When life gives you lemons (or maybe butter), make the Gaines family's favorite chocolate chip cookies.
Chip and Joanna Gaines, with their five kids, ages 1 to 15, have found some fun ways to stay sane and savor the extra — albeit mandated — family bonding during this unprecedented time.
Stationed in her home kitchen, Joanna Gaines whipped up a batch of chocolate chip cookies from her first cookbook, "Magnolia Table," catered to the preferences of her little ones.
"With life looking quite a bit different than we’re all used to, our @magnolia family is looking for ways to focus on how we can make the most of our time spent at home, because honestly there's no better place to be right now — and in the midst of all that's going on, we believe that there is room for connection, creativity, laughter, and inspiration," Gaines wrote on her Instagram.
In the cooking demo, filmed by the Gaines' eldest son, Drake, 15, Gaines dished up some secrets to getting the cookies just right — that is, equal parts chewy and fluffy.
And it's all about the butter.
"Typically butter makes for a flatter cookie. I use real butter and I don't soften it completely, like overnight," she explained. "I like it to be a little bit chilled still — even though it's soft and it kind of gets clumpy. Those clumps of butter actually work really well in this recipe. It makes them fluffy and chewy, which I think the kids really like."
Gaines uses brown sugar because it contains molasses, which makes the cookies more moist and chewy, whereas white sugar caramelizes and makes cookies more brown and crisp.
While we're champing at the bit to whip up a batch of these cookies (hey, we may even start now), this delicious dessert isn't the only fun fans can have with the Gaineses this week.
"So here’s what we’re gonna do: for the next few days, we’re going to share a new challenge and/or activity that we can all get in on together and share," the cookbook author posted.
They also want to see what their followers are cooking while staying at home. Gaines asked folks at the end of the video to post their own videos on Instagram as posts or stories with the tag @magnolia and #webelieveinhome.
Joanna Gaines' Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe
- 2 cups brown sugar
- 1 stick softened butter (left at room temperature about an hour, still a little chilled)
- 2 eggs
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla
- 2½ cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 heaping teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 bag chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Add the brown sugar and butter to a stand mixer and beat on low spread until well combined but still chunky. Add the eggs and vanilla and continue to mix.
- Next add the flour, salt and baking soda. Start on low speed, increase to medium and then to high speed and allow to mix until ingredients are well combined
- Add the chocolate chips and mix for a few seconds on medium to high speed.
- Spoon or place cookies about one inch apart (about 12 dollops) on baking sheet lined with wax paper and bake for 12 to 15 minutes.
Optional: For a heartier dessert, spread an even layer of the cookie dough into one or two mini-cast iron pans, bake and top with your favorite vanilla ice cream.