Soft and Chewy M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies – my favorite chocolate chip cookie gets all dressed up for the holidays! The addition of bright red and green M&M’s makes them perfect for Santa! No chilling required, which is a bonus if you make them with kids!
December is here and it’s time to decide what cookies will Santa find on the plate by the fireplace this year. For my kids, this is a very important decision. Reindeer – that’s easy. They love carrots and oats. But Santa – he needs a special treat. After all, he spends the whole night in cold, flying all over the world, delivering presents. That needs to be appreciated.
When it comes to cookies for Santa, there is also a slight competition. You wouldn’t want to leave him cookies that are ordinary or something he just had in the house next door. They need to stand out, visually and taste wise.
Enter Soft and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies with M&M’s. We all know that classic chocolate chip cookie is always a winner. Especially one that it soft and chewy and packed with gooey, melty chocolate. But add red and green M&M’s and bam! Santa didn’t expect that!
Baking cookies with our kids is a tradition that I hope to carry for years and years. Hopefully, even when they are all grown up they will still want to come to mama’s home and bake Christmas cookies. It’s so much fun and them knowing that we will leave a plateful for Santa, gives them the anticipation that is precious to experience.
I always bake cookies with my kids. Especially during the holidays. They love to be involved besides what kid can resist colorful M&M’s? If you ever baked cookies with kids, you know that they expect to eat the cookies as soon as they are safe to handle. For that reason (and let’s he real, when I want a cookie – I want it now), I tend to avoid recipes that require chilling the dough for hours or worse, overnight. Sure, they may come out thicker. I just don’t have the patience. My Soft Ginger Molasses cookies do not require chilling and they come out beautiful and absolutely delicious.
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These chocolate chip cookies are packed with bright red and green M&M’s, so perfect for the holidays. They are soft (thanks to the vanilla pudding mix) and chewy. My trick to give them pretty “faces” is to save few M&M’s and chocolate chips and press them to already formed cookie balls, on the baking sheet, ready to be placed in the oven. The base dough is my very favorite. I love using vanilla pudding mix in my cookie dough as it helps produce soft but not cakey cookies. It enhances the vanilla flavor in combination with a good pure vanilla extract. Perfection!
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature, 1 stick
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup and 3/4 to 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 3.5 oz instant vanilla pudding mix
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup red and green M&M's
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Line a baking sheet with Silpat silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, cream butter for 30 seconds. Add both sugars and beat for 3 minutes, until light and fluffy.
- Add egg and vanilla and mix until well incorporated.
- In another mixing bowl, whisk together flour, pudding mix, soda and salt.
- Add the dry ingredients to the butter sugar mixture and mix with an electric mixer until almost incorporated. Switch to a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon, add chocolate chips and M&M's (reserving some) and stir in until well mixed.
- Scoop the cookie dough with a medium (1 and 1/2 tablespoon) cookie scoop. Roll into balls and place on prepared cookie sheet, spacing them 2" apart.
- Press reserved chocolate chips and M&M's onto the balls.
- Bake cookies for 9 to 11 minutes (10 minutes was the magic number for me). Cool for 2 minutes on the sheet, then transfer onto a cooling rack to cool completely.
The finished dough tends to be crumbly but it should come together when rolled into balls in your hands. For less crumbly dough, use 1 and 3/4 cups of flour.
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