I've been searching for the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe for the better part of my life. It's proven to be more of a challenge than finding a well-fitting pair of jeans, or even car shopping (though admittedly cookie-baking/eating is more fun).
But this is the one! The recipe for my favorite cookies of all time.
In simplest terms, these are oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. But really, they are so, so much more: the most flavorful dough that is worth a bite even without a chocolate chip, dense and intensely chocolatey, a firmness that will keep soft and crisp cookie-lovers happy.
These are really simple cookies to whip up. There's no chill time or any special directions that make these at all high maintenance. They follow the usual formula for chocolate chip cookies (cream butter + sugar, add dry ingredients, bake), with some key ingredients that transform them into something truly spectacular.
Let’s take a look at these key ingredients:
Whole Wheat Flour
This recipe uses only whole wheat flour for a heavier, denser cookie with lots of rich, nutty flavor. Whole wheat flour has more texture to it than all purpose flour, which works really well in an oatmeal cookie.
Brown sugar adds more of a nuanced flavor than white sugar. It is slightly less sweet than white sugar, and since brown sugar contains both molasses and water, it tends to make baked goods more moist and chewy. The only kind of sugar used in these cookies is brown sugar, so you get lots of flavor and moisture added in. This means a cookie with a complex flavor and long shelf life!
Old Fashioned Oats
So I’m guessing you’ve definitely had an oatmeal chocolate chip cookie before and you know that the addition of oats adds some earthy flavor and a lot of texture to a cookie. These cookies, however, are LOADED with oats. Some oatmeal cookies have just a hint of oatmeal with a paltry 1/2 cup of oats. These cookies have equal amounts of oats and flour, so they are very, very oaty. I feel strongly that this makes them an acceptable breakfast item.
The most surprising ingredient! These chocolate chip cookies have molasses in them and it makes all the difference flavor- and texture-wise. Molasses is what gives these cookies such a strong brown sugar flavor without so much sweetness. We've concluded all this full-bodied, ever so slightly bitter flavor is what makes the chocolate chips here taste extra chocolatey.
Molasses (like honey) adds and attracts moisture, which helps to make these cookies so soft and chewy, and also lengthens their shelf life. I’ve stored these in an airtight container on the counter, and they tasted freshly baked a whole 5 days later.
Inquiring Minds Want to Know:
When should I eat these?
This is a rare chocolate chip cookie that is actually best at room temperature. Not my favorite dough to sample (not that any of us actually eat cookie dough or anything...), or even my favorite fresh from the oven. Once these have set at room temperature is when the dense and chewy texture and robust flavor really come through. This makes them ideal to make ahead!
But like all chocolate chip cookies, these are very, very good with milk.
Where do I find whole wheat flour?
When I first started making these (10 years ago!), whole wheat flour was a challenge to find. Now, most big grocery stores have their own brand. You'll find it right by the all-purpose flour in the baking aisle. You want regular whole wheat flour for this recipe - not bread flour or white whole wheat.
As an FYI, I have never seen whole wheat flour at Aldi, though I am still holding out hope.
What kind of molasses should I use?
Light or robust molasses will work for these cookies. I use Grandma's Usulphured (you can see the bottle here if you want a visual), which is a mild molasses. Avoid blackstrap molasses, which is too bitter (even though it has the best name).
Whole Wheat Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups packed light brown sugar
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 (12 ounce) package semisweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.Cream the butter and brown sugar in a large bowl. Add oats, eggs, molasses, milk, and vanilla and beat until combined. Add dry ingredients and mix until combined. Stir in chocolate chips.Roll dough into 24 balls. Each ball will contain roughly 1/4 cup of cookie dough. Place about 3 inches apart onto cookie sheets. Bake 12-14 minutes, until cookies are just beginning to brown around the edges. Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes on cookie sheets, then move to racks to cool completely.Once completely cool, transfer to an airtight container. These cookies will stay fresh up to 7 days.
If you want a soft, classic chocolate chip cookie, try these.