A cookie that's sweet, satisfying, AND gluten-free? Yes, please!
I created these gluten-free chewy chocolate chip cookies for a special child in my life. He’s sensitive to gluten and his symptoms are worse than most. After eliminating treats from his diet for weeks, the first thing he wanted was a chewy chocolate chip cookie. Excellent choice, kiddo.
A Delicious Treat that Brings Back Childhood Memories
It’s important to remember that the smell and taste of a baked good can take us back in time. Perhaps you’ve heard of the “Proustian moment”, a concept first noticed by Marcel Proust. The narrator of “In Search of Lost Time” experiences an involuntary memory recalling his childhood. This occurs simply by dipping a Madeleine cookie in milk. A vivid sense memory occurs after tasting a simple treat. As a modern day example, I wrote a poem once stating “somebody should bake chocolate chip cookies, but I won’t be the master chef.” That single line left unchanged by critics in a poetry workshop hit me hard. This timeless classic has lasting power. We all know and love a big, fat, chewy, chocolate chip cookie.
I’ve read loads of baking blogs in search of the ultimate chewy chocolate chip cookie recipe, and ended up combining three of my favorites! This search resulted in discovering almond flour, my first alternate ingredient of choice. Almond flour’s texture is grittier than white flour, requiring the tongue to adapt. However, by browning the butter, chilling it, and then chilling the dough, a resulting complexity of flavor yields the tastiest bite.
The Secret Weapon for Boosting Flavor
My second ingredient, brown butter, isn’t new. French chefs use it in sauces for fish and vegetables all the time. It’s a natural by-product of hollandaise sauce. In my last restaurant, my cooks discarded the brown parts of the butter after making hollandaise sauce. Consequently, I wondered how we could reuse it. After consulting with Julia Child, I discovered the secret ingredient known to trained chefs world-wide. All that good, nutty brown by-product enriches desserts and sauces with incomparable flavor.
Try this 3-Ingredient Broiled Asparagus with Balsamic Brown Butter to experience the savory side of brown butter.
The Healthiest Flour for Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
Those of us with wheat and gluten intolerance can rejoice in the discovery of almond flour in baked goods like cookies and cake. First off, almond flour is low in carbs, packed with nutrients, rich in Vitamin E, and high in magnesium. It’s also loaded with fiber. Combined with the low glycemic index also offered by coconut sugar in this recipe, you might feel compelled to call this a superfood! However, almond flour does have a high fat content, but the good news is that the fat is good. In other words, you could say this chewy chocolate chip cookie recipe is healthy-er, by limiting yourself to just one and working it into your daily allotted calorie intake.
Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate
My next guest, dark chocolate, needs no introduction. Dark chocolate is the most healthful choice of chocolate. It contains less sugar which is the culprit in milk and semi-sweet chocolate. Switching over to the dark side should be easy for most of us. The antioxidants in dark chocolate may reduce the risk of heart disease. That being said, a little bit goes a long way. I have yet to find dark chocolate mini-morsels. Chopping big morsels will scale down the bite that dark chocolate delivers. In this recipe, dark chocolate’s aura overrides any grittiness given by almond flour. In short, this makes a good pairing.
Getting that Perfect Texture
Lastly, in addition to cultivating flavor, creating a chewy texture remains the end goal. By adding an egg yolk to a recipe typically calling for one egg, the protein and fat create more chew. Above all, adding the extra yolk emulsifies flour with the cocoa and fat. The end result creates the creamy light brown dough we associate with cookies.
By the way, don’t toss that egg-white! One great way to use it is in oatmeal. Try this Chocolate Oatmeal to add protein to your morning cereal. As an oatmeal afficionado, this recipe tops my favorite for staying full while counting calories.
Returning to the subject of the perfect chocolate chip cookie, equally important, is vinegar. Of course the acid in vinegar rounds out sweetness in a baked good. In addition to that subtle tang, a chemical reaction occurs after mixing with baking soda. The resulting carbon dioxide creates the lift batter needs in order to rise as it bakes. For example, remember mixing vinegar with baking soda in science class to get a volcano? Finally, that lesson returns to serve us well in our daily life!Jump to Recipe
Best Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 3/4 cup butter unsalted
- 1 1/4 cup coconut sugar
- 2 1/4 cup almond flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 cups dark chocolate chips
- In a medium bowl, sift almond flour and whisk in salt and baking soda.
- In a heavy bottomed saucepan under medium high healt, melt the butter until it browns. The color should be dark golden with a nutty aroma. This should only take five minutes; just strain any sediment that occurs.
- Pour butter into a pie plate, cover, and rest in fridge for 30 minutes.
- In stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat the butter for one minute before adding sugar. Cream together for two minutes.
- Add egg, yolk, vinegar, and vanilla and mix on medium-high speed, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- On low speed, slowly beat in the dry ingredients until mixed.
- Add chocolate, mixing on low speed for 5-10 seconds until combined.
- Chill in refrigerator for at least 3 hours. Baking immediately will cause the cookies to spread and chilling the dough deepens flavor.
- Preaheat oven to 350.
- Bake for 9-11 minutes and then pull from the oven. They will continue to bake while resting, so a tad bit undercooked is optimal. That’s what makes them chewy. Add chocolate chips into the tops of the warm cookies for added flair.
- After five minutes transfer cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely.
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Want More Gluten-Free Desserts?
In the mood for more sweet treats? After whipping up a batch of these chewy chocolate chip cookies for your gluten intolerant loved one (and sampling a few for yourself), you might want to also try making any of these “healthy-er” gluten-free desserts: