It is pretty easy to sneak whole wheat flour into a batch of cookies – especially if you’re already dealing with a batch of flavorful oatmeal cookies that will get a little extra boost of nuttiness from the whole grain. These Whole Wheat Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies are a great example because you would never know that there is whole grain flour in there with all of those chocolate chunks.
Of course, it’s not really necessary to “sneak” whole wheat flour into foods and hide the fact that you’re adding some extra whole grains into cookies or a cake. You need to be sneaky about it because you don’t want to compromise the texture of the baked good when using whole wheat flour, however. Whole wheat flour can make things like cookies a little bit drier and a little bit more crumbly, and if the cookie dough you’re working with isn’t flavorful to begin with, the whole wheat flavor can actually take over the cookie. This dough is very flavorful, not just because it has a generous amount of butter in it, but because it uses brown sugar, vanilla and oatmeal and all three of those elements give the cookies a lot of body. White whole wheat flour can also be substituted for whole wheat flour in this recipe.
I used semisweet chocolate chunks in these cookies, along with some chopped pecans for texture. Chopped walnuts will work just as well if you have those on hand. I found that semisweet chocolate worked better than dark chocolate did for these cookies because the whole wheat flour adds an earthy note (by which I mean that it tones down the sweetness of the sugar), and the little bit of extra sweetness in the chocolate was just perfect. The finished cookies are crisp around the edges and have a nice chew to them. The recipe makes a fairly big batch, but the cookies keep well in an airtight container and are great for sharing.
Whole Wheat Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 1/4 cups rolled oats (regular or quick cooking, not instant)
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
Preheat the oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugars. Beat in eggs one at a time, followed by vanilla extract.
Stir in whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt, either by hand or with the mixer on low speed. Mix in oats, then stir in chocolate chips and chopped pecans until everything is well-distributed.
Shape into 1 or 1 1/2 inch balls and place onto prepared baking sheet, allowing room for cookies to spread.
Bake for 11-13 minutes, until edges are turning golden brown. Cool for 2-3 minutes on baking sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies.