These soft, chewy, buttery sugar Neapolitan cookies have been on my radar to make for a long time. Adapted from cookie queen Sarah Keiffer, these cookies are as delicious as they are impressive. Flavored with freeze dried strawberries, dark chocolate and vanilla, these Neapolitan cookies are made from one cookie dough. Three different flavors in one yummy bite without having to bake three separate cookies. I'd consider that a baking win.
How to make Neapolitan cookies
The base recipe for this cookie dough is a vanilla sugar cookie dough. Begin by beating the sugar and butter together until light and fluffy. An egg, egg yolk and vanilla are beaten in followed by the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Once the dough is well combined, remove the dough from the mixer and place it on a scale. I typically weigh everything in grams anyway, but especially for this recipe as it's easier to divide the grams into thirds. Divine the dough into 3 even portions. One third of the dough remains vanilla, another will be strawberry and the last third will be chocolate. Set aside the vanilla dough, as this dough is done and nothing more will be added to it.
Place the second ⅓ of the dough back into the bowl of the stand mixer. Pour in the pulverized dried strawberries and mix on low until thoroughly combined. Remove the dough from the bowl and set aside. Wipe down the bowl with a paper towel to remove any remaining strawberry dough.
Place the last ⅓ of the dough into the bowl. Add the cocoa powder and mix until well combined on low speed.
Using a 1 tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop dough balls of each flavor of dough, one flavor at a time. Wipe out the cookie scoop with a paper towel between scooping each flavor.
Take one each of the vanilla, strawberry and chocolate dough balls and gently press them together. Roll them together into a ball. Roll the cookies in granulated sugar and bake for 9-11 minutes or until the cookies look set at the edges and the center looks almost set. Err on under baking than over baking. Let the cookies cool to firm up a bit as they are fragile right out of the oven. I like to serve and eat these barely warm or at room temperature.
If you make these Neapolitan cookies, let me know! Drop a comment or tag me on Instagram. I love seeing your bakes and creations.
For more cookie recipes, check out these posts:
- 2 ⅔ cups (320g) all purpose flour
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 ¾ cups (333g) granulated sugar, divided
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup freeze dried strawberries
- 1 drop pink or red gel food color
- 2 tablespoons Dutch process cocoa powder
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- In a food processor, pulverize the strawberries until powdery.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and 1 ½ cups of the granulated sugar together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
- Reduce the speed to low and add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract and beat until incorporated, about 1 minute.
- Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl.
- Add in the flour mixture, mixing on low until just combined. Remove from the mixing bowl. No need to rinse out the mixing bowl.
- Using a kitchen scale, weigh all of the dough. Divide the dough into three portions.
- One portion is your vanilla dough. Nothing will be added to it. Set vanilla dough aside.
- Place one portion of dough back into the mixing bowl. Add the freeze dried strawberries and a drop of red or pink food color. Beat on low speed until well combined.
- Remove the strawberry dough from the bowl and set aside. Wipe out the bowl with a paper towel.
- Place last portion of dough back into the mixing bowl. Add the cocoa powder, beating on low speed until well combined.
- Repeat with the strawberry cookie dough. Wipe down the inside of the cookie dough scoop with a paper towel.
- Repeat with the chocolate cookie dough.
- Take one each of the vanilla, strawberry and chocolate dough balls and gently press them together. Roll into a ball.
- Repeat making tri-color dough balls with the remaining dough.
- Place the remaining ¼ cup of granulated sugar into a shallow bowl.
- Roll the dough balls into the sugar and place on the cookie sheets, 3 inches apart.
- Bake the cookies for 9-11 minutes until the edges are just set and the centers still soft.
- Let the cookies cool for 15 minutes, or until the cookies are firm enough to handle.