Right around my birthday, I had the need to recreate the M&M cookies of my youth: soft and chewy on the inside, slightly firm around the edges, and packed with colorful M&Ms. The kind that you knew would give you a stomach ache after eating two, but you had to have four.
It took me a few tries*, but I finally got the cookie I was dreaming of. After tinkering a bit on my own (try number 1 and 2), I found a recipe that was similar to what I was going for. I tested Michelle’s aka the Brown Eyed Baker‘s recipe (try number 3), and it was so so close. However, I wasn’t exactly satisfied until I made a few tweaks of my own (lucky try number 4!).
Here’s the key to making thick and chewy M&M cookies. Continue reading
I’ll come clean, I like crispy cookies. Not everyone is on the crispy cookie choo-choo train with me, namely my boyfriend. So from time to time I have to venture to the dark side, which ironically is the softer side. Last night was one of those times, and I made chewy chocolate chip cookies. Making chewy cookies again got me thinking: What makes a cookie harder or softer? And is one better or are they both delightful in their own ways?
The key to a chewy cookie is moisture. To achieve that ooey-gooey goodness, use more brown sugar than granulated sugar. The molasses in brown sugar holds in extra moisture. Use an extra egg yolk to trap fat and melted butter to up the chewy factor.
How you bake the cookies is as important as the ingredients within them. To prevent the cookies from spreading, place them on the pan in large dollops. The added height keeps the middle of the cookie perfectly soft. Finally, bake them at a higher temperature for a shorter period of time, which helps to—you guessed it—prevent spreading and keep in moisture.
Keeping in mind these guidelines, the recipe I used made wonderfully soft cookies that I shoveled into my mouth the second they came out of the oven*. These cookies are best warm, so make sure you have a big glass of milk ready when the timer rings!
As a crispy cookie freak, these were incredibly warm and satisfying. Eating them felt like cheating…Does it count as cheating if it’s between cookies?* Am I having a moral crisis over chocolate chip cookies?! —Maybe. But maybe the soft side isn’t so bad after all.
*Personal Admission #6: Some call it taste testing. Others call is quality control. I call it eating dessert at 1 in the afternoon.
Recipe yields 2 dozen
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup butter (melted)
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg + 1 egg yolk
- 1 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Prepare pans with parchment paper and preheat oven to 350°.
- Sift flour, baking soda, and salt.
- Mix together melted butter, brown, and white sugar.
- Beat in eggs and vanilla until just combined. Be sure not over beat the eggs as they can make the cookies tough.
- Combine the flour mixture to the wet ingredients until a homogenous dough forms.
- Fold in chocolate chips.
- Place golf ball size mounds on the prepared pan and bake for 10-12 minutes.
So what’s your preference? Chewy or crispy? Comment below!