Friday, 15 April 2011

Adventures in Baking: Low/er Fat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Low fat Oatmeal Chocolate Chip   &   Lower Fat Chocolate Chip Cookies

I have been ravenous for the last few days and craving chocolate chip cookies.  Since I`m not the type of person who just eats one (it`s likely that a batch is gone within 24 hours... yikes!), I thought it might be worth testing out some low/lower fat recipes.  I know, they`re still full of sugar but as least one of the two evils has been tamed with these!

The first batch I made is from my Joy of Cooking cookbook.  It's a low-fat oatmeal chocolate chip cookie recipe that I modified using a mashed banana instead of oil and fewer chocolate chips to make it even lower fat. 

Pros: They're very moist with a slight hint of a banana in the background, and a nice sweet oatmeal flavour that's punctuated with the richness of the semi-sweet chocolate chips.  Very littel fat is used in the recipe.

Cons: They have more of a dense oatmeal muffin top feel to them than a traditional cookie.

I've included the original recipe ingredients in parentheses beside my modifications so that you can make either version.

Low fat Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Low Fat Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
(based on a recipe from The Joy of Cooking)
Yield: 20 cookies
Preheat the oven to 375°F

Whisk together:
1 1/4C all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

In a separate bowl, beat on medium speed until well blended:
1 small frozen banana, thawed & mashed (original: 1/4 C canola oil)
2 tbsp butter, softened
1 C packed dark brown sugar
2 large eggs (original: 1 large egg, 1 large egg white)
1/3 C light corn syrup
1 tablespoon milk
2 1/2tsp vanilla

Stir into the batter:
2 C old-fashioned rolled oats

Let the mixture stand 5-10min for the oats to absorb the moisture.  Stir in the flour mixture until almost incorporated.

1/2 C heaping semi-sweet chocolate chips (original: 1 C reduced-fat chocolate chips) and finish mixing.  The dough will be very moist & loose - like a thick muffing batter.

Drop the dough by heaping measuring tablespoonfuls onto parchment lined baking sheets spacing them 1 1/2" apart.  Bake 1 sheet at a time until the cookies are slightly golden brown (7-10 min).  Mine took 10 min.  Remove the sheet to a rack and let stand until the cookies firm slightly, about 2 minutes.  Transfer the cookies to racks to cool.

Low fat Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
The second batch I made is based on a recipe I found on  Normally you have to make some taste concessions when you reduce the fat with in baked good but these really hit the spot!  I didn't have golden syrup so I used corn syrup instead.  Apparently it isn't exactly the right substitute, but it seemed to work ok!

Pros: Very good cookie mouth-feel & flavour.  Lower fat than traditional chocolate chip cookies.

Cons: With your first bite you can tell that they've been modified but by the second bite it goes away.  They go stale quickly (by day 2 they were a little tough) I would recommend freezing them after you bake them and pull them out as you want to eat them - it will take app. 10 min to thaw on the counter or you can microwave them for maybe 10-15 seconds.

Again, I've included the original ingredient quantities in parentheses.

Lower Fat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Lower Fat Chocolate Chip Cookies
(based on a recipe from
Yield: 24 Cookies

The biggest problem people run into when baking chewy chocolate chip cookies is over baking – if they are golden all over when they come out of the oven, they won’t be chewy once they cool down. Because these firm up as they cool, make sure they are slightly golden and set around the edges, but still very soft in the middle (if you want chewy cookies).

Preheat oven to 325°F.

In a large bowl, beat:
1/4 C butter, softened
1 C packed dark brown sugar (original: 1 C packed brown sugar)

The mixture will have the consistency of wet sand.  Add:
1 large egg
1 1/2 tbsp. light corn syrup (original: 2 tbsp golden syrup, honey or maple syrup)
2 tsp vanilla (original: 2 tsp vanilla or maple extract)

Beat until smooth.

In a separate bowl mix:
1 1/2 C all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda  (original: 1 tsp. baking soda)
1/4 tsp. salt

Add dry ingredients to wet and mix until almost combined.  Add:
1/2 C heaping semi-sweet chocolate chips (original: 3/4 cup chocolate chips

It may seem dry at this point – continue to mix until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated.

Scoop tablespoons of dough and roll into walnut-sized balls.  Place them app. 2” apart on a cookie sheet that has been lined with parchment paper.  Flatten each a little with your hand. Bake for 10-12 minutes.  I found that 10 minutes was perfect.  If I waited until the edges were brown (12 min) they were over baked.

Transfer to a wire rack to cool.


- Jacs

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