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Cookie Recipes - Unusual ingredients?

I was invited to a cookie exchange next week, and I am looking to accomplish 1 of 2 things.

A) Bring a cookie so unique and strange that everyone praises it, or
B) Bring a cookie so unique and strange that I don't get invited next year.

Either is fine with me! So, does anyone have any (edible) cookie recipes that they could share that contains a 'wierd' ingredient? The potato chip cookies are good but that is sort of mainstream now. I was thinking more along the lines of savory herbs or rutabagas or parsnips...

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  1. Not sure if this is unusual enough but Maida Heatter has a good cardamom cookie recipe.


    1. Don't know if you'll consider this an unusal ingredient but...A co-worker of mine who likes to bake, and has taken a few classes, makes a couple varieties of 'pecan sandies' style cookies that the recipe calls for adding crushed potato chips to. She brought some to work and we all raved about them. They were really good. I just did a Google search of 'potato chip cookies' and got a lot of 'results'. Below is the link to the search results in case you might be interested in these.


      1. How about Blackberry Sage Thumbprints? http://www.chowhound.com/topics/281671 They won first in a cookie exchange among Funwithfood's friends. They're really pretty cookies too.

        1. I know it's from a Butter Council ad, but there's a recipe for rosemary caramel sandwich cookies that actually looks pretty good. I saw it in a mag, but it's also probably on their butterisbest.com website.

          1. Bean Cookies. no kidding. Recipe calls for rolled oats, ground up canned white beans, brown sugar, etc. I like them & they're healthy. I can paraphrase if you like.

            1 Reply
            1. re: morebubbles

              I was thinking along the same lines, but rather yellow split pea-filled cookies (hopia munggo).

            2. Those are exactly along the lines that I am looking for! I printed them all out so far and am having trouble deciding! MoreBubbles, I would love the recipe for the bean cookies.

              3 Replies
              1. re: sparkalina

                morebubbles actually posted it here in another thread a while back: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/32760... (Just saving you the trouble of paraphrasing!)

                1. re: Katie Nell

                  Oh yay! Thanks so much Katie. I tried searching for it here & had no luck. That'll save me some typing - I don't have to rush home now! ;)

                2. re: sparkalina

                  Sure thing, I'll post it when I get home tonight, or early tomorrow morning! It used to be avail. on line, but it's not there now. It's a recipe by Julie Van Rosendaal, incidentally, but like I said, I'll paraphrase.

                3. Maybe go for unusual herbs or spice combos?

                  Start with a basic short bread or butter cookie recipe, and flavor it with

                  cardamomn and orange zest
                  five spice
                  rosemary and lemon
                  black pepper and drizzled with caramel
                  green tea powder

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: OnceUponABite

                    One of my vendors used to make homemade cracked black pepper biscotti for me at Christmas. The first time she sent them, I was a little skeptical but one bite made me a convert! They are highly addictive. I don't have a recipe, but you could probably modify a standard biscotti recipe by reducing the sugar a bit and adding fresh cracked pepper. Dipping the ends in chocolate might be interesting too...

                  2. get ahold of the veganomicon cookbook. i just made pistachio rosewater cookies. they look like innocent sugar cookies (and are extra xmasy with the green pistachios on top), but are much more grown up & lovely. other ingredients are lime zest & cardamom. awesome taste, but reallly deceiving by appearance :)

                    3 Replies
                      1. re: reannd

                        reannd, what's the texture of the pistachio rosewater cookies? they sound heavenly! (any chance of a paraphrased-recipe post? :) )

                        1. re: porceluna

                          Hey there-

                          The texture is well, kinda chewy at first.. gets hard fast, though, b/c they're made w.canola oil+soy milk (vegan recipe).. advice: make a single batch & eat them w.in a week =)

                          I don't know (c) rules or I'd post it myself. I have nothing but good things to say about this recipe.. it rocks.

                          Maybe go to your local bookstore & check it out. It's got kind of a lot of ingredients.. or just splurge & get Veganomicon online. It's a GREAT book.. a *ton* of great recipes. I checked it out from our library & ordered it for myself the same day after flagging like 30 recipes as can't miss. (I'm not vegan, but these recipes are very cool).

                      2. I don't know where you are located so I don't know if you can buy rice crackers, but this is a real unusual, tasty cookie, popular in Hawaii. I dip half in chocolate.
                        There are many recipes for it online-Google (Arare Cookies)
                        Item B.... on your list is hilarious.

                          1. re: piccola

                            This intrigues me -- why do they look so good!? Just may have to test them.

                            1. re: piccola


                              I once made a spice cookie recipe that called for bacon fat from a magazine article. It had been handed down and was thought to be a wartime recipe. It was ... awful.

                              Chocolate pepper cookies OTOH are fabulous, if an acquired taste. The first time I made them (Martha Stewart Christmas recipe) I wasn't sold, but others were. An aunt insisted I make them again the next Christmas, that if I put it off she might be dead. (Yes, this was many Christmases ago & she's still very much alive). At this point I began to acquire the taste. Now my favorite is Maida's Wienerstube, which I make with black cocoa for a superdark cookie. They're one of my top 5 favorites.

                              1. re: foiegras

                                foiegras, is there any way you could post your recipe for chocolate pepper cookies? They sound really good!

                                And, they've got me thinking about a "salt & pepper" gift basket, with salty worldpeace cookies and your peppery cookies.....!

                                1. re: porceluna

                                  Which one do you want me to paraphrase, Maida's? It's more hard-core, I think ... and I like your salt & pepper idea, very decadent!

                                  Btw, I Googled to see if I could find the recipe online, and one of the results was my post above--too funny :)

                                  1. re: foiegras

                                    If by hard-core, you mean yummier, then let's go for Maida's recipe! :)

                                    And don't you love the self-referencing Googles?! Not entirely helpful, but always worth a smile!

                                    1. re: porceluna

                                      Well, once you've developed the taste, I think Maida's is the best :) OK, I'll do this for you tomorrow (I am not with my cookbooks today).

                                      Btw, I get my black cocoa from King Arthur Flour's catalog. If you do the Google search, you'll find a picture of how dark they are normally. With the black cocoa they're Oreo black.

                                      I remember one guy who didn't care for this cookie in his Christmas package--he told me they were all really good "except for that black one" & made a face like maybe I was trying to poison him--I find those moments priceless <g>

                                      1. re: porceluna

                                        Here ya go ... and btw, this is in the Maida Cookie compilation book, which is well worth owning.

                                        1.5 c sifted all-purpose flour
                                        1.5 t baking powder
                                        .25 t salt
                                        .75 t cinnamon
                                        .25 t allspice
                                        .5 t finely ground black pepper
                                        pinch of cayenne
                                        .75 c unsweetened cocoa (preferably Dutch)
                                        1.5 sticks unsalted butter
                                        1.5 t vanilla
                                        1 c sugar
                                        1 egg

                                        Sift dry ingredients together. Cream butter; add vanilla and sugar and cream again. Add egg, mix. Add dry ingredients; mix only as necessary.

                                        Form logs, freeze or refrigerate (I freeze). Bake .25" slices 10-12 min @ 375. Done when tops spring back when pressed with your fingertip.

                                        My notes: 9.5 min @ 375.

                                        Enjoy :)

                                        1. re: foiegras

                                          foiegras, I've got these in the freezer now, just begging to be baked. One question: do you grease your cookie sheets, or line with parchment for this cookie?

                                          1. re: porceluna

                                            porceluna, I line with parchment for all my cookies, unless it's Toll House or a recipe specifically calls for baking directly on the sheet. Let me know how you like them :)

                                  2. re: foiegras

                                    Really? I made some bacon-fat spice cookies a couple of years ago and they were pretty good. Actually it was hard to tell them from 'regular' spice cookies made with butter. I didn't think they were that unusual. I even passed them out at the office, without telling anybody what was in them (made sure they weren't getting to any vegetarians) and they gobbled them up.

                                    1. re: Bat Guano

                                      Yes, it was totally obvious with the ones I made, and not a "good thing" at all ... perhaps if I'd used a milder bacon ... ?? I recently got some applewood non-cured bacon that probably would have been much better for this purpose. At any rate, not an experiment I plan to repeat ...

                                2. oh wow! I was leaning toward sage or rosemary but BACON????? How could I not? I am actually thinking of 'getting a migraine' and going home to test these out! ;-)

                                  1. There was a recipe for hazelnut and black pepper cookies with rolled grains on Chocolate and Zucchini. I used rolled oats like the original recipe she mentions, and wished I had added 1/2 tsp. ground cardamom. I think it really would've made the cookies special. They're good, and I think would be a surprising texture and flavor to anyone having expectations based on their appearance. http://chocolateandzucchini.com/archi...

                                    But, I doubt anything could beat bacon cookies for surprising!

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: amyzan

                                      I saw that she replaced the oats with spelt - that adds another ingredient that a lot of people aren't familiar with. (at least in my burgers-n-fries family.)

                                    2. OK...I made the bacon cookies. I used Maverick Applewood Bacon.

                                      They really are not bad! Kind of like a McGriddle. Sweet, savory, and for some strange reason, you eat the whole thing. Maybe you don't need to do it again though.

                                      Tomorrow (Wednesday) night is the cookie exchange, so I will post back and let you know the reaction!!!!

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: sparkalina

                                        Oh, you brave woman! Let us know what happens. I'm so curious now.

                                        1. re: sparkalina

                                          Seriously? OK, you're my idol.
                                          Can't wait to read how it went.

                                        2. Has anyone mentioned cheese yet?

                                          On a lark, I put some cheddar cubes into some peanut butter cookie dough then baked it as usual....amazing.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: fmed

                                            fmed, please describe flavpr, texture, reactions...

                                            1. re: alkapal

                                              The cheese was chopped in chocolate chip sized chunks and it turned nice and gooey right out of the oven....just like freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies. The match seems pretty near ideal as the salty cheesiness contrasts very nicely with the sweet peanutiness. The best cookies ones were the ones that had slightly burnt cheesey bits.

                                              I will try other cheeses next time around, but I think a salty cheese (like good aged cheddar - which is what I used) or some sort of smoked cheese will do well here. In retrospect I really shouldn't have been surprised on how good it tasted.

                                              You just really have to try it next time you make a batch of peanut butter cookies. Try it on just a couple of cookies...no harm no foul if you end up not liking the combination.

                                          2. OK...the results are in on THE BACON COOKIES. Like I said, I found them to be just OK. Nothing special, but I did go back for one more, so they weren't horrible. BTW, with the Maverick Applewood non-cured bacon and all the fiber fron the bran flakes they are only 1 point each for Weight Watchers)

                                            At the party half of the people who tried them, liked them, and ate more than one. I passed the recipe out. The other half would not even try them, but took some home to 'test' on their family.

                                            At work, however, they were gone in 10 minutes and everyone liked them. These people eat anything, though.

                                            12 Replies
                                            1. re: sparkalina

                                              ok, let me understand, bacon-y fiber morsels?

                                              1. re: alkapal

                                                wow - you just took all of the fun out of it!

                                                1. re: sparkalina

                                                  sorry, high curmudgeon factor today (missing fort myers).....btw one nickname of my former kittycat was "sparkalarka"

                                                  1. re: alkapal

                                                    I got it because I took the Wilton cake decorating classes and discovered edible cake glitter.

                                                    For 1 year I put it on EVERYTHING. Including mashed potatoes at family dinners, pancakes, stuff like that. Everthing's better with sparkles!

                                                    I have progressed out of that stage now, but I do get a little nostalgic thinking about it.

                                                    1. re: sparkalina

                                                      glitter is good -- break some out for the holidays! show us your creations!

                                                      remember those little silver balls you used to be able to get in the grocery store to decorate cookies, cupcakes, etc? what are they called, and why can't i get them at the grocery store?

                                                      1. re: alkapal

                                                        HA! They were called silver dragees and I think they said "do not eat" right on the label.....I loved those (sigh). I just found out they are illegal in California!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                                        I can see my frenched lamb rack now...sparkling in the candlelight with little circles of silver balls. All dressed up and no where to go.

                                                        1. re: sparkalina

                                                          dragees! that's it. i found these gold and silver ones, and miniature gold and silver ones!
                                                          (also look on this page for really dorky cookie cutters for "already been chewed" cookies shaped like mutilated gingerbread men!!!!!) that would not be a holiday party i want to attend.

                                                          so sad about the cali-for-ni-ans! ;-)

                                                          1. re: alkapal

                                                            The ABC cookies might be good for next year's cookie exchange! They are pretty cute. I will decorate them with silver dragees and cake sparkles!

                                              2. re: sparkalina

                                                So ... are you invited next year? :)

                                                1. re: foiegras

                                                  Unfortunately, yes. Now they want to see if I can top it. I have a whole year to experiment, with the office as my guinea pigs! I love these people here.

                                                  1. re: sparkalina

                                                    sparkalina, i just saw this post after posting right above about the mutilated gingerbread man cookie cutters. if you make those, with a really strange new recipe, they might disinvite you for the next year!

                                              3. sparkaline (love that name!) To a moist oatmeal cookie recipe I added 1/4 cup of toasted ground almonds (whirled thru the food processor) and a heaping tblsp. of carmadon seeds (whirled through my spice mill) into the dough. They were a big hit with the holiday tea and cookie swap crowd last week.

                                                1. I was looking for interesting ideas for my new bakery, and saw your post. Since you are interested in making something different try Saurkraut Chocolate Cake. I prepared it while in culinary school, for a project, and it is amazing. The vinegar cooks out, so you do not taste it at all and the saurkraut itself ends up tasting like coconut. No one in the class could guess what was in the cake and it was extremely moist and delicious! It was also fun to make such a strange recipe and discover that it was great!!

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: onesweetbakery

                                                    i've heard about that, but never tried it.

                                                  2. May not be out there enough, but I have a 3 ingredient recipe for tofu peanut butter cookies--want it? Mr. Pine loves them, but I prefer the raw dough over the baked product.

                                                    3 Replies
                                                    1. re: pine time

                                                      Ooooh I want it! Please and thank you. :)

                                                      1. re: piccola

                                                        Guess I lied: it has 4 ingredients.

                                                        Peanut Butter Fudge Cookies

                                                        1 c. peanut butter (your choice of smooth or chunky)
                                                        1 c. sugar
                                                        1/3 c. silken tofu (was told this is the only variety to use)
                                                        1 tsp. vanilla

                                                        Blend all together. Roll into balls or flatten into cookies. Bake at 325 for 20-25 minutes.

                                                        1. re: pine time

                                                          Oh, it's like the basic flourless PB cookie but with tofu instead of egg. Clever!

                                                    2. Sparkalina, I am curious to know why it has to be unique and strange if you don't mind my asking.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: Ruthie789

                                                        Wasn't that clearly explained in A and B in the original post?

                                                      2. I used to make a double ginger-curry cookie that was fairly popular...

                                                        1. It's been 5 years since you first posted, but this discussion still comes up at the top on a search for unusual cookies. So here are a few more for you / anyone else looking to branch out.

                                                          Earl Grey Tea Cookies from Real Simple

                                                          Shari's Kitchen Swedish Cardamom Toast (Cardamom Biscotti) from Eleanor Ostman's book Always on Sunday, Revisited, page 197

                                                          Popcorn Cookies - a few recipes found when searching, including this one

                                                          1. These ones caught my eye recently so I filed the Url away for safekeeping: Scourtins, or French olive cookies

                                                            One of these days I will get around to trying them!

                                                            15 Replies
                                                            1. re: ursy_ten

                                                              The scourtins I've enjoyed at olive oil tasting parties and they are terrific. Thank you for the link though, all of the recipes look so interesting and approachable. Unique recipe ideas make for such an enjoyable read.

                                                              1. re: HillJ

                                                                You're welcome HillJ! I agree, I love unusual recipes too - so inspiring.

                                                                Here is another I came across that also looks good:
                                                                Portugese sweet lemon and black olive cookies -

                                                                Really like how rustic these ones look.

                                                                1. re: ursy_ten

                                                                  Wow, I'm glad I said something, this recipe looks right up my alley. I enjoy an imperfect looking cookie (rustic) very much! The blogger entry mentions this cookie would make an interesting "dunker"...what would you dunk it in? Ideas?

                                                                  Also, the inclusion of cinnamon in this recipe is very unusual don't you think?!

                                                                  1. re: HillJ

                                                                    I always think tea when I hear "dunking".
                                                                    Lemon... olive... tea... yes, I think that works.

                                                                    I think the inclusion of cinnamon *is* unusual, but inspired! Because of this, I was tempted to go in the direction of chai tea when pondering a suitable dunking match, but am wondering if it would make the experience "too busy" :)

                                                                    1. re: ursy_ten

                                                                      interesting rec's! maybe once I make a batch of these I'll have a better idea myself. it's hard to tell which flavor profile will be dominant here...very interesting!

                                                                      1. re: ursy_ten

                                                                        What about a hot lemon tea or lemon water?

                                                                        1. re: HillJ

                                                                          Mmm yes! A citron tea springs to mind! As it happens, we have some in the pantry at the moment.

                                                                          I might have to give this recipe a go! Must keep an eye out for oil cured black olives. I generally haven't been paying much attention to the affairs of olives, but I think I've been buying them in brine.

                                                                          If I find some and try the recipe, I will report back!

                                                                          1. re: ursy_ten

                                                                            I will look forward to comparing notes!

                                                                            1. re: HillJ

                                                                              I just made them, HillJ!

                                                                              My notes for this batch: Made with chopped preserved lemon instead of the zest. Rinsed the chopped black olives and preserved lemons because of saltiness, also omitted kosher salt because I was afraid they might end up too salty. Added about 2-3 times more cinnamon that recipe asked for (by clumsiness). Baked fan forced 12 mins. Surprised at how much the flavours mellowed! Expected a bit more of a punch in the mouth. If I could do it over again, might not rinse the salt off the olives and lemon. Having said that, am regretting not making a double batch.

                                                                              I think my cinnamon was a bit old, could still not taste much of it at all.

                                                                              I think they're wonderful - really nice for a change, and I'll definitely make them again!

                                                                              1. re: ursy_ten

                                                                                No kidding, mellow flavors. I wasn't expecting to hear that. After the holidays I'll give the recipe a try too and report back here. Very curious to taste these.

                                                                                1. re: HillJ

                                                                                  Hello HillJ! Further notes from today's batch... the first ones were good, but these are much much better:

                                                                                  Made with chopped preserved lemon rind instead of the zest, rinsed. Did not rinse the chopped black olives. Packed the olives more tightly into the measuring cup. Did not add any kosher salt. Added about 2-3 times more cinnamon (same as last time because was only subtle last time). Mixture was more moist and doughy this time - last time had to squeeze quite firmly to get them to hold together. Rolled in caster sugar (extra fine sugar. Last batch was just plain white sugar) - caramelised much better. Baked 12 mins, some fan forced, some not. Think the non-fan forced ones browned slightly more evenly. Enjoyed them last time, but these ones had way more flavour. Squish as thin as you can!

                                                                                  1. re: ursy_ten

                                                                                    I'm so glad I read this! Thanks ursy, your tips are very helpful. Talk to me about the cinnamon (I'm a fan too) and why you tripled it. How does it play off the other ingredients? Are you baking a chewy or a crispy prefernce?

                                                                                    1. re: HillJ

                                                                                      You're welcome!

                                                                                      They are more on the crispy side - I think they are meant to be a crispy kind of cookie, just going by how thin they're supposed to be.

                                                                                      The cinnamon - I tripled it because the first time I made them, I over-tipped the jar and too much fell out, and the flavour was still quite subtle. So I deliberately put in too much again this time, knowing that if I put in the amount that the recipe stated, I probably wouldn't taste it.

                                                                                      Having said that, maybe it's only subtle because my cinnamon is a bit old! It can be easy to lose track so I actually have no idea how old it is. So maybe if you have some fresh cinnamon, proceed with caution.

                                                                                      I think flavour-wise, it adds a warmth and an earthiness that contrasts with the lemon and olive.

                                                                                      They are still quite a sweet cookie - just not as sweet as chocolate chip cookies or jam drops. Because of this, I was also thinking it might be worth trying with cracked pepper instead of cinnamon (maybe not triple quantity though), for a more, hmmm - austere result... messing with the sweet - savoury balance a bit more. Maybe I'll do half cinnamon, half pepper next batch and see how they go.

                                                                                      I have a lot of black olives to use up so I imagine that I have a few more batches of these cookies in my future. Lucky everyone seems to love them!

                                                                                      1. re: ursy_ten

                                                                                        ursy, what do you think about adding cinnamon to the sugar coating instead of or in addition to the dough. Or keeping the cinnamon in the dough but adding pepper to the sugar coating?

                                                                                        1. re: HillJ

                                                                                          Sure, I think adding cinnamon to the sugar would be great, I wonder if it would enhance it further by caramelizing in with the sugar?

                                                                                          Same with the pepper - but I should add that I automatically tend to gravitate towards the "add more stuff!' philosophy, I've been trying to work at keeping things simple lately, but it doesn't come naturally :)

                                                              2. How about Cricket Cookies?Here is the link: http://www.insectsarefood.com/recipes...

                                                                And here is one of the recipes:

                                                                Chocolate Chirp Cookies, makes a dozen or so cookies.

                                                                2 ¼ cups cricket flour
                                                                1 tsp. baking soda
                                                                1 tsp. salt
                                                                1 cup butter, softened
                                                                ¾ cup sugar
                                                                ¾ cup brown sugar
                                                                1 tsp. vanilla
                                                                2 eggs
                                                                1 12-ounce pkg. chocolate chips
                                                                ½ cup dry-roasted chopped crickets

                                                                Preheat oven to 375 deg F.
                                                                In saucepan heat 1 12-ounce pkg. chocolate chips until melted. Or melt in small bowl in microwave.
                                                                Dip dry-roasted crickets into mixture and lay flat on drying pan or plate.
                                                                In small bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.
                                                                In large bowl, combine butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla; beat until creamy.
                                                                Beat in eggs.
                                                                Gradually add cricket flour mixture and mix well.
                                                                Stir in chocolate covered crickets.
                                                                Drop by rounded measuring teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet.
                                                                Bake for 8-10 minutes.

                                                                5 Replies
                                                                  1. re: HillJ

                                                                    Per stores.

                                                                    Pet lizards love those chatty buggers.

                                                                    1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                      Live crickets or freeze dried for baking?

                                                                  2. re: PotatoHouse

                                                                    i think that cricket recipe would meet the OP's second criterion perfectly well.

                                                                  3. Probably a little late to this thread but look up Rosemary Walnut butter cookie. So easy and delicious but definitely an acquired taste.

                                                                    1. Great old thread. I wonder what Sparkalina did to top herself in 2008 and if she ever succeeded in getting herself uninvited?


                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                      1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                        Here's hoping Sparkalina's either found a few new cookie recipes to enjoy & share or realized say no thank you is just as easy.

                                                                        1. re: HillJ

                                                                          True enough! Here's her thread from 2008-- we never heard the outcome, though, but if those are the cookies she brought, she surely was invited back. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/576425


                                                                          1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                                                            How can one go wrong with that recipe!