I thought these One Bite Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies would be an exercise in portion control. Turns out…that was not the case at all.
Let’s start at the beginning. What inspired me to make teeny, tiny little chocolate chip cookies? It all started with some store bought chocolate chip cookies…
I don’t often buy baked goods from the store. I’m talking grocery stores, not stand alone bakeries. Sure, there are exceptions. I’ll buy sandwich cookies and vanilla wafers and the occasional angel food cake.
Anyway, unless it’s already a tried and true item, it doesn’t happen regularly.
I remember one night my family went out for a casual dinner. I had a taste for chocolate cake. We had no chocolate cake at home and it was not likely that I was going to run home that evening and whip one up.
So, we headed to the nearest grocery store. I crossed my fingers but, I already knew I wasn’t going to find a chocolate cake either in the bakery section or the freezer section that didn’t have 10,000 ingredients that I didn’t want my family to ingest.
For that, I would probably need to go to a special grocery store, which was not on the way home. Needless to say, chocolate cake was not going to happen that evening.
You might think I’d have some chocolate cake stashed away in the freezer with all of the baking I do. But, it’s kind of feast or famine around here with blog food.
Sometimes I have a bunch of stuff hanging around, and sometimes there’s nothing. When there’s a bunch of stuff, I either freeze or give away to friends.
Often, I’m working right up to my deadline for publishing a post. I might have baked or cooked the recipe just a day or two before publishing.
Other times, I’ve gotten a good head start and had some posts banked from weeks before. That always seems to be the time that one of my friends says, “Hey, got any of those cookies leftover?”
And no. No I don’t. I made them last month and, unfortunately, they’re long gone.
So, a couple of weeks ago, we were in the grocery store and I was in the mood for some chocolate chip cookies. Again, it wasn’t likely that day that I would rush home and whip up a batch. And really, I just wanted a bite or two.
Now, this is an instance where we pretty much NEVER buy chocolate chip cookies from the store. Again, unless we’re buying one from an amazing bakery or some place known for amazing cookies.
We simply love making our own cookies, homemade, from scratch. Some of our favorites are… Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies, Malted Milk Chocolate Chip Cookies, a recent favorite, Hazelnut Mocha Coffee and Cream Cookies or the super yummy Caramelized White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies.
As I’ve mentioned before, my husband even learned how to make Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies. He wanted to be able to whip up a batch whenever he wanted them.
So, there I was in the store, picking up different containers of cookies, reading the ingredients, checking to see if the list was short and simple. I also tried figuring out if they were soft cookies or crunchy cookies.
My family looked at me…with surprised expressions that said, “You’re buying chocolate chip cookies?!?”
I simply held up two different kinds and asked for a vote. Okay. Tiny chocolate chip cookies it was. Good. I just wanted a couple.
We broke into them after lunch that day. I took a bite and was immediately disappointed. I was ready for a crispy cookie, so that wasn’t the issue, even though I’m not a huge fan of crispy chocolate chip cookies. (I’m okay if I think of them like biscotti, ready to be dipped in something that will soften them up.)
My issue was that they were kind of a nothing cookie, with only the chocolate chips to redeem them. The cookie itself wasn’t crispy and rich. There was no buttery, brown sugar flavor to the cookie part. They were just kind of dry, powdery and sandy.
After my first bite, I reminded myself that this is why I don’t buy cookies from the grocery store. They rarely end up meeting my expectations.
That being said, that container of mini cookies went and they went pretty quickly. Again, I’m pretty sure it was because of the chocolate chips. That dry flavorless dough was simply a vehicle to eat some chocolate.
I suppose it was also because there weren’t any other cookies available in the house. And, the cookies were small and easy to snack on. So, someone would pass by the kitchen and just pick up a couple. They were low commitment cookies.
I decided I would make a batch of homemade tiny chocolate chip cookies. Yep, they would be One Bite Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies. They would be soft, maybe a little crispy on the edges.
They would have the flavor of a REAL chocolate chip cookie, not some powdery, crumbly, tasteless cookie.
Now, if you’re making mini cookies, you need to use mini chips. You need small chips if you want them distributed throughout the cookie. Okay. That was one ingredient decided. Now what dough should I use?
I loved how the batter turned out for my Caramelized White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies. The extra yolk in that recipe added some nice richness and some softness to the texture. So I used that recipe for my base and added the mini chips instead of the Caramelized White Chocolate.
Once I got the dough all mixed up, I started to think about portions. How big (or should I say small) did I want to make these cookies?
I have lots of scoops that I use for portioning out muffins and cupcakes and cookies, but none small enough for this job.
Then, I thought about using a measuring spoon and scooping out tiny little portions of dough so that I could achieve some level of uniformity.
I have to be honest. As I visualized myself scooping out many, many, many tiny spoonfuls of dough..I thought, “Ugh! That’s going to be some tedious work!”
So, I decided on a different route. I would cut the dough into nice little even portions, you know, just like you cut the refrigerated tubes of cookie dough you buy in the, ahem, store.
In order to be able to cut the dough, I would have to chill it. I was so happy I had come up with the idea.
In one fell swoop, I threw some plastic wrap on the counter. I piled the dough in a rough log shape.
Then, I placed another piece of plastic wrap on top of the log and formed it into a shallow brick shape. You can see from the photos, that it was about 10″ long and somewhere between 3/4″ and 1″ thick.
I don’t know how I arrived at those dimensions. My normal self would have done a bunch of calculations to work out the perfect dimensions.
My “I’m not in the mood for anything too tedious” self, just formed it, threw it in the freezer, and moved on. In other words, I was winging it. I hardly recognized myself.
Well, I still brought out a ruler at the end to measure it for posterity, so there was some small bit of myself still present :)
Here’s the bottom line…I think I knew in my head that I would be cutting 1/2″ cubes, kind of the size of game dice. I realize that dice come in different sizes, but the one I was picturing was 1/2″ ish.
In any case, those dimensions worked out perfectly. Once the dough was nicely chilled and firm, I unwrapped the brick and placed it on a cutting board.
I cut a slice that was somewhere between 1/2 and 3/4″ thick. I then cut that slice into 8 pieces that now looked like little cubes, or dice.
I gave each cube a quick 3 second roll with my hands to form balls, and placed it on an ungreased cookie sheet.
Okay, that was easy. I repeated it with the rest of the dough. It went pretty quickly, if I do say so myself. And, it didn’t feel tedious at all.
(I will say, though, if you have someone to help you in the kitchen, it will be done in no time.)
Those of you who are looking for serious shortcuts? You could skip the rolling process and just place the cube of dough right on the cookie sheet.
Rolling them just smooths the surface and helps them bake into nice little circles. Who knows? I might have liked the rustic nature of the little cubes better. Next time I’ll really embrace my rebel self and see how that turns out.
Here’s the thing. In the end, it’s hardly going to matter. They’re barely going to last long enough to appreciate that uniformity.
Silly me! I thought that making little cookies would be the perfect answer to portion control. I mean, I knew that the dry, tiny cookies from the store went pretty quickly, but that was nothing compared to the homemade ones.
If you take a look at the photo where all the baked cookies are piled on a cookie sheet…That’s where all the cookies ended up after I was done with the photo shoot.
So, that sort of ended up being the serving vehicle when I finally declared the photo shoot complete.
When I’m baking for the blog, there are always sharks circling the goods while I’m shooting.
“Are these okay to eat, Mom?” “Mom, can I have one of those cookies/scones/brownies etc?” “Is it okay if I have just one?” “Can I have a sample?” “When can we try them, Mom?”
I, of course, wanted to try them first. They really are small enough for one bite, but I took two, so that I could experience the full texture.
The outside of the cookie is just a little crisp. The inside of the cookie is soft, with a little bit of chew to it. Okay, hands down, we’ve already blown away the store bought cookie.
The flavor sealed the deal. Of course, it had all the delicious flavor of a homemade chocolate chip cookie, because it was a homemade chocolate chip cookie.
So, I put the cookie sheet full of tiny cookies on the table. ” Hey, if you want a cookie…they’re open for grabs!” I barely needed to say anything out loud. Putting the cookies on the table was like blowing a dog whistle.
Now, I didn’t exactly mean for the cookie sheet to be a serving tray. It’s just where all the cookies landed when I was done.
And….the spatula was on the tray as well. I didn’t mean for the spatula to be a serving tool. I figured everyone would grab a couple of cookies and be on their way.
Nope. Apparently everyone was really hankering for a cookie. They got plates and drinks and napkins and sat down at the table. Oh. I see. This is going to be an event.
My husband used the spatula to scoop up a whole pile of cookies to serve to one of the sharks. I had this vision of a bulldozer pushing all of the cookies onto everyone’s plates.
Whoa, Nelly! Wait! What are you doing? They’re not potato chips!!! My husband said, “But, they’re small.”
Well, slow down folks! I had plans to take some to a friend. I grabbed a bag and shoveled a bunch in to protect them from the sharks.
And no. They weren’t eaten in one sitting, though they were quickly becoming an endangered species. I gathered them up and put them in a storage container to stop the feeding frenzy.
So there you have it. I was inspired to make One Bite Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies based on some disappointing tiny cookies I bought at the store. I bought the tiny cookies in a brilliant move towards portion control.
The idea of a delicious, homemade tiny chocolate chip cookie? Done and done!
The idea that tiny cookies=portion control?
Yeah. Not so much.
One Bite Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter 1 stick, room temperature
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- Using an electric mixer, in a medium mixing bowl, beat butter for 30 seconds or until creamy. Add sugars and continue beating for 3 minutes or until light and fluffy.
Add the whole egg and beat until combined. Then add the egg yolk and vanilla, and continue to beat until combined. Gradually add the flour mixture and either stir by hand or mix on low until combined. Stir in the mini chocolate chips.
Place a large piece of plastic wrap on your work surface. Scoop the cookie dough onto the plastic, scooping it into a log shape. Cover the dough with another sheet of plastic wrap and form it into a bar that's about 10" long and about 1" thick. Wrap the whole bar up in the plastic wrap and place it in the freezer for 30 minutes or until very firm but not frozen.
Unwrap the chilled cookie dough. Using a sharp knife, cut about 3/4" slice. It doesn't have to be exact. Just get a feel for a slice that's slightly larger than 1/2" and cut it. Then cut that slice into 8 cubes. Roll each cube into a ball and place about 1 1/2" apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Repeat with balance of dough.
Bake for 6-8 minutes or until cookies are lightly golden. Allow to cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes, then remove to cooling rack to finish cooling.
*I used 3/4 cup of chocolate chips for the cookies you see pictured in the post. While there was enough chips to get a bunch in each cookie, I think it would be better with 1 cup, so I'm going to write the recipe with that measurement. Feel free to reduce that back to 3/4 cup if you'd rather err on the side of less chocolate.
*I used unsalted butter in this recipe. If you use salted butter, reduce the salt in the recipe to 1/4 teaspoon, or leave it the same if you like a bit of extra salt in your cookies.
*I baked each sheet of cookies separately. Once I had a full sheet rolled and ready, I went ahead and baked it while I worked on the next sheet.
*If you don't want to bake the cookies the same day, store them in the refrigerator instead of the freezer. Make sure they're wrapped well in the plastic so that the dough doesn't dry out. You can cut, roll and bake them the next day, or even the day after.
*If you'd rather have larger cookies, scoop out about 2 Tablespoons of dough for each cookie and bake for 10-12 minutes. You'll get about 16-18 cookies.
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