Easy Italian biscotti cookie recipe made with chocolate covered almonds
You are going to love this easy Italian chocolate biscotti recipe! Don’t you love it when something wonderful becomes even more wonderful? Like, when you purchase an item on sale and at the cash are told there is an additional 50% off! Or when you receive a complimentary hotel upgrade! Isn’t it fantastic when you discover a new author, and then realize that they have an entire series of books to enjoy! The best surprises however, happen in the kitchen. When we visited with Anna, to learn how to make her classic Italian biscotti, we left with not one, but two recipes. The second biscotti we learned to make from her were these – an easy chocolate Italian biscotti recipe that is just as amazing (some would argue, even more amazing) than the original.
We first tasted Anna’s biscotti several years ago. Anna’s son is dating Helen’s daughter, and during holidays a gift basket filled with sweets would make its way to Helen’s home, courtesy of Anna. This homemade offering of kindness included all sorts of delicious things, but what disappeared first were always the biscotti. The chocolate biscotti in particular, with their rich chocolate flavour, perfect amount of sweetness, and incredible texture were always the first to go.
Our visit with Anna was full of delightful surprises. We knew that it would be lovely, but we didn’t realize just how welcoming, kind and generous Anna would be with her time, enthusiasm, and of course her recipes. Stepping into her kitchen it was clear that this was the heart of the home. Now a retired nurse (yay for nurses!), Anna spends much of her time cooking and baking for her family. Her daughter mentioned that it was not uncommon for the family to wake up to delicious smells, like freshly baked muffins, breads, and even biscotti.
We don’t know about you, but we have eaten some bad biscotti in our day. Rock hard, too sweet, flavourless. Our experiences led us to conclude that making biscotti must be very difficult. The only way to ensure a great tasting biscotti was to purchase it, preferably at an Italian coffee shop or bakery. But guess what! We were wrong. Anna taught us that making biscotti is actually quite simple, with the right recipe. This easy Italian chocolate biscotti recipe proves that perfect biscotti can be made at home.
What are Italian biscotti?
Italian biscotti are twice baked cookies. They have a distinctive oblong shape and are typically flavoured with almond, although there are endless possibilities. Their shape, and the fact that they are dry due to the double baking, make them the perfect cookie to dunk into your coffee, tea, or hot chocolate.
How to bake Italian biscotti
In order to get your biscotti to be the right texture, you need to bake them twice. This is not complicated – it just takes some time. The first thing that you will do is shape your dough into flattened logs. After the dough bakes, you allow it to cool, and then you cut our your individual cookies using a serrated knife. Place each cookie so that one of the cut sides is down, and bake again. It’s as easy as that!
What is so special about this easy Italian chocolate biscotti recipe?
Well, the first thing of course is that it comes from Anna. She is even sweeter than her cookies! Focusing on the biscotti however, we are not exaggerating when we say that these are the best chocolate biscotti we have ever had. We think that there are a few reasons why this is so, and we have listed them here:
- Anna uses olive oil instead of butter in her biscotti recipe, which gives a lovely flavour and texture
- This easy Italian chocolate biscotti recipe uses just the right amount of sugar. The biscotti are sweet, but not too sweet.
- Instead of plain almonds, Anna uses chocolate covered almonds in this recipe (the way she does in her original biscotti recipe). We cannot explain how amazing this is!
How to cut biscotti
The most challenging part of this easy Italian chocolate biscotti recipe is slicing the dough to shape your cookies. You need to allow the cookies to cool enough after the first baking before cutting. The trick, we learned from Anna, is to use a serrated knife. A large bread knife would work well, but you can also use a smaller serrated steak or dinner knife.
Using a serrated knife to slice biscotti
A serrated knife is one with “teeth”. You want to use this sort of knife because you will be using a sawing motion as you cut through the cookies. This will enable you to cut through the almonds without flattening and destroying your cookies.
How to store chocolate biscotti
The first thing to do is make sure that these Italian cookie are cooled completely. Then, you can store your Italian chocolate biscotti in a well sealed container where they will keep for several days at room temperature. You can also keep them in the refrigerator for longer.
Can I freeze the Italian chocolate biscotti?
Yes! We have frozen these biscotti before, in order to pace ourselves! Otherwise, we could eat an entire batch in a few days. It’s not our fault – they are too delicious, and we are weak.
To freeze biscotti, place them in a container lined with parchment paper, with additional parchment paper between layers of biscotti. To serve, allow your Italian cookie to thaw at room temperature – they will be perfectly delicious.
Variations to this easy Italian chocolate biscotti recipe
This recipe is really perfect just the way it is. There are however some modifications that you can make to it, according to Anna.
- You can add some slivered almonds to the top of your biscotti. Prior to the first baking, brush some egg white on top of the dough and sprinkle slivered almonds on top. This will make a pretty Italian cookie!
- If you prefer, you can use chocolate chips and plain almonds in place of the chocolate covered almonds. Or you can use all three – chocolate covered almonds, chocolate chips and almonds. Just be sure that the total amount of ingredients equals the one cup, or close to it.
This recipe for easy Italian chocolate biscotti is part of our series of Xenes Kouppes. You can find more recipes in this category, here:
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Italian chocolate biscotti recipe
- 1 Stand mixer with paddle attachment
- Serrated or bread knife
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- 2¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 2½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tbsp grated orange rind
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1 cup chocolate covered almonds
- ⅓ cup slivered almonds
- 1 egg white
- In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment combine the eggs, sugar and olive oil and beat well on medium speed for approximately 5 minutes.3 eggs, 1 cup sugar, ⅓ cup olive oil
- Meanwhile, combine your dry ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well combined. Set aside.2¼ cup all-purpose flour, ½ cup cocoa powder, 2½ tsp baking powder, ½ tsp salt
- Add the grated orange rind and the almond extract to your wet ingredients in your mixer bowl and mix well. Next, with the mixer speed set on low, slowly add in the dry ingredients. When just combined (that is, you no longer see any flour), add in the chocolate covered almonds and mix briefly until well combined.1 tbsp grated orange rind, 1 tsp almond extract, 1 cup chocolate covered almonds
- Line your baking tray with parchment paper. Half your dough and make two logs which are approximately 1 inch think and 4 inches wide. Optional: If you wish to decorate the top of your biscotti with slivered almonds, brush the top of the dough with a thin layer of egg white and then sprinkle the slivered almonds on top. Chill in refrigerator for 15 minutes.⅓ cup slivered almonds, 1 egg white
- While dough is chilling, preheat oven to 325 °F
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator and then bake in the middle rack of your oven for 30 minutes. Remove, and allow to cool on baking sheet for 15 minutes. Once cooled, use a serrated knife to carefully cut the logs into biscotti (keep them on the baking tray). We like to cut on the diagonal and have each biscotti about 1 inch wide. Arrange biscotti so that a cut side is up and bake in the middle rack of the oven for 15 – 20 minutes, turning over half way through.
- Allow to cool on baking tray for a few minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack. Biscotti should be crisp and dry, but not too hard. Store in a well sealed container at room temperature for several weeks. Baked biscotti can also be stored in the refrigerator, or frozen. Enjoy!