Dear Home Ec 101,
My cookies keep ending up flat, hard and chewy, what can I do? I have tried 5 different recipes and my cookies all come out the same, flat. I watch them in the oven and they puff all up and then it is like bubbles popping and they flatten out before they are done cooking. What can I do? I have tried melted butter, room temp butter, hard butter and also different bake times and I end up with the same result.
Cookie baking relies heavily on the temperature of the oven, the dough, and the cookie sheet itself. Here are a few tips for creating cookies with more loft. That’s the fancy schmancy way of saying cookies that are not flat as a pancake.
- If your recipe calls for baking powder ensure it is still active.
- Get a thermometer, sometimes the calibration of ovens can be off and even though the dial says 350°F it could be heating to 400°F or the reverse may be true.
- Preheat your oven, it matters.
- Use cold butter and only cream until mixed. The butter and sugar mixure should be consistent in texture (no lumps) but still grainy. Some recommend using a hand mixer over a stand, as the stand mixer is powerful enough to create heat through the friction of mixing the butter and sugar.
- Use your eggs straight from the refrigerator, crack, beat quickly, and add to your batter.
- Store your chocolate chips in the freezer.
- Work quickly, the longer the dough sits at room temperature the warmer it becomes.
- Do not reuse the baking sheet unless it has cooled completely between batches.
- Try chilling the dough for ten minutes in the fridge before baking.
- Finally slightly undercooking your cookies will help keep them from falling. Allow them to sit on the cookie sheet for an extra minute before transferring to a rack.
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