Monday, May 23, 2011

Soft and Chewy Cookies 2 Ways: Chocolate Chip and Peanut Butter

These are easy, delicious cookies. There aren't any special techniques going on, but there is a secret ingredient--instant pudding mix. It keeps the cookies soft. They still have a nice bit of chewiness, and aren't cakey. They also don't spread too much and get flat during baking (I hate that!). I like my version of the New York Times' ultimate chocolate chip cookie, but its greatness relies on 24 to 36 hours of chilling time, while these only need to chill for an hour.

You could easily use this recipe for a simple batch of chocolate chip (or peanut butter) cookies, but I couldn't resist dividing the dough in half so I could have two awesome cookies instead of one. My peanut butter version uses Reese's peanut butter chips and chopped peanuts. I also added cinnamon for a little extra something. I think the nuts and spice make them taste like a whole different cookie, as opposed to just swapping out chocolate chips for peanut butter chips.

Do any of you have a chocolate chip cookie recipe with a secret ingredient? I'm especially curious to try recipes I've seen using yellow cake mix, and cream cheese. Please share your experience and links in the comments!

Soft, Chewy Cookies 2 Ways: Chocolate Chip and Peanut Butter
Adapted from here, but it seems to be an favorite.
The secret ingredient—pudding mix—helps keep these cookies soft, but with a nice amount of chewiness. Chilling the dough at least an hour helps prevent spreading. I use insulated cookie sheets (also called “air bake” or double layer) because they prevent the bottoms from getting dark too quickly. I like Ghirardelli or Guittard chocolate chips.

Makes 40 to 45 cookies

2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (282 grams)
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp (scant) fine salt
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs

1 cup dark chocolate chips

1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup peanut butter chips
1/2 cup lightly salted roasted peanuts, roughly chopped

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.

Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars on medium-high speed, just until light and fluffy. Add pudding mix and blend. Add vanilla, then add eggs one at a time, blending on low speed after each addition. Add flour mixture in two additions, blending on low speed just until combined.

Transfer about half the dough to a separate bowl and stir in chocolate chips. Add cinnamon, peanut butter chips and peanuts to the remaining dough and stir to combine. Cover and refrigerate both doughs at least one hour or up to 2 days.

Preheat oven to 350 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Drop 1-inch balls of dough on baking sheet, about 2 inches apart (I got 12 cookies per sheet). Bake one sheet at a time in the center of the oven (this ensures even cooking) for 10 to 12 minutes, or until just set and light golden around the edges. Cool on baking sheet 3 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack.

1 comment:

The Coffee Machine Review said...

Thank you for your chewy cookie recipes. I love them when they are chewy and have been looking for some interesting recipes. I want to make them and bring in to work for my am and pm snacks - as you can probably tell I am also mad on great coffee and these will go fabulous with coffee. Thank you.