Cookies Holidays

White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies

white chocolate macadamia nut cookies on plates

Almost every coffeehouse I worked at in the late 90’s made sure to offer four kinds of cookies: chocolate chip (of course), peanut butter, oatmeal raisin, and the very fancy (at least for suburban Minnesota) white chocolate macadamia nut. Chocolate chip was my number one pick each time, and I never was a huge fan of the latter: the white chocolate was overly sweet, and the macadamia nuts were left in huge pieces that could crack a tooth.

Years later when I was developing cookie recipes I finally found a white chocolate that I liked, and discovered that using that good chocolate and finely chopping the macadamia nuts so they weren’t so overwhelming made for a delicious cookie. I use it often; my Half-n-Half White Chocolate Raspberry Cookies which are another favorite.

This cookie is based on my Chocolate Chip Cookie 2.0 recipe, with a small change: I use more brown sugar here than white sugar for a little more rich, caramel-y sugar profile to shine through.

I also have a variation (see notes) that includes cacao nibs and orange, which I love equally as much as the original. The bitter complexity of the cacao nibs really balance the sweet flavor of the white chocolate, and adds a nice bit of crunch. I find myself adding them even if I don’t include the orange pieces.

white chocolate macadamia nut cookies on plates

Ingredient Notes For Making White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies:

  • All-purpose flour: Make sure your all-purpose flour is not too high or low in protein; I like to use Gold Medal unbleached all-purpose for cookie baking. At 10.5 percent protein it is a good, moderate choice to keep baked goods tender.
  • Unsalted butter: I use unsalted butter in my recipes so I can control the salt content. This recipe uses both salt in the dough and sprinkled on top before baking, so unsalted works well here in order to keep the cookies from getting too salty.
  • Pure vanilla extract: I prefer the flavor of pure vanilla extract over artificial, and recommend it here since this recipe includes a tablespoon of vanilla. However, if you love a brand of artificial and use it regularly, it will work fine.
  • White Chocolate: Use a white chocolate that you love! I have used Valrhona’s Ivorie and Ghirardelli’s White Chocolate Baking Bar with good success.
  • Macadamia Nuts: I like using salted nuts in this recipe, and don’t find them too overwhelming.

Measuring Flour For Baking Cookies:

*Throughout my recipes posted on this website, 1 cup of flour equals 142g. Please note that 1 cup of flour can range anywhere from 120g to 142g, depending on the baker or website. I found that after weighting many cups of flour and averaging the total, mine always ended up around this number. Weighing your flour instead of using cup measurements is the surest way to get the result I intended when developing the recipe.

Different brands of flour have varying levels of protein, ranging from low to high, which can result in very different outcomes when baking. I’ve found Gold Medal all-purpose unbleached flour to be the best option for many of my recipes; I use it in all the baked goods that don’t use yeast.

To Freeze Cookie Dough:

Cookie dough can also be formed into balls and frozen for up to 2 weeks. Freeze them on a sheet pan without them touching, then move into a freezer bag. When you’re ready to bake, set the cookies sit out at room temperature until the oven preheats. The cookies will need an extra minute if baked frozen.

white chocolate cookies on plates

More White Chocolate Recipes:

white chocolate macadamia nut cookies on plates

Perfect White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies

Servings: 16 cookies
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
These white chocolate macadamia nut cookies have a rich, caramel-y profile that shines, combined with the salty, roasted nuts. Using good white chocolate and finely chopping the macadamia nuts so they aren't overwhelming makes for an absolutely delicious cookie!
Sarah Kieffer
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Adjust an oven rack to the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 400F [200C]. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and baking soda.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy, about 1 minute. Add the granulated and brown sugars and salt and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg, yolk, and vanilla, and mix until smooth. Add the flour mixture and beat on low speed until just combined. Add the chopped white chocolate and macadamia nuts and and mix into the batter on low speed. Use a rubber spatula to give the dough a final mix and make sure it is completely combined.
  • Form the dough into balls, about 2 tablespoons each [50 g], and place 8 cookies on each sheet pan. Sprinkle each cookie with a little flaky salt, if desired.
  • Bake one pan at a time, rotating halfway through baking. Bake the cookies until the tops are golden and the cookies are slightly puffed and starting to crinkle, 10 to 11 minutes. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and use the back of a spoon to gently press the center of each cookie in to flatten it. Let the cookies rest on the sheet pan for 5 minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack to finish cooling. Cookies are best eaten slightly warm but can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days.
  • *Cookies will soften the longer they sit. Cookie dough can be formed and refrigerated overnight, then baked the next day; the cookies may need an extra minute if chilled. Cookie dough can also be formed into balls and frozen for up to 2 weeks; let the cookies sit out at room temperature until the oven preheats. The cookies will need an extra minute if baked frozen.

Notes

Variation: White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies with Cacao Nibs and Orange – Add 2 tablespoons chopped cacao nibs and 1/4 cup [35 g] King Arthur Orange Jammy Bits or chopped candied orange peel to the dough along with the white chocolate and macadamia nuts.
*White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies often have very large chunks of both main ingredients throughout them, which I don’t always love – I wanted a cookie where flavors were more evenly distributed. I also find that white chocolate (at least the two brands I use most in baking (Valrhona Ivorie and Ghiradelli) seems to hold its shape longer when baking it in cookies than semi-sweet chocolate. Because of that, I like to finely chop my white chocolate so that it evenly disbursed and not in large pieces. I do the same with the macadamia nuts. 
*Throughout my recipes posted on this website, 1 cup of flour equals 142g. Please note that 1 cup of flour can range anywhere from 120g to 142g, depending on the baker or website. I found that after weighting many cups of flour and averaging the total, mine always ended up around this number. Weighing your flour instead of using cup measurements is the surest way to get the result I intended when developing the recipe.
Different brands of flour have varying levels of protein, ranging from low to high, which can result in very different outcomes when baking. I’ve found Gold Medal all-purpose unbleached flour to be the best option for many of my recipes; I use it in all the baked goods that don’t use yeast.
  • Reply
    Lou
    Tuesday, May 21, 2024 at 4:44 pm

    5 stars
    Hi Sarah! I baked these and they were so good! I don’t think I’ve seen you specify what kind of oven setting you use – do you use with or without fan assistance (convection)?

    • Reply
      Sarah Kieffer
      Wednesday, May 22, 2024 at 4:30 pm

      Great to hear! I do not use convection.

  • Reply
    Sabrina
    Saturday, March 23, 2024 at 7:20 pm

    5 stars
    very nice recipe and a welcome change from chocolate chips! Macadamia nuts too, thank you!

  • Reply
    Mary
    Sunday, January 14, 2024 at 11:02 pm

    Do you think the Valrhona dulcey blond would work well here?

    • Reply
      Sarah Kieffer
      Tuesday, February 6, 2024 at 4:50 pm

      Hi Mary – Yes! I think it would be delicious.

5 from 3 votes (1 rating without comment)

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