Chestnut Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe {Gluten-Free}

by valentina on December 6, 2011

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My sweet seven-year-old was diagnosed with Celiac Disease a few years ago.  While initially, the thought of changing to a gluten-free lifestyle was daunting, we quickly got into a good groove, and my son has been thriving ever since!

I’ve done a ton of gluten-free baking, and I’ve also tried many gluten-free baked goods from markets and bakeries.  The result: I’ve become a total “gluten-free cookie snob!”

Here’s the deal, gluten-free or not, have you ever bitten into a “healthy” baked good, and right away you just know something’s off?  This happens quite often with gluten-free cookies.  So my goal is always to create a gluten-free cookie recipe that is super delicious, and not “super delicious for a gluten-free cookie.”   Just super delicious! Know what I mean?

My lovely baker friend, Elizabeth from Bella’s Breadbox, gave me an extra bag of chestnut flour and I spent all Saturday afternoon going nuts (no pun intended), experimenting with it. By Sunday morning, these Chestnut Chocolate Chip Cookies were born. And they’re the opposite of “off” — they’re totally on! Spot on!  Their flavor is deep, rich and maple-like.

Needless to say, these cookies are perfect to bring to a holiday cookie exchange!  Whether or not it’s specifically a gluten-free holiday cookie exchange!

Chestnut Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe {Gluten-Free}

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Yield: Makes about 3-1/2 dozen


6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup golden brown sugar

1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 egg

1 cup chestnut flour (see notes)

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1-1/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

About 3 whole roasted and peeled chestnuts (How To Roast And Peel Chestnuts)

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a couple of baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to cream the butter with the sugars, vanilla, salt and cinnamon. Add the egg and mix on a low speed for 1 minute. The batter should be smooth and light.
  3. Measure the chestnut flour and then sift it into the batter with the baking soda. Mix just until the flour is fully incorporated.
  4. Fold in the chocolate chips and use a 1-inch ice-cream scoop to shape your cookies, placing them on the parchment-lined baking sheets as you go. There should be at least 2-inches between them.
  5. Slice the roasted chestnuts are super thinly and place about a half of a slice on top of each ball of cookie dough. (I like how this looks, however only add this step if you plan to eat/serve the cookies the day you bake them -- the texture of the nut isn't as good the next day.)
  6. Bake in the preheated oven until the cookies are golden brown, about 9 minutes.
  7. Let them sit for about a minute on the baking sheet, and then carefully use a flat-bottomed, metal spatula to move them to a cooling rack. Serve at room temperature.


Chestnut flour has a short shelf life of about 1 month. Keep it stored in an airtight container in a cool, dark place. You can buy chestnut flour here.

Other than a small bag where I keep all-purpose for recipe testing, our kitchen is completely gluten-free. It's easier for all of us this way.

Up to 6 hours and at least 1 hour ahead:
Make the cookie dough and bake the cookies.
These cookies are simply better as fresh as possible!

Che check out myTop 10 Gluten-Free Cookie Recipes.

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Sophie December 10, 2011 at 2:19 pm

MMMMM,…these gf festice cookies with chestnuts look utterly delicious!


Angie Halten December 15, 2011 at 3:34 am

I haven’t heard of chestnut flour before, but your recipe sounds so good I’m going to try and find some!


valentina December 15, 2011 at 8:59 pm

Hi Angie! You can get chesnut flour here! Hope you make and enjoy the cookies! Happy holiday’s! :-)


Erica December 11, 2012 at 6:19 am

Hi- I came upon your blog and recipe awhile ago, but finally got a chance to try it! These are the first GF ones I’ve tried that have the perfect texture. They have a mellow sweetness from the chestnut (which I like). I put a bunch in the freezer. Sometimes frozen GF goodies can end up with a weird or pasty texture after being thawed, but these didn’t! I just popped a couple in the toaster oven on low heat and it came out tasting and feeling exactly like they did fresh out of the oven. Perfectly crispy on the outside, and soft and gooey on the inside. Had to write and thank you!


valentina December 11, 2012 at 7:10 pm

Hi Erica, I’m so glad you tried these cookies! My recipe for them is now in the American Chestnut Foundation Magazine. :-) Happy to hear they froze well, too. Thank you for visiting my site and sharing in my love of cooking. ~ Valentina


Sophia February 23, 2013 at 8:36 pm

Hi Valentina, this recipe looks amazing! I’d really love to make it but I haven’t got any chestnuts…I have chestnut flour, dark chocolate, goji berries and the rest of the cookie ingredients. Do you think that goji berries would taste nice with the chestnut flour? And does it matter that I have no chestnuts?


valentina February 23, 2013 at 11:40 pm

Hi Sophia, I think it would be fun to try them the goji berries! Let me know how it turns out. Thanks for your interest in my recipes! :-)


Amy May 16, 2013 at 11:54 am

Ciao Valentina, I’m a gluten-free American expat living in Italy, where chestnuts are like the national nut. I can’t throw a pizza without hitting a bag of chestnut flour, one of which has been sitting around my place since a failed experiment with banana bread many moons ago. I must say, these could be the very best chocolate chip cookies I’ve ever, ever had. The nutty, creamy flavor from the flour takes this classic to a completely different place. Thank you so much for posting this recipe!!


valentina May 16, 2013 at 4:12 pm

Thank you so much, Amy! Last year this recipe was featured in the American Chestnut Foundation’s magazine. :-) My gluten-free son LOVES them, too. How luck you are to be in a place a beautiful as Italy — with such delicious food!


Dana October 11, 2013 at 4:44 pm

Hi Valentina,

I love this recipe you’ve shared, I had 1.5kgs of chestnut flour and wasn’t sure what to do with it! I made one batch as a test run and loved them so now I’m making 3 batches for Thanksgiving this weekend. They are sooooo delicious! I am making them vegan and substituted the egg for 3tbsp’s ground flax mixed with 5tbsp’s water (I also tried out using oil instead of butter). They came out perfect and taste amazing- no one in my family would’ve guessed that they were gluten free & vegan. Thanks for the recipe!


valentina October 11, 2013 at 7:57 pm

Hi Dana, Thanks so much for the lovely comment! So happy you found a way to make them vegan, too. I was so excited when I discovered chestnut flour . . . so many possibilities! :-)


Jerri-Lynn DeGayner January 23, 2014 at 3:59 pm


Just stumbled across this recipe, trying to find an alternative to almond flour all the time.
I’m trying to stay away from refined sugar, do you think it could be replaced with honey or maple syrup and if so, how much? Would it be still the 1/2 brown + 1/4 white so 3/4 total of honey or maple syrup? Thanks for any input.


valentina January 23, 2014 at 7:39 pm

Hi there — I would use honey rather than maple syrup, and I would use 3/4 cup. Lower the oven temp to 325 degrees F because honey browns faster. I haven’t ever done this, but its my best guess. (You could also try agave — if you do, use 2/3 cup as it’s slightly sweeter than honey.) Thanks for visiting my site! :-)


Jerri-Lynn DeGayner January 23, 2014 at 8:02 pm

Thank you very much!


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