A collection of seasonal recipes and stories

chocolate chip oatmeal zucchini cookies

I didn’t mean for this to happen. I meant to make zucchini bread, though why it’s considered perfectly normal to put zucchini in bread but not in cookies is beyond me.  I’d actually already done the whole zucchini in cookies thing, with little success — those cookies turned out fluffy and cakey and sort of slimy because, duh, I put zucchini in them.

So really, I thought this time I’d just put my excess zucchini in bread, where fluffy and cakey are generally welcome.  But when I read through my zucchini bread recipe I discovered a tip for maximizing zucchini flavor while minimizing zucchini moisture and I became a teensy bit obsessed with the idea that this also might be the key to non-slimy zucchini cookies.

It is.  Well, that and I used a completely different cookie recipe as my base, one that contains both oatmeal and pecans in addition to the chocolate chips.  The resulting cookie is exactly the kind of chocolate chip cookie I like to eat — thick and dense and chewy with melty bits of chocolate, crunchy pecans, flecks of mellow oatmeal, and the delicate sweetness of shredded zucchini.   Plus, no slime.

Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Zucchini Cookies
adapted from Cook’s Illustrated’s Baking Illustrated and Carole Walter’s Great Cookies
(makes about 4½ dozen 2½” cookies)

½ lb. zucchini
¾ c.  lightly packed dark brown sugar
2½ c. old fashioned oats
2/3 c. + 2 T. sugar
1¼ c. flour
¾ t. salt
½ t. baking soda
¼ t. nutmeg
1 c. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp
1 egg
2 t. vanilla extract
2 c. chocolate chips
2 c. chopped pecans (or walnuts)

1) Preheat your oven to 375°F and lightly butter two cookie sheets.

2) Grate the zucchini using a food processor or box grater to yield 1 c. grated zucchini.   Toss the zucchini with 2 T. of sugar, transfer to the mixture to a fine-mesh strainer and set it over a bowl to drain for at least 30 minutes.  This draws moisture out of the zucchini and prevents the cookies from becoming cakey and slimy, so don’t skip this step.

3) Meanwhile, place the brown sugar, 2/3 c. sugar and ½ c. oatmeal in the bowl of a food processor and process for 2 -3 minutes until the oatmeal is finely ground.  (you could also do this in a blender)

4) In a medium bowl, whisk together the remaining dry ingredients and set aside.

5) In the bowl of your food processor (or of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment), process or mix the butter until it’s light and fluffy.  Add the oatmeal-sugar mixture in three stages, mixing well after each addition.  Add the egg and vanilla and mix until well incorporated.  Add the dry ingredients in three stages, mixing just until blended.  If you’ve done all this in the food processor, transfer the batter to a large bowl and stir in the chocolate chips and nuts, otherwise just stir the chips and nuts into your mixing bowl.

6) After the zucchini has drained, squeeze it between several layers of paper towels or cheesecloth or a dishtowel to absorb excess moisture.  You want to remove as much moisture as possible, so you’ll have to work at it a bit.  Fold the shredded zucchini into the cookie batter.

7) Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto the prepared cookie sheets, spacing them about an inch or two apart.  They’re not going to spread much so they don’t need a whole lot of room.  Bake for 18-20 minutes or until the edges begin to turn golden brown.  Remove the cookies from the oven and cool on the sheets for 2-3 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.  I think these taste best slightly warm, when the inside is still a bit melty and the outside is still a bit crisp, but they’re also quite nice completely cool and pretty tasty even when frozen.

26 responses

  1. Your cookies seems so different. I didn’t see any cookies like yours. If I can find the ingredients in my country, I will try. Thanks for recipe.

    September 7, 2009 at 7:24 pm

  2. These are even better than chocolate zucchini bread. They look luscious!

    September 11, 2009 at 8:40 pm

  3. waw!! These cookies look so appetizing!!
    They sing to me,..

    MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM,…all the way!!

    October 29, 2009 at 3:03 pm

  4. Molly

    Quince? Fennel? Roooootabega? Heavy Cream! I know you got it in you, I mean you must be eating something delicious. I miss me some Kissing Forks news.

    <3 M

    December 29, 2009 at 12:44 am

    • Megan

      That was a bit of a long hiatus, huh? But yes, fennel. . .comin’ right up. Thanks for hanging in there.

      February 2, 2010 at 11:33 am

  5. My mouth is watering; these look delicious…what a beautiful photograph!

    January 13, 2010 at 11:37 am

  6. evelyn

    these are amazing!

    June 23, 2010 at 3:07 am

  7. I made these cookies and they were amazing. Thank you so much for everything!

    July 8, 2010 at 1:54 pm

  8. This recipie looks amazing!

    September 20, 2010 at 10:08 am

  9. Korinda

    I made these after searching long and hard for exactly this kind of recipe. Holy crow, are these amazing! What a wonderful job you did with this recipe! I didn’t add as much chips or nuts because I don’t like my cookies to be terribly loaded down. I did, however, use walnuts in addition to the pecans. These were just simply amazing. Everyone keeps asking and asking for them!

    This recipe is staying right in my recipe box for safe-keeping!

    September 20, 2010 at 2:34 pm

  10. Gretchen

    Made these cookies this am and they are very good. My son loved them and couldn’t believe they were made with zucchini. This recipe is a keeper !

    December 15, 2010 at 11:31 am

  11. Laurie

    My new favorite cookie – We have loads of zucchini and I’m making my second batch! They were a hit with the family. Thanks!

    July 22, 2011 at 11:43 am

  12. Samantha

    These are delicious, however a laughable use of zucchini. After they drain, it’s one small handful to a giant bowl of dough!

    July 26, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    • Bill

      I thought so too. So I made a double batch. :)

      July 31, 2011 at 6:19 pm

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  16. lindsay m.

    thank you for sharing this recipe. I made these cookies today and they are absolutely delicious. I will use this recipe from now on!

    December 10, 2011 at 3:22 pm

  17. Ruth

    YU-UM! These are really delicious! Mine did spread out, not so much that they joined but they’re definitely flat. Crispy on the outside and soft inside…perfect! I guess because they flattened they only took about 12 minutes which is, in my opinion, a real plus;) I’ll make a double batch next time and maybe add more zucchini but they’re just so good I don’t know if I want to mess with them. Thank you, thank you!

    February 27, 2012 at 8:30 pm

  18. These cookies look so delicious. I’d love to make this soon. yummy

    July 22, 2012 at 4:52 am

  19. Most amazing cookie ever! Everyone loved them, even my husband who hates chocolate, I will try them with raisins next to please him :)

    September 8, 2012 at 4:30 pm

  20. wanda

    MIne came out thin and baked together…like one big cookie.

    September 22, 2012 at 5:58 pm

  21. Ok…. I am so gonna try this!

    December 16, 2012 at 5:07 am

  22. Pingback: Sunday post | Anastacia Knits

  23. Gayle

    What is 1/2 lb zucchini? Really, most of us don’t keep a scale handy to weigh amounts. Can you please provide the amt. in cups. Thx

    September 4, 2013 at 10:14 pm

  24. ShannonJ

    Just found your blog, made these tonight (wheat flour and half butter subbed with applesauce). Freaking amazing! Thank you!

    October 18, 2013 at 11:32 pm

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