Condley: Tahini cookies

Published 2:00 pm Tuesday, November 8, 2022

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By Sarah Condley


After making Tahini Crackers, I had tahini remaining in the container and wondered what else I could make with it since its best-by date was approaching. I went to the computer and typed in tahini recipes in the search box, and several things popped up. Since I like to bake more than I like to cook, I was drawn to sweet recipes. The one that caught my eye was Tahini Cookies. The recipe appeared very simple, and I had all the ingredients.

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The recipe said to place the oven racks in the upper and lower parts of the oven, but since I have two ovens, I just preheated both to 350 degrees and lined one cookie sheet pan with parchment paper, and put a Silpat mat on the other. I did this because I wanted to see if it made a difference in how the cookies turned out.

Before starting the cookie dough, I placed 1/4 cup of sesame seeds on a small baking pan and toasted them in the oven for 5 minutes. No matter how you toast the seeds, on top of the stove or in the oven, you must watch them closely because they can burn in a heartbeat. While mine toasted, I stood right by the oven and checked it at 3 minutes, 4 minutes, and then 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, they were slightly brown, and I opted to go ahead and get them out of the oven. I left them on the baking pan while they cooled.

While the sesame seeds cooled, I combined the dry ingredients with a whisk. I put the softened butter in a larger bowl, along with the sugar and honey, and used my hand-held mixer until the dough was nice and fluffy, which took a right at 3 minutes. I added the tahini and continued using the mixer until the tahini was incorporated. Then I poured in the dry ingredients, 1/2 at a time, and mixed until just combined. 

The dough was pretty sticky, but not so sticky that it got all over my hands. I scooped out some dough and weighed it. I wanted to make sure the dough balls were precisely 1 oz. If you don’t have a scale, my 1 oz. cookie balls were about 2 tablespoons each. I gently rolled the dough into a ball and dipped the top of the dough ball into the sesame seeds that were in a small bowl. Onto the cookie sheet they went. The recipe said it would make 24 cookies, but I ended up with 28.

I baked the cookies for 13 minutes. One pan was light brown, and the other I left in for another 2 minutes. 

The cookies cooled on the pans, and I was ready to try one after cleaning up the kitchen. They were still a tiny bit warm, but who doesn’t like warm cookies? After a couple of bites, I offered a bite to Brad. We both liked these cookies. They aren’t too sweet, which he liked, and they have a different favor which I guess is the tahini.

Before bedtime, I needed to put the cookies in a container, and I had to try another one, you know, to see if I liked them better, warm or room temperature. I’ll say I liked them both ways.

If you have tahini in your cabinet, I recommend you make this Nailed It recipe. I had to figure out who I was going to share these with, so I didn’t eat them all and ended up taking a few to the gym with us the next day. The ladies who tried them said they were good; one person even wanted the recipe. I think I’ll freeze a few of these gems cause I don’t need them sitting around in my kitchen calling my name.

Tahini Cookies


• 2 cups all-purpose flour

• 1 teaspoon baking powder

• 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

• 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

• 3/4 cup sugar

• 3 tablespoons honey

• 3/4 cup tahini

• 1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds


• Place racks in upper and lower thirds of oven and preheat to 350 degrees.  Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.  Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter, sugar, and honey in a large bowl until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.  Beat in tahini, then add dry ingredients in 2 batches, beating after each addition until fully combined. Dough will be slightly sticky.

• Place sesame seeds in a small bowl.  Scoop out heaping tablespoons of dough (about 1 oz.) and roll into balls.  Dip tops of balls in sesame seeds, pressing to adhere, and place, sesame side up, on 2 parchment lined baking sheets, spacing about 2” apart.  Bake cookies, rotating baking sheets halfway through, until golden brown, 13-15 minutes.  Let cool on baking sheets (cookies will firm as they cool).