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Black and White Cookies


A New York classic, these iconic cookies are more like flat cakes coated with chocolate icing on one half and vanilla on the other. Martha made this recipe on episode 702 of Martha Bakes.

  • Yield: Makes 10

Photography: Yossy Arefi

Source: Martha Stewart Living, November 2000


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cake flour (not self-rising)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure lemon extract
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup, plus more if needed
  • 1 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flours, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs and sugar until smooth. Add milk, and whisk to combine. Whisk in melted butter and extracts. Add flour mixture, and stir to form a smooth dough. Cover, and chill for 1 hour.

  2. Line baking pans with Silpat nonstick baking mats. Using a 2-ounce scoop, drop five cookies per pan, 3 inches apart. Bake until edges are light brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack set over parchment paper to cool.

  3. In a small bowl, combine confectioners' sugar, 3 tablespoons hot water, and corn syrup. Whisk until smooth. Using a small offset spatula, ice half of each cookie. Return cookies to rack to drip, if necessary.

  4. Add chocolate to remaining icing. Stir until smooth. Add additional corn syrup to thin to desired consistency, if necessary. Spread chocolate icing over second half of each cookie. Allow cookies to set, about 10 minutes.

Cook's Notes

When Martha made these cookies on Martha Bakes, she omitted the lemon extract and substituted semisweet chocolate (61 percent).

Reviews Add a comment

  • katkir0426
    19 FEB, 2017
    Wish I had read the reviews before trying waste of ingredients (especially the Kerry Gold butter). They came out as flat as pancakes...I think that maybe the butter should have been softened and not melted because melted butter makes the cookie spread too much. Won't be trying any more of her recipes. Someone from this site should correct the recipe!
  • charmaussie
    25 JAN, 2017
    Waste of ingredients and time. Was hoping the other bad reviews were just exaggerations. They're not. I saw this on Martha Bakes recently and couldn't wait to bake it. The best taste about it was the simple icing. The cookies resembled biscuits. Trying Pioneer Woman's B&W Cookies recipe tomorrow. This must be the first Martha Stewart recipe I've made that didn't come out well...usually her recipes are spot on.
  • dianetheisgmai
    21 JUN, 2016
    These cookies were VERY disappointing... I used the ice cream scooper, but didn't flatten cookies as there were no instructions directing me to do so. The cookies never flattened out. Cookies were very dry. The icing tasted like corn syrup. I .dded cream cheese which helped... frosting improved with chocolate. I would NOT make these againl
  • jundermay
    31 DEC, 2011
    The cookies were AWESOME. The powdered sugar topping wasn't all that. Ended up using powdered fondant! That did the trick! I give this an 8 outta 10 rating!!!
  • Shashi
    20 JUN, 2009
    Dao, the recipe for the icing is part of the overall recipe (see step #3)
  • dao_2008
    13 APR, 2009
    What is the best icing recipe for these cookies? Is it the recipe on this page or somewhere else?
  • jaclynde
    24 FEB, 2009
    my three year old nephew *couldn't take more than a few bites.
  • jaclynde
    24 FEB, 2009
    when I made these the frosting recipes in her baking book were faulty. My three year old nephew could even take more than a couple of bites...which was disappointing b/c I made them for an oscar party and thought they'd turn out so well. The cookies themselves were good, though...just beware of the frosting recipies in the book.
  • alicerules41
    23 DEC, 2008
    Hi could you tell me which frosting recepi you like? for these cookies
  • cma4r
    5 JUL, 2008
    these cookies are really light and fluffy and delicious! before baking, make sure to chill the dough and don't get scared that it is really loose. the icing recipe is not my favorite but there is another recipe in martha's baking handbook for these cookies that the icing is amazing! it has lemon juice in it that provides just the right kick of flavor. skip the recipe for the cookies from the baking handbook, they are too dense and don't have nearly as much flavor as these cookies.