Now, my initial reaction to oatmeal cookies used to be BLEH! I remember being fed oatmeal raisin cookies as a kid and I hated them…along with most kids I knew (minus like 2 friends…you know who you are). But as I got older I was finally introduced to chocolate chips or chunks in oatmeal cookies and now I’m a believer. Also, sans chocolate, oatmeal cookies are delicious! Now, if you are one of those people who like raisins and not chocolate chips, feel free to swap them out!
I like to bake up about a third or a half of the dough and then save the leftover in the freezer to bake at a later time. Otherwise, I tend to just eat too many. Because they have oats I sometimes convince myself that they’re a breakfast cookie…which they truly aren’t. But with the quarantine all bets are off. And quarantine breakfast could totally be cookies.
Don’t forget to read the below on proper tips, tricks, and best practices for making, baking, storing, and eating these cookies! Most importantly always zap those little cookies to be warm for the best eating experience!
Tips on Ingredients:
Usually the better the ingredients, the better your food will taste. However, I do like to go over which ingredients that you should have the best quality for and the others are those that I think don’t need to be the highest quality. But again, if you don’t have access to high quality, it will still be delicious! I also let you know if a certain type or style is best.
These are the items that I have notes for, whether it’s to buy the best quality or if there are specific notes about that ingredients.
- Butter: I always suggest using a good quality when it comes to your dairy. This always helps the texture and flavor profile. I personally am a big fan of butter like Kerrygold.
- Vanilla extract: In general, I just always suggest a good vanilla, preferably not a fake. This affects the flavor profile for the muffins.
- Oats: be sure they are old fashion oats. Other types of oats will not mix or bake the correct way. Also, be sure they aren’t expired!
- Chocolate: Yes, this one is really important. A good versus bleh chocolate is going to make the difference here people. So, my go to dark chocolates are Ghirardelli, Guittard, or my go to, the Trader Joe's Dark Chocolate baking bar. Now, a baking bar is a bit different, because I cut it up to make my chunks. But truly I love it because you get little flecks of chocolate everywhere, then huge chunks depending on how big you cut it.
- Cinnamon: Now, this is a controversial add. But Tyler loves loves loves cinnamon in these cookies so we add them. But it is not 100% necessary. I personally think it tastes without it! And that’s saying something since you all know I’m a spice girl!
Best Tips and Knowledge to make the best possible cookies:
These tips are helpful for when you are making the recipe. Outside of the tips for ingredients above, these are tips on how to do something or why what I’ve listed in the recipe is necessary.
- Room Temperature Butter: So many of my recipes (and others’) call for room temperature butter. This is due to a few things. 1) An emulsion is formed when all the wet ingredients are room temperature and mixing. You are whipping in air into the batter, which will later help in baking when you get that light and fluffy texture. 2) Room temp butter is also able to blend smoother and create a cohesive batter. If you don’t have it room temp it can become very dense.
How to: I usually leave mine on a plate on the counter for a couple hours or maybe on the oven if it’s being used for something else.
- Room Temperature Eggs: A lot of baking recipes (mine included) ask for room temperature eggs. This is because a room temp egg is easier to break down than a cold egg. So therefore, it mixes into the batter better. ALSO, room temp eggs get a better volume making for a fluffier baked good.
How to: I would suggest leaving them on the counter for a couple of hours to get room temp. However, if you forget or run out of time, another option is to place the eggs into a bowl of warm water (not hot) for about 10-15 minutes.
- Creaming Sugar and Butter: This is often the first step in many of my baked goods. Like the point above on room temperature butter, the creaming of the sugars and butter makes for a light and fluffy baked good. This is the point of 1) breaking down the granular of sugar so they are evenly distributed and baked. 2) That you’re getting that emulsion going and trapping in air that will create a light and fluffy batter and therefore final baked good. I always suggest at least 3-5 minutes. However, if your kitchen is colder, you may need to go up to 6-8 minutes at least to make sure they cream fully.
- One Egg at a Time: I always suggest doing one egg at a time to make sure you’re getting each one mixed in thoroughly and to get a better volume. I also recommend breaking them into a bowl first to make sure you don’t mix in any shells!
- Mixing Dry Ingredients Separately: This is so important and basically happens in like 90% of baking. This is to make sure you are thoroughly mixing in the items like baking powders, sodas, etc. You want to make sure that it’s evenly distributed because once you mix it into the wet ingredients it can stick in one place.
- Chilling Time: So, chilling the dough is a VERY important part of making any cookie. Most require it, but also this will dictate whether you have a thick or thin cookie. The longer they chill, the thicker they will be. My trick for making them thicker quicker, is to pop the dough into the fridge for 15-30 minutes, ball the dough and place it on a baking sheet with parchment paper, then toss it in the freezer for 1-3 hours. This will help the rise. If you have more time feel free to leave them in the fridge for 24 hours, or freeze the balled dough for 30 minutes, transfer to a freezer-safe bag or Tupperware. More chilling time always equals a fluffier cookie.
- Saving Dough: If you decide not to bake all the dough at once, you can ball the dough, place it on parchment paper in the freezer for about 30-ish minutes (should be very cold), then transfer into a freezer-safe bag or Tupperware for up to 2 weeks. It can take a few extra minutes to bake, so keep your eyes on the oven to check.
- Bake Time: Now, this is the difference of a gooey or a crispy cookie. I like to bake mine crispy on the edges and gooey in the center. So, you bake for the minimum time below. But if you are a crisp all the way through, do the longer time. Also, each oven/altitude/climate can change your bake, so keep your eyes on the oven and bake to your liking. If your cookies are frozen, they may need an additional 1-3 minutes of baking time. I also check on mine to make sure the edges are brown and I use a spatula to make sure I can pick up the edges.
- Reusing Parchment Paper: Yes! As long as it's not completely burned, you can and should reuse the parchment paper during a bake, maybe using just 1-2 sheets for all the cookies.
- Cool Baking Sheets: Now, you can reuse the parchment paper and of course you can bake using just 1-2 baking sheets. However, before you place dough or bake it, your baking sheets should always be cooled down. This helps with a good bake and keeping those cookies thick.
- Perfect Circle: This is my favorite Cloudy Kitchen tip! Use a round cookie/biscuit cutter that’s just a bit bigger than your cookie. Right when the cookies come out of the oven, place cutter around cookies and quickly move cutter in a circle motion to create a perfect cookie shape while still warm and moldable. This makes for a perfectly circle cookie.
- Reheating: If you are left with extra cookies after you bake, be sure to store in an air-tight container. Then when you go to eat them, be sure to heat those cookies before eating. I do about 15-25 seconds in the microwave before eating so they are nice and gooey!
Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Yields 36 cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
- 1 1/4 brown sugar
- 3/4 cup white granulated sugar
- 2 eggs, room temp
- 2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 cups old fashion oats
- 1 tsp cinnamon, optional*
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 1/2 cups of dark chocolate chunks or chips, divided
- Extra flakey salt for topping cookies, optional
In a large mixing bowl from your stand mixer, using the paddle attachment on medium-low speed, add butter and sugars into the bowl. Cream until thoroughly combined and fluffy. This can take 3-5 minutes.
Add eggs, one at a time, each mixing in thoroughly. Then add in vanilla extract and mix thoroughly.
In a second medium-large bowl whisk flour, oats, cinnamon*, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients with the mixer turned onto lower speed (to prevent the dry mixture from spilling out).
Once well mixed, fold in the chocolate chips/chunks.
Cover and chill dough in the fridge for at least one hour and up to 24 hours. I place them in the fridge for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Then I remove, ball into 2 Tbsp sized balls, and place in the freezer for 1 hour before baking.
Preheat the oven to 350° F and prepare 2-3 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Place 2 Tbsp sized balls onto baking sheets and a few inches apart.
Bake for 12-14 minutes (may need a couple more minutes if you freeze the dough).
Remove from the oven and top with flakey salt. Let sit for about 5 minutes, then move to cooling rack. Enjoy!