Sometimes you just want an old-fashioned (read: buttery, chewy, doughy) chocolate chip cookie. You know exactly what I mean by that; the incomparable taste & feel of a traditional version of said cookie. Warm, gooey, melty goodness. I like the edges firm and crispy, but the center to remain soft and chewy. I was that girl who would get the chocolate chip cookie and coffee wherever she went. Oh yeah. I would dip my chocolate chip cookies into my latte. Into my milk. Into my hot chocolate. No shame.
I started out on this recipe the way I start on all my recipes: trial and error. I wanted a healthy cookie that didn’t taste healthy. I was using slightly melted coconut oil which resulted in a cookie that tasted mildly coco-nutty and would spread out and thin out on the baking sheet. It was thin and kinda crispy. It tasted great, but it didn’t scream childhood chocolate chip cookie to me.
Soooo… I ditched coconut oil and decided to stick to real butter. Butter = the basic building block behind all great cookies and brownies. I then added almond butter to use less of the standard butter. I finally ended cutting out the nut butter altogether and stuck to vegan butter. But- if you’re not vegan or consume dairy; you can easily use organic or grass-fed butter for a much healthier, real-deal butter option. Note that vegan butter does have a coconut oil base, so standard butter results in a slightly better, chewier cookie.
Now let’s talk about flour! This cookie recipe works well with any GF all-purpose flour blend. And if you’re not GF, am happy to report it works just as well with your standard, all-purpose flour. There’s nothing fancy/remote in them like almond flour, tigernut flour, amaranth or hazelnut flour. All flours with which I’ve been experimenting lately. I also steered clear of coconut flour. The latter resulted in anything – but your traditional chocolate chip cookie.
So… there’s a little secret ingredient to these amazing chocolate chip cookies… Quick disclaimer: it does not involve a veg of any kind. Are you guys ready for it? It’s good ol’ cream cheese! I found this handy little tip a while back in a recipe from My Gluten-Free Kitchen. I loved her recipe, but it had many ingredients that I couldn’t enjoy, so… I had to come up with my own. However, I thought that little baking tip was genius!
Also, because I eat dairy-free, I tried two different types of DF cream cheese. There’s amazing ones readily available on the market. Or you can try to make your own at home. Have you tried my no-fail Cashew Cream Cheese Recipe? So easy and zesty thanks to nutritional yeast and apple cider vinegar. If buying it- you can use tofu-based cream cheese OR, almond or cashew-based varieties. And if you don’t have a problem with dairy, opt for good ol’ REAL dairy, full-fat cream cheese.
You see; cookies need a superb binder to achieve this level of chewiness. I tried the recipe with applesauce, I tried it only with fluffy egg whites, I tried it with only egg yolks, and I also tried this with almond butter- that’s how the recipe started. But, hear me out: cream cheese is where it’s at. The chewiness factor is unreal!
The other pro tip is to plan ahead when baking a batch. The dough should be chilled in the fridge for at least 2-3 hours before scooping it into cookie dollops. Chilling it adds firmness, it allows everything to settle in, and most importantly- they don’t spread out like sad balloons across the baking sheet, as if someone popped them mid-bake. Ahem… because that only happened to me the first 101 times… 🙂 trust me, you’re going to love this easy to follow recipe!
Chocolate Chunk Cookies
- 2 cups + 2 tbsp gluten-free all purpose flour
- 1 + 1/3 cup organic coconut sugar
- 4 tbsp your choice dairy-free cream cheese or real cream cheese* room temp
- 1/2 tbsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups of dairy-free chocolate chips or dark/semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup of vegan or dairy butter (I recommend organic or grass-fed butter)
- 2 eggs (at room temperature)
- 1/2 tsp of sea salt
- 1 tsp of baking soda
- In a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients: GF flour, baking soda & sea salt.
- Use a stand mixer (or electric hand held mixer) and mix the cream cheese, vegan butter and sugar together until smooth. I like to mix the butter and cream cheese first, then slowly pour in the coconut sugar while I mix.
- Add the two eggs & the vanilla extract and mix on low speed to integrate.
- Slowly add the dry ingredient bowl contents (step 1) and continue to mix on low until well-integrated & smooth. Don’t overdo it.
- Add the chocolate chunks (or chips) and fold by hand using a spatula.
- Cover the dough with plastic wrap and place it inside your fridge for at least 2-3 hours. It needs to be nicely chilled & settled before scooping.
- When ready to bake these, preheat your oven to 350F and remove dough from the refrigerator. Allow it to sit for 10-15 mins before scooping them into dough balls.
- Use an ice scream scooper and place them at least 2 inches apart on the cookie sheet.
- Bake anywhere from 10-12 minutes, or until the edges turn golden brown. Don’t over-bake or the center will lose chewiness. Trust me on this one. Allow them to cool for 3-5 mins before moving them to a cooling rack.
- ENJOY them with a cup of dark coffee, tea, milk or whatever you prefer. They’re DELISH & super easy to make! Right before serving, you could sprinkle some maldon sea salt flakes, I didn’t have any… so I used coarse sea salt!
I have not yet tried freezing cookie dough to bake at a later time.
For dairy-free cream cheese products: I’ve tried Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese, Daiya & Enjoy Yoso. If you live in the United States, I highly recommend Kite Hill Almond Cream Cheese. If you’re not intolerant to dairy, I highly recommend organic, full-fat cream cheese.
For vegan butter, I use the Earth Balance soy-free variety, love it!
By: Aleyda| The Dish On Healthy