July 8, 2011

Whole wheat chocolate chip cookies

I know it's hot out there and you may not want to turn on your oven but I crave a good homemade cookie all year round so I'm willing to do it.  And remember my search for a great chocolate chip cookie?  Well, I'm always interested when someone says they've found a great chocolate chip cookie recipe. 

I was introduced to this one a few months back via the great blog, Orangette.  These cookies really caught my eye.  Firstly, it's a whole wheat chocolate chip cookie.  Sounds a bit boring and may admittedly make you think of a dry, dense type of cookie but the potential for a great whole wheat, and dare I say, healthier, chocolate chip cookie was very alluring indeed.  Secondly, she (meaning, Molly, the author of the blog) mentioned they reminded her of digestive biscuits.  Well, coming from Hong Kong and with our exposure to British food, digestive biscuits conjure up a pleasant taste memory for me.
I'm so glad I tried making these cookies because they've staked a permanent place in my cookie-making repertoire.  Using white whole wheat flour is a great suggestion Molly made because it produces a milder whole wheat flavor but is still whole grain and gives you that nuttiness that balances out the sweetness.  The dough does taste like a digestive biscuit!  The cookies are crisp on the outside, soft in the center.  The dough is not too sweet and a terrific balance with the chocolate throughout.
So if you like digestive biscuits or a cookie dough that isn't too sweet, you might want to check these whole wheat chocolate chip cookies out.  They are very tasty.

Like many people, I'm trying to eat more whole grains but at the same time, whole wheat flour can be a bit too assertive.  That's why I think white whole wheat flour is really awesome.  It's a lighter, milder version of whole wheat flour that is still whole grain and has, from my understanding, the same nutritional value as traditional whole wheat.
To make these cookies, I start with 1 1/2 cups of white whole wheat flour.  Combine this, along with baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Aside from the flour, the other interesting thing about this recipe is the use of cold butter.  Cut a stick of cold butter up into about half inch cubes and place that into the bowl of your stand mixer.  I love when a recipe changes things up a little and makes things a bit more interesting in the kitchen.  Cutting up the cold butter helps it incorporate more quickly with the sugar and the cold butter will prevent the cookies from spreading too much when baking (no need to refrigerate dough unless you're inclined to).
Mix the butter mixture on low, together with 1/2 cup of dark brown sugar and the same amount of granulated sugar...  
until it looks like this...
An egg and vanilla extract are added now, followed by the flour mixture.  Mix just until the flour is absorbed into the batter.  I've also chopped about 4 ounces of bittersweet chocolate (you could also use chocolate chips but you will lose that oozing chocolate factor that is so desirable straight out of the oven) that is added at the end, mixing just enough to incorporate the chocolate throughout.
The original recipe for these cookies were intended for large ones (about 3 tablespoons of dough per cookie).  I make half the recipe and I've scaled their size down and scooped them into generous small ice cream scoop sizes.  I yield about 2 dozen cookies this way.

These dough balls are ready for a 350 degree oven.  They bake for about 15 minutes in this size.  Rotate the pans halfway through baking.
Here they are out of the oven.  Not exactly gorgeous to the eye but really good!
My taste-tester, a now 6-year old boy, says these are "mmm...mmmm" good.  There's something about the flavor and texture that keeps me wanting to eat them again and again and again.
Update (March 2015): These remain some of our favorite chocolate chip cookies.  I make them fairly often and thought I'd post a more recent photo of the last batch.


Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies
Via Orangette, with original recipe from Good to the Grain, by Kim Boyce*

- Yields approximately 2 dozen cookies -

*The recipe below is half of the original.  Instead of making large, 3 tablespoons worth of cookies, I scoop mine using a small ice cream scoop that I fill generously.

1 1/2 cups (180g) white whole wheat flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1 stick of cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 cup (110g) dark brown sugar, lightly packed
1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped into 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces (or use 2/3 cup of bittersweet chocolate chips)

Prepare 2 baking sheets by lining with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees with the racks positioned at the upper and lower thirds of the oven.

Into a bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt).

Place the pieces of butter and both sugars into the bowl of a stand mixer.  Beat on low speed until the sugars are incorporated into the butter, about 2 minutes.  Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.  Incorporate the egg and vanilla extract.  Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until the flour mixture is just absorbed.  Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl again to make sure all the flour is evenly incorporated.  Add chocolate and mix until just combined.

Scoop the dough using a small ice cream scoop.  I fill my scoops rather generously.  Place the cookie dough onto the parchment lined baking sheets, spacing them about 3 inches apart.

Bake for approximately 15 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through.  Keep in mind the baking time varies slightly depending on the size of the cookies but they are done when they are evenly browned.  Let cookies cool in the pan for a few minutes and then remove onto cooling racks.

These cookies keep well for several days in an airtight container at room temperature.


  1. How neat to have a healthier chocolate chip cookie. From the looks of them, no one would ever guess. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog and I'd love it if you'd come by and link your cookies up. http://sweet-as-sugar-cookies.blogspot.com/2011/07/sweets-for-saturday-25.html

  2. The cookies came out deeelish.. Thank you for the awesome recipe..

    1. I am very happy to hear that! These are one of my favorites - they are satisfying and I love that it keeps well for a few days. Thanks for the comment!



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...