no dancing around this step. I know it’s a little annoying to have to plan out your cookie making, but I’m highly recommending you start the fudge sauce process the day before. Or at least the morning you plan to bake the cookies. It’s a very EASY process, but chilling requires time. Just try and plan for that best you can.
Onto the cookies. Gather your ingredients. You’ll need the basics…butter, sugar, flour, etc. Simple, nothing fancy, but all good.
Next, beat, mix, stir, bake, wack that pan on the counter, bake again, wack again, eat warm…ENJOY!
That was the quick version, here are the nitty, gritty details…
The dough needs to be rolled into big two tablespoon-size balls, then add that frozen fudge ball to the center. Then add another tablespoon size cookie dough ball over top. So yes, two tablespoons of cookie dough, plus one tablespoon of fudge sauce, plus one more tablespoon of cookie dough.
A sprinkle of espresso salt, better known as flaky sea salt mixed with instant espresso (or coffee) powder.
This might sound odd, but please trust me, this is one of the keys to creating the very best cookie. The coffee highlights the flavors within the chocolate. You don’t realize it’s even there, but it’s what makes the cookie extra special.
And the salt? Well, that just seals the deal and creates a cookie that’s almost impossible to stop eating. That and the hot fudge sauce melting out of each cookie. Oh, that fudge sauce, it’s just so good. So delicious. So perfect.
The key to success…
…make sure to seal the fudge sauce inside the cookie dough before baking. It’s easy to do, but make sure there are no cracks or some of the fudge sauce may leak out.
…tap that baking sheet on your counter midway through baking, then return to the oven. When the cookies have completely finished baking, remove them from the oven and tap the baking sheet once more. You guys, this step is KEY. It will ensure you have the least cakey chocolate chip cookie. Instead, you’ll get a cookie with crisp edges and a gooey center. Tapping the baking pan on the counter deflates the center of the cookie, pushing the edges out. I used this same method for my pumpkin cookies. And I now do it every time I bake any cookies…because it works. I learned this tip from the New York Times and you need it too.
So with that, let’s all agree that this weekend’s baking project should be giant salted espresso hot fudge cookies.
Nothing not to love about these sweet, flaky, hot fudge cookies. Enjoy them warm…with a side of ice cream…maybe add a cherry and make a little sundae situation. Or let them cool a little and make an ice cream sandwich. Or…simply eat them hot, right out of the oven, with a little extra espresso salt on top.
The Best! Enjoy everyone and see you tomorrow for a very fun Cocktail Saturday.
Looking for other cookie ideas? Here are some summertime favorites…
Crinkle Top Chocolate Peanut Butter Skillet Blondies
Brown Sugar Oatmeal Cookie, Cookie Dough Ice Cream Sandwiches
Salted Pretzel Nutella Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches
Lastly, if you make giant salted espresso hot fudge cookies, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
Watch the How To Video:
Giant Salted Hot Fudge Cookies with Coffee Salt
Servings: 12 cookies
Calories Per Serving: 485 kcal
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2/3 cup whole milk
- 3/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 5 ounces chopped dark chocolate or 3/4 cup additional chocolate chips (I use 70% dark)
- 2 tablespoons salted butter, cubed
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 sticks (1 cup) salted butter, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar (use 1/2 cup for a sweeter cookie)
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (+2 tablespoons, if needed, see note)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon flaky sea salt
- 1 tablespoon instant coffee powder (optional)
- 1. To make the chocolate fudge filling. In a medium bowl, melt together cocoa powder, milk, chocolate chips, dark chocolate, and butter in the microwave for 1-2 minutes, until smooth. Stir in the vanilla. Transfer to a glass container. Freeze 30 minutes, until firm. 2. Roll the fudge sauce into scant tablespoon-size balls and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Freeze until firm, at least 30 minutes or overnight. 3. To make the cookies. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until combined. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until combined. Add the vanilla, beating until creamy. Add the flour and baking soda. Remove 2 of the frozen fudge balls and cut into 4 pieces. Fold chunks of fudge into dough, leaving streaks of fudge throughout. 4. Roll the cookie dough into 2 tablespoon-size balls. Place 1 frozen fudge ball in the center of the dough, pushing down gently into the dough. Add 1 additional tablespoon size cookie dough ball on top, sealing the dough around the fudge. Place the balls 3 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet (don't bake more than 4 cookies per baking sheet). 5. Mix the flaky salt and coffee. Sprinkle the salt mix over each cookie. Transfer to the oven and bake for 8 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and tap the baking sheet on the counter 3 times to flatten them down. Return to the oven and bake another 4-5 minutes or until the cookies are just beginning to set on the edges, but still doughy in the center. Remove from the oven and tap the baking sheet on the counter 2-3 times to flatten them down again. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet. They will continue to cook slightly as they sit on the baking sheet. Sprinkle with flaky salt mix.6. Eat warm (with ice cream...highly recommended) or let cool and store in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
View Recipe Comments
Sticky Dough: I use 2 1/4 cups flour when baking these cookies, but some find that the dough works better for them with an additional 2 tablespoons flour. If your cookie dough feels too sticky/wet to roll, add 2-3 tablespoons additional flour. Freezing: cookies can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw, then add salt mix as directed.
I loved the recipe but I found that the cookies spread out sooo much
Wonder if the fudge in the dough is too much. Any tips?
I only got 12 cookies, and they spend to 3 times their size
Thanks for giving the recipe a try! Was your dough possibly too warm? This will definitely make them spread a lot. This recipe is only meant to make 12 cookies. Please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan
The cookie is very tasty. I only rated 4 stars because I had a very difficult time getting the dough sealed around the frozen fudge ball, and even though I used more cookie dough to fudge ratio than was said, the fudge still seeped out. So I got about 12 large cookies out of the recipe, but I have a lot of fudge left over, enough to make another batch of cookie dough for, which I will be doing. Also the espresso/salt topping is very bitter and biting, I enjoy the strong espresso flavor, but if you don’t like bitter coffee, I would go very lightly on it, or swirl some expresso powder in the cookie dough with the flour.
Happy Wednesday! Love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks for giving it a try! xTieghan
These cookies remind me of tiramisu! Delicious. Pretty easy recipe. Will absolutely make again!
Happy Sunday! It’s so great to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, I appreciate you taking the time to make it! xTieghan
Just ok. I was really excited about these but the flavor was lacking. The hot fudge center was fun but the espresso powder salt combo tasted like bitter coffee. I’m a coffee and chocolate lover. I think I’ll try adding the the espresso powder to the dough instead. Maybe it won’t taste like over roasted coffee beans.
So sorry you did not enjoy the recipe, please let me know if I can help in anyway! xTieghan
Sooooo good! I was looking for something a little different and these were perfect! I did end up putting the extra flour in there and I put the cookie batter in the fridge for about 10 mins. Made it much easier to work with and oh my gosh, they were delicious! Thank you Tieghan!
Thanks a lot for giving the recipe a try, I am delighted that the recipe was enjoyed! Happy Sunday! xTieghan
Thank you Tieghan!! these look amazing. When at room temperature, for how many seconds would you put in microwave?
I microwave on 30 second increments until the chocolate is melted. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan
Hello! Could I use kosher salt instead of flaky? I’m at my parent’s house and don’t have access at the moment ? I can’t wait to make these. They look AMAZING!
Yes, that will work! I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! Happy New Year! xTieghan
Haven’t eaten them yet but they are so extremely stick, I added about a half a cup of flour but it still too sticky to work with. My frozen chocolate balls are also melting faster than I can use them. This is way too stressful.
Hi Megan! I am really sorry about this! Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help! xTieghan
After reading many of the reviews, it inspired me to write this. I too had fudge balls left over, but found them to be enjoyed just like eating a piece of fudge. I began assembling them by flattening the first piece of dough in my hand, making a plate, then added the fudge ball, and topped it w a hunk of dough that I spread around and sealing it with the bottom layer. My cookies did not turn out cakey at all and looked just like the pictures above. I didn’t really have to tap the pan since they were flat both times, but did anyway. I even put 12 on a pan and they were perfectly fine. The taste was amazing, especially with the addition of the salt n expresso as I used unsalted butter. This I very much a keeper recipe and a special treat to be shared with others. Thanks so much for sharing.
Hi Marilyn! I am really happy this recipe turned out so well for you! Thank you so much for trying this recipe! xTieghan
Thanks for answering my question about the heavy cream/almond milk. I tried replying directly from your response but the reply link doesn’t seem to work, Anyway, I did make the fudge sauce using the metric system because I prefer weighing method for accuracy and consistency. I didn’t catch it until it was too late. In the ingredients list when you switch to metric, it states to use 270 grams of semisweet chocolate chip but 3/4 cup chocolate chips is actually about 130 grams. Just wanted to bring that to your attention. Of course it was too much chocolate (with the addition of the 5 oz dark chocolate) so my fudge wasn’t liquid at all. I was able to create my balls instantly without needing to freeze or even refrigerate. And of course they did not melt into a sauce upon baking. Despite that, I ended up with a cookie with a firm fudge center that actually tasted pretty good! The cookie of course didn’t flatten; instead I got a round “stuffed” cookie. Different type of cookie but it worked for me! LOL
Also, I don’t know if you realized that in your post you include “sugar”: “Start with the chocolate fudge sauce. This is a simple mix of cocoa powder, sugar, milk, and chocolate chips. Melt everything together on the stove or in the microwave. Once melted, add a touch of butter for richness, and a splash of vanilla for the best flavor.” However in the ingredients list, sugar is not listed. Second, in the instructions, it states: :To make the chocolate fudge filling. In a medium bowl, melt together cocoa powder, milk, chocolate chips, dark chocolate, and butter in the microwave for 1-2 minutes, until smooth.” So my questions that follow are: is there sugar that is supposed to be in there and are we to add the butter afterwards?
Last question, I promise! 😛 Is cocoa powder necessary in the fudge sauce? What roll does it play?
Hi Mais!! There is no sugar in the fudge sauce, so sorry for any confusion. The butter should be added at the end. Yes, you need the cocoa powder for flavor and texture. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I hope you love this recipe! Thank you!! xTieghan
thanks! i wishthis turned out well for me. i followed instructions and ended up with cakes. i made the 2nd batch with flattening occurting at 4/8/12 min – still very cakey. i used the german chocolate brand. otherwise followed insturctions. I *did* add the 2 extra tbsp of flour b/c of sticky dough — maybe that is the ultimate issue? dont know. BUT the pictures were SOOO beatufiul wish mine worked out.
would love a simple choc chip cookie recipe!
So sorry these did not workout for you. I am wondering if you tried slamming them the baking sheets on the counter? This helps to flatten them. Here is a recipe for a pretty simple cookie: https://www.halfbakedharvest.com/giant-chocolate-chip-cookies/
I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan
Hi. I was wondering if I can use heavy cream or almond milk instead of whole milk for the fudge sauce? If so, I assume if I use HC the amount used would be less than the whole milk. How much do you recommend? And would almond milk be 1:1 ratio?
Yes an equal amount of either one will work. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan
Can I use ground coffee beans instead if espresso powder? Thanks
Sorry, that won’t give the same results. I would use the espresso powder or just skip it. Please let me know if you give the recipe a try, I hope you love it! xTieghan
I have both your cookbooks, follow you on Instagram, and have recently started following your blog! Love so many of your recipes. In this recipe I see you note “ 5 ounces chopped dark chocolate or 3/4 cup additional chocolate chips (I use 70% dark)” so if I opt to use dark chocolate chips, am I using 5 oz
+ 3/4 which would be about 11 oz of chips? Or just the 3/4 cup (~6 oz)? Don’t want to overdue it on the chocolate lol!
You will use 3/4 cup of chocolate chips. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if I can help in any other way! xTieghan
I was wondering since we only bake 4 cookies at a time, what should we do with the remaining cookies that are waiting to be baked? Should we refrigerate them while the others bake and swap them around with another baking sheet since the just baked cookies need to rest on the cookie sheet? Or should we leave them on the counter as the first batch bakes? I’m making these later today so I hope I do it correctly!!
Thanks so much!
You can leave them on the counter as the first batch bakes. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan
I noticed the ingredients call for 1 tbsp salt but the directions don’t include putting salt into the dough. Is this correct? I’ve never made a cookie recipe that doesn’t have salt in the dough so I want to make sure! Can’t wait to make these!
You are going to use the salt in step 5. I hope you love the recipe, please let me know if you have any other questions! xTieghan
Hi, we recently made these and they went completely flat. We followed the recipe exactly and so I don’t think there was an issue with measurement. I compared this recipe to other cookie recipes and noticed you use more baking soda. Do you make any considerations for the fact that you’re in high altitude in Colorado? I lived there and remember how all baking recipes required changes and am assuming measurements in Colorado versus not at altitude would be different. Unfortunately, that seems to be the case with all baking recipes I’ve made from this site so would love to know if modifications are needed.
Hey Cristen! I am sorry you had trouble. Was there anything you did differently at all? Any ingredients different? Method of baking this? Any info will be helpful to help me problem solve and figure out what might be happening for you. It’s hard to know without knowing any details.
I do not adjust for the altitude within my recipes, so I don’t believe that is the issue you are having. That said, you could try reducing the amount of baking soda if you think that could yield a better result for you. It’s just hard to advise without knowing more details.
Hoping I can help! xTieghan