How to Use Up Leftover Egg Yolks: Chewy Lemon and White Chocolate Cookies Recipe

The perfect recipe to use up leftover egg yolks


Chewy lemon and white chocolate egg yolk cookies - a delicious way to use up leftover egg yolks

Egg yolk recipes are thin on the ground, unless you’re keen to make a homemade custard. And let’s face it, who wants the bother of making a custard (or one step further, an ice cream recipe) when you’ve just whipped up a pavlova (likely the reason you have leftover egg yolks in the first place)?

This egg yolk cookies recipe is the answer. It’s a basic method I’ve used for many years, and it’s a great way of using up leftover egg yolks when you’ve made a meringue. Really simple, very quick, and you can jazz it up with pretty much anything.

This recipe makes the kind of cookies that bend rather than snap, the kind that are chewy in the middle, the kind I love the most!


Can you freeze egg yolks? 


Can you freeze eggs?

First let’s clear up some eggy facts. Do NOT attempt to freeze egg yolks. I tried once, and the freezer did a weird thing to them. When they defrosted, they’d hardened, almost as if they’d been fried before freezing. Definitely not useable.

Egg whites can be frozen, coming out of the freezer just as perfectly as they went in. In fact, it’s probably worth making these egg yolk cookies precisely so you’ll have an excuse to freeze the egg whites. And make pavlova for Wednesday dinner, just because…


Lemon and White Chocolate Egg Yolk Cookies


Chewy Lemon and White Chocolate Cookies

A delicious chewy cookie that's great for using up leftover egg yolks.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Course Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 28 cookies


  • 225 g butter softened
  • 400 g granulated sugar
  • 3 egg yolks any size is fine
  • tsp vanilla essence
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 150 g white chocolate chopped into rough chunks
  • 320 g plain flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • ยฝ tsp salt


  • Cream the butter and sugar together until pale
  • Add the egg yolks and beat into the mix one at a time
  • Mix in the vanilla, lemon zest and chocolate chunks
  • In a separate bowl mix together the dry ingredients, then combine with the butter mix until you have a nice soft dough.
  • Take about a dessert spoonful of the dough and roll in your hands to form a ball.
  • Flatten slightly, then place on a baking sheet lined with baking parchment
  • Repeat with the rest of the dough, leaving about 3cm between each cookie.
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 180deg C (160 for fan ovens) for around 12 minutes, or until the edges have just begun to crisp, but not brown across the cookies.
  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool.
  • Enjoy!
Keyword Biscuits


What else can you add to a cookie recipe?

These chewy cookies are pretty forgiving. Not only are they easy to make, they will accommodate any kind of alteration in flavours, so go crazy with your favourites:

  • Try adding juicy raisins instead of the chocolate
  • Chopped hazelnuts with milk chocolate chips are a classic cookie combination
  • Chopped dates and some toasted walnuts for something a bit more grown-up
  • Cranberries and white chocolate (this was a reader suggestion – let me know if you’ve tried anything that worked well)

Leave out the lemon in the last 3 suggestions, or substitute with orange zest.


37 thoughts on “How to Use Up Leftover Egg Yolks: Chewy Lemon and White Chocolate Cookies Recipe”

  1. these look great Helen – I love a good basic cookie recipe that you can change the ingredients in…one you can pass down to the next generation!

  2. Helen i was only thinking about some Cornish ginger fairings i used to make yesterday and wishing i could remember the recipe!
    i prefer gooey cookies over crunchy ones too and i love the sound of these using up egg whites. i will def be giving these a go – thank you x x

  3. Oh yummy – first the fudge now these – I shall have to get you to bake for my birthday lol. In seriousness off to pin. Thank you ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. What a great recipe, I often wonder what to make with my leftover egg yolks. Plus I love it that you can have lots of alternative flavours with this recipe!

  5. Ooh these look yummy. I love making biscuits but haven’t made any for ages… I’ll add these to my list of must-bake-recipes ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. I do love a good cookie! These look great although I usually have too many egg whites left over and not a fan of meringue! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Oooh really? I searched everywhere for egg yolk recipes – what do you make with yours? I’m sure you’re not forever doing homemade custard – are you??

    • Lemon and white chocolate – no better combination. Lemon, white chocolate, cream and meringue = lemon eton mess. Lemon and white chocolate hot sauce with frozen berries = heaven. I could go on…

  7. With a freezer full of egg yolks from my latest fascination with macarons (like you am intrigued as to how anyone ends up with too many whites) I just randomly googled “egg yolk biscuits” and landed here.

    Which is brilliant on two counts:

    1. Because the recipe is great (it worked with four egg yolks too). We did white choc and cranberry, but am thinking that next time might make them a bit more grown up (and therefore have a few left over) with very dark choc….
    2. Because I’m trying to read a new blog every day this month – and while I realise I’m very very late in coming to yours I’m glad I did!

    • Wonderful! I’m so glad you did. I like the sound of white choc and cranberry, and I’m thinking of orange and hazelnut next. But I can’t quite give up the chocolate ๐Ÿ˜‰

  8. With the alternatives you’ve offered here, do you still use the white chocolate? Or are they substitutes for the chocolate?

    • No, I’d leave the chocolate out with the other suggestions. There are endless combinations – all depends on what you like. Happy baking!

  9. Hi helen cookies turned out fab used 1 yolk and an egg. Had too much mixture couldn’t finish cookies. Can you freeze the dough and how long will it keep. If so plan to bake dough from freezer will that work.

    • Yes you definitely can freeze the dough, we’ve done that too and it works fine once you’ve defrosted. I’d say keep for no more than 3 months frozen though, in line with other food recommendations. You could probably form into cookies and bake straight from the freezer too if you adjust the timings and temperature accordingly. Glad it worked for you!

  10. I just tried this recipe to use some yolks left over from meringue cookies. I added about 1/3 c. of dried cranberries with the white chocolate chunks, and about 2 tsp. of orange zest instead of lemon zest. They are a great texture, and truly delish!


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