Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies

In honor of March, (and because my cookie dough stock pile ran out in the freezer) I decided to make some Grinch Cookies Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies! 🙂 And this time I took pictures during the process of making the dough & documented how I save the cookie dough in the freezer to have fresh baked homemade cookies whenever I want!

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Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies:

2/3 cup shortening

2/3 cup butter

1 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar (packed)

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon soda

1 teaspoon salt

Green food coloring (I used Wilton Kelly Green paste)-just enough to give it a pretty mint color, but not enough to make it look like toothpaste

1 & 1/4 teaspoons mint extract

1-12 oz bag chocolate chips or more! 🙂

Cream the shortening, butter, and both sugars. Then add the eggs, and vanilla. Add remaining ingredients. When dough is complete, minus the chocolate chips, add your green food coloring so that you are able to fully see what the color will be since the flour is already added. This is also a good time to add the mint extract as all the other ingredients are already included, so you can get a good sense of the flavor. (Although I know I like the 1 & 1/4 teaspoon amount, so I add the mint extract when I add the vanilla) Mix in your chocolate chips. Drop by teaspoon full onto greased cookie sheets. I like to use my regular Pampered Chef cookie scoops to make the perfect sized cookies and to keep the dough off my fingers, so I am less likely to be tempted to eat some. Bake at 375 degrees F for 10-12 minutes. (Usually a full 9:30 to 10 minutes)

4 WW Points each

I use my hot pink “Raspberry Ice Artisan Deigner Series” Kitchenaid mixer to make this and everything!!! It makes the process so much easier. This stand mixer was a Christmas present from my parents a couple years ago and I LOVE IT!!! Best Christmas Present Ever!

Cream the butter, shortening, sugar, & packed brown sugar until smooth (no lumps of anything).

Cream the butter, shortening, sugar, & packed brown sugar until smooth (no lumps of anything).

Creaming the first four ingredients.

Creaming the first four ingredients.

Should look like this when done creaming.

Should look like this when done creaming.

Add the two eggs, cracking each separately into a small bowl to ensure no shells get into the dough.

Add the two eggs, cracking each separately into a small bowl to ensure no shells get into the dough.

Just a side note: if you do happen to get an egg shell in your small dish, or your batter for that matter, use a large piece of the egg shell to carefully scoop it out of the dish. Nothing else works as well!

Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla and 1 & 1/4 teaspoons of mint extract.

Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla and 1 & 1/4 teaspoons of mint extract.

Mix together, remembering to scrape down the sides & bottom of the bowl so everything gets mixed in completely.

Mix together, remembering to scrape down the sides & bottom of the bowl so everything gets mixed in completely.

Add 3 cups All Purpose flour.

Add 3 cups All Purpose flour with the salt and baking soda. I try to sprinkle around the salt and the baking soda over the flour, this helps to ensure it gets mixed in evenly and you don’t get baking soda clumps-there is nothing worse than that! (Trust me-Dad has made us pancakes before! 😉 )

Note: If you have a smaller bowl, add your flour 1 cup at a time, mixing on low speed in between.

Add our green food coloring at this point.

Add the green food coloring at this point.

I add the food coloring during this step so that you can get a true sense for what the color looks like, because the white flour dilutes the color a bit. I used Wilton paste food coloring in the color “Kelly Green”. I like to use a knife to scoop out a little dye, then I slide it off on the beater of the mixer and let the mixer do its thing! If I want to add more dye, I use a new clean knife to dip into the dye and scoop out a little more and do the same thing. *Remember you can always add dye, you just can’t take it out, so add small amounts of dye at a time. Also, word from the wise, be sure to put the knife that has dye on it straight into the sink after you have spread it on the beater, otherwise it can temporarily stain your counter, get on you, etc.

My favorite part! Add the Semi-sweet chocolate chips.

My favorite part! Add the Semi-sweet chocolate chips.

I added about 2 cups of Semi-sweet chocolate chips because I used a whole bag and then I had about a half a cup left from another bag.

Mix it all together.

Mix it all together.

I love desserts & I love to bake! However, every time I make desserts, I then can tend to overindulge on the yumminess I just made. After eating too many cookies on a Saturday morning, I would be left feeling guilty and lethargic. To prevent this, a really helpful trick I learned on Pinterest is to lay out some wax paper on the counter on top of a small pan or large lid (anything that helps make it more portable). After making the dough, drop by teaspoon full onto the wax paper, then put it in the freezer for a few minutes so the scoops of dough set-then put them in a large freezer Ziploc bag & store in the freezer. This way you can have homemade fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies whenever you like!

Next I take a small pan and line it with wax paper. Then I use my regular Pampered Chef scoop to scoop out a bunch of cookies onto the tray.

After the dough is made, I take a small pan and line it with wax paper. Then I use my regular Pampered Chef scoop to scoop out a bunch of cookies onto the tray.

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Then I put the tray in the freezer for a few minutes to let the scoops of dough solidify a bit so that they can be stored together in large Ziploc bags without combining into a Monster cookie! While that is in the freezer, I prepare my large freezer Ziploc bags. I use a permanent marker to write the name of the cookie, the temperature to bake it at (375) and the date. I also write 4 WW points on the bag to remind me, in case I feel like going crazy and eating more than I should.

The bags I just prepared and the scoops of dough just removed from the freezer.

The bags I just prepared and the scoops of dough just removed from the freezer.

Then I put the little scoops of cookie dough into the large freezer bag and put them back in the freezer.

Then I put the little scoops of cookie dough into the large freezer bag and put them back in the freezer.

In the morning, I just take out two of the frozen cookie dough scoops (one for me & one for my husband) and put them in a sandwich size Ziploc bag in the fridge so they can defrost during the day. When I get home I take the cookies out of the fridge, pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees F & put the little thawed cookie dough scoop on a  greased cookie sheet.

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(Awww! Isn’t it cute just sitting there.) Then I bake the cookies for about 9:30/10 minutes each. This gives me the best of both worlds! I get fresh baked homemade chocolate chip cookies, and I am not tempted by having all the cookies made at once which makes me feel like I need to hurry up and eat them before they go bad or before someone else eats them all. Hope this can help you to enjoy your desserts guilt free too! :)

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies fresh out of the oven!
Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies fresh out of the oven!

Best Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

This is my family’s chocolate chip cookie recipe-these are the Best Chocolate Chip Cookies in the World! (And I don’t think I’m being biased)

Fresh baked Chocolate Chip  Mini M&M Cookie

Fresh baked Chocolate Chip Mini M&M Cookies.

Chocolate Chip Cookies:

2/3 cup shortening

2/3 cup butter

1 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar (packed)

2 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon soda

1 teaspoon salt

1-12 oz bag chocolate chips (use only 1 cup if also adding 1 cup M&M’s or walnuts)

*1 cup seasonal colored M&M’s or mini M&M’s (optional)

**1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Cream the shortening, butter, and both sugars. Then add the eggs, and vanilla. Add remaining ingredients. Mix in your chocolate chips-I like to use 1 cup (and an extra handful) of chocolate chips and 1 cup M&M’s that are colored for the nearest holiday. Another option I like is to use is 1 cup mini M&M’s with the chocolate chips (the mini M&M’s are really fun because they fit into every little nook and cranny of the cookie!) Drop by teaspoon full onto greased cookie sheets. I like to use my regular Pampered Chef cookie scoop to make the perfect sized cookies and to keep the dough off my fingers, so I am less likely to be tempted to eat some. Bake at 375 degrees F for 10-12 minutes. (Usually a full 9:30 to 10 minutes)

Make your Dessert & Eat it Too!

I love desserts & I love to bake! However, every time I make desserts, I then can tend to overindulge on the yumminess I just made. After eating too many cookies on a Saturday morning, I would be left feeling guilty and lethargic. To prevent this, a really helpful trick I learned on Pinterest is to lay out some wax paper on the counter on top of a small pan or large lid (anything that helps make it more portable). After making the dough, drop by teaspoon full onto the wax paper, then put it in the freezer for a few minutes so the balls of dough set-then put in a large freezer Ziploc bag & store in the freezer. This way you can have homemade fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies whenever you like! I like to put the name of the cookie, the temperature to bake it at (375) and the date. I also write 4 WW points on the bag to remind me, in case I feel like going crazy and eating more than I should. Then, in the morning, I just take out two of the frozen cookie dough balls (one for me & one for my husband) and put them in a sandwich size Ziploc in the fridge so they can defrost during the day. When I get home I take the cookies out of the fridge, pre-heat the oven and bake the cookies for about 10 minutes each. This gives me the best of both worlds! I get fresh baked homemade chocolate chip cookies, and I am not tempted by having all the cookies made at once which makes me feel like I need to hurry up and eat them before they go bad or before someone else eats them all. Hope this can help you to enjoy your desserts guilt free too! 🙂

4 WW Points each

Grinch Cookies

I discovered Grinch Cookies on Pinterest but there was no recipe provided, so I used my regular chocolate chip cookie recipe and added some green food coloring and mint extract. I made these this December to go on cookie trays for my co-workers for Christmas. They turned out AMAZING! The light green color is so fun and the hint of mint tastes great with the chocolate chips. I am a big fan of these cookies and these will now be a Christmas staple in my home.

Grinch Cookies fresh out of the oven!

Grinch Cookies fresh out of the oven!

Grinch Cookies:

2/3 cup shortening

2/3 cup butter

1 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar (packed)

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 cups flour

1 teaspoon soda

1 teaspoon salt

Green food coloring (I used Wilton Kelly Green paste)-just enough to give it a pretty mint color, but not enough to make it look like toothpaste

1 & 1/4 teaspoons mint extract

1-12 oz bag chocolate chips

Cream the shortening, butter, and both sugars. Then add the eggs, and vanilla. Add remaining ingredients. When dough is complete, minus the chocolate chips, add your green food coloring so that you are able to fully see what the color will be since the flour is already added. This is also a good time to add the mint extract as all the other ingredients are already included, so you can get a good sense of the flavor. Mix in your chocolate chips. Drop by teaspoon full onto greased cookie sheets. I like to use my regular Pampered Chef cookie scoops to make the perfect sized cookies and to keep the dough off my fingers, so I am less likely to be tempted to eat some. Bake at 375 degrees F for 10-12 minutes. (Usually a full 9:30 to 10 minutes)

4 WW Points each

Valentine’s Day Treats for Co-Workers

Good morning! Just wanted to share with you about an amazing Valentine’s Day treat I made for my co-workers last week. I made my favorite chocolate chip cookie dough recipe and then added about a cup of mini M&M’s and a cup of chocolate chips to the batter! Yum! I typically like to use M&M’s that match the season, however, I could not find any plain chocolate Valentine’s M&M’s at Walmart, so I opted for mini M&M’s which fit right into every nook and cranny.

Next I used my Wilton “heart pop” cookie pans to make my  heart shaped cookies on a stick. I sprayed the pan with a little olive oil, then I spooned in some cookie dough (the heart cookie pans I have seem to  be about 2-1/2 to 3 cookies worth of dough that I spooned into each tin). Then I used my fingers to press the dough into the form of the heart mold. I used Wilton 5″ white lollipop sticks and I placed the stick about half the length of the cookie, and placed the stick so it lied flat against the little groove built into the pan. I moved some dough from the center strip of the cookie where the lollipop stick would be buried, and I covered it up with the dough so you could not see the stick any more through the cookie dough. Then I baked them in a 375 degree F oven for about 10 minutes. I watched the edges so they didn’t burn, but it is important to ensure that the cookie is completely cooked so that when it sets it will be able to be supported by the stick, and it won’t break your cookie.

When they finish baking, let them cool in the pan on a wire rack for about 10 minutes then flip the pan over and tap on the back of the pan and the heart cookies should come right out without a hitch. Let the cookies cool, then my favorite part…decorate them!!! 😀

I layed out some wax paper on the counter & melted some chocolate almond bark in a little bowl in the microwave. Remember with chocolate, it is important to stir it about every 30 seconds so it doesn’t burn, as it tends to hold its shape, so its easy to think its not melting, but it is! Then I held each cooled cookie (not by the stick, but by the left half of the heart) and spooned some melted chocolate almond bark on the right side of the heart, spooning the chocolate in a straight line down the center, and using the back of the spoon to spread it out on the right half of the cookie. I set each cookie on the wax paper and sprinkled with the cute little X & O sprinkles. (A little known fact is that you can buy little tubs of sprinkles at the Walmart bakery for a few bucks-so next time you walk by, check out the sprinkles on the cakes to see if you like any! Then, let them know you would like to buy some. )

After I coated one half in chocolate, I decided the cookies were missing a little pizzazz, so I took some pink almond bark melts (those little colored disks that you can buy) and melted some in a little dish in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds until melted. Then I let it cool a few seconds, and poured the colored melted chocolate into a little Ziploc bag and cut a tiny hole in the corner of the bottom of the bag. Then I drizzled the almond bark over each decorated half of each cookie. Perfect! That is just the extra touch it needed to take it to the next level.

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I let each cookie dry completely, and placed them in Wilton plastic goodie bags and tied with some curling ribbon. (I had some pink left over from our wedding, and the red was from Christmas-perfect combination for Valentine’s Day!) I also had some clear labels at home, and I wanted to make a cute little tag on the cookies since they were my “valentine” to my co-workers. On Pinterest, I remembered pinning some pretty fonts  from DaFont.com. So, I downloaded some of the pretty fonts I liked and created cute little labels to place on the cookie bags.

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These brought back memories of our wedding day since we gave out these heart shaped cookies on a stick, with one half dipped in chocolate with pink and lavender almond bark drizzled on that side, as our wedding favors to our guests. They were gorgeous! Big thanks to my family and friends who met at the church to help us make these beautiful favors for our guests.

Wedding Favors! They had a little label on the back that thanked our guests for coming!

Wedding Favors! They had a little label on the back that thanked our guests for coming!