Monster cookies! Remember when Mom made monster cookies, those peanut butter oatmeal cookies with both chocolate chips AND M & Ms? They were chewy in a delicious, take-small-bites-so-they-last-longer kind of way. Monster cookies could change clothes by using seasonal colored M & Ms.
Recently my Mom had baked a hoard of monster cookies and when we stopped by, she sent us home with two individually wrapped, giant cookies. She’d used the wrap that adheres to itself so it was even more of a funky wrapped treat. My P.S. was thrilled, he said he hadn’t had one in a very long time. The grocery store bakeries just doesn’t make the same recipe. They’re not like Mom’s!
Granddaughter Bella spent the night a couple weeks ago we made monster cookies for Grandpa. I had found a recipe that made a smaller batch than the huge one my mother’s recipe made. We didn’t need cookies for 100. Oddly enough, Paula Deen’s recipe on the Food Network site is one of the few that didn’t have the usual teaspoon of corn syrup in it.
That was always a mystery to me. This is a large bowl of dough when it’s all mixed, and 1 single teaspoon of corn syrup seems underwhelming. I’m pretty sure there were many cookies that didn’t get a single bit of corn syrup in them. I always wondered why anyone bothered to add it. But I always did, just in case it was the secret ingredient and all of the cookies failed if it was left out. I didn’t want to wander into the black hole of monster cookie making. But I did omit it because Paula did. She should know her cookies, right?
Following the directions we put the eggs into my large pink Tupperware bowl (Bella and I love pink) and Bella beat the eggs and sugars with the electric mixer until they were mixed. We added the salt, vanilla, peanut butter and butter and mixed it well again.
We measured all of the dry ingredients into a separate bowl and whisked them together so that they were well blended.
We added the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients next. We also added the M & Ms and chocolate chips. The recipe only called for 1/2 cup of each but I added the entire bags. That was about 4x the correct amounts, but we like the cookies filled with chocolate goodness!
Paula said to use a tablespoon of dough to make a cookie, and said nothing about whether to press them down. The first pan of cookies was ridiculously high, they didn’t spread at all. Bad idea, Paula. The next pans I used my large cookie scoop which is about 2 tablespoons and makes pretty large cookies, almost as large as my Mom’s. About 8 fit on a sheet pan and were baked in the preheated oven for about 12 minutes.
I pressed the cookies flat with a spatula and formed them a bit more round. We had 4 pans going, refilling them as the pans were emptied and cooled. The cookies had to sit in the pans until they were totally cooled, or they fell apart. Again, that lesson was learned with the first pan. Paula had suggested 3 minutes but it was closer to 10-15 minutes. These are dense cookies!
But the cookies were totally delicious. I always forget that they are like a peanut butter cookie with lots of add-ins. The recipe made about 36 cookies, as Paula said, but at her one tablespoon directions it would have made twice that. If you want a smaller cookie, use 1 tablespoon. We like our monster cookies monster-like!
1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 12 ounce jar creamy peanut butter
1 stick butter, softened
1/2 cup multi-colored chocolate candies (I used a bag of milk chocolate M & M’s, about 2 cups)
1/2 cup chocolate chips (I used a bag of semi-sweet choc chips, about 2 cups)
1/4 cup raisins, optional (didn’t use, Mom didn’t use)
2 teaspoons baking soda
4 1/2 cups quick-cooking oatmeal (not instant)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Paula said to line cookie sheets with parchment paper or nonstick baking mats, which I tried but found it wasn’t necessary. A regular sheet pan, ungreased, worked just fine.
In a very large mixing bowl, combine the eggs and sugars. Mix well with electric mixer. Add the salt, vanilla, peanut butter, and butter. Continue beating until mixed.. Stir in the chocolate candies, chocolate chips, raisins, if using, baking soda, and oatmeal. Drop 2 tablespoons of dough 2 inches apart onto the cookie sheets. Press to flatten and shape into round cookies.
Bake for 12-15 minutes. Do not overbake. They will be barely browned on the edges. Do a test cookie to see the timing for your sized cookies.
Let pans stand for about 10 minutes on wire racks to cool. When cool, store in large resealable plastic bags. May be frozen for several months.
Yield: about 36 large cookies
Adapted from the Food Network