Chewy, chocolatey and perfect for the holidays. These cookies are sweetened with brown sugar and molasses; they have bittersweet notes of dutch cocoa and the signature smokiness taste from the molasses.
Chewy, chocolatey and perfect for the holidays. These cookies are sweetened with brown sugar and molasses and have bittersweet notes of dutch cocoa and that signature molasses smokiness.
Last fall I was tinkering around with a recipe for spiced molasses cookies and in those trials I had made these. I didn’t want to be redundant, so I decided I’d wait awhile before I published the chocolate version. Then, these chocolate sugar cookies happened and although they were perfect, I kept a sweet spot in my heart for these. The molasses just make these special for the holidays and I do love that bittersweet taste the syrup imparts.
If you can find a crispy or crunchy cookie on this site, I’ll hand you a 20$. My love for chew runs deep and is what brought us these beloved chocolate chunk cookies and these brown butter chocolate cookies. The key ingredients are egg yolks and brown sugar. Like any good buttermilkbysam recipe, these chocolate molasses cookies have both.
I once heard a cookie described as ‘bendy’ and that is exactly how I picture a good chewy cookie. These chocolate molasses cookies are certainly that!
This is caused by a reaction between the baking soda and the molasses which are very acidic. Essentially, these cookies puff up quite a bit due to that reaction and then they fall quickly – creating cracks.
This is a very, very simple cookie recipe but there are a few things you want to get just right:
Aren’t you in the right place! Here are some ideas:
What kind of molasses should I use?
I always get ‘Grandma’s molasses’ because it’s the one most readily available in the store. I have tried this with blackstrap molasses and found the cookies turned out far too strong (robust, as they say) for my taste. But if that’s what you are after, use it!
What kind of cocoa should I use?
Dutch process will lend a rich, chocolatey taste. If you look closely you’ll spot a difference between some of the photos; in one I used dutch rouge cocoa and in another a mix of dutch cocoa and black, hence the gray black color.
My tops didn’t crack, what did I do wrong?
I’ve found you get better, bigger cracks when you’ve smoothed out the dough with your hands first. If you scoop and the dough has a textured look when it goes into the oven you won’t get as cute of a cookie post-bake.
Can I add other flavors?
Sure! Cinnamon and ginger would be lovely here I think, for a more spiced chocolate taste. Cardamom would be wonderful as well.
What can I roll the cookies in?
My favorite ingredient for rolling cookies, for pie crusts and scone topping is always organic cane sugar because it’s not as white, is not as finely milled so the pieces are bigger and have a slight brown color. It gives a rustic look and a crunch to my baked goods. That said, you can use whatever granulated sugar you have on hand. Definitely don’t use brown sugar, but turbinado could work. And if you want something more colorful roll them in sprinkles! Nonpareils are quite cute on these.
How should I store the cookies?
In an airtight container. These stay good for quite awhile, 4-5 days.
Will cookie size affect bake time?
Absolutely. The instructions I’m giving are 9 minutes for 1 tablespoon of dough. If you are making bigger cookies you need to, a. Space them out well as these spread and b. bake them for a little longer.
What’s the best way to prepare a cookie sheet?
Use cooking spray to coat the bottom with a thin layer of oil and place a sheet of parchment paper on top. The oil keeps the paper in place. Do not oil the cookie sheet and place the cookies directly on the metal. Also, different parchment papers can yield different results, I find the best one to be reynolds bleached paper which doesn’t cause over-browning. If you have a silpat you can use that, although bake time can differ, they might overspread and overbrown.
How do I know when the cookies are done baking?
This one is tricky because you cannot use your usual cues (golden edges). I like to underbake my cookies so they turn out soft. When it comes to these, I’ll wait for them to puff and then crack. If you are safe, you can gently touch the edge of a cookie with your finger and if it feels firm they are done.
Can I make the dough ahead of time?
With caution. This dough doesn’t need and shouldn’t be ‘rested’ in the fridge or even at room temperature as both scenarios dry out the dough. The cookies turn out best when made right after mixing the dough. That said, if you absolutely need to I’d make the dough, portion the scoops, roll them in sugar, then set them on a plate to flash freeze. Once the balls are frozen, put them in a ziplock bag and leave them in the freezer. When it’s time to bake, bake them frozen and add a few minutes extra baking time.
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