With an usually soft texture and amazingly rich chocolate flavor, these chocolate frosted Swig-style cookies are so easy to make and will rock your world with their deliciousness. 

Chocolate Frosted Swig-Style Cookies

I can’t believe it’s been eight months since I told you about these cookies on Instagram with nary a word or recipe post here on the blog to follow up the gush fest.

Sorry about that.

The upside to completely holding out on you is that having spent eight months making these cookies dozens and dozens of times (not kidding), I basically have the recipe down to a foolproof, no-fail science.

Which is kind of funny, because these cookies really don’t need foolproof science. The recipe is easy. Super easy.

They have become my go-to cookie every time I need a quick treat for a get-together, potluck, take-in meal or just quick chocolate fix. You’d be shocked at how often I’ve made them just because I’m craving a chocolate cookie. Or would you? You probably know me pretty well by now. No secrets here.

That ultra-soft (almost unusually so) rich chocolate cookie frosted with the dreamiest, most delicious chocolate frosting…well, it’s become one of my favorite cookies of all time.

Chocolate Frosted Swig-Style Cookies

Apparently Swig (a sweet shop located in Utah, I believe) cookies have a sort of cult following. In the interest of full disclosure, I’ve never had a real, live, authentic Swig cookie. So I can’t tell you whether this chocolate knockoff is similar or not to the chocolate Swig cookies you can buy at their store.

But in another step toward full disclosure, I’m also not sure I have a huge desire to taste a verified chocolate Swig cookie. I’m afraid there’s no way it will live up to the deliciousness of these cookies that I can easily make (and eat without anyone watching) in my own kitchen.

The cookie itself is a drop sugar cookie (meaning, you don’t have to roll and cut out the dough) that’s lightly pressed into a crackly disc with the bottom of a sugar-laced drinking glass. On its own, the cookie is quite tasty. I’ve even made the cookies once or twice without frosting them.

I’d like to say that was planned, but because we are all friends, I’ll just tell you – it’s because the cookies got gobbled up before I could make the frosting.

You know, five kids and all that (best excuse in the world).

The key to the amazingly soft texture of the cookies is to only bake them for 8-9 minutes. Any longer and it could be death to your could-be-lifechanging chocolate sugar cookie. Consider yourself warned.

Chocolate Frosted Swig-Style Cookies

And that frosting?

Oh, that frosting. It’s so creamy, so chocolate-y, so fluffy and rich and decadent…it has become my new favorite chocolate frosting for everything (not to be excluded: sandwiching the dreamy stuff between graham crackers).

I won’t be mad if you decide to toss a few sprinkles on top of the frosted cookie (especially if it’s a holiday and you want to make them a bit more festive looking).

But these show-stopping cookies certainly don’t need the fuss of sprinkles if you’d rather leave them off. They really are perfect just as they are.

Cookie + frosting. That’s it.

Of the many, many recipes I make and post on here, these chocolate cookies are truly one where I wish you could all just reach through the screen and taste a little nibble (my generosity only extends to a mere snitch just to whet your appetite to make them for yourself). That heavenly chocolate combo of soft cookie and creamy frosting is almost impossible to appreciate fully without experiencing it yourself.

Chocolate Frosted Swig-Style Cookies

A few notes about cocoa here. In the pictures for this post, my cookies are lighter in color than the frosting. That’s namely because I used natural, unsweetened cocoa powder (like, Hershey’s) in the cookie and a darker, richer Dutch-process cocoa in the frosting.

But if you notice in my Instagram post from several months ago, when I used Dutch-process (dark cocoa powder from Ghirardelli) in the cookies and the frosting, the cookies look somewhat darker.

Basically, you can interchange the type of cocoa powder you use for the cookie batter and for the frosting.

Dutch-process cocoa powder, with its milder, richer taste, will give the cookies a slightly more intense chocolate punch without the hint of acidity that you sometimes get with natural, unsweetened cocoa powder. However, the cookies and the frosting are perfectly wonderful with natural, unsweetened cocoa powder, too (which is probably the most common type of cocoa powder most home cooks keep on hand).

And if you’re thoroughly confused about cocoa powder after this little talk (don’t worry, you aren’t alone), here’s a quick post that can help unmuddy the cocoa powder waters a bit. Feel free to ask any questions in the comments below, as well.

Chocolate Frosted Swig-Style Cookies

Honestly, these cookies are worth making, especially if you haven’t nailed down what you want to bring to friends/neighbors/teachers/coworkers/3rd cousins twice removed this time of year.

I make these cookies large and in charge using my #20 cookie scoop, but you could definitely make them smaller (I actually think a bite-size version of this cookie might be the cutest and smartest thing one of us could ever do).

And since I know someone might ask, yes, I do occasionally make the traditional non-chocolate Swig-style sugar cookies. As undeniably delicious as they are, they don’t hold a candle to this chocolate version in my world.

Chocolate Frosted Swig-Style Cookies

One Year Ago: Soft Eggnog Sugar Cookies with Whipped Eggnog Frosting
Two Years Ago: Bacon Wrapped Chicken Bites {Main Dish or Appetizer!}
Three Years Ago: Toffee Crumble Caramel Apple Pie

Chocolate Frosted Swig-Style Cookies

Yield: Makes 2-3 dozen cookies, depending on size

Chocolate Frosted Swig-Style Cookies


  • 4 cups (20 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) dutch-process or unsweetened, natural cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks, 8 ounces) butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups (9.25 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup (3 ounces) powdered sugar
  • 2/3 cup neutral flavored oil, like canola, vegetable, grapeseed or avocado
  • 2 large eggs
  • Granulated sugar, for rolling
  • Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) butter, softened
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) powdered sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup Dutch-process or unsweetened, natural cocoa powder, sifted through a fine mesh strainer (to avoid little bumps and lumps in the frosting)
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line several large, rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. For the cookies, in a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, cream of tartar, and salt.
  3. In a large bowl with a handheld electric mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter, granulated sugar and powdered sugar until light and creamy, 2-3 minutes. Add the oil and eggs and mix until well-combined.
  4. Add the dry ingredients and mix until the dough comes together. It should be stiff, but not dry (and definitely not overly wet or sticky).
  5. Form the dough into balls about the size of a golf ball or thereabouts. I use my #20 cookie scoop (about 3 tablespoons of dough per ball). You can definitely make them smaller, too, if you'd like.
  6. Place the cookies several inches apart on the prepared baking sheet(s).
  7. Place 1/4 cup or so of granulated sugar in a shallow dish. Dip a flat-bottomed glass into the sugar (it helps to rub the bottom of the glass lightly with butter or oil before the first dip so the sugar adheres) and then press the glass onto a cookie, flattening to about 1/4-inch or slightly thicker. Repeat that process for all of the cookie dough balls.
  8. Bake for 8-9 minutes. The cookies will still be very soft in the middle but set around the edges. Don't overbake! Let them cool for a few minutes on the pan before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  9. For the frosting, with an electric mixer (handheld or stand mixer), cream together the butter and 1 cup of the powdered sugar until very light and fluffy, 1-2 minutes. Add the remaining powered sugar, sifted cocoa powder, heavy cream, and vanilla. Mix for 2-3 minutes until very thick and creamy.
  10. Spread the frosting evenly on the cookies. Decorate with sprinkles, if desired. Store well-covered in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.

Recipe Source: adapted from Melissa at The Faux Martha

88 Responses to Super Soft Chocolate Frosted Sugar Cookies {Swig Style}

  1. Bryn says:

    When I look at your Instagram post you mention adding milk to the dough, but I don’t see it in this post. Was it only added bc you doubled the recipe in the instagram post?

  2. Rachel says:

    I made these for a dinner party with some friends if you weeks ago and they turned out sooo good! They did not disappoint!

  3. Whitney says:

    The recipe calls for 20 oz of flour or 4 cups. I thought a cup of flour is 4 oz. am I missing something?

    • Mel says:

      I test all my recipes using 5 ounces of flour per cup (I’ve found this is more accurate to the way I measure; it’s also what America’s Test Kitchen recommends).

  4. Sarah says:

    This might be a dumb question but can this dough be rolled out and cut out with cookie cutters? I am looking for a chocolate sugar cookie recipe.

  5. Elizabeth says:

    I’ve made these twice in the past week – once for a party and once just for fun. They’re DELICIOUS! Everyone loves them! Thanks so much for the recipe!

  6. Jim says:

    These. Are. Amazing.

  7. Janice says:

    Thank you for such a lovely recipe. I made these today with my daughter and the whole family really enjoys them. I more than enjoy them – I love them! I think what I like about them the most is that they are chocolatey without being overly sweet. Even the frosting is not terribly sweet. This is a different cookie for that reason and one that I will print out for my recipe binder to make again and again.

  8. Rick says:

    Quick question. My cookies were quite dry and just broke apart. Can you give me some ideas on what I did wrong?

    • Mel says:

      Hi Rick, sounds like the dough was overfloured. Did you use the weight measures by any chance? If not, I’d suggest adding a bit less flour next time (everyone measures flour differently which is why I often add weights). I usually fluff up the flour, scoop it and level.

      • Jenny says:

        I did mine by weight and got the same dry result in my dough. I’m trying to make sure that I slightly under bake them to hopefully help. I did 20oz of flour by weight. Should I scale that back a couple ounces next time? I think they’ll still be yummy! 🙂

        • Mel says:

          Hey Jenny – the dough is more on the dry side than the wet side…is it crumbly? If it’s really dry and crumbly, I’d say do 1/4 cup less flour and see how that goes (but if it’s just drier than normal cookie dough, I think you’ll be fine).

    • Jen says:

      I had the same issue and ended up throwing mine away (I’m super picky). The same thing happened with the Reese’s Chocolate Peanut Butter cookies I recently made even though I weighed the flour and baked them for the minimum recommended time… I realized afterward that I used the wrong size cookie scoop so that may have been my issue… I plan on retrying this as well as the other recipe but I think I will also double-check the accuracy of my scale.

  9. Becca says:

    Can half and half replace heavy cream in the frosting?

  10. Anne says:

    My family loved these, with and without frosting, because some were stolen before I had a chance to frost them:) Thank you for sharing! We used all Dutch process cocoa. I so appreciate all you are doing for the people of Ghana! Love to read about it. We hope you have a Merry Christmas and enjoy your trip to Portland! I live close by and it’s one of our coldest winters here so dress warm! Also, I’ve signed up for your newsletter twice, but have not received one yet.

    • Mel says:

      Thank you, Anne! We’ll be bringing some warm clothes! Also, I looked at the email list and it shows that the last two newsletters have been sent to you and haven’t bounced…have you checked your spam/promotions folder?

  11. Cindy says:

    I can confirm that the use of peppermint extract in the frosting and crushed peppermints on top is delicious! Beautiful for the holidays.

  12. Lindy says:

    Also…swig has since changed their cookies and I think they’re horrible now, so I’m sooo happy to see this!!! I loved their original ones! There’s a similar soda place here in Utah called Sodalicious that makes a peppermint frosting to top with the chocolate cookies too and they’re amazing! I’m going to make a combo of both!!! So excited. You’re the greatest.

  13. Lindy says:

    So you’re saying…if I make these today and store them in the refrigerator that by Friday I can bring them to room temperature to serve at a party and they would be soft and wonderful still???

  14. Jennifer Moffitt says:

    These are I think the most delicious cookies I have ever made! I just finished making a batch and they turned out beautifully and taste wonderful!

  15. Teresa R. says:

    Mel, these cookies are delicious. Thanks for the recipe. I had leftover browned butter icing and used that on half the cookies and the chocolate frosting on the other half. Both were soooo good. Thanks for another winner.

  16. Mimsie says:

    Every year I make our family’s traditional favorite cookies (i.e. “it wouldn’t be Christmas without —–“), and then I try out one new recipe. This was the one for 2016. I like the chewy, cakey texture very much. I had to sample two of them to make sure. Haha. I like to make sampler size cookies so I divided the recipe in half, and rolled balls about 3/4” inch in size, before flattening them with sugar as you said to do. This makes a cute little cookie, just over an inch in diameter. I frosted them, then sprinkled them with flecks of one candy cane I had crunched up with a rolling pin. It yielded about 4 dozen little cookies. Thank you, Mel, for yet another delicious recipe.

  17. Katie says:

    Mel, another home run!! I like chocolate just fine, but wouldn’t consider myself a chocoholic and even I had a hard time staying away from these! These were so easy and came together so quickly.

    Thought I’d mention that I forgot to smush down one pan’s worth of cookies before putting them in the oven, then kept wondering why they weren’t flattening out like the other batches 😉 I smashed them down when I realized it (Maybe 5 minutes had passed?), then put them back in for another few minutes and they turned out just fine! I used good ol’ Nestle cocoa powder and while the icing was lighter in color, it was perfectly delicious.

    Thanks for another great recipe!

  18. Amber says:

    Hi Mel! These cookies were amazing!!! My husband agreed to take a bite after I made them (He’s not a huge fan of chocolate) and ended up eating the whole cookie.
    If I were to use my medium cookie scoop to get a higher yield out of the batch, would you recommend cutting down the baking time or leave it at 8 minutes?

  19. Amber says:

    Oh man!! These are amazing!!! I may have done a happy dance in the kitchen when my husband agreed to take a bite of one (he’s not a huge chocolate fan) and ended up eating the whole thing
    If I were to use my medium cookie scoop to help stretch the yield…would i need to shorten the baking time or still leave it at 8 mins?

  20. Carlee says:

    Ooooh, these look soooooooo good! If I hadn’t already baked dozens upon dozens of cookies this weekend, I’d jump up and make them. Instead, I’ll save them for Christmas part 2 next week 😉

  21. Nancy Greenblatt says:

    You say to store these Swig cookies in the refrigerator. Could they be stored at room temperature, just as well?

    • Mel says:

      They do better in the refrigerator, in my opinion, due to the creamy frosting…but they’d probably be fine at cool room temperature for up to a day.

  22. fiona says:

    I love your blog! 🙂 Everything looks Yummy!

  23. Julianna says:

    What recipe do you use for the non-chocolate swig sugar cookie??

  24. Analee says:

    Hi Mel!
    It’s my first time commenting…but not my first time loving your site. 🙂 thank you for all the wonderful recipes and especially your lets talk series. Love to talk “life” as much as talk recipes! Love your recipe book too though!
    I just signed up for your newsletter….so excited! Is there any chance of receiving the first two recipes? Thank you again for being a friend across the miles….

  25. Teresa says:

    Ok Mel, these cookies are unreal! Today I made 6 dozen iced ricotta cookies for an ornament/cookie swap I’m attending tomorrow night. Then after I finished those, I just had to make these and had everything on hand. My Williams-Sonoma Pernigotti dutch cocoa was close to its expiration date, so it was a perfect time to use it up. I used the dutch in both the cookie and the frosting. Oh gosh, they just melt in your mouth and the combination of the tender cookie and the thick, rich frosting was too much! I gave a good number away to a friend this afternoon after we tried them and froze the rest, hoping they will freeze well. I will be coming home with a lot of cookies Saturday night, so I really needed to stash these delicious ones in the freezer for another day. Thank you for such a winner! Wishing you and your sweet family a very happy holiday, with many thanks for all you do!

  26. Jennifer says:

    So…I’m not really an oil expert. Olive oil? Does that work?

  27. Nicole H says:

    Hi Mel. Have you tried these with coconut oil, by chance, as opposed to the other neutral oils that you mentioned? I have some expeller pressed that I am trying to use up, but if it would change the results of the cookies, I’ll definitely use another.

  28. I hope to find cream of tartar somewhere as I’d like to try these. I like reach chocolate cookies.

  29. Katherine says:

    Oh Mel these look so amazing! I just finished and delivered all of my holiday treats but I’m tempted to make these anyway! I have you to thank for my treat plates this year, I made:
    Twixter Cookies
    Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Rods
    Peppermint Crinkle Blossom Cookies (from the newsletter)
    Peanut Butter Marshmallow Fudge
    Magic in the Middle
    and then also:
    A little ritz sandwich cookie that has peanut butter and marshmallow fluff and dipped in chocolate, and a chocolate cookie dipped in white chocolate and then crushed candy canes! And I used the leftover caramel from the pretzel rods and twixter cookies to make little caramel nut truffles that have a little cayenne in the chopped nuts!
    The feedback I got on my cookies plates this year has been so so positive!
    Thank you so so much for all your heavenly recipes!

  30. Jamie says:

    These are the best things I’ve ever had and I haven’t even frosted them yet! Thank you!!

  31. Vickie says:

    So I’m a little confused!! (Nothing new!!!). The recipe calls for 1 cup (4 ounces) of cocoa powder. There’s 8 ounces in a cup, so do I use I cup or 1/2 cup? For the powdered sugar in the cookie recipe is it 3/4 cups or 3 ounces? Also in the frosting recipe, it calls for 2 cups (8 ounces) of powdered sugar???? Am I missing something? I love the swig chocolate cookies, but live in Washington so I’m dying to make these! Thanks for sharing your recipe!!

    • Liz says:

      8 ounces in a cup is a volume measurement of liquid. The 4 ounces of cocoa powder is the weight of a dry ingredient.

      So you use either the volume measurements in the recipe (cups or partial cups) or the weights (ounces) if you are using a scale.

      Consider that different flours have different weights for 1/4 cup (check some labels if you aren’t baking by weights). I use a hard red wheat flour that is 38 grams (1.34 ounces) per 1/4 cup. I believe Gold Medal flour is 30 grams (1.05 ounces) per 1/4 cup.

      Sorry … read the comment and I couldn’t help myself.

    • Mel says:

      Hi Vickie, Liz is right (Thanks, Liz!). A cup holds 8 ounces of volume…the ounces I’m giving in the recipe refer to the weight of the ingredients.

  32. Kira says:

    I have seen these and wanted to make them, but no one I trusted has posted a recipe. Thanks for coming through!

    I first tried knock off Swig cookies and couldn’t wait to try the real thing because the knock off was soooo yummy. I was disappointed. My cookie tasted like freezer burn. In hindsight, I’m happy I didn’t pick up an expensive cookie buying habit.

  33. Jill says:

    you are not going to believe this but on my to do list this morning was make chocolate sugar cookies. I had a different recipe I had planned to make, but decided to try yours instead. amazing!!!!!!! and I haven’t even frosted them yet.

  34. Josie says:

    Oh my goodness Mel! I can’t tell you how excited I am to make these!
    So I live in Utah and Swig was all the rage for awhile and I had never been because many people rave about the dirty sodas and I don’t drink soda, but then one day a friend brought me one of these chocolate cookies, and I DO eat cookies, and I was in love! I’ve tried their other cookies and I don’t think they are anything out of this world, but I do love the chocolate ones and now my life will be changed for the better thanks to you!!
    Can not wait to make them! I have no doubt yours will be better! I will give you a full report! Thank you Mel, you are the best!

  35. Paige says:

    Yum! I’ve never had chocolate sugar cookies before! These look incredible!


  36. Jess says:

    Have you frozen them frosted? Thanks, they look delicious! Tried to convince my 3 year old to make these today but he insisted on hot water chocolate cake…boooo…

    • Mel says:

      I haven’t but Melissa at thefauxmartha.com (who inspired this recipe) has and I think it’s a dreamy idea! She flash freezes them on a pan and then slides the frozen frosted cookie into a bag(s).

  37. Liz says:

    This might be more than anyone wants to know, but I saved the link after reading the article and thinking about what to buy for holiday baking:


  38. Kim says:

    These look so great, and I was thrilled to see that they can be refrigerated for several days. Does the frosting dry well enough to stack them in a container without them sticking to each other and making a mess?

    • Mel says:

      No, the frosting stays really soft…however, once they are refrigerated, the frosting firms up enough probably for the cookies to stack…but it will soften again at room temp.

  39. Emily says:

    well now I know what treats I’m bringing to my daughter’s preschool christmas program!

  40. Jana says:

    Do you think these would taste as good by adding peppermint extract to make them more festive?

  41. Monica says:

    There’s no way I’m not making these asap. You easily convinced me! Thank you!

  42. Ashley says:

    Haha! Mel, I use my kids as an excuse all the time….”Oh, all those cookies were eaten? Crazy kids.”

  43. Thilde Maria Hansen says:

    Can baking soda and cream of tartar be replaced by anything else?
    Are any of them also known as Natron in the states?
    I’m from Denmark and I’m not really sure what the danish version of these two products are, but I’m thinking natron could be one of them because that and baking powder is what we usually use in recipes here.

    • Mel says:

      I’m not really sure; you’d definitely have to experiment as I’m not familiar with substitutions and haven’t tried them myself. Have you tried googling to see if there’s an adequate substitution in Denmark? From how you describe natron, it sounds like it might work for the baking soda.

    • Andrea says:

      I believe that natron is what we call baking soda in the U.S. (In
      Swedish, it’s bikarbonat, if that helps you.) Cream of tartar might be vinsten? You might try searching for cream of tartar on Wikipedia and then changing the language. (A useful trick I learned when I lived in Sweden for a couple of years.) Good luck!

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