I have a confession to make: winter is not my favorite season. I don’t like being cold. In fact, I’m the girl who wears a sweater in air-conditioned buildings during the summer. But there is one thing I love about cold weather. Drinking hot chocolate! If you’re a hot chocolate fan like me, then you’ll love it even more in cookie form. These cookies are flavored with actual packets of hot chocolate and topped with marshmallows. They are gluten free, but can be made gluten-full.
There are a few key ingredients that really amplify the chocolate flavor: espresso powder, dark chocolate balsamic vinegar and mini chocolate chips. The first time a recipe called for espresso powder I added it warily. I honestly thought it would make the dessert taste like coffee. But if you only use a small amount of espresso powder all it does is enhance the chocolate. Now I’m a believer! I’m also obsessed with dark chocolate balsamic vinegar. You can find it on Amazon or in specialty stores. I bought my bottle from a local store in Charlotte, North Carolina, called Pour Olive.
The batter is thick, and when it’s time to mix in the chocolate chips I recommend folding them in with your hands. You can use a spatula but it’s easier just digging in.
The cookies first go into the oven without the marshmallows. Once they’ve baked for seven minutes, take the cookies out of the oven and gently press three to five marshmallows on top of each cookie. The trick is working quickly and prepping the marshmallows in advance. I like to set out five marshmallows for each cookie so they’re ready to go. Then the cookies go back into the oven for another two minutes.
The cookies are done once the marshmallows begin to puff. You could also try toasting the tops. I’ve never done that with these, but I’m sure that would be delicious!
Let them cool on the pan for about 10 minutes before removing them to a wire rack to cool. My favorite way to eat these is warm, with a mug of hot chocolate. Even after they’re cool you can pop one in the microwave for 10-15 seconds to recreate that fresh-out-of-the-oven sensation.
This is a recipe you can enjoy at Christmas and all winter long! Tag me @rosesandwhiskers on Instagram if you try these hot chocolate cookies and use the hashtag #rosesandwhiskers.
Happy baking. 🙂
Hot Chocolate Cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2/3 cup light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp dark chocolate balsamic vinegar
- 3 1/4 cups gluten free 1 to 1 baking flour for gluten-full cookies, substitute all-purpose flour
- 4 packets hot chocolate
- 1 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp espresso powder
- 1 cup mini chocolate chips
- 2 1/4 cups mini marshmallows
- Preheat oven to 350 °F (177°C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
- In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then blend in the vanilla and balsamic vinegar on medium speed.
- In a separate bowl, whisk flour, hot chocolate mix, baking soda, salt and espresso powder. Gradually add to wet ingredients on low speed until just combined.
- Fold in chocolate chips using a spatula or your hands. Spoon 2-inch balls of dough onto cookie sheets, 12 cookies to a pan. Bake for seven minutes. (Only bake one pan at a time.)
- Remove pan from the oven. Working quickly, gently press three to five marshmallows on top of each cookie. It's best to have the marshmallows prepped in advance so that you don't waste time counting them out.
- Return to the oven and bake an additional two to three minutes, until the marshmallows start to puff. Let cool on the sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Store in an airtight container. These cookies also freeze very well.