Classic Chewy Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk and Ginger Cookies
I’m trying to step outside of my kitchen box. On my cooking to-do list I have things like faux ‘meat’balls made with lentils and ricotta (bear with me), an easy cassoulet (is that possible?), pad thai (at home, from scratch, not in a takeout container), and fresh spring rolls (can we put bacon in them, too?).
These cookies, with old-fashioned oats and loads of brown sugar are decidedly inside my kitchen box. They’re a classic… and I don’t have to buy a brand new jar fish sauce to make them. With new kitchen adventures, I need some classic comforts of the chewy and chocolate-studded variety.
The cookie dance is something we’ve done before. We know the steps.
Softened butter meets brown sugar. Egg for binding. Flour, spices, and old-fashioned oats for comfort and bulk.
The butter is beaten with the brown sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy. We want to incorporate a bit of air and fluff into the mixture.
Egg and vanilla extract into the butter mixture. We’re cool.
Flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
I’m aggressive with the cinnamon and salt because oats can sometimes be a blackhole to flavors, absorbing them without a trace. Is that what blackholes do? Don’t answer that.
Dark chocolate chunks and chopped candied ginger for bitter chocolate and spicy cookie enhancements.
This is the hard part where you start to negotiate with yourself.
I don’t reaaaallllyyyy neeeeeedddd to bake this cookie dough. I could just eat it as-is and really I’d be saving money on my gas bill and mostly saving the planet in a really important way, so I’ll just eat all this dough, like… right now… hiding in the pantry.
But if you do decide to bake them, which you should , because that’s the point of most cookies… the reuse is a thick, soft and chewy, chocolate-studded and slightly spiced cookie of supreme comfort and success.
Strong and true words.
This recipe is adapted slightly from Deb of Smitten Kitchen. I like that it’s a small batch recipe that makes about 2 dozen small cookies and 1 dozen larger cookies. According to your cookie thickness preferences the dough can be refrigerated for different lengths of time, all detailed in the recipe. A classic recipe, with a twist, and they’re all yours.
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 2/3 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- heaping 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- heaping 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- scant 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
- 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
- 2 ounces coarsely chopped bittersweet chocolate
- heaping 1/2 cup coarsely chopped candied ginger
- In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or in large bowl using electric hand beaters) cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg and beat for 1 minute, until well incorporated.
- In a small bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. Add the dry ingredients all at once to the butter mixture and beat until just incorporated. Use a spatula to incorporate the pats, chocolate, and ginger until thoroughly combined.
- Now you can do what you'd like with the dough. Scoop immediately onto a parchment lined baking sheet and baking right away (this will create a more flat cookie). Scoop onto a parchment lined baking sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes before baking (this will create a slightly thicker cookie). Scoop all of the dough onto a piece of waxed paper and refrigerate overnight and scoop and bake the following day. Lastly, dough balls can be scooped onto a parchment lined baking sheet, frozen solid, and kept stored in a freezer-safe bake. Bake from frozen (adding 2 or 3 minutes to the baking time) for thick cookies.
- Place racks in the center and upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake cookies for 12-14 minutes until golden brown and cooked through. Place on a wire rack to cool. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for as long as they'll last. It won't be long.