Aaron Hutcherson’s Rye Chocolate Chip Cookies

updated Jan 21, 2021
christmas
Rye Chocolate Chip Cookies

These chocolate chip cookies have a crispy exterior with a chewy center, and the rye flour adds a nice nutty complexity to balance the chocolate.

Makes12 (3 1/2-inch) cookies

Prep15 minutes

Cook20 minutes to 24 minutes

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Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

This recipe is part of our Quarantine Cookies package, featuring 16 of our favorite bakers and their best cookie for 2020. Check out all the amazing cookies here, and sign up here to receive one cookie recipe per day, for 20 days, straight to your inbox.

These rye chocolate chip cookies came about by circumstance. It was just the beginning of the pandemic — during the great all-purpose flour shortage in the spring — when I stumbled across a bag of rye flour that made its way into my shopping cart and, later, my kitchen cupboard. I had never baked with it before, but using new-to-me ingredients is a regular practice in my culinary experiments, so this was no different. While sometimes ingredients languish in my pantry until I’m struck with inspiration, in this instance I immediately knew what I wanted to do: cookies.

I used my fairly go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe, swapping in the dark rye flour for the usual wheat, and right in front of my eyes, a star was born. Although we all have our favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, the sour, bitter, and nutty notes of the dark rye flour (and dark chocolate) in this one add a nice counterpoint to what can sometimes be an overwhelmingly saccharine treat. And while refrigerating the dough for an extended period of time — as some recipes call for — does have its benefits here too, the rye flour is a shortcut to that, adding the enticing complexity that aging is usually required for. In times like these, my brain doesn’t have the capacity to plan for a sweet treat hours in advance, so instant gratification is key for my survival and self-care.

Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

These cookies are the perfect metaphor for this year: born of deprivation, notes of bitterness, and yet a balanced sweetness to reflect the occasional ray of sunshine in the darkness (like the Verzuz with Jill Scott and Erykah Badu). And outside of any sentimental self-reflection, they’re just damn good.

As we head into primetime Cookie Season, my rye chocolate chip cookies are the ones that will be at the front of my mind — and they should be for you too. They make the perfect 2020 gift, either for yourself or others, to wrap up the year that shall not be named with an easy win we all could probably use right about now.

Credit: Photo: Ghazalle Badiozamani; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

Tester’s Note

These are fun classic chocolate chip cookies with a twist. Rye flour gives a slightly nutty flavor, and there’s a good dose of brown sugar to keep these cookies nice and chewy. These are big, indulgent cookies, but you can also make them smaller if you’d like. Save a few chocolate chips for pressing into the top of the dough before baking for a pretty touch, and don’t skimp on the flaky salt for a nice contrast to all the sugar! — Christine Gallary, Food Editor-at-Large

Rye Chocolate Chip Cookies

These chocolate chip cookies have a crispy exterior with a chewy center, and the rye flour adds a nice nutty complexity to balance the chocolate.

Prep time 15 minutes

Cook time 20 minutes to 24 minutes

Makes 12 (3 1/2-inch) cookies

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 8 tablespoons

    (1 stick) unsalted butter

  • 1/2 cup

    packed dark brown sugar

  • 1/2 cup

    packed light brown sugar

  • 1/2 cup

    granulated sugar

  • 1

    large egg

  • 1 teaspoon

    vanilla extract

  • 1 1/2 cups

    dark rye flour, such as Bob’s Red Mill

  • 1 teaspoon

    baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 6 ounces

    chopped chocolate, or 1 cup chocolate chips

  • Flaky salt, for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Place 1 stick unsalted butter in the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large bowl if mixing by hand or with an electric hand mixer) and let sit at room temperature until softened.

  2. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 375ºF. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

  3. Add 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar, 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar, and 1/2 cup granulated sugar to the butter. Beat with the paddle attachment on medium speed until smooth and evenly combined, 3 to 4 minutes. Add 1 large egg and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and mix on medium speed until combined, about 1 minute.

  4. Add 1 1/2 cups dark rye flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Beat on low speed until just combined. Add 6 ounces chopped chocolate and beat on low speed until just combined.

  5. Divide the dough into 12 portions (scant 1/4 cup each). Roll each portion into a ball with your hands and place 6 on each baking sheet, spacing them at least 2 inches apart. Using your hands, gently press each ball into a disc that’s about 1-inch thick. Sprinkle the cookies with some flaky salt.

  6. Bake one sheet at a time until the cookies have spread and are browned on the bottom, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool for a couple of minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe Notes

Brown sugar: Feel free to use 1 cup whatever brown sugar you have on hand instead of a combination.

Make ahead: The dough can be rolled into balls, flattened, sprinkled with salt and frozen solid. Transfer to freezer bags and freeze for up to 2 months. Bake from frozen, adding 1 to 2 minutes to the bake time.

Storage: The cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature up to 3 days.

Recipe orginally published on Aaron Hutcherson's blog, The Hungry Hutch.