These oatmeal cookies have crispy little edges with chewy centers, then add in the rich flavors of chocolate and espresso with nutty hazelnuts, and these Espresso Hazelnut Oatmeal Cookies are going to be a favorite cookie year-round!
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Hazelnuts, aka filberts, are great in so many baked goods with their sweet and rich flavor. And we’re all familiar with them as a chocolate spread in Nutella.
Though Turkey is apparently the world’s largest producer of hazelnuts, they are widely grown in Oregon, and considered a Pacific Northwest staple in the United States.
Store hazelnuts, whether raw or toasted, in the refrigerator or the freezer (not the cupboard). They can spoil easily, and keeping them in cold storage will help keep them fresher longer.
I was happy to find a big bag of toasted chopped hazelnuts at my store. However, I realize that finding ready to use hazelnuts might be difficult, so I thought I’d share how to toast them and remove their skins if you can only find whole ones with skins on. You can toast blanched hazelnuts (ones with no skins) the same way.
But, if you can’t find hazelnuts, any nut will work, and I’d recommend almonds especially. Pecans or walnuts would also be lovely.
How to toast and skin hazelnuts
There are several ways to toast and skin the nuts. The one I find the easiest to use is the oven method, but choose the one that appeals most to you.
One note: do keep an eye on them as they cook; they can burn very quickly. Don’t walk away and check Facebook or anything!
To toast in the oven
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil and arrange hazelnuts in one single layer. Place the baking sheet in the middle of the oven, and toast until golden brown and fragrant, about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
To toast on the stove top
Place the hazelnuts in a medium skillet over medium heat, and toast until golden brown and fragrant, about 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
To boil (blanch) them
This method was made famous by Julia Child and Alice Medrich.
Make sure to use a large, deep pot, because the baking soda will bubble up making a large amount of foam, and you don’t want it to boil over.
Place 1 cup of raw hazelnuts in 4 cups of boiling water with 4 tablespoons baking soda. The water will foam up as soon as you add the baking soda. If it looks like it will bubble over, lower the heat and lift the pot off the element. Don’t let the pot boil over. Boil for 3-4 minutes, stirring constantly.
Lift one hazelnut out with a slotted spoon and place it in the ice water to test if it’s ready to peel. When the skin peels off easily, the whole batch is ready to dunk in the water bath.
Drain the hazelnuts out of the boiling water, and transfer them to an ice water bath. Drain again, and place them on a baking sheet lined with dark towels. Then, peel off the skins.
Preheat the oven to 350° F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the nuts in a single layer on the baking sheet, and bake for 10-12 minutes, giving them a stir once or twice while they bake. Again, keep a close eye on them while they bake so that they don’t burn.
To remove the hazelnut skins
Place the toasted hazelnuts on a clean dark kitchen towel, cover with another clean dark towel, and let steam for 1 minute.
Rub them in the towels to remove loose skins, don’t worry if all the skins don’t come off. Allow them to cool completely.
More easy cookie recipes
I just love cookies! And cookies can be so easy to make! Here are some of my favorites that you just have to try! Classic peanut butter cookies, Dulce de Leche Sea Salt Cookies, Lime meltaway cookies, and Coconut thumbprint cookies.
Pro tips on how to make a great PNW cookie
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Be sure to scroll down to the printable recipe card for full ingredient amounts and instructions
Cream together the brown sugar, shortening and granulated sugar. You’ll notice I left my fork in the bowl. I prefer to make cookies just with a fork. But, if you prefer to use a stand mixer or hand mixer, those will work just fine as well.
Add egg, water, vanilla, and espresso powder; beat well.
Instant espresso powder can be found on the coffee aisle of most well stocked grocery stores. Amazon also carries it. I use it in all kinds of desserts, from espresso cheesecake bites to Mocha candied almonds, and Mocha caramel sauce.
What kind of espresso powder do you like?
My favorite espresso powder is Medaglia D’Oro espresso instant coffee. Amazon carries it (that’s my affiliate link for it). Sometimes I can find it at the grocery store. Or, check specialty stores; I’ve even see it at Target. A jar lasts a nice long time for me, so if I’m getting low I might stock up with a couple of jars.
In a separate bowl, combine the oats, flour, salt, and baking soda, and mix well.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and mix well. Fold in the espresso chocolate chips and the chopped hazelnuts.
If you can’t find espresso chocolate chips, just use regular chocolate chips.
Scoop the dough onto a parchment paper or silpat lined cookie sheet. I love these cookie dough scoops to get nice consistent scoop sizes. These air filled cookie sheets are my favorites (you’ll even see them in the photos). These cookie sheets allow for nice air movement and a nice even browning underneath the cookie.
Bake about 13 minutes for small cookies, or about 17 minutes for larger cookies, or until edges are golden brown. Remove to wire rack. Cool completely.
Can I make big cookies?
This recipe will make about 5 dozen smaller oatmeal cookies.
If you want larger cookies (like I’ve made for the pictures), drop the dough by rounded tablespoonfuls onto parchment paper lined cookie sheets, and bake 17 or 18 minutes. This will make about 25 large cookies.
I love using those cookie dough scoops to measure out my cookies, whether large cookies or small cookies. That way they all come out the same size and shape. And, they all bake at the same rate.
Can I make these ahead?
Yes, you can make these ahead! The baked cookies freeze really well. Allow them to cool completely before placing them in an airtight freezer safe container. And store in the freezer for up to 6 months.
To enjoy them, simply take them out of the freezer and allow them to defrost on the counter.
The dough can also be made ahead and kept in the fridge or the freezer. I like to make the dough into dough balls, place them on a parchment lined tray and pop them in the freezer. Once frozen, they can be stored in a zip top bag.
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Espresso Hazelnut Oatmeal Cookies Recipe
Espresso Hazelnut Oatmeal Cookies
- 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
- 3/4 cup vegetable shortening
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
- 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats uncooked
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ cup espresso morsels chocolate chips
- ½ cup toasted chopped hazelnuts
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- In large bowl, beat with a hand mixer or sturdy fork, the brown sugar, shortening and granulated sugar together until creamy. Add egg, water, vanilla, and espresso powder; beat well.
- In a medium bowl, combine oats, flour, salt, and baking soda, and mix well. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, and mix well. Fold in the espresso chocolate chips and the chopped hazelnuts.
- Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls or using cookie dough scoops onto cookie sheets lined with parchment paper or Silpats.
- Bake 12 to 15 minutes for small cookies, or 16 to 18 minutes for larger cookies, or until edges are golden brown. Remove to wire rack. Cool completely. Store tightly covered.
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations, and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary based on brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes, and more.