What is it that’s so special about a Chocolate Chip Cookie? Is it the chewy, melt-in-your-mouth, buttery goodness in every bite? Is it the warm, melted, gooey chocolate that instantly hits your tongue? Maybe it’s the satisfaction of watching the chocolate chips pull apart from each other as you break the cookie in half. Or maybe it’s all of the above.
For me, a perfect chocolate chip cookie has a lightly browned, slightly crisp edge, a soft, chewy center and a rich, “buttery” flavor. They should never be too puffy or cakey, nor too flat or crumbly. There’s a perfect in-between that is just right.
I started my chocolate chip cookie journey while in college, and I’ll admit, it took me a long time to get the texture just right. I didn’t have a family recipe to go by, as neither of my parents were bakers. So, I started from scratch (literally), especially considering I was aiming for a vegan and gluten-free cookie, to make matters more tricky! There’s a lot of pressure to perfect a chocolate chip cookie, as it’s such a traditional, staple dessert. It’s so simple, yet needs to tick off all the right boxes.
Funny story: after this particular photo shoot, I had some of my homemade vanilla ice cream in the freezer waiting to be scooped into cookie ice cream sandwiches for a separate photo shoot. I went to check on the ice cream about 10 minutes after uploading these photos to my computer, only to see them gone and my boyfriend happy as can be (until he saw my face), to which he replied: “you were finished, right?”
Here's what you need:
- 1/2 cup vegan butter (I use Earth Balance)
- 1/4 cup applesauce (this is your egg replacer)
- 3/4 cup raw cane sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 Tbsp arrowroot
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup gluten-free baking flour
- 3/4 cup blanched almond flour
- Chocolate chips/chunks to taste (somewhere between 1/2 cup - 1 cup should be perfect!)
Here's how to make them:
- Add vegan butter (softened) and applesauce to a mixing bowl, and mix.
- Add cane sugar and vanilla extract, and mix again.
- Add arrowroot, baking soda and salt, and mix.
- Add gluten-free flour (1/2 cup at a time) while continuing to mix.
- Add blanched almond flour and mix until the mixture if thick and cookie-dough like.
- Fold in as many chocolate chips/chunks as you like. Transfer to the fridge for an hour before baking.
- When ready, scoop cookie dough into even-sized balls and transfer to a cookie sheet.
- Using the palm of your hand, gently flatten the tops slightly (skip this step if you like fluffy, pillowy cookies).
- Bake on 350F until golden brown. This happens very quickly. In my oven, it takes 7-10 minutes. So, keep a close eye and don't go very far!
- As soon as you take them out, even though they are golden brown, they will be very soft to the touch, so allow them to cool for a few minutes before moving them. They will firm up during this time.