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White chocolate cream cheese cookies

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The Pastry Chef's Baking

(Read caption) Reserve a few white chocolate chips to press into the top of the dough before baking these cookies.

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I get a lot of my baking recipes from trolling Pinterest and many of the pins I add to my baking pinboards turn out to be from Averie Cooks. Matter of fact, I have so many pins from Averie's blog that I don't know why I don't just go directly to her blog and cut out the Pinterest middleman. Probably because that would be too easy.

Oftentimes a luscious picture would catch my eye on Pinterest and even as my trigger finger clicks on the pin to go to the source recipe, I just know it's from Averie Cooks. Some bloggers have a distinct look and feel to their creations. I've come to associate Averie's look and feel with mouthwatering, thick, chubby cookies and moist cakes. 

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Thick and chubby and bursting with white chocolate chunks, this recipe for white chocolate cream cheese cookies sucked me in. I was going to a family barbecue at my cousin's and there are three active boys in the family, so I knew some sort of chocolate chip cookies needed to be in the mix. Plus, really, you can't go wrong with a cookie recipe from Averie's blog.

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This one didn't disappoint. As with all her cookie recipes, make the dough ahead of time, portion it into golf-ball-size dough balls and freeze first. And underbake them. That's how you get them to be thick with the perfect moist, chewy, dense texture. I didn't have white chocolate chips so I chopped up Guittard white chocolate baking wafers. Don't worry if you don't like cream cheese (I don't) because the cream cheese just adds to the texture, not the flavor. I loved these cookies; they're hearty and sturdy but also tender and chewy. If you like white chocolate chip cookies, these are a winner.

White chocolate cream cheese cookies
From Averie Cooks

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
2 ounces (about 1/4 cup) cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 3-1/2-ounce packet instant vanilla pudding mix
1 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch salt, optional and to taste
10 ounces white chocolate chips

1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter, cream cheese, sugars, egg, vanilla, and beat on medium-high speed until creamed and well combined, about 4 minutes

2. Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the flour, dry pudding mix, baking soda, optional salt, and beat on low speed until just combined, about 1 minute.

3. Hold back a handful of the white chocolate and add the rest. Beat on low speed until just combined, about 30 seconds.

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4. Using a large cookie scoop and a 1/4-cup measure, form approximately 13 to 14 equal-sized mounds of dough, roll into balls, and flatten slightly. Strategically place a few reserved white chocolate chips right on top of each mound of dough.

5. Place mounds on a large plate or tray, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, up to 5 days, or place in the freezer in a freezer bag.

6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F., and line a baking sheet with a Silpat liner or parchment paper. Place dough mounds on baking sheet, spaced at least 2 inches apart and bake for about 11-13 minutes, or until edges have set and tops are just set, even if slightly undercooked, pale, and glossy in the center; don't overbake. Cookies firm up as they cool. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for about 10 minutes before serving.