These amaretto cookies are bursting with almond flavor, which pairs beautifully with the semi-sweet chocolate chips.
They are crisp on the outside and chewy in the middle. My favorite type of chocolate chip cookie. If you love almonds and chocolate, you have to try these cookies.
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What is amaretto?
Amaretto in Italian means “little bitter.” It is a sweet Italian liqueur that originated in Saronno, Italy.
Originally the flavor was derived from bitter almonds. Modern commercial amarettos are flavored with apricot pits or peach pits. Apricot pits and Peach pits are natural sources of benzaldehyde which provides an almond-like flavor to the liqueur.
Some amarettos are infused with other flavors, such as vanilla. They’re often sweetened with dark or burnt sugar which gives the liqueur its dark amber color. My favorite brand is Disaronno.
You could also make your own amaretto.
Bread Flour: Bread flour produces more gluten creating a chewy cookie.
Kosher Salt: Enhances the flavors of the other ingredients.
Baking Soda: Provides the leavening for the cookies.
Unsalted Butter: Room temperature butter is easier to blend with the sugar.
Brown Sugar & Granulated Sugar: Using more brown sugar than white sugar adds moisture and helps to produce a soft and chewy cookie.
Egg and Egg Yolk: Eggs should be at room temperature. The fat from the additional egg yolk adds richness and helps binds the dough.
Amaretto: These cookies do not taste alcoholic, most of the alcohol cooks out while baking. Use whatever amaretto you have on hand. No need to go out and buy an expensive bottle of amaretto.
Almond Extract: Always use pure vanilla extract not imitation.
Semi-sweet Chocolate Chips: You can use either regular chocolate chips or chopped semi-sweet chocolate.
Almonds: Almonds add a little crunch to these cookies and reinforce the almond flavor.
Stand Mixer: I have a stand mixer from KitchenAid. My mom and brother bought it for me for my birthday almost 15 years ago. I use it weekly and it still works just like it did when it was brand new. It makes so many kitchen tasks easier and comes with a variety of attachments.Sign up for KitchenAid’s Newsletter to receive 10% off your next order!
Rubber spatula: For folding batters together, I prefer a stiffer spatula like this one from OXO. It fits comfortable in my hand, is dishwasher safe, and is heat-resistant up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit. Both the handle and head are silicone coated which makes it easy to clean and safe to use with my non-stick cookware and bake ware.
Sturdy cookie sheets. My favorite are these Airbake cookie sheets. They have a pocket of air in the center of the baking sheet that helps prevent the bottoms of the cookies from over cooking.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugars with the paddle attachment on medium speed until smooth. Lower the mixer speed to stir and add in the egg, egg yolk, amaretto, and almond extract. Mix until thoroughly combined, about 30 seconds.
- Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips and almonds with a spatula.
- Wrap the dough in wax paper and refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll it into balls, about 2 tablespoons of dough each. The dough may be a bit crumbly but will become smoother as you roll it.
- Place the balls on a baking sheet leaving at least 2 inches in between each cookie. Flatten the balls slightly with your hand to help them spread.
- Bake for 10 – 12 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned. Allow the cookies to cool for at least 10 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.
Baking Tip: My mom’s trick for evenly baked cookies is to rotate the cookies while they bake. Place the first baking sheet of cookies on the lower rack of the oven and bake until they begin to spread out (usually the same amount of time it takes me to divvy out the dough on to the second baking sheet.) Move the first baking sheet of cookies to the top rack and rotate 180-degrees to finish baking and place the second baking sheet of cookies on the bottom rack. Continue this process until all of the cookies have been baked.
- Make sure all of the ingredients are at room temperature. This ensures the ingredients mix evenly and will give you the best final texture. To quickly bring the eggs to room temperature, place the whole eggs in a bowl of warm water for 10-15 minutes.
- You can use either regular chocolate chips or chopped semi-sweet chocolate.
- Refrigerate the dough for 2-3 hours to allow the flour to fully hydrate. Refrigerating the dough also allows the butter to solidify and stops your cookies from spreading too far when baked.
- Use a cookie scoop for evenly portioned cookies. Take the guesswork out of portioning cookies by using a cookie scoop to make sure each cookie is the same size.
- Alternatively, you could cut the block of cookie dough into even pieces with a knife.
- My secret for perfectly baked cookies is this AirBake cookie sheet. My cookies bake evenly every time I use these pans. AirBake cookie sheets have two aluminum layers with a layer of air in between them. The layer of air decreases the temperature of the top layer of metal, preventing the bottom of the cookie from browning too quickly. These pans are also really easy to clean. Just wipe them clean with a little soap and hot water. It is not recommended to fully submerge these pans in water or place them in a dishwasher.
- Baking times for all recipes are only suggestions. The actual baking time will vary depending upon your oven. It is helpful to know your oven and worth purchasing an inexpensive oven thermometer. Oven temperatures can vary as much as 50 degrees plus or minus.
Make-ahead, storing, and freezing instructions
Make-Ahead: You can mix up the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Storing: Baked cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
Freezing Cookie Dough: Unbaked cookie dough balls can be frozen for up to 3 months. Place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze until solid. Once frozen, remove from the baking sheet and place in a zip-top bag. Label with the date and contents.
When you are ready to bake cookies, remove the cookie balls from the freezer, let them sit at room temperature while the oven preheats, and then bake. You may need to add a minute or two to the baking time.
Freezing Baked Cookies: Baked cookies can be frozen for up to 3 months.
Once the cookies have cooled completely, place them on a sheet pan and freeze until solid. Transfer the frozen cookies to an airtight container or zip-top bag. Label with the date and contents.
Thaw frozen cookies overnight in the refrigerator or on the counter.
- Fresh Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies
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- Sourdough Oatmeal Cookies
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