Single Serve Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Hello again friends.baker_katherine_chocolate_chip_single_serve_vegan-1

I know, I know. I disappeared again. And I’m not going to make any excuses. I was busy doing what you do in your 20s: making mistakes, enduring set-backs, moving multiple times, and coming out stronger and more certain of who I am and who I want to be.

I also spent time writing a bunch more for Spoon University (check it out here), but after some soul searching and debating and squandering self-doubt, have decided to make my way back to blogging.

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And after decided to come back to blogging, I spent a considerable amount of time debating starting a new blog or re-starting kbaked for like the 4th time. I ultimately decided on the later, but am planning to give it a serious lift in style, layout, and quality.

All while eating cookies, of course.

I love chocolate chip (oatmeal) cookies. I mean, do you know someone who doesn’t? If you do please let me know; I’d legitimately be interested in interviewing them. Send me their contact info ASAP.

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Back to cookies: one of my favorite things to make because 1) They don’t take very long, and 2) Holy moly, delicious!

But when you live alone, sometimes you just want one or two. Because if you have a dozen, you most likely eat a dozen. And then you feel icky and out of balance. At least, if you’re me.baker_katherine_chocolate_chip_single_serve_vegan_air_2

That’s why single serve cookie recipes are important to keep in your arsenal. The oatmeal is  hypothetically optional, but highly preferable, in my opinion.

I hope you enjoy this recipe, and my promise to blog more frequently in the coming months. It’s my goal to improve my content, layout, and start blogging about more than just recipes, but also nutrition, health, and life.

I hope you enjoy!

Single Serve Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookiesbaker_katherine_chocolate_chip_single_serve_vegan-1

Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 15 mins
Servings: 1

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 tablespoon non-dairy butter or coconut oil or nut butter or neutral oil like canola
  • 2 1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract optional
  • 1/3 cup all purpose whole wheat oat flour or any combination thereof
  • 2 tablespoon rolled oats optional or substitute addition flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon chia seeds optional
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon water or milk add more if dough appears too dry
  • Dash salt
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. In a small bowl, combine all ingredients and mix until just combined.
  3. Roll dough into two medium or one large cookie dough ball and place on an ungreased baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 8-12 minutes until the edges begin to turn golden brown and cookie becomes fragrant.

Recipe also shared on Spoon University

Check out some more noms on a link share on runningwithspoons.com!

Candy Corn Cookie Cake [Pumpkin + Banana Chocolate Chip]

Apparently I’m really into making things that look like candy corn. First I made this roasted veggie corn pizza thing, and then on Sunday I made this giant cookie cake for a post for Spoon and frosted it so when you cut it, it looks like a piece of candy corn. When I get into something, I go all out. Hence why I posted like 5 pumpkin recipes in a row.

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Speaking of pumpkin, I went to Trader Joe’s this Saturday and got so excited and overwhelmed by all the new pumpkin products that I actually had to leave quickly without letting myself buy any otherwise I would have easily spent $50. I decided I had to go home and think about which to buy first so I don’t end up with nothing but pumpkin spice sugary things in my pantry. This recipe also has pumpkin. #cantgetenough The middle layer of the cookie is pumpkin. And the outside layer is banana. Get it? Orange/yellow. Just like a piece of candy corn.

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Using pumpkin and banana also makes this cake a dairy free/vegan option as it replaces using butter + eggs that a cookie mix calls for. Yes I used another mix. When I write for Spoon my goal is to be appealing and realistic to a college student. And when I was in college (omg I feel old saying that), I rarely had a fully stocked pantry or the desire to buy many things at once, so using a mix would have appealed to me, even though I still prefer every-last-detail-from scratch. But this makes it fast, easy, and less to purchase/clean up. Go with it. You can also make this recipe by assembling and whisking all the dry ingredients of regular cookie dough. But a mix will work just fine.  A lot of cookie and cake mixes are actually dairy free if you look at them. Just check the back of the package! Or use a fancy specific dairy free one like this.

So here is a recipe for cookie cake. It would be a hit for a Halloween party. Or, if you live alone and mostly hang out with your dogs cause all your friends are far away, you can be like me and have it all to yourself. I currently have about 80% left of it in my fridge from baking it earlier today. And a giant batch of chocolate bark for an upcoming post. #foodbloggerproblems. I’m okay with these problems, btw.

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You can view the Spoon version right here, or you can simply look at the recipe below. Happy eating!

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20-25 minutes

Total Time: 30-35 minutes

Level: easy 

Ingredients:

1 bag chocolate chip cookie mix

½ cup canned pumpkin

1 large overripe banana

½ cup white chocolate chips, divided

1 ½ cup white frosting of your choice (vanilla, cream cheese, etc) —> I recommend making buttercream with 1 1/2 sticks butter or Earth balance non-dairy butter substitute + 4 cups powdered sugar + 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. Divide cookie mix in half in two separate bowls.

3. Peel and mash banana. In one bowl, add mashed banana. In another bowl, add canned pumpkin. If desired, add yellow food coloring to banana portion, and orange to canned pumpkin portion.

4. Mix each bowl of cookie mix and pumpkin or banana until a dough forms.

5. Grease a pizza pan or 9 inch cake pan. First, make an outer ring with the banana cookie dough mix. Fill the center with the pumpkin cookie dough mix. Add half white chocolate chips to center to form a small circle.

6. Place in the oven and bake until the cookie is browned and fragrant and a toothpick releases upon insertion in the center, 15-25 minutes.

7. Allow to cool. Add remaining half white chocolate chips to center on top of the melted/baked white chocolate chips.

8. If frosting, dye half frosting yellow and half frosting orange by mixing food coloring or food dye into frosting. Frost with yellow frosting around the outer banana ring and orange frosting around the middle pumpkin ring.

9.Slice into triangles originating from the center and serve.

My Favorite Basic Chocolate Chip and Double Chocolate Cookie Recipes (22 years in the making)

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Greetings friends! Sorry I’ve taken a mini-hiatus from blogging. With a sick family member (yes my dog niece is family) and flying back to New York to start the moving process, and then Southwest loosing alllll of my luggage, blogging has been something I’ve wanted to do but haven’t had the time to. Anyways, I actually wrote this post and took these photos last week while in Wisconsin, but didn’t get to put it all together ~~ until now!

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So here you have it: my chocolate chip cookie recipe that after 22+ years of experimenting I have contoured to my exact liking. These are my favorite simple chocolate chip cookies. They may not be your favorite. Everyone looks for different things in a cookie. But to me, these are wonderful. Chewy but not mushy. They have a lot of texture and a lovely simple flavor. I’ve also included alterations to make them vegan, as well as a double-chocolate option.

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I’ve been making chocolate chip cookies for a very, very, very long time. I don’t mean to age myself, but I started baking when I started babbling aka like 22 years ago, back in the days where all phones had curly cords and the radio bumped things like Ace of Bace and children all knew what a VHS was. Ahh, the early 90s.

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Another fond memory of mine is making cookies. It was one of the first things I can recall baking. I just remember making them over and over. Sometimes with my grandma, sometimes with my sister on rainy summer afternoons, and sometimes just by myself. I’m not sure how many fistfuls of cookies I’ve consumed since I started crafting the chocolate chip cookie , but I have experimented extensively with recipes and have honed the following as my favorite basic chocolate chip cookie recipe.

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Because no matter how many fancy desserts and trendy, sophisticated health food things I like to eat, there is simply nothing as blissful and comforting as an ooey gooey home-baked chocolate chip cookie.

These are super-moist and have a delightful mouthfeel. Not too chewy, but also not firm. Substantial enough to give way without much effort, but not so gooey they fall apart. The half whole wheat flour was once an attempt to make these “healthier” but ended up being a staple because it helps create this desirable texture. Also I like chewiness. These are definably not crispy. Crispy cookies have their time and place, but if you ask me, not in this situation. #thesituation #mike #jerseryshore #whatamiwritingnow

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I use chocolate chunks and/or diced up chocolate bars instead of chocolate chips because I think it creates a more interesting texture dynamic and overall mouthfeel. If you want to make a double chocolate cookie, that recipe is also below. Enjoy!

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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Bake Time: 15 minutes
Level: Easy

Ingredients For Basic Chocolate Chip Cookie:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter [vegan: non-dairy butter or coconut butter] softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg [vegan: 1 tablespoon chia seeds + 2 tablespoons nondairy milk]
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • dash salt
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks
  • 1/2 cup walnuts or pecans (or other nuts, may also be omitted)

Ingredients for Double Chocolate Cookie:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter [vegan: non-dairy butter or coconut butter] softened
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 oz baker’s chocolate or 1/3 cup chocolate chips, chopped, melted, and cooled to room temperature
  • 1 egg [vegan: 1 tablespoon chia seeds + 2 tablespoons nondairy milk]
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk or nondairy milk (I use almond)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • dash salt
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks
  • 1/2 cup walnuts (or other nuts, may also be omitted)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. In a large bowl or stand mixer, cream softened (room temperature) butter or Earth balance non-diary spread or coconut oil until fluffy. This should take a bout a minute. If making double chocolate variation, chop baker’s chocolate or chocolate chips and place in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave in 30 second increments until melted, stirring after each increment. Should take about 90 seconds total. Set aside and allow to cool a bit. 

3. Gradually add both sugars and continue to cream until light and fluffy, another 3-4 minutes. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula occasionally.

4. Add egg or chia egg and continue to mix until fully incorporated. If making double chocolate variation, add melted chocolate. 

5. In a separate bowl, combine flours, baking soda, and salt. Whisk together until well combined and aerated. If you are making double chocolate, add the cocoa powder here.

6. Put down your source of electric mixing and grab a spatula. With as few strokes as possible, add flour and oats and mix until just combined. I do not trust a machine to do the delicate work of my hands as I do not want the gluten to develop and become tough. I like chewy cookies, so to me this is a small step that yields better results. If making double chocolate variety, add 2-3 tablespoons liquid. Cocoa is a drying agen, so you’ll need this to retain moisture.

7. Add oats (if making regular cookies), chocolate chunks and nuts and mix again until just combined.

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8. Use a small ice cream scoop to scoop dough out of the bowl onto an ungreased baking sheet. I use parchment paper for best results/minimal clean up/less burning on the bottom.

9. Lift up tray, drop it onto counter or table. This is loud and may cause dogs to give you concerned looks. But it also helps the dough spread out nicely on the pan so each cookie bakes more evenly.

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10. Pop cookie dough filled baking sheets into the freezer for 10-15 minutes. This also helps all the dough be at the same temperature and bake more evenly.

11. Place baking sheets in the oven on a middle wrack and back for 8-10 minutes until just golden and still slightly gooey. They will carry-over bake a little as they cool.

12. Allow the cookies to cool for a few minutes on the sheet before transferring them to a cooling wrack. Allow to cool or enjoy warm and gooey. I like the word gooey.

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Chochaffelie (Chocolate Chip Waffle Cookie)

I have an [extreme] obsession with waffles. There is something about those airy rectangles that create such a pleasurable experience for my mouth. To me, texture is a huge part of the enjoyment of food, and there is something truly magical about those airy, repetitive rectangles that never fail to please my mouth. Maybe it’s the maximum surface area for browning. I love browning. Food that’s a lil burnt is totally up my ally…especially when it’s something sweet’n’carby.

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If you want to get all food science-y, (too bad if you don’t, because I’m finna) this is called the Maillard Reaction, which is the reaction between amino acids and their reducing sugars that gives foods that distinct brown color and flavor. This is what happens to your toast, cake, the cripsy parts of your potatoes, your roasted veggies (yes, vegetables are carbohydrates!), caramel making, and that gorgeous golden crust on all your breads.

Long story short, the Maillard Reaction = protein + carbohydrate + heat = brown.

Bottom line of story: Maillard = delicious. 

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Now back to waffles. With all that surface area for Maillard to go down, there’s lots of crispy browning. And then there’s the glorious crunchy edges that contrast oh so beautifully with the fluffy inside.

I really, truly, love waffles. Toaster waffles are a staple in my life. Any place I’d put bread, I will other times put toaster waffles. Yes, your pb+j just got better. As did your sandwich. Just buy the whole wheat kind and they aren’t too sweet for even your saltiest creation. Trust me on this one. You will thank me later.

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Beyond the freezer, there are homemade waffles. If you got a few extra minutes they are always worth making, even just for the fragrance that will waft through your house all day long after. I recently got a new waffle iron because my old one went MIA when my mom moved, and I have been spending some quality time making waffles for myself in batches, freezing some, and eating them all week long.

But why just make waffles in a waffle iron? I thought to myself. Why not cookies? And thus, the chocaffelie was born. Just rolls off the tounge, doesn’t it? No. No it does not. It does taste good though.

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I had to try this recipe a few times before I got it right. The first time I just tried to bake regular cookie dough in the waffle iron. It didn’t work so great. It tasted nice, but was all sticky and crumbly. So I hybrid some various aspects of the cookie and the waffle and ended up with this. I also realized that for best results, smaller chocolate pieces are needed to prevent them from sticking to/burning on the waffle iron. Thus, I recommend you chop your chocolate chips. This would also be a wildly appropriate place for mini chips. But you know. Work with whatcha got.

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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Level: Easy

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup flour
  • ¼ cup rolled oats
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 egg, separated
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar, divided in half
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup milk of choice
  • 1 cup chocolate chips, chopped (or 1 cup mini chips)

Directions:

1. Plug in your waffle iron and set it to a medium-high heat.

2. In a bowl, combine flour, oats, baking soda and salt. Mix.

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3. Separate egg into yolk and whites. Whip the whites up with an electric mixer. Add half of the granulated sugar (so about ⅛ cup or a few tablespoons) to encourage the stiff peaks to set. Set both aside.

if you look closely, i'm flipping a peace sign in that egg yolk reflection. i think i'm hilarious fyi.

if you look closely, i’m flipping a peace sign in that egg yolk reflection. i think i’m hilarious fyi.

4. In a large bowl, beat the butter, remaining white sugar, and all of the brown sugar together until nice and fluffy. This will take a minute or two. Next add the egg yolk  and vanilla and whip a little more until combine. Lick the whisk. Or at the very least, appreciate its beauty or try to prevent your dog from hopping up and stealing it from you.

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5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix gently until combined.

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6. Fold in the chocolate chip pieces or mini chips. Finally, very gently fold in the egg whites.

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7. You can place a spoonful of batter in each of the four corners of the waffle iron, or place a big glob right in the center, depending on what kind of end product you want.

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8.  Close the iron and allow the cookie to bake for about 2 minutes, or until brown and crispy and beautiful.

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9. Using a fork or knife, gently remove from iron and set on cooling rack to cool.

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10. Eat. And/or post to instagram and prepare to be bombarded with texts demanding you share. It’s up to you.

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Fudgy Vegan Double Chocolate Muffins – with a Surprise Ingredient [Watermelon!]

I like chocolately muffins. I like to dip them in almond or soy milk, or mash them up into Greek Yogurt. It makes a great substitute for a froyo creation when I’m too lazy to seek it out. I kind of like those VitaTop muffin things. The chocolate ones. But they’re expensive and I tend to only buy them when they are on sale at Target. So that’s a bummer. But I can get by.

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In addition to chocolate muffins, I also like the challenge of vegan baking. I always have. No, I’m not currently vegan. I am, however, a vegetarian of f 13+ years and recently have been progressing towards a more plant based diet.  Lately I’ve just been more and more into earthy stuff and the challenge of creating things with stuff straight from motha nature (also this book doe…). Now I know that baked goods aren’t something you’d typically pick off a tree, but I really genuinely do enjoy vegan baking sometimes. Buttercream is a beautiful thing and if you follow me on Instagram you know I’m a bitch for ice cream, but there’s something to be said about vegan baked goods. Sometimes, without all the mingling flavors of eggs and butter and other stuff, I believe you can actually taste the flavors more intensely. In fact, some of the most pure tasting and flavorful ice creams/gelatos and pasteries I’ve had have coincidentally be vegan. So be open minded, friends. And open mouthed.

These muffins, like a lot of other vegan baked goods, are rly fudgey and intensely chocolatey. Both great things.

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I’ve seen a lot of vegan baking recipes that use applesauce to add sweetness and texture to baked goods. This is a great trick. I do it all the time. And I almost did for these muffins. But then I also realized I had a boatload of watermelon which I happened to be snacking on while I started baking. So I decided to experiment with pureeing some up and using it instead of applesauce in my recipe. Why? Why the hell not. It’s nutritious and delicious just like applesauce added some natural sweetness and tons of moisture and a springy bite to the muffins.

Do these taste like watermelon? No. Not really. They mostly just tasted really chocolately. That’s not the point though. The point is that I like to experiment and this substitution happened to work splendidly. It also has inspired me to play around with baking with watermelon. Perhaps I will actually try to use it as a flavoring agent in a future baking project. Anyways, happy eating.

[Ps – there’s a half marathon recap after dis recipe.]

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25-30 minutes
Yield: 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup oat flour (or all-purpose flour)
  • 1/2 cup coca powder
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1.5 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 cup almond or soy milk (can use regular if not going for vegan)
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 1 cup pureed watermelon
  • 1 + 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips (double check for non-dairy if you’re vegan, or don’t if you don’t care)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. In a small bowl, combine almond milk and vinegar and set aside for at least 10-15 minutes. This will allow it to curdle. It’s like DIY buttermilk. It will provide leavening and acidity to the final product.

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3. In a large mixing bowl, combine flours, sugar, cocoa powder, and baking soda. Whisk to combine.


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4. Use a food processor or blender to puree a cup of cubed watermelon.

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5. Combine dry and wet ingredients and stir until just combined. Add one cup chocolate chips.

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7. Line a muffin tin (tray? whatever) with 12 muffin cup things. Spoon batter into each. It may help to use an ice cream scoop for this. Trust me here it’ll change your life.

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8. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup (or more) chocolate chips all over the top of the muffins.

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9. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Meanwhile, clean bowl with spatula via your mouth. Your dog may park herself in front of the oven and watch you do this.

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10. Cool completely and eat. These taste better cold. I would recommend storing them in the fridge. They taste fudgier that way.  And/or mashed up into Greek Yogurt.

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nutty brown rice krispie treats

IMG_5234love making homemade granola and granola bars. In fact, that might be the next recipe I post. but today, I wanted something a little sweeter and decadent than my standard healthy granola bar recipe produces.

I was also in the mood for something with a little more crunch. For me, texture plays a huge part food. Sometimes i just want to eat something soft, like a big chewy cookie made even softer with oatmeal baked in. Other times, only something with a bite will do, and a nut-infused candy bar is the only thing that will satisfy me.

Today, the mood was crispy. I was specifically craving one of those crispy-style granola bars that Kid’s Cliff Bars makes, but i also felt like cooking, so i decided to make my own.

This recipe, like all recipes really, is just a guideline. Use whatever you have around the house – toss in your choice of nuts and toppings. Whatever you end up with, it’ll likely taste delicious!

another bonus – not that i am – but this recipe is gluten free for those who must be conscious of it!

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For the bars:

  • 4 cups brown rice krispies (regular will also work)
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey (or agave)
  • 1 cup peanut or almond butter
  • 3/4 cup nuts (i used almond and cashew today)
  • 1 cup chocolate chips (or butterscotch or white chocolate chips)
  • 1 cup chocolate chips, melted (for optional drizzle on top)

 

Directions:

  • Melt butter in the microwave (about 30 seconds). Add brown sugar and mix.
  • Add honey to brown sugar/butter. Mix again.
  • Add peanut butter. To make stirring easier, it may help to microwave for about 20 seconds before mixing.
  • Fold in cereal. Mix with a spatula or large spoon until evenly coated. If they aren’t “sticky” enough at this point, add more honey until they are sticky!
  • Add nuts & chocolate chips.
  • Pour into a 9×13 pan that has been buttered or sprayed with cooking spray.
  • Melt remaining chocolate chips in the microwave, and drizzle on top of bars.
  • Place in the fridge to let them firm up.
  • Cut, eat, enjoy! 🙂

 

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