Salted Rye Cookies from Whole Grains for a New Generation

December 25, 2012(updated on August 30, 2021)

salted rye cookies

My cookie output has been woefully low this holiday season. There was a batch of rugelach for Hanukkah, a celebratory round of pumpkin seed brittle on my first full day in Portland and these salted rye cookies.

Both the rugelach and the brittle are old favorites, the rye cookies were a recipe that had jumped out from the pages of Liana Krisoff’s new book Whole Grains for a New Generation. I spent a few days cooking from it a couple weeks back for a Table Matters piece (publishing soon!) and found everything in it incredibly appealing and inspiring.

salted rye cookie

These cookies did not let me down. They are buttery, sweet (but not obnoxiously so) and pleasantly sandy from the rye flour. A classic slice and bake style cookie, the only garnish they need is a quick roll in chunky sugar and flakey salt.

I left half at home for Scott and brought the balance out to Portland with me in my luggage. They were forced to compete for attention with the brittle and have still managed to disappear first.

If you’re looking for one final cookie to make this year, or simply need something to eat with a mug of tea, this is such a good one.

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Salted Rye Cookies from Whole Grains for a New Generation


  • 1 cup 2 sticks / 225 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup 150 g granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 2 1/2 cups 230 g whole (dark) rye flour
  • 3 tablespoons coarse sparkling sugar or turbinado sugar


  • In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, cream the butter and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, a pinch of salt, and the orange zest. Gradually mix in the flour.
  • Divide the dough into two portions and place each on a sheet of plastic wrap. Shape into logs about 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter and wrap tightly.
  • To shape the soft dough log into a more perfect cylinder, use a paper-towel tube: Cut the tube open vertically along one side and nest the wrapped log inside, then tape or rubber-band the tube closed.
  • Chill in the refrigerator until firm, about 1 hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • On a sheet of waxed paper, combine 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and the sparkling sugar. Unwrap the dough logs and roll them in the mixture to coat well. Place each log on a cutting board
  • and cut into 1/8-inch-thick (3-mm-thick) rounds, arranging the rounds 1 inch (2.5 cm) apart on the prepared baking sheets.
  • Bake until lightly browned at the edges, about 16 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through so the cookies bake evenly.
  • Remove to wire racks to cool completely.
  • The cookies can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

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8 thoughts on "Salted Rye Cookies from Whole Grains for a New Generation"

  • Miss Marisa,
    We need to change the name of your book to “gifts in jars.”
    I made 4 jars of your granolas. 7 jars of Hazelnut spread. 2 different jams!!

    Everything was a hit and my family thinks I’m some amazing homemaker thanks to you!!!

    Happy New Year!

    1. Oh!!! And a large bowl of your cranberry sauce for both Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner went over big time!!! Converts have been made of the can eaters!

  • I’ve got some rye flour kicking around the pantry from bread baking. I might just have to try these out! They look adorable!

    Do you think they would roll out well for using cookie cutters instead of slice and baking?

  • Yum, these look tasty! I don’t think I’ve ever had a cookie made with rye, but I’m a cookie lover, so maybe I’ll have to try it.

  • These cookies are so simple to make but so amazingly tasty and light! They will be included in my New Year’s parties for decades to come.

  • hey marisa, these look so scrumptious. I’m just wondering if you used the gram or cups measurements for the flour– I thought 2 1/2 cups rye flour weighed a bit more than that (230 grams I thought was 2 cups!??) In any case your cookies look great. Thanks, Salvegging

    1. I posted the recipe directly as it was written in the book, so I really can’t speak to the discrepancies in the volume and weight. I made the cookies using volume measures.