Tahini Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Tahini Chocolate Chunk Cookies

I’m having a blast at the ethnic grocery store right down the street from my house.  The place is always packed, and the prices are way better than most grocery stores.  Since it’s a heavily trafficked store, I know the turn-over is great.  Fresh, fresh, fresh!

I picked up some fresh tahini (if I told you the price, you would slap yourself—no more $18 tahini at Whole Foods, thanks!) with the intent to make hummus.  For some reason, all I can stomach for breakfast lately is hummus, vegetables, a hard-boiled egg and a glass of milk.  It’s weird, but I’m going to ride it out because it sounds healthy.  I will admit to stepping into Whole Foods long enough last week to grab their flyer.  I’m hooked on the money-saving recipes in their monthly flyers, however ironic they may be (I have a recipe for saving money:  shop somewhere else. I kid, I kid.  I love WF).  Anyway, a recipe for sesame chocolate chip cookies made with tahini jumped off the page.  Why have I never thought of this?  Then, I saw Dula Note’s Tahini Swirl brownies and just about died.  Those are next, my little pretties.

Tahini Chocolate Chunk Cookies

I’m not about to claim this to be a healthy cookie.  People ask me all the time about how I eat.  It’s the most personal question I can think of, and it’s really best if you just come to my house for dinner so I can show you.  I would say the diet I align with most is the Mediterranean diet.   But, I have a strong love for ethnic foods, too.  One of my New Year’s resolutions is to make more Indian food at home.  I couldn’t quite define my eating habits until this month’s Rachel Ray magazine.  Gabriella Gershenson wrote an article entitled ‘The New Mediterranean Diet’ that captures the foods from the entire coast that touches the Mediterranean Sea.  Not just southern Europe anymore, her definition includes north Africa, the Middle East and a slip of Asia.  Now, THIS is how I eat.  I eat lots of lean proteins, vegetables and whole grains, but with heavy North African spices and Middle Eastern Flavors.  And if I don’t have some variation of Asian food once a week, you can find me in the fridge with a spoon in the red curry paste jar.  (Don’t try that).

Maybe it doesn’t bother you to not be able to clearly expound upon your diet, but it was making me fret.  I felt like I was dodging the question with my vague answer: ‘oh, I eat mostly healthy, but I do shove a cupcake in my pie hole on the reg’.  Or, is it pie into my cupcake hole?

Tahini Chocolate Chunk Cookies

The one way my diet unmistakably differs from the Mediterranean diet is dessert (duh!).  While the new Mediterranean diet touts dessert to be strictly dried fruits and nuts, I’m all GIMME THE CHOCOLATE over here.  I eat lots of dried fruits as snacks, not dessert.  This leaves plenty of room for a warm chocolate chip cookie.

If you’ve never cooked with tahini, try it!  It’s just pureed sesame seeds—you know, the ones on your hamburger bun?  They’re nutty and slightly sweet.  And they’re gloriously gooey in chocolate chip cookies.  Let’s do this!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Tahini Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Yield: 8 cookies
Serves: 2
  • ¼ cup all-natural tahini (see note)
  • 2 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • ¾ teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons flour
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ⅓ cup chocolate chunks
  • 1 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
  1. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. In a medium bowl, beat together with an electric mixer on medium the tahini and butter. Add the brown sugar and beat well, until fluffy, about 30 seconds.
  4. Next, add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined.
  5. Sprinkle the flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder evenly over the mixture, then beat until just combined--do not over-mix.
  6. Finally, stir in the chocolate chunks with a spatula.
  7. Make 8 scoops of dough on the cookie sheet, and sprinkle each cookie with a bit of the toasted sesame seeds.
  8. Bake for 9-12 minutes, until the edges are starting to brown.
  9. Let cool on sheet pan for 1 minute, and then move to wire rack to cool completely.
About tahini: The brand I use is 100% natural tahini. The only ingredient is sesame seeds. No salt. Nothing but ground toasted sesame seeds.





  1. says

    Love the way that you describe your diet – it’s very similar to the way we eat (dessert included) and this is such a great articulation of that philosophy. Also love these cookies; I’ve not tried tahini in baking yet but I’m intrigued!

  2. says

    YES! I’ve been wanting to make tahini cookies! I wish we had a good ethnic food store in our lil town…it’s definitely expensive stuff, but I just can’t not buy it. So with my jar o’ tahini, I’m ready to go with these cookies. Bring on them chocolate chunks! I’m down for some delicious ethnic food and tahini cookies for dessert!

  3. says

    I love ethnic markets as well. The first time I bought ginger from one I thought, “So THIS is what fresh ginger is!” I’m intrigued by these- can’t wait to try them!

  4. says

    I love tahini in baked goods, it adds such a great flavor and these cookies look amazing. I eat very well most of the time as well, but when it comes to chocolate……..

  5. says

    I LOVE tahini…mainly because I grew up on it..haha And we also shop at the Mediterranean market too because it’s way cheaper in a lot of things. Funny, I work at WF and some things are crazy expensive but some arent if you get the sales..lol I need to make tahini cookies…And where did you get those gorgeous plates!!!?

    • says

      haha! let me reiterate again how much I love Whole Foods, Samantha. I go there for stress relief. having a bad day? Whole Foods makes it all better. It’s my therapy.

      I do agree with you–some things are totally reasonably priced. especially the 365 brand.

      Bad news about the plates–they’re my grandmother’s. I inherited them years ago. I wish I had a better source for you. They say ‘Johnson Brothers Holland’ and ‘made in England’ on the bottom. I’m sure they were super cheap back in the day. Try Ebay?


  6. says

    I love Whole Foods, but everything priced there makes my soul weep. I also have no idea what Tahini is, but it sounds like an exotic island where I would like to go and eat these cookies on the beach. You’re invited, btw.

  7. says

    Sad but true: I’ve never used tahini other than for hummus and dressings. Clearly I’m missing out…the nutrition stats are so impressive, cookies is a natural fit :)

  8. says

    The NEW Mediterranean diet definitely sounds like how we eat also! With some Mexican food thrown into the mix. :P I love the tahini infusion in these. Like PB+choc cookies but cooler.

  9. says

    Ooooh how interesting, sounds wonderful! I have some tahini, and am always on the hunt for nutritious ways to bake for my training. Now I have another healthy cookie recipe! Yum! Thanks!

  10. Stephanie says

    Ooh these look and sound divine! I’m going to try to adapt them without regular flour and see how they go!

  11. says

    I am blown away by these cookies. They look too good to be true – I wouldn’t mind taking a couple of these off your hands :). I am so jealous whenever people talk about Whole Foods. I’ve never been to one since there’s none close by, but ethnic grocery stores? I can definitely find some of those! Seriously can’t wait to make these!

  12. says

    I don’t eat everything, but almost! So it’s impossible to tell someone how I eat — it depends on the season, and what I feel like. And at the moment I feel like one (OK, three!) of these cookies! Good recipe — thanks.

  13. says

    Such a great idea! I was just buying hummus at Whole Foods this week because I never can bring myself to buying a big container of pricey tahini and not knowing what to do with it all.

  14. says

    I’m so intrigued by the sound of these! I love (LOVE) tahini, but have never tried it in a sweet recipe, now that I think of it. I stock up on huge jars at the local Middle Eastern market, and totally need to hit them up for a new jar so I can make these. Yum!

  15. says

    These are genius! I’ve been on a sesame kick lately, too – yum! Thanks for sharing the recipe. Can’t wait to make them. Love the small batch, too.

  16. Kate says

    Ok — we’re all intrigued! But has anyone actually tried these beauties!? I’m discouraged by comments that just say how much they want to try a recipe. I need results! Off to give them a try. Yum

    • says

      haha, I agree! I make them twice a week, but I’m biased ;) Erin from the law students’ wife made them and posted on instagram about them :) (www.thelawstudentswife.com) Let me know :) If you like these, I have tahini swirl brownies comin’ at ya soon, too! ;)

  17. says

    love the idea – especially a small batch, and since I am off chocolate temporarily, I am going to substitute either dried cherries or cranberries! Fun flavours.

  18. says

    Perfects all batch and savory combination with sweet. I made them rep lacing the chocolate with dried cherries (snipped in half for size and the check for pits). So glad I made them. Perfect after dinner or with morning coffee. Will not last long enough to test shelf life:-)

    I slightly reduced the sugar and used dark brown with no harm. Probably a 10% reduction but will have to make another batch to verify that! Lovely use of tahini – which often hangs around too long since I only use it in a few things.


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