I dug this recipe out of my archives thinking it might come in handy for people who have shortening leftover from holiday pie baking. Chewy Maple Cookies, which get their name from the fact they are chewy maple cookies, have a double dose of maple flavor from both maple extract and maple syrup.
The maple syrup contributes to the chewiness, but I think the shortening is what enhances the texture the most. It gives the cookies crispy, almost hard, edges and very dense centers. Shortening also helps preserve freshness, so Chewy Maple Cookies taste good on day 2 and even day 3. If you're still not sold on using a half cup of shortening, you can try swapping out some (half) of the shortening for butter. I may try that one day, but my family is really enjoying the shortening version so I'm not in a hurry to experiment.
If you are not in the mood to experiment either and want to use 100% butter, consider the Oatmeal Walnut Cookies with Maple Glaze. They are also thick and chewy, but they're definitely more of an oatmeal cookie whereas with this recipe the oats are less prominent.
Chilling the Dough
I rarely bake up all the cookie dough at once. Instead, I portion it into little balls, put it on a plate, chill, then keep the individual portions in the refrigerator or freezer until ready to bake. This dough was no exception. While it doesn't require chilling, I found that the cookies made with dough balls that had chilled for two days were browner, a little chewier and had even crunchier edges. So bake up as many cookies as you need, but try chilling the dough for a few days for even better cookies later!
Chewy Maple Cookies
- ½ cup shortening (96 grams)
- 1 cup packed brown sugar (200 grams)
- ½ cup pure maple syrup not pancake
- 1 teaspoon maple flavoring or extract
- 1 large egg
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour (210 grams)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup shredded coconut sweetened or unsweetened
- ½ cup oats regular or quick cooking
- ¾ cup sea salt caramel chips or white chips
- flakey salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- With an electric mixer, beat the shortening and brown sugar until fluffy. Gradually beat in the maple syrup and the maple extract.
- Add the egg and stir until it is well blended, then beat for 1 minute, scraping sides of bowl.
- In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. By hand or using lowest speed of the mixer, gradually add the flour mixture to the maple mixture.
- Stir in coconut, oats and chips.
- Drop by rounded tablespoons (or use a medium cookie scoop) onto ungreased or parchment lined baking sheets. Bake one sheet at a time for 12-14 minutes. Let cool on sheets for 3 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.
- Sprinkle a few flakes of salt over each cookie. Optional.