Yes, the holiday baking rush has wound down… but most of us are still in the house, trapped by Mother Nature, and looking for a little comfort food to take the edge off our cabin fever. Never fear, we’ve got the cure – cookies!

And since you aren’t rushed to bake by the dozens and distribute to everyone, why not take the time and put a little effort into upping your cookie game? We’ve got tips, via Parade Magazine, to help you “Chef-ify your cookies”!

Start Swapping!

One of the easiest ways to shake up your recipe is just by swapping out ingredients! Swap half your vanilla for another extract like almond or hazelnut for a boost of flavor. (Just don’t completely replace the vanilla, because it’s an important flavor component in many recipes.) Or swap out a quarter cup of flour for some nut meal! It will accentuate flavor while subtly changing the texture.

And one of the most important changes you can make is your butter.

The quality of this ingredient really makes a difference – look for European butter in the grocery store or farm fresh butter from the farmer’s market.

You can also replace nuts in your recipe with seeds. Use an equal quantity, and be amazed at the difference in flavor.

A Little Something Extra!

Unlock your liquor cabinet! Orange or chocolate liqueurs, or even schnapps, are great options for adding a little bit of subtle flavor. You can also add a bit of crunch and salt to recipes with bacon. If you use bacon, consider a dab of bourbon, since you have the liquor cabinet open anyway.

Dazzle with Drizzle!

Another quick cookie upgrade is drizzle.

Make an easy chocolate drizzle for beautiful and delicious effect for any cookie recipe, it dresses up anything – can be drizzled, dunked or go in between two cookies to create a sandwich.

It’s easy, too! Combine equal parts chocolate and hot, heavy cream and whisk!


Do you have any favorite tips to share for cookie upgrades? Drop them in the comments!