Cookies are not exactly my forte. I find them to be rather high maintenance. They burn at the drop of a hat, require regular oven-time supervision, and continue cooking on the pan once removed from the oven. It took me a while to figure this last one out because if you try to remove them from the baking pan/parchment as soon as they come out they are often too mushy and you end up ruining at least the first few trying to remove them. So, in my early baking days, I would let them sit on the pan on a wire rack for several minutes to harden up before removing, walk back in, and have 2 dozen over-baked cookies on my extremely frustrated hands. I have now learned to account for the continued baking, by reducing oven time, and made my first from-scratch cookies in a long time. I decided to go with Monster Cookies. It is a great way to use up all the chips and sprinkles you’ve been saving of which you don’t have too much left. For example, I had less than a quarter of a bag of mini chocolate chips and a 1/2 bag of peanut butter chips hanging around just begging to be baked into something delicious, but most recipes call for 3/4 to a whole bag of each item. This was the perfect opportunity to use them up so they wouldn’t go to waste! The essence of Monster Cookies is that you can throw a bunch of things that you love into them to make them more personalized. The base cookie is peanut butter oatmeal.
1 stick salted butter, at room temperature
1/2 c light brown sugar
1/4 c sugar
3/4 c peanut butter (I used creamy, but think I’ll try chunky next time to add more texture.)
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 c flour
1/2 c oats (I used quick oats because they are more finely cut, but the oatmeal flavor wasn’t as strong as,
I would have liked so I plan to use rolled oats next time.)
These are the items I added, but you can of course mix and match whatever is hiding out in your pantry:
3/4 c M&M’s
1/2 c peanut butter chips
Handful mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line your baking sheets with parchment paper. (Parchment paper helps prevent burning and makes it easier to get them off the pan). In a large bowl cream the butter and sugars together on medium speed for about 3 minutes using either an electric mixer of stand mixer with paddle attachment. Mix in peanut butter, egg, and vanilla. Slowly mix in the baking soda and flour. Be sure not to over mix. Fold in the quick oats, M&M’s, and chocolate/peanut butter chips.
Roll balls of dough and place on prepared baking sheet. I rolled them slightly larger than the size of a ping pong ball. Press some M&M’s into the top of each and bake for 9-10 minutes. They cook quickly and will look like they’re not done, but trust me, they are. Let them cool on the pan for 10 minutes then place on a wire rack to cool the rest of the way.
These ended up looking surprisingly similar to the Keebler Rainbow Cookies, but they tasted way more homemade and were softer. I made so many that there was no way Boyfriend and I could eat them all before they started to go stale so I brought over half the batch in to the girls at work. The great thing about these cookies is that you can add different things each time to adjust the flavor and texture. The base recipe provides a really great canvas for a bunch of different types of cookies.