Chocolate Tutu Cookies

Chocolate Tutu cookies are a staple holiday dessert in most Southern Italian/Sicilian families. The spelling actually varies by region and family. Joe’s family uses the spelling tutu, but tetu, toto and even dodo are common variations. They all describe this little round chocolate cookie covered in a thick icing. This cookie is moist, yet dense enough to dunk in a good cup of coffee.

Chocolate Tutu Cookies are so yummy, you’ll make them all the time!

Chocolate tutu cookies are traditionally made for All Saints Day in Sicily. They’re baked as a tribute to deceased relatives and loved ones. Italian Americans make them as a Christmas cookie, but they can also be found at other times of the year. Joe’s family likes to make them for every conceivable holiday and celebration. Christmas and weddings are two great examples, but even having a dinner party can be a good excuse for tutu cookies!

The more chocolate, the better!

Joe’s mom, Anna Rose, taught me to make tutus the first year Joe and I started dating. I like the cookie, but felt they should have a deeper chocolate flavor so I replaced some of the flour with cocoa powder. As far as Joe is concerned, the more chocolate the better!

I send out gift boxes of cookies each year to our friends and family. Chocolate tutus are one of the Christmas cookies that everyone on the cookie list receives. If you are high enough on that list to make a special request, you might actually get a box filled with them exclusively.

Chocolate tutus are one of Joe’s personal favorites, so I always make extra for him. He especially likes to dunk them in his coffee. (It’s his idea of a healthy breakfast.) I prefer toasted panettone for breakfast, but that’s a whole other story.

Chocolate Tutu Cookies

4 from 7 votes
Recipe by Margaret Sanfelippo Course: DessertsCuisine: ItalianDifficulty: Easy


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Baking time


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Chocolate tutu cookies are little round chocolate cookies that are covered in a thick icing. They’re perfect to dunk in a cup of coffee.


  • Cookie Ingredients
  • 1 cup 1 unsalted butter (2 sticks), at room temperature

  • 1 3/4 cups 1 3/4 sugar

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 brown sugar

  • 3 3 large eggs

  • 1 tbsp 1 vanilla extract

  • 4 1/4 cups 4 1/4 flour

  • 1 cup 1 cocoa powder

  • 3 1/2 tsp 3 1/2 baking powder

  • 1/4 tsp 1/4 salt

  • Frosting Ingredients
  • 4 cups 4 powdered sugar

  • 6 tbsp 6 milk


  • Preheat the oven to 375F. Combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl.
  • Put the butter, white sugar and brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the side of the bowl, as necessary. Add the eggs one at a time, and mix well to combine. Next add the vanilla extract. Reduce the mixer speed to low, and gradually add the flour mixture until just combined. The dough should come together in a dry ball and leave the side of the bowl clean. You can add a little more flour if the dough seems too soft or a little milk if it seems to dry.
  • Roll into small balls and place 1 inch apart on baking sheet lined with a silpat silicone liner or parchment paper. Bake approximately 11-15 minutes, until set. Do not over bake or they will become very dry. Cool on wire racks.
  • To make the icing, mix powdered sugar and milk in a large bowl. The frosting should be somewhat thick. Next, dip the tops of the cooled cookies into the frosting and decorate with sprinkles (if desired). Let dry on a wire rack with aluminum foil underneath (on the counter) to catch the excess frosting.


  1. Hello, how many cookies does this recipe make?

  2. That makes a large amount of cookies! Will it work to cut the recipe in half?


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