Chinese Marble Cookies

Swirled with a bit of melted chocolate, these Chinese Marble Cookies are a fun twist on a classic sugar cookie!

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Swirled with a bit of melted chocolate, these Chinese Marble Cookies are a fun twist on a classic sugar cookie!Have you ever come across Chinese Marble Cookies?  I first stumbled across these fun treats at a local bakery back around the time Robbie was born.  (That was 5 years ago now…man, time flies.)  As I wrote about in this recipe for Pumpkin Spice Cannoli, Laura’s obstetrician’s office happened to be located right next to a new bakery here in town.  Of course, we had to stop in each time we had a doctor’s appointment.  I mean cannolis are required when you are pregnant, right?  (Cannolis are definitely required when your wife is pregnant.  Just for the record.)

Swirled with a bit of melted chocolate, these Chinese Marble Cookies are a fun twist on a classic sugar cookie!Well, that bakery quickly became a favorite, and over the last 5 years, we’ve stopped by whenever we needed cookies or cakes to celebrate.  Come to think of it, we haven’t actually gotten any cannolis since Robbie was born.  *be right back*  *ok, back – with a cannoli next to me*

Chinese Marble Cookies

I love staring at bakery cases.  Call me crazy!  As a home baker myself, I enjoy admiring other folks’ creations.  Of course, I also enjoy sampling other folks’ creations, too!  I’ve heard it said that the best dessert is one that you didn’t have to bake yourself.  While I do enjoy baking, I have to admit that there is some truth in that statement.

Swirled with a bit of melted chocolate, these Chinese Marble Cookies are a fun twist on a classic sugar cookie!This local bakery has a number of really creative cookies, but these Chinese Marble Cookies have always stuck out to me.  They’re tucked away on a tray in the bottom left hand corner of the bakery case.  In fact, if you don’t look close, you might miss them.  One day, I was making a cookie assortment box for Robbie’s preschool teachers, and I happened to notice the Chinese Marble Cookies.  I added a couple of cookies to the box…and an extra one in a small bag for me.  It was the best decision I made that day!

Swirled with a bit of melted chocolate, these Chinese Marble Cookies are a fun twist on a classic sugar cookie!I’m not exactly sure where Chinese Marble Cookies get their name.  Maybe it has something to do with the Chinese Marbles game?  *shrug*  All I know is these cookies are delicious!  They are essentially sugar cookies swirled with chocolate.  I went with a thin and chewy sugar cookie recipe here, but you could make these cookies with any sugar cookie recipe.  If you prefer thicker sugar cookies, then try making these Chinese Marble Cookies using this sugar cookie recipe instead.  (I’ve made this recipe both ways.  Both versions are delicious – one is thin and chewy, the other is thick and chewy.  Your choice!)

Swirled with a bit of melted chocolate, these Chinese Marble Cookies are a fun twist on a classic sugar cookie!No matter the style of sugar cookie, one of the things that I like the most about this recipe is the almond extract.  The combination of almond and vanilla in these cookies is quite tasty.  Almond extract makes for a unique cookie, don’t you think?  Come to think of it, it would be fun to finely chop a bunch of almonds and then roll these cookies in those almonds before baking.  The added crunch and flavor from the almonds would be pretty fun.  *Putting that on my baking agenda now.*  I hope you enjoy these fun cookies!  Happy baking!

Did you make a batch of these Chinese Marble Cookies at home?  Leave a comment or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog).  I’d love to see your version!

Swirled with a bit of melted chocolate, these Chinese Marble Cookies are a fun twist on a classic sugar cookie!

Chinese Almond Cookies

Swirled with a bit of melted chocolate, these Chinese Marble Cookies are a fun twist on a classic sugar cookie!
5 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Chilling Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 18 cookies
Calories: 198kcal



  • Using a medium mixing bowl, add flour, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt; mix until well combined. Set dry ingredients aside.
  • Using the bowl of an electric mixer, add butter and sugar; beat on medium speed until light and fluffy (~2-3 minutes).
  • Add egg, almond extract and vanilla extract; mix until well combined.
  • Add flour mixture in two separate additions, mixing well after each addition.
  • Add melted chocolate and gently swirl with a table knife until dough is marbled.
  • Shape dough into a roll with a 2½” diameter. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 60 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Slice dough into ½” slices and place 1” apart on baking sheets.
  • Bake for 14-18 minutes, or until cookies are light golden brown on edges.
  • Let cookies cool completely on pan before removing.

Swirled with a bit of melted chocolate, these Chinese Marble Cookies are a fun twist on a classic sugar cookie!

Looking for more fun cookie recipes?  Check out these other favorites, too:

These Gingerbread Button Cookies are a fun way to add a twist to the holiday cookie tray!Gingerbread Button Cookies

Surprise!  These Chocolate Stuffed Peanut Butter Cookies are stuffed with a layer of melty chocolate.  Yum!Chocolate Stuffed Peanut Butter Cookies

The crisp Fall air (and baking season) is back!  Celebrate the season with a batch of these tasty Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies!Frosted Maple Sugar Cookies

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  1. I like the visual interest that that bit of chocolate adds to the cookie. Does look a bit like marble. I’m not much of a baker myself, but I may give these a try for the holidays.

    Speaking of which, Merry Christmas to you and yours!

    1. Thanks so much, Frank! I’m just getting around to responding to comments, but I do hope you and your family had a great Christmas break. (And I hope you had plenty of tasty treats around, too!)

  2. I see why we are friends! I too LOVE staring at bakery cases and admiring AND sampling our peoples baked creations! That’s why I’m firing up my drone right now to send it up North! Please do leave your kitchen window open – my drone has been preprogrammed perfectly for operation Chinese Marble Cookie Retrieval!

    1. Yes! I love just seeing what other folks come up with…and then that always leads me to wonder whether I can recreate it at home. I would love for that drone to come on up – but I can’t be leaving the kitchen window open. There’s snow out there! Just tell the drone to knock on the door instead…on second thought, send the drone with a snow shovel! 🙂

  3. 5 stars
    I was wondering where the name came from – these do look a little like marbles, with that beautiful chocolate swirling! I do love looking at bakery display cases too, David – especially when I travel through Europe, there’s so many different pastries and gorgeous baked creations to inspire me (Venice and Strasbourg are my favourite). And PS: cannolis are a good idea anytime!

    1. You know, I have no idea where this name comes from. I guess these cookies look a little bit like marbles? The Chinese part? Maybe Chinese marbles? It’s a bit of a stretch, I admit…but they are a fun cookie! Also, I’ve stood in Venice and Strasbourg staring at bakery cases. I second your opinion that they are favorites!! (Also, now I want a cannoli. Haha!)

  4. I wonder if the Chinese part comes from the almond extract? Although I’m not sure if that was an aspect of the original cookie. I’m just thinking of how common almond cookies are in Chinese restaurants. Regardless, I love the look of these cookies, and they sound delicious.

    1. Hmmm, you make an interesting observation, Jeff. I do recall almond extract being part of the original cookie, so perhaps? No matter the name, these are a fun cookie. Hope you had a great holiday break, my friend!

  5. 5 stars
    Chinese Marble Cookies are new to me, David. I’ve had marble cake before, but never cookies. Love the combo of vanilla and chocolate and they’re so pretty!

    1. I have no idea where the Chinese part of this comes from, but I have to say that marble cookies are a fun idea. We enjoyed these! Hope you had a great holiday season, Marissa!

  6. These cookies look like picture perfect bakery cookies. Will have to look for it next time I visit Asian store, they have a beautiful bakery. Me too love visiting bakery shops and buying few of there creations

    1. You know, I have no idea where the Chinese part of this cookie comes from – maybe they are common in Chinese bakeries?? (We don’t have any near us, so it’s hard to say.) Either way, these are a fun cookie – and they’re not too difficult to make at home. Thanks, Rahul!

    1. So I don’t think there is anything authentic ‘Chinese’ about these, Michelle. Either way, I do enjoy this recipe! How can you go wrong with a good sugar cookie swirled with chocolate?? Happy New Year, my friend!

  7. Seriously the texture and finish of these cookies looks like marble, looks simple to make, but totally elegant! I’m with you, David! love to look at the display in a bakery, also I go crazy with the fresh baked smell when I pass through a bakery shop, Nothing better than a tasty sweet treat!

    1. I’m definitely with you on the bread thing, Aarthi! I do love baking homemade bread, but I absolutely love stopping by a bread bakery and seeing their loaves. Bread baking is an art! These cookies are indeed fun. What’s not to love about a sugar cookie with a good swirl of chocolate? 🙂 Happy New Year, my friend!

  8. 5 stars
    This is the first time I heard of this Chinese Marble Cookies, I am not sure if its just me but I havent seen this in any Asian countries I resided and even Asian shops I been to. Anyways I love the look of it, definitely will try this recipe someday

    1. Oh, I don’t think there is anything authentically Chinese about these cookies, Raymund. I suspect the name has something to do with the Chinese marbles game, although that is purely a guess. What I can say is these are a fun cookie to make (and eat) with the chocolate swirled throughout!

    1. I’m with ya, Nicole – I don’t think I can ever be cookied out! Sure, we might not be eating as many as we did during the holidays, but a little something sweet is still needed on these cold winter days, right?? 🙂

  9. Hi,

    A bakery in Philadelphia that is no longer in business made the
    Chinese cookies with almonds ground up in the cookie dough and
    the dough was rolled in sprinkles colored or chocolate and a quarter
    sized dot of chocolate in the center of the cookie. With your recipe how
    much almonds would you think would work? Thank you for your time I
    enjoy your blog.

    1. Hey Linda! Those cookies you describe sound delicious – I love the idea of adding ground up almonds directly into the dough. If I had to guess, I would start with 1/4 cup of ground almonds here. The only thing I wonder is whether you would need an extra little bit of egg (like an additional egg yolk maybe?) to balance out the additional dry ingredients. If you do play around with this recipe, let me know how it turns out – those cookies sound really fun!!

    1. Hey Susan! I’m so sorry these cookies turned out dry and crumbly. It’s hard to troubleshoot without being there, but did you check the recipe to make sure all of the ingredients (especially the butter and egg) were included? Did you make any substitutions to the recipe ingredients? These cookies should be more thin and chewy rather than crumbly. I’m hoping we can get to the bottom of this!

        1. Hmmm…I wonder if that Swerve replacement had an affect here? I’ve never baked with Swerve, but I do know creaming the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy (Step #2) is a key part. If you’re willing, I would try making this recipe with all granulated sugar to see what the difference is. I can’t say for sure, but I suspect that the Swerve might be altering the texture.

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