Whole Wheat Cocoa Nib Sablés: the healthy cookie

Ok let’s break this down because that is a very wordy title. You might be wondering, what are Sablés? I was wondering the same thing. This is just the fancy term for round French shortbread cookies. As you will see though, my Sablés didn’t turn out too “round.” Moving on to the cocoa nibs. I love theses things. It’s basically raw chocolate in its purest form. Noting has been added to it. Not even sugar – gasp! But somehow, even without sugar, they are not bitter. On the plus side, they’re much healthier than regular chocolate. The last part of these cookies in that they are whole wheat. Don’t worry though, adding whole wheat flower really doesn’t change the flavor very much and it’s better for you than white flower. So I guess we can say that these cookies are heathy for us, which I suppose it’s true if you turn a blind eye to the 14 tablespoons of butter that goes in them. I found this interesting recipe from Use Real Butter. And can I jus say what an awesome title for a blog. With that, always use real butter instead of margarine, ugh.

Beat the softened butter with the sugar, salt, and vanilla extract in the bowl of your electric mixer fitted with a paddle. Beat the ingredients until they are smooth but not fluffy. You don’t want to over mix. Add the cocoa nibs and stir to combine.

Measure out your dry ingredients. I used a scale to get a more accurate measurement here. For the flower you can use the whole wheat pastry flour or substitute that with an approximate one-to-one ration of white flour and whole wheat flour.

Add the flour to your dough and beat until it is just combined. The less you mix this the better. You can even take the dough out of the bowl and knead to by hand if you prefer.

Dump your dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap and using your hand form it into a thick log. As you can see I had some trouble with forming my log. The dough was a bit too dry to manipulate with ease and my log turned out to be more rectangular than circular. This is why my cookies turned out shaped a little funky.

Wrap the dough log in the plastic wrap and twist the ends tight. Refrigerate the dough for at least two hours or you could hold in overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Take the dough out of the oven and using a sharp knife cut the log into 1/4 inch slices.

Place the slices of dough on the cookie sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes or until light golden at the edges. Take the Sablés out of the oven and let them cool on a wire rack. Then enjoys these flavorful and almost guilt-free cookies.

Whole Wheat Cocoa Nib Sablés

  • Servings: 30
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


  • 2 cups (9 oz.) whole wheat pastry flour OR
  • 1 cup (4.5 oz.) all-purpose flour plus 1 scant cup (4 oz.) whole wheat flour
  • 14 tbsps unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup (3.5 oz.) sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup (1 1/4 oz.) cacao nibs


  1. Beat the butter, sugar, salt, and vanilla extract together in a mixing bowl until smooth, but not fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the cacao nibs and beat until combined.
  1. Add the flour and mix until just incorporated (don’t overbeat). You can gently knead any excess flour into the dough.
  1. Turn the dough out onto a sheet of plastic wrap and form the dough into a 12-x2-inch log. Wrap the dough in the plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the dough from the plastic wrap and cut into 1/4-inch slices. Place the slices 1 1/2 inches apart on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until light golden at the edges.
  1. Let cool for 1 minute on the baking sheets before removing to a cooling rack to cool completely. Flavor improves after a day. Store for up to 1 month in an airtight container. Makes 30 cookies.


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