Tuesday, December 27, 2011

California Olive Ranch Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies

Several months ago I had a wonderful time experiencing the deep, rich flavors of olive oil from the California Olive Ranch at a dinner here in Boston.  During the evening the reps from COR spent time talking about the versatility of Olive Oil, a topic I hadn't thought much of.  Normally I just saute with it, or whisk it into dressings, however they spoke of it's ability to take the place of butter in baking and that really piqued my interest.
Of course, butter is delicious.  It is a perfect pairing with golden brown toast, delicious melted over a piping hot mound of mashed potatoes, and a wonderful flavor in cookies and cakes.  However, butter also equals, well, less than nutritious elements and on the flip side, olive oil has so many wonderful properties I wondered how the substitution would be.  

I decided to check it out with America's classic cookie- the Chocolate Chip.  As American as apple pie, the chocolate chip cookie is flavored by those delicate elements of vanilla, brown sugar, salt, chocolate and, of course, butter.  So how would these cookies stand up without this crucial element?

Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies

by Ashley Viegas | May 31, 2011
  • 2 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ cup California Olive Ranch extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 or 2 Tbsp. of milk (or rice milk)
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.
Combine sugars, vanilla, and olive oil. Beat in the eggs one a time. Gradually beat in the flour mixture, then add in 1 Tbsp. of milk to make the dough a bit firmer, maybe another tablespoon if you feel the dough is too sticky/dry (I use about 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon).
Roll the dough into balls with your hands and place on a greased and/or lined baking sheet.
Bake for 10-12 minutes, until lightly golden and set. (Mine took about 10 and a half minutes.) These over bake quickly, so it’s better to take them out a bit early if you’re unsure. Allow to cool for a bit on the baking sheet, then move to another surface to finish cooling.
Recipe courtesy of Sydney Kania

Now I subbed in California Olive Ranch's Arbequina Extra Virgin Olive Oil in place of the regular Extra Virgin mainly because I didn't read labels.   The Arbequina has a stronger, fruitier flavor to it, so its presence was a bit more recognizable.  However, even with that error, these cookies were fantastic.  They maintained their tastes of vanilla and salt, the chocolate chips were warm and melty, and the cookies bore very very little difference to their higher caloric brother.  I think I have been converted- olive oil in baking- there's a way to start the new year on a healthier note!


Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic said...

Whar an awesome idea! I love olive oil but have never actually baked with it. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic said...

Great idea! I love olive oil but haven't baked with it yet. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

Kristen said...

What a great idea! The cookies look wonderful. I still think about that dinner and really enjoy using the product.

Kirsten said...

Thanks so much for your kind mention of baking with our California Olive Ranch extra virgin olive oil! This December we had a month-long celebration of 'Baking a Better Holiday' so do check out the terrific recipes here, too.


Enjoy, and keep on baking! These cookies look fabulous - Happy holidays!

Anonymous said...

I use my olive oil in everything but have never tried it with baking cookies. Great idea!

Jen said...

I have never used olive oil in my baking... Maybe I should give it a shot too.

Emily @ A Cambridge Story said...

What a great idea! I've used EVOO in muffins but not cookies. I can imagine that these are fantastic!

Anonymous said...

Way to ruin chocolate chip cookies.

Boston Food Diary said...

Try em....report back ;-)

Elizabeth said...

I used to bake a lot with olive oil when I was vegan. Since then I've come to really appreciate butter in certain baked goods. I should experiment with it again.

Amanda L @Tales from a Kitchen Misfit said...

i like to bake cookies with olive oil every once in a while, they really are surprisingly delicious!

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