Chewy Coconut White Chocolate Chip Cookies

It’s funny how our taste buds change over time, isn’t it? For the longest time I was the biggest coconut hater in the world. I wouldn’t go near it, even when chocolate was also involved (I was always so disappointed to find Mounds candy bars in my Halloween haul…). I know for a lot of people the texture of coconut is the problem, but it was more than that for me – I just couldn’t stand anything about it.

I don’t remember when or how I made the discovery that suddenly one of my most despised foods had become one of my favorites. I can’t imagine what would have convinced me to try anything coconut-flavored, but apparently I did and I loved it! And that love has grown into obsession – savory, sweet, beverages – basically anywhere I can add coconut I’m going to do it. The aroma and the flavor always (at least momentarily) make me feel like I’m sitting on a white sand beach on a tropical island. **Happy sigh**

Chewy Coconut White Chocolate Chip Cookies

A few months ago I made these coconut oatmeal white chocolate cookies, and they quickly became a favorite. I was craving them again recently, but they call for coconut oil and I didn’t have any. Rather than just replace the coconut oil with butter in the recipe, I decided to start from scratch and come up with a new recipe entirely. Because that’s what everyone does on Friday nights, right? :)

I was thrilled with the result, these cookies were awesome! The coconut flavor comes from the addition of both coconut extract and sweetened shredded coconut. White chocolate chips were a necessary mix-in, I think coconut and white chocolate are a match made in heaven. The cookies have a great chewy texture too, my absolute favorite. I brought these to Shane’s company party last month and received so many nice compliments on them. If you’re a coconut fan, you have to try these cookies!

Chewy Coconut White Chocolate Chip Cookies

So, which camp are you in – coconut lover or hater? Anyone else have a change of heart on coconut like me?

Chewy Coconut White Chocolate Chip Cookies
from Tracey’s Culinary Adventures

{Note: you could increase the amount of white chocolate chips in the recipe if you want – I’m just weird and don’t like a lot of chips in my cookies.}

1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 350 F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and both sugars on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the egg and then the vanilla. With the mixer on low, gradually add the dry ingredients, beating just until combined. Stir in the white chocolate chips and coconut until evenly distributed.

Using a small cookie scoop (mine measures about 1 1/2 inches across), portion the batter onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 2 inches apart. Bake for about 9 minutes (rotating the baking sheets halfway through if you’re doing both at once) or until the edges of the cookies are set (the centers may look underdone – don’t overbake!). Transfer the baking sheets to wire racks and let the cookies cool for a few minutes then remove the cookies to the wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with all of the dough.

Makes about 30 cookies