26 February, 2013

Dairy Free, Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

So, every once in a while I want something simple and sweet...and quick.  Cookies.  Toss all the ingredients into the Kitchenaid, turn it on and then I use my Pampered Chef medium scooper and BAM!  The longest part of baking the cookies is waiting on the oven...  It was snowing outside and our water heater broke on Sunday, so we weren't going to church.  What better thing to do with the Sprout than get in the kitchen and bake?  Nothing!

I picked a recipe that was no nonsense and reliable.  The Nestle Tollhouse recipe.  But I had a couple of choices if I wanted to make it dairy free.  Either "butter flavored" Crisco (dairy free...who knew!?) or my Earth Balance vegan buttery spread.  Because my Mister wanted a container of dough to eat with a spoon, I used Crisco.  The dairy free chocolate chips I use are made by "Enjoy Life!".  They are wonderful and NO one I know YET has been able to tell they were vegan, gluten free and nut free chocolate chips.  NO ONE.  I always skip nuts in cookies if I expect my Mister to help me eat them and the last thing I swapped out was using vanilla PASTE instead of vanilla extract.  Way better, deeper vanilla flavor to compliment and make the chocolate really pop.  I made these cookies "coffee house" sized, which really only means HUGE and thick.  

**To make them that large I had to reduce the baking temperature from 375 down to 325.  If you don't want to make huge cookies, don't.  Just remember to increase the temperature for smaller cookies.

Okay, let's get started.

Dairy Free Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 1/4 c.  King Arthur's gluten free flour
2 tsp. xanthan gum
1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 c. vegan butter, softened OR "butter flavored" Crisco
3/4 c. sugar
3/4 c. packed brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla paste
2 large eggs
2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) Enjoy Life! mini semi sweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped nuts, optional
Preheat oven to 325 F
Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla paste in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels and nuts if you use them. Scoop with a Pampered Chef large scooper onto ungreased baking sheets.
Bake for 18 to 22 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

*This recipe can be made into bars as well.  Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 15 x 10 in. jelly roll pan and spread the dough in.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.

These are ooey, gooey and de-LISH right out of the oven.  They are just as awesome when they are completely cooled.  My Mister asked for a tub of this to be kept in dough form so he could eat it with a spoon.  I obliged, but he has been consistently eating these since I made them on Sunday...they are nearly gone.  He is one picky customer so, that is compliment and proof enough that these are some fabulous cookies!

*To make without being gluten free simply use regular all purpose flour (I use King Arthur's) and omit the baking POWDER and the xanthan gum.  I usually skip the nuts in this recipe whether I make it gluten free or not because my mister just doesn't go for nuts.  I make them normal size, simply use the medium sized Pampered Chef scoop rather than the large sized and bake them at 375 F instead of 325 F.

* To make with dairy, use whatever semi sweet chocolate chips you want that have dairy in them and switch the fats from 1 c. of vegan butter or Crisco to 1/2 a c. of Crisco and 1/2 c. unsalted butter.

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