Chocolate Covered Pretzel Cookies

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The other day when I was jogging (which almost never happens), I was trying to decide how I would reward myself for my sudden burst of exercise — you see, that’s how I work, I run so that I can eat. Maybe I’ll stop for a doughnut, I thought, as I passed our local doughnut shop, Or I could get a bag of chips, I contemplated as I turned the corner by the mini-mart. Hmm, what do I crave, savory or sweet? And then around mile 2 I realized that I didn’t have any money on me, so I started rummaging through my mental inventory of snacks in my pantry. What could I do with the pittance I have in my cupboard? Let’s see, I have chocolate chips, pretzels, stuff to make cookies…wait, hang on a sec! At that moment I turned around and sprinted home to make my new favorite cookies, and they were exactly what I needed to satisfy every craving I’ve had since birth. Seriously, that’s how good they are. But I’ll warn you, don’t (DO NOT!) make these cookies unless you have a fresh gallon of milk in the fridge, because you will need it! These rich and salty beauties deserve a big, cold, creamy glass of milk to properly wash them down.

Chocolate Covered Pretzel Cookies

Makes 2-3 dozen

  • 1¼ cups unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup white sugar
  • ¾ brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup coco powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. Kosher salt
  • 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1½ cups crushed pretzel sticks (preferably Snyder’s of Hanover Old Fashioned Dipping Sticks), plus 1-2 dozen pretzel sticks snapped into thirds for topping

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Preheat oven to 375°F.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until combined.

In a separate bowl, sift together flour, coco powder, baking soda, and salt. Working in two batches, add the flour mixture to egg mixture, mixing until just combined after each incorporation.

Fold in chocolate chips and pretzels. Using a spoon, scoop out 2 Tbsp. of cookie batter and roll into thick balls, place on a cookie sheet. Take a piece of pretzel and press into the top of each cookie, slightly flattening out the ball, like this…

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See, this way you’re guaranteed a crunchy, salty pretzel in every chocolatey bite — and it just looks cool.

Bake for 9-11 minutes, until just cooked through (I recommend cooking for 9 minutes, then letting sit on the hot cookie sheet for another 1-2 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack). Serve with milk. Lots and lots of milk.

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Trail Mix Cookies

I’ve been making these cookies for years, but I never really had a name for them. When I decided to post them on my blog, I knew I needed to call them something, so I stood back and looked at the ingredients – chocolate chips, nuts, raisins, coconut – and they reminded me of trail mix. Ah-ha! Trail Mix Cookies, perfect! The batter has an oatmeal base, and the add-ins are really adaptable; if you don’t like one of the ingredients, just replace it with another trail mix-y alternative like bits of dried pineapple, M&M’s, pistachios, etc. Just make sure you roll the dough thick before sliding them into the oven so that they come out big and chunky and delicious, like a handful of trail mix!

Trail Mix Cookies

Makes 2-3 dozen

  • ½ cup almond or peanut butter
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. Kosher salt
  • 2 cups quick cooking oats
  • 1 cup shredded sweetened coconut
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks (or chips)
  • 1 cup raisins (or other dried fruit)
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (optional)
  • flaky sea salt (such as Maldon) for sprinkling over hot cookies

*Nut allergy note: Omit nut butter and increase amount of unsalted butter to ¾ cup.

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a large bowl or stand mixer bowl, cream almond butter, butter, and sugars until thoroughly combined. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until smooth.

In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.

Working in two batches, add flour mixture to butter mixture and beat until smooth. Fold in oats, chocolate, raisins, coconut, and nuts (if using), and stir until incorporated.

Roll a large spoonful of batter (about 2-3 Tbsp.) between your palms to create a ball. Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 8-12 minutes, or until golden on top. Immediately sprinkle hot cookies with flaky sea salt.

Let cookies rest on baking sheet for 1 minute before transferring to a wire rack to cool. Serve with a cold glass of milk. Yum!