Banana Walnut Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Who here doesn’t like banana bread? Ever since I figured out the proper technique on how to make it without resulting in what my family affectionately liked to call the “banana brick” this has become both a family and office staple. Thus, when I came across this recipe for a cookie that reminded me very much of banana bread, it was a no brainer. I mean, really, have you ever met a cookie that you didn’t like? And when it promises to be a winning combination of cookie and banana bread? Hello?
One thing I will say about bananas, there one of those strange fruits that I both love and hate. I love it when it’s baked…be it in a cake, cookie, or just straight by itself (and seriously, if you’ve not made yourself some baked bananas yet, I’m not sure what other nirvana experience you’re waiting for!). But by itself, fresh, it’s a tough sell. In fact, I’ll only eat it if it’s still a little green. Once a banana in my house has gone ripe, even the merest of brown speckles, it’s destined for a baked good or sliced with Mai’s cereal. Call it a weird quirk, but it keeps me in fairly steady supply of good ripe bananas for bread and…cookies!
These cookies came together fairly quickly and I almost forgot…they also incorporate one of my other favorite things in the cookie world…oats. The bananas ensure that this cookie is moist and sweet without being too sugary while the oats gives it a bit of a earthy and toothsome texture. I also feel (in my addled brain somewhere) that the oats makes it healthy? Bananas + oats = healthy, right? Whatever, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. The chocolate chunk and walnuts in there are just a reward for being so good.
And speaking of good, these cookies rock. I ended up making 9 dozen of these for a client visit (yes, you lucky guys know who you are) and aside from being pretty easy to mass produce, they were a pretty big hit if I do say so myself. Within an hour after arriving for my meeting, all but 2 dozen were left. I’m not sure if there’s a better review than that, folks.
Makes about 3 dozen
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
1 large egg
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup mashed ripe banana (about 1 large)
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped into 1/4-inch chunks
1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (about 2 ounces), toasted
Prepare oven and preheat to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together both flours, salt, and baking soda. Using an electric mixer, cream together butter and sugars until pale and fluffy on medium speed. Reduce speed to low and add in egg and vanilla and mix until combined. Mix in banana. Add in flour mixture and mix until just combined. Using a wooden spoon or mixing spoon, stir in oats, chocolate chunks and walnuts until uniform.
Using baking sheets lined with parchment paper, place dough about 2 inches apart. I used a 1.5″ cookie scooper. Bake cookies, 12 to 13 minutes, rotating sheets about halfway. Cookies should be golden brown and *just* set. Let cool on sheets for 5 minutes before transferring cookies to cool completely on wire racks. Cookies will keep up to 2 days, stored in airtight containers.