Hershey Kisses Cookies

Dec 6, 2022 | Food, Sweets

Happy Wednesday everyone!  We are day 7 into The 24 Days Before Christmas and these Hershey Kisses Cookies are a perfect recipe for this holiday season!  A delicious and decadent vanilla and half chocolate cookie, coated in sugar, and topped with Hershey’s Chocolate Kisses, an easy, no-chill cookie to make for your loved ones.  This recipe was adapted from an old family recipe and it was great fun making it for you.  I also found a recipe very similar from Lord Byron’s Kitchen blog.  The recipe calls for sanding sugar but I chose to sprinkle granulated sugar on the cookies after they were baked.  I also got creative and used Hershey’s Cocoa Powder in half of the recipe.  I think it looks scrumptious and mimics the pattern and colors in the chocolate kiss.
Hershey Kisses Cookies | www.twoadorablelabs.com
What is Sanding Sugar?
Sanding sugar is a large crystal sugar that’s great for decorating because it won’t dissolve with heat. It also creates a sparkly effect because of the large size of the crystals that reflect light. It’s great for decorating treats like cookies, cakes, scones, muffins, and even candies.
Hershey Kisses Cookies | www.twoadorablelabs.com

Sanding sugar is closely related to several different types of sugars, so substituting it in a recipe is usually straightforward. Here are some substitutes you can use if you don’t have any sanding sugar on hand: 

1. Coarse sugars like turbinado and demerara: Sanding sugar is most similar in appearance to large crystal sugars, like decorating sugar, sparkling sugar (also called edible glitter), pearl sugar, and raw sugars like turbinado or demerara sugar. Thus, using one of these coarse options will often result in a very similar outcome, whether for cake decorating or finishing muffins. However, turbinado sugar crystals will melt or dull under heat, so they won’t result in as shiny or sparkly an outcome as sanding sugar. 
2. Finer sugars like caster or muscovado: While sanding sugar has larger crystals and a special shimmer appearance that makes it more decorative than other sugars in cake and cookie decorating, you can substitute a finer sugar in a pinch for a similar taste and a less polished result. Opt for regular granulated sugar or superfine sugar (also called caster sugar) for a similar taste, or light brown sugar, dark brown sugar, or Muscovado sugar as sweeteners with a deeper flavor; powdered sugar (also known as confectioners’ sugar) is likely too fine and may significantly change the texture or look of your baked goods. 
3. DIY sanding sugar: If you can’t find sanding sugar in the baking aisle at your local grocery store, it’s easy to make your own sanding sugar at home out of any other granulated sugar you have on hand and a few simple baking supplies.
Hershey Kisses Cookies | www.twoadorablelabs.com
What is Cocoa Powder?
Cocoa powder is an end product after cacao beans have been fermented, roasted and pressed to extract most of the cocoa butter. “With all of the flavor but a fraction of the fat, cocoa powder is essentially a concentrated form of cocoa beans: it is bitter and strong,” Alice Medrich wrote in Food52. Or as Alton Brown put it, “Cocoa powder is the pure essence of chocolate, without any added fat or sugar to detract from its inherent goodness.”
Hershey Kisses Cookies | www.twoadorablelabs.com
How to make Hershey Kisses Cookies:
These cookies are incredibly easy to make.  I mixed softened butter, sugar, egg yolks, and vanilla together before adding the flour.  Once all the ingredients were combined, I rolled the dough into a large ball and then split it down the middle.  I placed one dough ball aside and in the same bowl added the cocoa powder to the remaining dough ball.  Once the dough was thoroughly combined with the cocoa powder, I rolled each ball out into a log approximately 18 inches long.  I braided the white dough with the chocolate dough and then cut the braid into 1 inch slices.  The slices were rolled into small dough balls and baked in the oven at 350 degrees for 13 minutes.  I sprayed the cookie sheets with PAM cooking spray and placed the cookies approximately  2 inches apart.
As soon as the cookies were baked, I took them out of the oven, sprinkled sugar on them and placed an unwrapped Hershey Kiss in the middle.  Some of the kisses melted a bit too much in the middle so I should have a waited a bit to add the kiss.  They were still delicious either way.  I don’t mind a melted kiss but if you want a perfect looking cookie, you might want to wait a few seconds.  Another way to avoid the kiss from melting is to place the cookies on a cooling rack.  I did not do this so the hot cookie still baked on the plate I was using.
Tip:  These cookies have more of a brownie like consistency and not a crunchy cookie.  I patted each dough ball down a bit with a spoon before baking in the oven.  This helped them to cook more evenly.
Hershey Kisses Cookies | www.twoadorablelabs.com
Ways to change up this recipe:
This recipe made 24 cookies with some kisses left over.  Melting the kisses down into patties would be a fun addition to this cookie tray.  Or let the kisses melt over this cookie for a less uniformed look.
Instead of the kisses, add your favorite jam or jelly.
Place a salted cashew in the middle and drizzle chocolate over top.
Add a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup in the middle.  The flavors of this cookie will blend very well with peanut butter.
Drizzle honey over top of this cookie for a natural sweetness.
Not only are these perfect for the Christmas holiday, they would make a special treat for Valentine’s Day.
Hershey Kisses Cookies | www.twoadorablelabs.com
Interested in more cookie recipes:
Hershey Kisses Cookies | www.twoadorablelabs.com
Hershey Kisses Cookies | www.twoadorablelabs.com

Hershey Kisses Cookies

A delicious and decadent cookie made of vanilla and cocoa chocolate powder!
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Vanilla, Cacoa, sugar, Hershey Kisses
Author: Two Adorable Labs


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder I used Hershey's Powder
  • 24 Hershey Kisses This recipe makes between 20 - 24 cookies
  • handful of sugar or more To sprinkle on top of cookies


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In a bowl, mix with spoon the butter, sugar, egg yolks, and vanilla
  • Add flour a cup at a time and mix well
  • For two large dough balls and set one ball aside
  • Leave the other dough ball in the bowl and add cocoa powder. Combine well until the entire ball is chocolate
  • Roll out the vanilla ball into approximately 18 to 20 inch log. Do the same with the chocolate ball
  • Twist both logs into a braid and cut into 1 inch slices. Roll each slice into a ball and place on a greased cookie sheet. I used PAM cooking spray in butter flavor
  • Pat down each ball a bit with a spoon or your fingers and bake for 13 minutes. The recipe said 12 minutes but my oven cooks a bit faster
  • Remove from oven, sprinkle sugar on top, and place a Hershey Kiss in the middle.
  • Transport to a decorative dish and serve
  • Cookies can be stored in an air tight container for up to 3 to 4 days or frozen for later
I’m Bobbi Jo, a lab-lover who took my passion for animals and dogs and turned it into something bigger.  When I adopted Jake and Maggie, my love for them became the driving force behind Two Adorable Labs, and my blog was born.  My hope is to not only share them with the world, but to help educate others on the importance of animal health and well-being.

I love hearing from all of you and do my best to respond to each and every one of you.  I always enjoy your comments, feedback, and suggestions so keep them coming!  If I’ve posted a recipe (for our human and our furry friends) and you try it, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram @twoadorablelabs and use #twoadorablelabs​.

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What Do You Think? Let Us Know!


  1. Thomas Domitrovich

    these were incredible!!!!!! When I bit into “them”, I was pleasantly surprised that they were moist when bitten into and not crunchy. These cookies where awesome!!!!

    • Two Adorable Labs

      Thank you! I’m so happy you liked them. Mr. TAL, You are my favorite taste tester 🙂


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