For a lot of people, chocolate chip cookies are all about the chocolate. Me, I love the molasses-y flavor of the brown sugar dough that surrounds it.
To play off of that flavor idea — and to create a more grown-up-feeling chocolate chip cookie — I swap out the brown sugar for coconut sugar, a commonly available sweetener that has a deep, earthy flavor and aromas of coffee, toffee and vanilla that makes these cookies taste like coffee and doughnuts in the best way. To add chew to the cookies (and stay on theme with the crunchy health food store vibes of the coconut sugar), I add puffed brown rice (look for it next to the healthy cereals), which adds its own nutty flavor. Don’t be tempted to use Rice Krispies; they dissolve into the batter and create weird holes in the finished cookie.
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine the butter, coconut sugar, granulated sugar, vanilla, baking soda and salt and beat on medium speed of a mixer until creamy, about 2 minutes (see Baker’s Note). Add the eggs one at a time, beating well between each addition, until incorporated. Add the flour and beat on low speed until almost combined, then add the chocolate and puffed rice and continue mixing until everything is evenly combined.
Using a 1-ounce ice cream scoop or 2 tablespoons, drop mounds of dough 2 inches apart onto the prepared baking sheets.
Bake, rotating the baking sheets front to back and top to bottom halfway through, until the cookies are golden brown at the edges and just set, about 10 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 1 minute, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.
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