March 20, 2011 by Flora Dawn
It’s no secret my mom has serious sweet tooth. So growing up I enjoyed my share of sweet treats, especially cookies. Coming home from school in the afternoons to a house that smelled like a bakery is indeed a good thing. Let’s face it, few things make a better after school snack than warm chocolate chip cookies and a glass of milk!
So chocolate chip cookies were definitely high on my list of comfort foods I worried about making gluten-free. Everyone has an ideal cookie in their mind, perhaps even more so with the chocolate chip variety. They can be thin and crisp, soft and chewy, the size of your face or miniature. They can be simple and traditional or a little unconventional and loaded with extras (like coconut, nuts or even fruit).
Well, the word cookie means “small cake” and my mom takes this meaning literally. She loves fluffy, soft cookies and will always tell you that you need a “little more flour” in your dough. Flat, crisp cookies will never do in her kitchen. Personally, I prefer a Tollhouse-style cookie, a little crispy on the edges, but soft and chewy in the middle, nothing too fluffy for sure.
So when I finally came up with a version of gluten-free, egg-free (and yes nut-free) cookies that my whole family could eat, it was with some surprise and humor that they were very soft, very fluffy and very much like the ones my mom makes.
I know egg-free cookies might seem kind of scary to some, but seriously, these cookies stay really moist due to the applesauce (and don’t worry they don’t taste fruity). Unlike most gluten-free cookies, these aren’t dry and crumbly, even after several days.
So far we have only used this recipe for traditional chocolate chip cookies, but I think the recipe could be adapted to make cinnamon raisin, kitchen-sink cookies, etc. Since we eat dairy, these do have butter, but I am sure that could be adjusted if you need a dairy-free cookie as well.
And although I have a recipe for Cowboy Cookies and one for Triple Chocolate Cookies, this is the first recipe for traditional chocolate chip cookies I have thought were good enough to post; and trust me, it isn’t for lack of trying to make them.
I know everyone’s version of the perfect cookie is different, but I really think this a great kid-friendly cookie. And I just mix them by hand, making them easy for kids to help or make them entirely on their own. So grab a glass of milk and have an afternoon snack!
Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies
These cookies are easy to make dairy-free, simply use Earth Balance in place of the butter or vegetable oil (no need to heat the oil). Also, the optional baking powder makes the cookies more cake-like which my kids love, but if you prefer a flatter cookies, simply omit it.
Makes about 2 1/2 dozen cookies.
- 1 1/4 cups white rice flour
- 1/2 cup plus 2 TB sweet rice flour
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder, optional
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 8 TB butter (1 stick) or Earth Balance
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 TB flaxseed meal dissolved mixed with 2 TB hot tap water
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- about 1 1 /2 cups chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350. Grease or line baking sheets with parchment or silpat mats.
- In a large bowl mix dry ingredients.
- In a large microwave safe bowl, place butter and microwave until melted, about 30-60 seconds. Add sugars and stir with a wooden spoon to combine. Add applesauce, flax mixture, and vanilla and mix well; pour into dry ingredients and stir until blended thoroughly. Add chocolate chips and stir to incorporate.
- Drop by rounded tablespoons onto baking sheet. Bake for 10-14 minutes or until cookies are slightly browned. Allow to set a minute or two before removing to a rack to cool.