Try a New Recipe: Harvest’s Half Baked Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

Posted on September 23, 2022 Posted by Athena Scalzi

I made cookies! And if you couldn’t guess from the title, it was oatmeal cookies. With chocolate chips. And espresso powder. And other things, but for some reason only those ingredients are included in the title.

Anyway, as I mentioned before, Half Baked Harvest is one of my favorite food bloggers, so I was excited to try this cookie recipe, although I’m not a big fan oatmeal cookies.

I actually had all the ingredients for these cookies on hand:

Ingredients laid out on a counter.  There's Domino brand light brown sugar, Kerrygold brand salted butter, a Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate bar, two brown eggs, vanilla extract, King Arthur brand espresso powder, baking soda, flour, old fashioned Quaker oats and Crown brand maple syrup.

So my first mistake is in this photo of ingredients. There’s maple syrup in the picture, but there’s no maple syrup in the cookies. There is maple syrup in the optional vanilla frosting that you can make to go with the cookies, but I forgot to make the frosting entirely, so at no point did I use the maple syrup pictured here. So pretend it’s not there, okay? Great.

Moving on, the first thing I did was brown the butter. One thing I love about Half Baked Harvest recipes is that it always calls for browned butter. If you’re unfamiliar, brown butter is just where you take regular butter and heat it in a skillet until the milk solids start to brown.

A blue frying pan on the stove, the contents of which are melted butter.  The milk solids have separated from the liquid butter, causing the butter to have a white layer on top.

As you can see here, once the butter melts, the milk solids separate from the liquid. The white matter is the part that turns brown. Eventually, you’ll end up with what I like to call liquid gold:

A Pyrex glass bowl of melted brown butter.

This is what it looks like straight out of the stove!

And here’s all the solid, browned goodness that makes browned butter so good:

The browned milk solids from the brown butter sitting at the bottom of the glass bowl.

So why brown butter? Is it really necessary? Not really, you definitely don’t have to put in the extra effort, but it adds so much more depth and rich flavor to whatever you cook! I promise you can really taste the difference. The best brand of butter I’ve found for browning is Kerrygold. It browns like no other butter. I highly recommend using this brand if you know you will be browning butter for a recipe!

Anyway, I put all the browned butter in a mixing bowl and added the brown sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, and espresso powder. One thing I found interesting about this recipe was the amount of espresso powder it contains. Whenever I’ve seen espresso powder in a recipe, it’s usually only 1 teaspoon, and it’s usually listed as optional. This recipe, however, called for 2-4 tablespoons of stuff. The amount between 2 and 4 tbsp seems like a lot to me, so I opted for 3 just to keep it in the middle.

This made my dough DARK:

A white mixing bowl filled with a dark brown liquid.

I thought flour, oats, and baking soda might lighten it up, and this did a little:

A white mixing bowl filled with dark brown cookie dough.  Lots of oats can be seen in the dough.

For the final step, I added a 4 oz bar of semi-sweet chocolate and half a bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips, both from the Ghirardelli brand.

A white mixing bowl filled with the final cookie dough shape.  Oats and tons of chocolate chunks can be seen throughout the batter.

Honestly, this dough was super easy and quick to make. It took longer to brown the butter than it did to measure the ingredients and mix the batter together. There was nothing too difficult about this batter, no cooling, no whisking the eggs for long periods of time. It was all in one bowl, and all super standard ingredients, and no stand mixer or even hand mixer needed!

This dough is actually quite wet for cookie dough, so I wouldn’t recommend working it with your bare hands. I used a cookie dough scoop and simply scooped some onto a baking sheet. (The recipe says to use parchment paper on my baking sheets, but I always use parchment paper anyway because my baking sheets are crusty, dusty, moldy, and rusty.)

Twelve large spoonfuls of dark brown, oatmeal, and chocolate cookie dough spread evenly on a parchment-lined baking sheet.

At the time, they looked a lot like no-bake cookies to me.

I threw them in the oven for eight minutes, turned them over and left them for another three minutes. And this is what I ended up with:

A beautiful photo of oatmeal cookies with perfectly baked chocolate chunks, beautifully presented with flowers all around them.

I laugh! That’s what they are supposed look like (photo by Half Baked Harvest). This is what mine actually looked like:

The twelve cookies, now fully baked.  They are dark brown, wobbly in shape and look very oatmeal.

Not quite twins, are they? And if they’re twins, mine look like the evil twin parents hide in the attic, like that Simpsons episode of Treehouse of Horror.

I don’t know what was wrong here, so I looked at the comments on her recipe. Apparently tons of people had the same problem and complained that it was much darker than his. If I had to guess, I’d say the insane amount of espresso powder was the culprit. I was willing to bet the tablespoon measurement was actually a typo, but I haven’t seen any mention of it in the comments, so maybe that’s not the case. They are espresso cookies, after all.

Ugly or not, I still tried to get a glam shot or two of them:

Me holding one of the cookies.  It's dark brown, full of oats, and the chocolate chips are gooey because they're still warm from the oven.

A small black plate on the counter.  There are two of the cookies on it, and I'm holding half a cookie so you can see inside.  There is a glass milk bottle next to the plate.

Enough about looks, how about taste? ! Well, they’re pretty decent. I mean, they contain chocolate, so they can’t really be bad, but they’re not super stellar either. Although I am oatmeal biased, so if you really like oatmeal cookies, you’ll probably enjoy them. Not the worst thing I’ve ever done, to say the least. I ended up with 24 of these bad boys, so if you want to make this, but don’t want there to be so many, I recommend halving the recipe.

Do you like oatmeal cookies? Do you often brown your butter for pastries? Do you want to try these cookies? Let me know in the comments and have a great day!

(Also, someone asked me in my last post what the M in AMS stands for. I think that’s the second time I’ve been asked, actually! It’s Marie.)

-AMS

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