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Turtle Cookie Recipe

My crew loves these Turtle Cookies, and they have quickly become a new favorite cookie! Lucky for me, they are as easy to make as they are delicious! The ingredients list is also pretty simple, and you should have most things already on hand in your kitchen.

Everyone has their cookie cravings for the basic chewy chocolate cookie, but let me tell you, these chocolate turtle cookies will be the new delicious cookie recipe that you bake on regular rotation!  

Need a beverage to pair with these Turtle Cookies? The crew’s favorite drink is usually a glass of cold milk, but I tend to prefer a cup of coffee! The bitterness of the coffee really balances the richness of these cookies.

They make the perfect afternoon snack! I also love to make these as a part of my holiday cookie assortment! They are the best cookies for the Christmas cookie season or the next cookie exchange you might be going to!

If you are looking for other delicious recipes for sweet treats, try my Best Ever Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies, French Toast Muffins, or Coffee Cake Muffins! Your family is sure to love all of these recipes as much as mine does. 

Dry Ingredients and Wet Ingredients Needed

  • Flour – All purpose flour works great for this recipe! If you are averse to gluten, try using a 1:1 replacement gluten-free flour. It shouldn’t change the taste or texture of these cookies at all.
  • Cocoa Powder – Make sure not to skimp on quality here! All chocolate is tasty to me, but a high quality cocoa powder will really bring your baked goods to a new level.
  • Salt – High quality sea salt, please! Of course, you can definitely use a regular kosher salt or table salt if you choose. Sea salt just has a better taste in my opinion and will really help bring all of the other flavors out in these Turtle Cookies. 
  • Baking Soda – This produces one of the most important chemical reactions in baking, so definitely don’t skip this ingredient! Baking soda tends to have similar quality no matter which brand you use, so I wouldn’t worry about that too much here. 
  • Butter – Grass-fed, organic, delicious butter! Definitely the best way to go for this recipe. If you have to substitute something dairy-free, however, I would recommend unrefined coconut oil! It will add so much good coconut flavor to these cookies and really bring them up a notch.
  • Brown Sugar – Light or dark brown sugar will both work in these Turtle Cookies! It just depends on how much molasses flavor you want, the darker your sugar the more intense the flavor. 
  • White Sugar – If you want to stay away from refined white sugar, try using an unrefined cane sugar instead! You’ll get the same amount of sweetness but it will be slightly healthier than refined sugar.
  • Egg – Pastured eggs are the best way to go, they have a rich orangey egg yolk and are richer in both nutrients and flavor than normal eggs. If you can’t get your hands on any, any egg will do!
  • Vanilla – Look for genuine vanilla extract! The simplest way is to just check the ingredients list; if it isn’t pure it will have added natural flavors, artificial flavors, or will even just say ‘vanilla flavoring’. 
  • Chocolate Chips – This is where you can get super creative. You can use white chocolate, semisweet chocolate chips, milk chocolate, or dark chocolate chips. You could even go super crazy and use all three!
  • Caramel Bits – Caramel bits are super easy to find in stores or online. If you want the best quality, try to avoid ones with palm oil or soy lecithin included. The more genuine caramel you get the better!
  • Pecans – Pecans are truly a game changer in this recipe. The nuttiness tempers out all of the sweetness in these Turtle Cookies, and pecan and caramel are truly a match made in heaven. If you don’t have pecans on hand, you could substitute walnuts, hazelnuts, or almonds. You just won’t get quite the same effect with them.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I keep my Turtle Cookies from flattening?

If your Turtle Cookies are getting too flat when baking, try refrigerating the dough before using a cookie scoop to scoop it onto the cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or prepared baking sheet! This will help the cookie form and help them hold their shape.

Can I make my Turtle Cookies look like a turtle?

Yes you can! Just take pecan pieces and arrange them around the cookie to look like the head, arms, and legs of a turtle. This trick might make your kids love them even more!

Will these keep after baking?

Yes! Just store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3-4 days, though I am sure they won’t last that long!

Tips for Making Turtle Cookies

  • To get a really delicious cookie, make sure to cream your butter and sugar in a medium bowl with an electric mixer or stand mixer until it is very light in color and fluffy in texture. 
  • Be sure to scrape down the large mixing bowl quite a few times during the mixing process! This will guarantee that all of the ingredients are well combined so that you don’t get any flour/butter pockets in your cookies. For best results, scrape down to the bottom of the bowl at least twice between adding every ingredient.
  • If you want a milder chocolate flavor, check out dutch processed cocoa powder. There is a lower level of acidity in cocoa that has been processed this way which creates a very mellow flavor. 
  • If you are a fan of salty flavors, turn these into salted caramel turtle cookies by sprinkling a little flakey salt on the tops of your cookies once they’re done baking!  I promise it will be a huge hit!  Maldon Sea Salt is a great option for this. It is a finishing salt that has a delightful flavor and adds the perfect amount of crunch to baked goods and more. 

I hope you enjoy these easy turtle cookies! Let me know how making this recipe went, and if your family enjoys the cookies as much as mine does! Some of my favorite things is hearing your takes on these recipes!

Turtle Cookie

These Turtle Cookies are a delicious chewy cookie that is loaded with pecans, chocolate chips and a drizzle of caramel. The perfect combination of flavors and texture!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 22 minutes
Servings 22 cookies


  • 1 cup Flour
  • cup Cocoa powder
  • ¼ tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp Baking soda
  • ½ cup Butter
  • cup Brown sugar
  • ½ cup White sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • ½ cup Chocolate chips
  • ½ cup Carmel bits
  • ½ cup Chopped pecans


  • Preheat oven to 350º
  • Combine flour, cocoa, salt, and baking soda together in a bowl, and set aside
  • In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars together until light and fluffy
  • Beat in egg and vanilla until incorporated
  • Stir in flour mixture, and then chocolate chips, caramel bits, and chopped pecans
  • Place by the tablespoon on an ungreased or parchment-lined baking sheet with at least 2 inches of space between each
  • Bake in center of oven for about 12 minutes or until set on the edges and soft in the center

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