Chocolate Chip Cookie Variations & Mix Ins

What is America’s favorite cookie?  It's the incomparable, chewy, chocolaty, warm, gooey chocolate chip cookie.  It's hard to improve on perfection, isn't it?  But it is fun to experiment with variations and mix-ins to add some spice (or sweet) to your life.  You can swap out your chocolate chips for white chips, M&Ms, dark chocolate chips, chocolate chunks, walnuts, or pecans, but why not try something a little more daring?  You can be assured that you will always have a willing taste-testing audience to try your creations.

Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

This is the perfect cookie if you want all your favorite foods in one convenient package!  The ingredients come together beautifully for a hearty taste.  They’re not exactly “diet” food, but you can reduce the sugar and butter you use.

You’ll need:

  • ½ cup mashed ripe banana (about 1 medium banana)
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 ¼ cup flour
  • 2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ cup semisweet chocolate chips

To make:

  • Preheat your oven to 350˚ F.
  • Combine first five ingredients in a large bowl and mix until smooth.
  • Add in egg and beat well.
  • Combine flour, oats, baking soda, and salt in another bowl.
  • Add flour mixture to the banana mixture and blend well.
  • Stir in the chocolate chips.
  • Drop as you would regular chocolate chip cookies and bake for about 18 minutes.

Coffee Liqueur Cookies (AllRecipes.com)

Next time you have a dinner party, whip up these sophisticated, gourmet cookies.  They offer a surprising, and delightful, twist on the old favorite. Consider giving these in decorative bags instead of coffee favors at your next party! They'll be a real hit.

You’ll need:

  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee granules
  • 2 tablespoons coffee-flavored liqueur
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • ¾ packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

To make:

  1. Preheat oven to 300˚F.
  2. In a small bowl, dissolve the coffee granules in coffee liqueur. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar.
  4. Add eggs and coffee mixture and stir.
  5. Sift the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt.  Stir this into the creamed mixture.
  6. Stir in chocolate chips.
  7. Drop dough on cookie sheet and bake for 20 to 25 minutes.

Image by Rochelle, just rochelle on FlickrChocolate Mint Chip Cookies (Cooks.com)

For those with a sweet tooth and a mint tooth, these cookies will be a fast favorite.  In addition to mint chips, this variation has a chocolaty glaze.

You’ll need:

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ cup sugar
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 ½ cup butter, softened
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 10-ounce package mint chocolate chips

Glaze:

  • 2 cups sugar
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa
  • ½ cup butter
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

To make:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350˚F and grease your cookie sheets.
  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, the cup of cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Set this mixture aside.
  3. In a large bowl, mix sugar, brown sugar, and butter until light and fluffy.
  4. Add eggs.
  5. Stir in flour mixture and mint chocolate chips.
  6. Drop dough and bake for about 8 to 10 minutes.

If you love a specific chocolate chip recipe or you want to dress up some store-bought dough, here are some fun mix-ins you can try:

  • Peppermint extract.  Switch this for the vanilla in your favorite recipe.
  • Dried cherries.
  • Ground cinnamon.
  • Ground or crystallized ginger.
  • Dark chocolate-covered raisins.
  • Almonds, walnuts, pecans, or macadamia nuts or any of the above covered in chocolate.
  • Shredded coconut.

We all love chocolate chip cookies, but next time you’re craving a sweet treat, try something new.  Your taste buds will thank you.