Chocolate Chunk Walnut Cookies

These cookies are reminiscent of the ones my mom used to make: thick and chewy, with a nice caramelized flavor.

Chocolate chip cookies were one of the few desserts my mom made from scratch. We always knew when she was going to bake them because there would be a bowl of walnuts on the kitchen table.

My siblings and I diligently sat on the floor together and cracked the walnuts for her. Then we helped my mom mix the cookie dough, stir in the chocolate chips, and finally add the freshly shelled nuts.

When it came time to scoop the cookies, my mom used a spoon to gently place mounds of dough on the baking sheet.

However, my siblings and I wanted “shaped” cookies, so we rolled the dough in our hands and turned them into hearts or animal shapes.

After baking, we wondered why our cookies turned out dark, hard, and crunchy, while mom’s were perfectly soft and chewy. That was one of my first food science lessons–don’t overwork the dough! 

a few other tips I learned along the way:

  • Chill The Dough: This allows the ingredients to come together and develop flavor.

  • Bake Cookies Longer: Most cookie recipes suggest baking them for only 9-11 minutes so they are slightly under-baked. The cookies continue cooking on the pan but remain soft. For chewier and firmer cookies, bake 1-2 minutes longer (or 2-4 minutes longer if frozen).

  • Bake Cookies Straight out of the Freezer: Baking frozen cookie dough balls allows them to “melt” down slower and not spread out as much. Therefore, the cookies maintain their shape and stay thicker. If your dough is not frozen, make sure it is at least chilled completely.

Joby's test Kitchen pile of Chocolate chunk Cookies on a plate

My mom’s cookies were soft, but they were also chewy and caramelized around the edges.

When I got older I realized she had been over-baking them!

But guess what? They were delicious, and now I “over-bake” my cookies to achieve that same chewy texture and caramelized flavor.

How to Make Chocolate Chunk cookies

In a food processor or blender, add 1/2 a cup each of all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, and rolled oats.

Also add 1/2 a teaspoon each of baking soda and salt, and finally 1 teaspoon of cornstarch.

Joby's Test Kitchen flour mixture for cookies

The cornstarch is optional, but is sometimes used in cookie recipes to make them soft and tender. It also prevents cookies from spreading too much so they stay thicker and become chewier.

It’s not an essential ingredient so you can omit it, but I would recommend trying it at least once to see if you notice a difference in your cookies.

Grind all the dry ingredients until a fine flour is formed. Set aside.

With a hand-held mixer, beat the sugars and butter for 1-3 minutes until creamy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat another 15-30 seconds until incorporated. Don’t over beat it.

Next, add the flour mixture and beat on low until no more flour remains and the mixture is crumbly. Do not over mix. You don’t want a smooth dough.

Finally, stir in the chocolate chunks and nuts.

Using a cookie scoop or spoon, portion out 12-16 balls of dough onto a baking sheet or cutting board, lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat.

If the dough is too soft, pop it in the fridge for 10 minutes and then scoop it out.

Cover the dough mounds with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge or freezer for 30-60 minutes or for up to 1 day.

If not planning to bake all the cookies at once, transfer the dough balls to a freezer bag laying them flat until completely frozen. 

Preheat oven to 350℉. Place cookies on a parchment-lined sheet pan spaced out at least 2 inches from each other.

If using frozen dough, bake for 11-14 minutes; 11 minutes for softer cookies and 14 minutes for chewier cookies.

If using chilled or room temp dough, bake for 9-11 minutes. 

Joby's Test Kitchen chocolate chip cookies on parchment paper

Chocolate Chip Cookie Variations

This recipe makes a great base for other cookie flavors.

By simply swapping out the chips and nuts, or baking in a dish, or adding an ingredient like cocoa powder, you get a whole new cookie with a completely different flavor!

 

What My Kids Say:
10 year-old: “Oh, my goodness. These are so good!”
7 year-old: “Mmmmmm….”

Hera are some other desserts you might enjoy

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Joby's Test Kitchen chocolate chunk walnut cookies on parchment paper

Chocolate Chunk Walnut Cookies

Joby’s Test Kitchen
These buttery and slightly salty cookies are filled with sweet chocolate chunks and crunchy nuts.
Prep Time 1 hour 16 minutes
Cook Time 14 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 16 Cookies
Calories 174 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup (60g) wheat flour
  • ½ cup (60g) flour
  • ½ cup (60g) oats
  • 1 tsp cornstarch optional
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 6 tbsps (84g) butter, slightly melted
  • ½ cup (98g) brown sugar
  • ¼ cup (48g) white sugar
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ½ cup (90g) semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate chunks or chips
  • ¼-½ cup (30-60g) walnuts , chopped

Instructions
 

  • In a food processor or blender, grind together the flours, oats, baking soda, salt, and cornstarch. Set aside.
  • With a hand-held mixer, beat the sugars and butter for 1 minute until creamy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat another 15-30 seconds until incorporated. Don't over beat it.
  • Next, add the flour mixture and beat on low until no more flour remains and the mixture is crumbly. Do not over mix. You don't want a smooth dough.
  • Finally, stir in the chocolate chips and nuts.
  • Using a cookie scoop or spoon, portion out 12-16 balls of dough onto a baking sheet or cutting board, lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat. If the dough is too soft, pop it in the fridge for 10 minutes and then scoop it out.
  • Cover the dough mounds with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge or freezer for 30-60 minutes or for up to 1 day. If not planning to bake all the cookies at once, transfer the dough balls to a freezer bag laying them flat until completely frozen.
  • Preheat oven to 350℉. Place cookies on a parchment-lined sheet pan spaced out at least 2 inches from each other. If using frozen dough, bake for 11-14 minutes; 11 minutes for softer cookies and 14 minutes for chewier cookies. If using chilled or room temp dough, bake for 9-11 minutes.

Notes

Flours: You can use any ratio of flours you want: use more AP flour, or more wheat, or omit the oats, etc. As long as you have about 1 1/2 cups of flour it should be fine, though I have only worked with the ratios above. You can also try bread flour for extra chewy cookies!
Cornstarch: Using cornstarch mimics using cake flour and is supposed to help baked goods stay soft and tender. Though I do notice cornstarch gives cookies/blondies/brownies a soft, tender, and chewy texture, I don’t think your recipe will be greatly affected if you don’t use it.
Chilling/Freezing: I like to use a small cutting board for freezing or chilling because it fits better in the fridge or freezer. Make sure to line it with a parchment paper or silicone mat so the dough doesn’t stick.
Parchment Paper: Most cookie recipes recommend placing the cookie dough on an ungreased cookie sheet. Since I bake my cookies for longer, they tend to “burn” underneath if I place them directly on the sheet. So I use parchment paper which ensures they brown properly but don’t burn. If you chilled the dough on parchment paper, reuse that. However, I would not use a silicone mat for baking because the cookies will not brown enough.
Keyword chocolate, chocolate chip, cookies, walnuts

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