Cookies recipe

Recipe for black and white cookies

The nostalgic cookie that is becoming widespread.

This is my go-to version of a black-and-white cookie: a chewy, lemon-flavored cookie—no almond extract in sight—that comes out of the oven with a slight dome shape. As for the frosting, this recipe makes a thin, gooey frosting in both vanilla and chocolate.

Like most iconic foods, what makes a good B&W cookie is debatable, this recipe is my favorite. Learn more about the history and variations of the black and white cookie here.

Did you know that the first major mistake humankind made was with food? It’s fascinating how much good and bad can come from eating. Get more thoughts on Jewish food here.

Preparation time: 25 minutes
Cooking time: 14 minutes
Yield: 16 cookies


  • Biscuit
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 ounces unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • The zest of a lemon
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons of milk


  • 2½ cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 7 tablespoons milk, divided
  • 1 tablespoon corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder, sifted
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a small bowl. Put aside.
  3. Cream butter, sugar and lemon zest in a stand mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add eggs and vanilla and beat on medium-high speed until combined, about another minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula.
  5. Alternate adding the dry ingredients and sour cream to the bowl, starting and ending with the dry ingredients, mixing after each addition and scraping down the sides if necessary. Mix just until combined.
  6. Measure ¼ cup of dough and place on prepared cookie sheet. Repeat until you have four cookies per sheet. (Aim for 1.75 to 2 ounces of weight per cookie.) Roll out each mound of dough in a circle shape until the dough is about ½ inch thick. Repeat with the second baking sheet.
  7. Bake the cookies for 12 to 14 minutes, rotating the tray 180 degrees halfway through baking. Cool the cookies briefly on the baking sheet then place the cookies on a wire rack to cool. Repeat with the rest of the dough. Let the cookies cool completely before trying to frost them.
  8. To make the frosting, whisk together the powdered sugar, 4 tablespoons milk, corn syrup and vanilla in a medium bowl. The icing should be thick but spreadable.
  9. Flip the cookies over so that the flat side (or bottom of the cookie) is facing up. This is the side you will glaze. Spread white frosting over half of each cookie in a thin, even, opaque layer using a small spatula or offset knife. Place the cookies on a wire rack, frosting side up, and allow the frosting to harden completely before proceeding with the chocolate frosting. (Cover the bowl so the remaining frosting doesn’t dry out.)
  10. Add the cocoa powder to the remaining white icing. Add 2 tablespoons of milk to the mixture and whisk until the frosting has reached a thick but spreadable texture. (If the mixture isn’t sweet enough for your liking, or you run out after frosting the cookies with the white icing, add ¼ cup powdered sugar and more milk if needed.)
  11. Frost the second half of each cookie and allow the frosting to harden completely before storing the cookies.
  12. Store cookies in an airtight container for up to 3 days.