Thin and Chewy Walnut Cookies
I'm quite excited to share this one with you guys. Quite. These thin and chewy walnut cookies took so many batches to get right, but lemme tell you, the effort was so worth it.
Amazingly chewy, incredibly deep flavor, quick and easy, dairy-free, crunchy walnut bits - these are some of the things that made all the recipe testing worth it.
These walnut cookies are far uglier than your average cookies, but don't judge, because they're also far more special than your average cookie. It's not every day that you'll come across a cookie such as this one. I can't really articulate why, but these chewy walnut cookies are unique. Uniquely ugly and delicious.
Here's what makes these thin walnut cookies so chewy: walnut butter. And honey. And the absence of any eggs.
Now, before you freak out about the walnut butter, don't. Because you don't need to buy a jar of (expensive AF) walnut butter. You'll be making your own (k, now you can freak out).
That's right - you're gonna take some raw walnuts, spread them out onto a baking sheet, toast them in the oven till browned and emitting an irresistible nutty aroma, and blend the toasted walnuts up in your food processor until a smooth, buttery mixture forms.
That's how you make your own toasted, nutty, smoky, richly flavored homemade walnut butter. Way cheaper than a jar from the store. And way better.
And then there's the honey. I love adding honey to baked goods. It makes the dessert so soft and last for so long. Ever made a honey cake or honey cookies? Notice how long they stay fresh for and how soft they are?
And sometimes, if you put just the right amount of honey, the honey will also help make your cookies nice and CHEWY. Too much honey, and your cookies will be light and airy and very soft. Too little, and the honey won't impact your cookies very much at all. The right amount, and CHEWY GOODNESS ERRRMYGOSH.
And, as you may have guessed, these thin and chewy walnut cookies have just the right amount of honey. Hence the "chewy" in the title of these cookies.
And about the absence of eggs. While eggs add moisture and fat to cookies and help make them soft, eggs also tend to inhibit the chewiness that might have resulted from nut butter and/or honey.
And because we want all the chewiness, there are no eggs in this recipe. As an alternative liquid, milk is used. Do feel free to use non-dairy milk as a substitute if you want your cookies dairy free.
Here's how easy these cookies are:
Toast the nuts, blend them in a food processor, add the rest of the ingredients to the food processor in the order specified, stir in some toasted, chopped walnuts, and you're done.
Oh yes, I forgot to mention - aside from the walnuts you're using to blend into a walnut butter, you're also gonna toast an extra half-cup. And chop up that extra half-cup to stir into the dough. Because it's a wonderful contrast to bite into a soft and so-chewy-you-can-bend-it cookie that's also studded with nutty, toasted, crunchy walnut bits.
Soft. Chewy. Crunchy. All the textures.
This walnut cookie "dough" is more like a batter. It's thin and loose and sticky. You'll need to use a cookie scoop to drop mounds of dough onto your baking sheets. Don't try shaping balls with your hands. Don't you even. I already told you - these cookies are ugly. It's part of their appeal. Don't try to make them attractive.
And one more thing - these cookies actually taste better the day after they're made. And the day after that. The chewiness increases, the flavors intensify - it's really the stuff of dreams.
Thin. Bendable. Easy. CHEWY. Quick. Rich. Nutty. Ugly. Special. So very special.
I love you, thin and chewy walnut cookies.
Thin and Chewy Walnut Cookies
Yield: 15 large cookies
1 1/2 cups raw walnut halves
1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup honey
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups packed flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons milk (or non-dairy milk substitute)
1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. Spread the walnuts onto one of your baking sheets and toast in the oven for 9-10 minutes, until walnuts are browned. Place 1 cup of the toasted walnuts into a food processor and blend till a smooth, buttery mixture forms. Meanwhile, chop up the remaining 1/2 cup walnuts.
3. Add the sugar, honey, and vanilla extract to food processor and blend till smooth.
4. Add in the dry ingredients and milk and blend till just smooth. Stir in the chopped walnuts by hand last.
5. Using a large cookie scoop, drop mounds of dough spaced out onto prepared baking sheets. The cookies will flatten and spread a lot while baking, so leave enough space in between them.
6. Bake cookies for 10-13 minutes, until flattened and golden on the edges. Let cookies firm up on sheets for 20 minutes before moving them. Cookie texture and taste actually improve the next day!