Category Archives: Cookies/Bars/Brownies

Chocolate Chip Toffee Brownies

I wish I could tell you that these Chocolate Chip Toffee Brownies are healthy and low-calorie…but they are definitely not! What they are is dense and very, very rich. Probably the only healthy ingredient is the unsweetened cocoa powder, which gives them a great chocolate flavor. Then there’s the chocolate chips, which make them extra chocolatey. And finally, the toffee bits which bake into the batter and give these brownies a subtle caramel flavor.

When you are craving something sweet and chocolatey, these brownies are a great thing to make. Just make sure you have lots of people to share them with so you’re not tempted to eat the whole pan yourself! But, they do freeze well so you can always save the extras for later if you don’t want to share…I’m just sayin’ 🙂

CHOCOLATE CHIP TOFFEE BROWNIES by NancyC

Makes a 9×13″ pan

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup Half & Half (light cream)
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 (8-ounce) package toffee bits, divided (use 1 1/4 cups for the batter; save 1/3 cup for topping)
  • 2 cups (12 ounces) mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided (use 1 2/3 cups for the batter; save 1/3 cup for topping)

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a 9×13″ baking pan with parchment paper (or spray with cooking spray); set aside.

In large bowl, cream softened butter and sugars. Then blend in eggs, vanilla, and Half & Half, mixing until smooth.

In medium bowl, whisk flour, salt, and cocoa powder together. Add this dry mixture to the butter/sugar/egg mixture, half at a time, mixing until everything is combined.

Fold in the toffee bits and mini semi-sweet chocolate chips, stirring to distribute evenly in batter. Pour or spoon batter into prepared 9×13″ pan, spreading batter evenly in pan. Sprinkle 1/3 cup each of the remaining chocolate chips and toffee bits over the batter.

Bake at 350˚F for 42 to 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let brownies cool completely in pan before cutting into squares. If using parchment paper, after brownies have cooled completely, lift the uncut brownies out of the pan with the parchment paper edges, then cut into squares.

It’s hard to resist a good brownie! Thankfully, the weather is getting nicer and I’m hoping to get outside more and exercise these brownies off! Do you have a weakness for brownies like I do?

Sharing this recipe at Fiesta Friday, Meal Plan Monday, Weekend Potluck, Inspire Me Monday.

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Dark Chocolate Mocha Pudding Cookies

Dark Chocolate Mocha Pudding Cookies @ NancyCThis is the first time I’ve used instant pudding mix in a cookie. I’ve heard that adding pudding mix to cookie dough keeps the cookies soft, but I wasn’t crazy about the idea of adding pudding mix with artificial flavors, dyes, and other things.

jell_osimplygoodI decided to try adding pudding mix this time because JELL-O recently came out with a new line of instant pudding mixes (and Jell-O mixes) called JELL–O SIMPLY GOOD.  They’re made and flavored with real ingredients like banana, cocoa, vanilla bean, and fruit juices–and they have no artificial flavors, dyes, or preservatives. JELL-O sent me some complimentary samples to try and I used their Simply Good Chocolate Instant Pudding Mix in this recipe. The pudding mix really does make the cookies soft and chewy. These cookies also have a rich chocolate flavor with just a hint of coffee, which pairs well with the dark chocolate chips. And if you want to make them more of a holiday treat, you can add sprinkles on top!

DARK CHOCOLATE MOCHA PUDDING COOKIES by NancyC

Makes 20 to 21 large cookies

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons strong brewed coffee
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 (3.9-ounce) package instant chocolate pudding mix (I used JELL–O Simply Good Chocolate)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups dark chocolate chips (you’ll need 2 packages of chips–1 whole package plus most of another package)
  • Optional: assorted sprinkles–chocolate or holiday sprinkles

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add vanilla, eggs, and coffee; blend everything well.

Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, dry instant pudding mix, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add this flour mixture to the butter/sugar/egg mixture, mixing until everything is blended. Then fold in the dark chocolate chips, stirring until evenly incorporated in batter.

Use a 1/4 cup size measuring cup to scoop dough and place on parchment-lined cookie sheets, 2″ apart (you should be able to fit 6 cookies per sheet). Flatten cookies just slightly and sprinkle with assorted sprinkles, if desired.

Bake at 350˚F for 12 to 13 minutes or until tops are set. Be careful not to overbake! Cool cookies on pan for 2 minutes, then remove to wire rack to cool completely.

If you happen to have any cookies left over, you can store them in an airtight container for 4 to 5 days. Or if you want to make a batch ahead of time, you can freeze them for 2 to 3 months.

If you like your cookies on the soft and chewy side, you’ll have to try this recipe! I’m glad I finally tried adding the pudding! Do you add pudding mix to any of your cookie recipes?

Sharing this recipe at Fiesta Friday, Weekend Potluck, Meal Plan Monday, Inspire Me Monday.

Dark Chocolate Chip Granola Cookies

Dark Chocolate Chip Granola Cookies @ NancyC

I’ve been in a chocolate chip mood lately! I recently posted a recipe for some Chocolate Chip Scones and then I thought I’d make some breakfast-type cookies, but with chocolate chips in them, too–I call them Dark Chocolate Chip Granola Cookies. A cookie made with ingredients that I usually put in granola, like honey, coconut flakes, old-fashioned oats, wheat germ, ground flaxseed, chopped nuts, raisins or dried cranberries, and a good amount of dark chocolate chips!

These cookies brown a little more around the edges because of the honey, I think. I read somewhere that baked goods made with honey brown faster, so that’s true of these cookies. They’re a good, slightly chewy cookies that make a great snack or quick breakfast if you like sweet things for breakfast!

DARK CHOCOLATE CHIP GRANOLA COOKIES by NancyC

Makes about 26 cookies

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups sweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed (you can substitute wheat bran or oat bran for the wheat germ or flaxseed)
  • 1 cup golden raisins, dark raisins, or dried cranberries (or a mix of 2 or 3 of these)
  • 1 1/4 cups dark chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

In large bowl, cream butter and sugar, until smooth, then add honey, vanilla, and eggs, blending well.

In medium size bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add this mixture, half of it at a time, to the butter/sugar mixture; mix until everything is blended, but don’t overmix.

Fold in, a few ingredients at a time, the coconut flakes, oats, wheat germ, flaxseed, raisins or cranberries, chocolate chips, and nuts, stirring to blend everything evenly into the batter (batter will be thick).

Using a measuring cup, drop dough by 1/4 cupfuls, 2 inches apart, onto parchment-lined cookie sheets (you should be able to fit 6 cookies per sheet). Bake at 350˚F for 12 to 13 minutes or until edges are browned. Cool on cookie sheet for 2 to 3 minutes, then move to wire rack to cool completely.

It’s nice eating cookies that have some healthy ingredients in them–I guess it helps justify eating cookies, right? 🙂 Do you have any healthier cookie recipes you like to make?

Sharing this recipe at Fiesta Friday, Meal Plan Monday, Weekend Potluck.

Jumbo Ginger Molasses Cookies

jumbo-ginger-molasses-cookies-nancyc

I like these gingery molasses cookies so much, I think I will make them every fall and winter! I first made them during this past Christmas season and think they’re a great cookie to munch on during the cold weather. They’re flavored with lots of ginger and some cinnamon and cloves. They’re slightly crispy on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. And they are one big cookie! Big enough to satisfy any sweet tooth.

They’re very buttery, too–rich and buttery. And after you roll the cookie dough into balls, you also roll them in coarse sugar–I think the coarse, sparking sugar coating really makes them look special! Molasses cookies have never been a huge favorite of mine, but I really like these, so if you’ve never made molasses cookies before, you may want to give these a try!

JUMBO GINGER MOLASSES COOKIES by NancyC, adapted from Taste of Home

Makes 26 to 28 cookies

  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, softened
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 4 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup coarse sugar

Preheat oven to 350˚F.

In large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and molasses; set aside.

In medium bowl, blend the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, and salt; gradually add this mixture to the butter/sugar mixture and mix everything well.

Shape cookie dough into 2-inch balls (I used an ice cream scoop to scoop the dough, then rolled it into balls) and roll in coarse sugar. Place 2 1/2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets (or baking sheets lined with parchment paper). You’ll be able to fit about 6 cookies on each baking sheet. Bake 13 to 15 minutes or until tops are cracked. Let cool on cookie sheet for 1 minute, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Do you like gingery, spicy, molasses-flavored cookies? What kinds of cookies do you like making during the winter months?

Sharing this recipe at Fiesta Friday, Meal Plan Monday, Inspire Me Monday.

Jumbo Oatmeal Cranberry Chocolate Chip Cookies

jumbo-oatmeal-cranberry-chocolate-chip-cookies-nancyc

I start thinking about making recipes with cranberries as soon as the fall season comes around. Cranberries, whether they’re fresh or dried, are such a classic autumn and holiday ingredient. It just wouldn’t seem like Thanksgiving or Christmas without cranberries, would it? And because these cookies have dried cranberries, along with white and semi-sweet chocolate chips, they’re perfect for making this time of year when the days are chilly, evenings come earlier, and cookie baking and giving are in full swing.

These cookies are big, thick, and chewy–the kind of cookie you want to have when you’re sitting in a big, comfy chair with a mug of hot cocoa, wrapped in a warm blanket and maybe watching a favorite movie or reading a good book. Did I mention that these cookies also have oatmeal in them too? It always makes me feel a little better when a cookie has oatmeal in it–somehow, cookies with oatmeal just seem a little healthier, don’t they?

JUMBO OATMEAL CRANBERRY CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES by NancyC

Makes about 18 cookies

  • 3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2/3 cup white chocolate chips
  • parchment paper, for lining cookie sheets

Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

In large bowl, blend butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well; set aside.

In a medium-size bowl, combine oats, flour, baking soda, and salt. Add half of this flour mixture to the egg/butter/sugar mixture and mix well; then add in the rest of the flour mixture and mix all ingredients well.

Fold in the dried cranberries, semi-sweet chocolate chips, and white chocolate chips; stir until these are evenly distributed in batter.

Drop dough by 1/4 cupfuls, 2 inches apart, onto parchment-lined cookie sheets (if dough is too sticky to work with, refrigerate it for 5 to 10 minutes before putting on cookie sheets). You should be able to fit 6 cookies per sheet. Bake at 350˚F for 12 to 13 minutes, or until very lightly brown (do not overtake, or cookies will be dry). Cool on cookie sheets for 1 minute, then move to wire rack to cool completely.

Baking cookies is a great thing to do when it’s cold outside–it makes everything so cozy inside! Do you like making cranberry-flavored goodies this time of year too?

Linked to Fiesta Friday, Meal Plan Monday.