chocolate chip

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

December 1 010 Edited Chocolate Chunk Cookies

They may not look like much, but don’t let that fool you. This chocolate chip cookie adaptation may be one of the most well-received cookies I have ever baked. They have a salty, sweet, chewy, chocolately thing going on that works quite nicely.

I have long such thought that anyone who receives a free cookie is conditioned to tell the baker it is a good cookie. If they really like you, they may also tell you it is a delicious cookie. I bake a lot, so I give away a lot of baked goods. I am used to the compliments.

December 1 018 Edited Chocolate Chunk Cookies

These, however, received so much love that I was almost embarrassed. It’s just a chocolate chip cookie with a few unexpected bits worked in. I’m telling you, anyone can bake them.

If you are doing some last minute holiday baking this weekend, these are sure to go over well. If you are really savvy, maybe you can sweet talk someone in to baking these for you. It doesn’t matter how you get there, I suppose, just as long as do. Enjoy!

December 1 015 Edited Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Serves: approx. 24
  • ½ cup pecans, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup whole wheat flour
  • ¼ cup rolled oats
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened, shredded coconut
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup chocolate chunks
  1. Toast the pecans in a skillet over medium heat, shaking the pan frequently until the nuts are browned and fragrant. Transfer to a plate or bowl to cool (they may burn if you leave them in the hot pan, so do not ignore this step).
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, rolled oats, shredded coconut, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, cream the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
  4. Beat in the egg and the vanilla extract.
  5. Add the flour mixture and mix until just incorporated.
  6. Fold in the chocolate chunks.
  7. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto parchment-lined baking sheets.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees F for 12-15 minutes, rotating the sheets halfway through. The cookies will have golden brown edges and look slightly undercooked in the centers when they are done. Allow to cool on the baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a rack to finish cooling.
For a variation, use 1 teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia or ½ teaspoon orange oil + ½ teaspoon vanilla extract in place of the 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.


Orange Agave Chocolate Chip Cookies

January Blog 002 Edited Orange Agave Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate chip cookies. How can one little cookie lend itself to seemingly countless interpretations? Neiman Marcus has a chocolate chip cookie recipe. The New York Times has a chocolate chip cookie recipe. I have a chocolate chip cookie recipe. Funny, that last one does not hold quite the same intrigue.

Over the life of this blog, I have made chocolate chip cookies with blue cornmealpumpkin, and cornflakes and marshmallows. Though some were better than others, all were worth the experience.

More often than not, when I bake cookies for no other reason than my own personal enjoyment, I turn to a recipe that calls for a package of dry pudding mix in the batter. The cookies that recipe yields are wonderfully soft, and I can adjust the flavor with either vanilla or chocolate pudding mix.

These orange agave chocolate chip cookies provided a new way for me to enjoy one of my favorite flavor combos: chocolate and orange. The cookies are made with agave nectar in place of sugar, so as far as healthy cookies go, these are not as bad as others.

January Blog 008 Edited Orange Agave Chocolate Chip Cookies

Agave nectar is known for a glycemic index lower than that of sugar, so it is less likely to cause a rapid spike in blood sugar. I am not a nutritionist, so that is the extent of my expertise on the health front. I am a person with a fairly active sweet tooth, so I can say these cookies are plenty sweet despite their lack of sugar.

Please do not let what may sound like an unusual ingredient – agave nectar – turn you away from these cookies. I often discard recipes when I have never heard of an ingredient or do not know where to find it. Though many of us do not likely have agave nectar in our pantries right at this moment, it is relatively easy to find. At my local grocery store, agave nectar is shelved in the baking aisle along with the other sweeteners.

There are plenty of uses for agave syrup beyond these cookies. A reference guide on substituting agave syrup for other sweeteners is available at All About Agave. Vacation Cookies are another cookie recipe that make use of both agave nectar and chocolate chips.

I am starting to think there may be as many uses for agave nectar as there are interpretations for chocolate chip cookies. Enjoy!

January Blog 006 Edited Orange Agave Chocolate Chip Cookies

4.0 from 1 reviews

Orange Agave Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • ⅔ cup agave nectar
  • ⅔ cup canola oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • zest of one orange
  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  1. In a large bowl, mix together the agave nectar, canola oil, egg, vanilla extract
  2. orange extract and orange zest.
  3. Add the flour, baking soda and salt to the wet ingredients and continue to mix until thoroughly combined and a soft dough forms.
  4. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Drop batter by rounded tablespoons onto parchment-lined baking sheets.
  6. Bake at 325 degrees F for 12-14 minutes or until the cookies are light golden brown.
  7. Allow to cool on a baking sheet for a few minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
To return this recipe to its original vegan state, substitute 2 tablespoons water or non-dairy milk and 1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds for the egg.


Chocolate Chip Sweet Potato Bread

Cookie Swap 050 Edited Chocolate Chip Sweet Potato Bread

When the calendar moved to December this past weekend, my first thought was to leave sweet potatoes firmly planted in the past. In my mind, these root vegetables have a place at the Thanksgiving table, and that is about it.

But the problem was, I had a stack of sweet potato recipes that I fully intended to enjoy in November but simply did not get around to. Shelve them for next year, or get to baking? As you can see, I opted for the latter.

Nearly every time I bake a quick bread, I find myself disappointed. Either I can not get it out of the pan, or it completely crumbles when cut or it sinks in the middle. Inevitably, I wonder why on earth I did not think to bake muffins instead.

Cookie Swap 035 Edited Chocolate Chip Sweet Potato Bread
This bread sunk a bit along the middle, and it was so moist I was initially concerned I failed to bake it until fully done. Turns out all was well, and I have been enjoying a slice for breakfast ever since.

Though I opted to sweeten my bread up with mini chocolate chips, incorporating nuts will make for a more savory option. Consider enjoying a savory slice with a bowl of soup or salad.

As I was using up my remaining sweet potatoes, I came to realize that along with peanuts, these root vegetables are the one item my farmers’ market lists as available year round. Looks like I will be able to get to some more of those sweet potato recipes after all. Enjoy!

Cookie Swap 040 Edited Chocolate Chip Sweet Potato Bread

Sweet Potato Bread
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sweet potato puree
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup applesauce
  • ⅓ cup milk
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup mini chocolate chips
  1. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a separate bowl, stir together the sweet potato puree, brown sugar, applesauce, milk and vegetable oil until well combined.
  3. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  4. Fold in the mini chocolate chips.
  5. Pour the batter into a greased 9 x 5 loaf pan.
  6. Bake at 325 degrees F for 60 minutes until the bread is lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Allow the bread to cool in the pan for 45 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack (or let’s be honest, a plate will suffice) to cool completely. If needed, run a knife along the edges of the pan to fully loosen the loaf.
Like pumpkin puree, sweet potato puree is available in canned form. I made my own by roasting four small sweet potatoes at 400 degrees until tender, about 45 minutes. When they were cool enough to handle, I simply popped them out of their skins and mashed them with a fork. For a savory twist, add chopped pecans or other nuts in place of the mini chocolate chips.