When I shared a picture of these dark chocolate lebkuchen on instagram a few weeks ago, you guys seemed preeeetty into them. And, for good reason. There’s not much better than something sweet dipped in dark chocolate!
That shiny chocolate was waaay too tempting. I’m not even gonna admit how many of these I managed to get through during this shoot…
I feel like these dark chocolate lebkuchen just taste exactly like Christmas. I made them back in November and immediately felt right in the holiday spirit!
They’re lightly spiced with all things festive: cloves, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg. Sweetness comes from brown sugar and honey plus a hint of orange. Oh, and a good slather of dark chocolate to add a hint of richness.
Even if you’ve never heard of lebkuchen, you’ll almost definitely have tried them before. I’d ate them at German Christmas markets loads of times before I even knew what they were called.
They’re little German bakes that are somewhere between a cake and a biscuit. Soft and slightly spongey but sturdy enough not to fall apart as you stuff them in your face 😉
Traditionally they’re made with a thin wafer layer at the bottom which adds a little texture. But, at this time of year I’m all about easy bakes that I can make with ingredients I’ve got to hand.
(Although, true story, I’ve stopped holding a stock of dark chocolate for baking because I basically have zero discipline. Dark chocolate never appealed to me all that much til it was the only chocolate in the house. Who’d have thought?)
The dark chocolate coating is also totally optional but, really, why wouldn’t you?? You could coat them with a thin icing glaze instead but I find dark chocolate helps offset some of the sweetness. And I like an excuse to eat melted chocolate (shh!).
This lebkuchen recipe is super straightforward and only takes about an hour start to finish. It’d make a perfect baking project for a lazy afternoon (heh, like there’s many of those going around in December…). And, if you’ve got little’uns they can easily get involved with rolling out the dough and dipping into the chocolate.
There’s no tedious creaming or mixing going on (for someone who loves to bake, I have an irrational hatred of creaming butter and sugar together by hand!).
Melt the butter alongside honey and then mix everything together to form a dough. Roll into little balls and bake, then add a generous chocolate coating. Simple!
- 85g butter
- 200g runny honey
- 200g plain flour
- 100g ground almonds
- 1 and 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 100g dark brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 medium orange (juice of)
- 200g dark chocolate, melted
- Pre-heat oven to 180c. Heat the butter and honey in a pan over a medium heat until the butter has melted. Allow to cool slightly (about 5 minutes).
- In a large bowl, add all of the remaining dough ingredients. Add the butter/honey mixture and mix until combined.
- If the dough feels a bit too wet to work with, refrigerate for 10-15 minutes.
- Roll the dough into balls and place on a lined baking tray, leaving enough space for them to spread. You'll probably need to use 2 baking trays or do this in batches.
- Gently press each ball down to flatten a little. Bake for 10-12 minutes until browned but still soft.
- Remove and transfer to a cooling rack to cool. Holding each biscuit upside down, dip into the melted chocolate to coat, then return to the rack and leave chocolate to set.
Fancy getting festive in the kitchen? Check out all my Christmas recipes here!