I love a great cup of coffee, (don’t even talk to me before cup #1 in the morning!) and I adore a tasty cookie to crunch on alongside. One of my all-time favourites is Chocolate and Hazelnut Biscotti.
Deeply chocolatey with a fabulous nutty crunch, I can never stop at just one!
While they are often called Biscotti in English, this is a traditional Tuscan treat, known as Cantucci in Italy. They may be served with a strong espresso or dipped into a special wine called Vin Santo at dessert time. However you enjoy them, they are ridiculously addictive!
Biscotti or Cantucci were originally designed to last a long time, which is why they don’t have any butter or other fat in them.
My Chocolate and Hazelnut Biscotti are a little more decadent than the traditional recipe but still require only simple ingredients.
- Cocoa: For baking, I always use and recommend Dutch Processed (alkalized) unsweetened Cocoa powder. This type of cocoa powder is dark, with a strong chocolate flavour and beautiful colour. It is the standard cocoa powder available in Europe, but in the United States, you’ll need to look for it specifically. Hershey’s is a good choice.
- Sugar: Plain white sugar will allow the flavour of the chocolate in these biscotti to shine through.
- Eggs: I use European size Large eggs which are closer to a U.S. size Extra Large.
- Baking Soda: Also known as sodium bicarbonate, this gives the biscotti a little lift in the oven.
- Roasted Hazelnuts: For simplicity, you can use toasted hazelnuts in this recipe, which are often easy to come by during the festive season. If you have hazelnuts with the skin still on, follow the instructions in my Nussecken recipe to roast and de-skin them.
This is such an easy recipe! The only quirk is in the baking process when they are baked, then sliced, then baked again. The second baking makes them beautifully crunchy!
- First, beat the sugar and eggs together with a pinch of salt in the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl using an electric mixer until light and fluffy.
- Next, sift over the flour, cocoa powder and baking soda and run the mixer on low until a crumbly dough forms. Add the hazelnuts and run the mixer for one minute more to combine.
- Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly until you have a smooth dough. Divide the dough in two and form each half into a log shape around 30cm / 12 in. long. Place logs on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and bake for 25 minutes at 180°C / 350°F / Gas 4.
- Remove from the oven, allow to cool for 5 minutes, then use a sharp knife to cut on the diagonal into slices around 1.5cm thick. Flip over onto the cut edge and bake for a further 10 minutes.
- Cool on the tray for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely, before storing in an airtight container, Serve with a strong coffee or hot chocolate. Delish.
- For extra chocolate flavour, dip the ends of your biscotti in melted chocolate. Yum!
The complete ingredient list and detailed instructions are in the recipe card at the bottom of the page.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long do biscotti / cantucci keep?
A very long time! Once cooled, keep in an airtight container. They will last several months (but they don’t in my house because I eat them all well before then).
Can I freeze biscotti dough?
Yes! It can be frozen. Be sure to wrap it well in cling film to prevent freezer burn or flavour transfer.
Can I make other flavours of homemade biscotti?
Yes! This is only one of my favourite biscotti recipes! How about Apricot and Almond Biscotti?Or switch the hazelnuts out for dark chocolate chunks and make double choc. Add a little orange zest or candied orange for jaffa flavour or espresso powder to give them a real caffeine kick. The combinations are endless!
More Chocolate and Hazelnut Recipes
Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti Recipe
Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti (Cantucci)
- 225 g white sugar
- 3 large eggs
- pinch of salt
- 400 g plain or all-purpose flour
- 60 g unsweetened cocoa powder (see notes)
- ½ tsp baking soda, sodium bicarbonate
- 200 g roasted hazelnuts
- PREPARE: Heat oven to 180°C / 350°F / Gas 4 and line an oven tray with baking parchment paper.
- BEAT SUGAR AND EGGS: In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment fitted, beat the sugar, eggs and salt together until light and fluffy.
- ADD DRY INGREDIENTS: Sift over the flour, cocoa powder and baking soda, and run the mixer on low speed until a crumbly dough begins to form. Add the hazelnuts and mix for a minute more, then turn out onto the bench top and knead briefly until smooth.
- SHAPE AND FIRST BAKE: Divide dough into two pieces, shape into logs approximately 30cm (12 in.) long and place them on the prepared baking tray, allowing enough room for the biscotti to spread. Bake for 25 minutes, until crisp on the outside.
- SLICE: Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet. Use a sharp knife to cut the logs on a diagonal into slices 1.5cm (just more than ½ in.) wide. I cut them directly on the baking sheet, but you can use a cutting board if you prefer,
- SECOND BAKE: Flip each slice so that a cut side is facing upwards, then return to the oven and bake a further 10-15 minutes to crisp. Allow to cool on the tray for 5 minutes, before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
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