Chocolate-Hazelnut Rugelach

These fancy cookies are actually slice-and-bake in disguise.

Chocolate-Hazelnut Rugelach
Photo: Greg DuPree; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall; Prop Styling: Audrey Davis
Active Time:
30 mins
Chill Time:
2 hrs
Total Time:
3 hrs 40 mins
2 dozen

While they may look fancy and taste quite decadent, these Chocolate-Hazelnut Rugelach are simply slice-and-bakes in disguise. Layers of sugar, spice, nuts, and chocolate get rolled up in a flaky, buttery dough that, after freezing for 15 minutes, slices into beautiful swirled cookies. Reminiscent of pie dough, this pastry is supremely flaky and buttery, with just a hint of sweetness. Although the dough is quite flaky, it's surprisingly easy to work with. The filling, layered with brown sugar and cinnamon, crunchy, toasty hazelnuts, and rich dark chocolate, hits all the right notes. Any fans of Nutella already know the wonders achieved when combining hazelnuts and dark chocolate: It's simply a match made in heaven. As an added bonus, you might have all of the ingredients necessary to make these cookies in your pantry already.

These rich, buttery delights remind us of chocolate-filled croissants. When kneading the dough, don't overwork it, or it will be tough and not as flaky. If you don't own a food processor, you can combine all the ingredients in a bowl using a pastry cutter.

These Chocolate-Hazelnut Rugelach can be enjoyed all day long, pairing beautifully with your morning coffee, afternoon hot cocoa, or post-dinner cocktail. As one batch yields 2 dozen, these sturdy rugelach also make great gifts—simply bag them up, tie with twine, and deliver to friends or neighbors.


  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface and dusting

  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar 

  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt

  • 4 ounces cold cream cheese, cubed

  • ½ cup cold unsalted butter, cubed

  • 1 large egg yolk

  • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar 

  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon 

  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped toasted hazelnuts

  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate (from 1 [4-oz.] bar), finely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream 

  • 1 tablespoon sparkling sugar


  1. Pulse together flour, granulated sugar, and salt in a food processor until combined, 3 to 4 pulses. Add cream cheese and butter; pulse until mixture forms large, crumbly pieces, 6 to 8 pulses. Add egg yolk; pulse until just incorporated, 3 to 4 pulses.

  2. Turn dough out onto a clean work surface, and knead until dough just comes together, about 1 minute. Divide in half; shape each piece into a rectangle about 5 x 3 inches. Wrap individually in plastic wrap, and chill at least 2 hours or up to overnight (8 hours).

  3. Stir together brown sugar and ground cinnamon in a small bowl. Remove 1 chilled dough rectangle from refrigerator, and unwrap. Place dough on a well-floured work surface, and lightly dust with flour. Roll into a rectangle about 12 x 6 inches. Sprinkle dough rectangle with half of the brown sugar mixture. Sprinkle half of the chopped hazelnuts over brown sugar mixture. Sprinkle half of the finely chopped chocolate over hazelnuts. Starting at 1 long end, carefully roll dough up into a tight log. Place log, seam side down, on a baking sheet. Repeat procedure with remaining chilled dough rectangle, brown sugar mixture, chopped hazelnuts, and chopped chocolate. Freeze logs, unwrapped, on baking sheet 15 minutes.

  4. Preheat oven to 375°F. Remove 1 dough log from freezer; cut into 12 (1-inch-thick) slices. Arrange slices, standing upright with seam side down, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush tops of slices evenly with half of the whipping cream, and sprinkle with half of the sparkling sugar. Bake until rugelach are golden brown and dough is flaky, 13 to 15 minutes. Cool on baking sheet 5 minutes; transfer to a wire rack, and cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes. Repeat procedure with remaining dough log, whipping cream, and sparkling sugar.

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