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Ever wonder how bakeries get such round cookies? I know they use molds but they can be costly when you have to buy so many. Here is a useful tip that I do when baking cookies.
I save all my jar tops (the metal ones such as spaghetti jar tops). I grease them thoroughly and put my cookie dough in each one, then flatten it down with a spoon. I then place them on a cookie sheet and bake. When slightly cooled, I then pop them out and they are all the same shape and size. No need to purchase cookie molds when you can use your imagination. Just remember to grease the jar tops well and remove the rubber ring if jar top has it.
I also bake in tin cans. Tuna Cans make perfect cupcakes. Clean them well in lemon juice first.
By Carolyn from E Northport, NY
Everyone likes to bake cookies, children as well as experienced bakers. Recipes will most often guide you through whatever cookie you're making, however these tips might add to a cookie baker's success with every different kind of cookie.
By Pookarina from Boca Raton, FL
When making cookies and squares, I never find that I need as many chocolate chips or nuts that the recipe calls for. Manufacturers are trying to sell their product. I don't believe in reducing the amount too much, but by only putting in what is needed, I have reduced the fat content of the sweets and have some ingredients left over for the next batch.
When a particular baking item, such as chocolate chips, is on sale, I buy it and make a large batch of cookies. We enjoy half right away, and I freeze the other half for when friends drop by or we just feel like a home baked treat!
By JP's Mom from Rocky Point, NY
I never know when the urge to bake cookies will hit me these days, so I leave the box with the sticks of margarine out of the fridge on the counter so it is soft when I'm ready to use it.
Baking time short? Find 1 or 2 friends to swap cookies with you. Do a double or triple batch of your fav and she does the same, and you swap. Great when you don't have time to do a lot of variety or go to a big cookie swap party!
When making homemade cookies always add 1/2 cup dry oatmeal. Your cookies will not spread all over the pan and they will be delicious! By carol
While one batch of cookies is baking, I prepare the next batch on parchment paper or foil. As soon as a batch is removed from a cookie sheet, the next batch, on the paper, is slid onto the sheet and goes right in the oven. Speeds up things a lot!
I bake all of my cookies on a stoneware pizza pan. Any stoneware oven piece is perfectly good. I spread a very thin layer of oil on. Just enough to coat it but not enough to fry the cookies.
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Every Christmas I like to bake an assortment of cookies for friends, but it is such a struggle. I live in Hawaii and am convinced the humidity is ruining my cookie baking but I don't know how to counteract the effects. Cookies are either burned, not baked enough, soft, too hard .... something! Can anyone give me a general idea of what I am up against? I see corrections in recipes for high altitudes but nothing for high humidity.
I grew up in New Orleans, and I have two thoughts:
1: Borrow an oven thermometer and make sure your oven is the temperature you think it is. It may not be the humidity.
2: Ask your neighbors and friends in the area for their cookie recipes.
3: (Sorry, this one costs money): Look for insulated baking sheets if your cookies are only burned on the bottom.
Sometimes it can be your cookie sheets if they are coated with the older "black" teflon popular several years ago. They required that you turn your oven down 5 degrees lower. Also, if you use glass bakeware for anything, you may need to lower the temperature 5 degrees. I also agree that it may be that your oven is off in its temperature--you may be needing a new thermostat. Check it with an oven thermometer.
Definitely is the humidity... i live in Singapore and cookies are fine when I cook in an air conditioned kitchen (a rarity), but I've just moved to a place without air conditioning in the kitchen and my cookies don't rise any more at all.
would love to find a solution.
Does any one line their cookie sheets with parchment paper before baking?
I've used parchment to line my baking sheets for years.
I use parchment paper for several reasons. First, don't have to wash the cookie sheet. Second, can have the next batch ready to bake. Third, I pull off the entire sheet with cookies still on it onto the cooling rack. It can also be used in cake pans esp. if making an upside coffee; it will come out cleanly without using extra shortening.
I have used parchment paper for baking cookies, cooling fudge etc for years. The cookies seem to bake better and more evenly. You can use the same sheets of paper for several batches and you never have to wash cookie sheets again. I would be lost without parchment paper when I make my Christmas cookies each year. Love the stuff.
Yes, sure helps with clean up. Love it. And also I use heavy duty foil and wipe it off between each pan full. GG Vi
I use parchment paper under almost everything. When I broil anything, parchment paper in the bottom of the broiler pan makes clean-up effortless. Most times you don't even have to wash the pan. (Just a wipe will do).
How would I calculate the cost of baking cookies?
By Donna from Orlando, FL
You have to know how many cups are in the bags of flour, sugar, etc. that you use. Then you need to know the cost of those bags, then take the number of dozens of cookies the recipe makes into the total cost of the ingredients. I did that many years ago, when I was married, to compare the cost of homemade cookies, with the cost of bakery cookies. There might be an easier way to do it, but this is the only way I could figure out. I only used the cost of the larger ingredients. Seasonings, etc, you don't use that much of in a recipe.
Doing the math on ingredients is the simple part. Donna said "baking" cookies so I'm thinking she might mean the actual cost of the baking process in her oven. I would be interested in knowing that as well. Is it worth trying to figure that into the cost? If one were baking all day long, I imagine it would be worth adding into the cost of the cookie ingredients, especially if you're trying to recoup and make a profit at a bake sale or other enterprise.
1st you need to calculate the cost of raw product by ounce. There are good sources online for measurements such as how many ounces in a pound ect. Keep your list! You must also use an accurate scoop to measure cookie dough, as in 1 ounce scoop per cookie, how many cookie's per baking pan. So make a small normal batch see what your yield is. So when you know what 1 batch will yield, you take the total cost of raw product divided by the number of cookies you made, that yields the cost of 1 cookie. For the spices that go into the dough you can estimate that cost, probably .35 cents per batch, if you are using more expensive spice up that cost a bit. If you are wanting to resale these cookie's take the cost of the individual cookie and divide this by .45% the total will give you a resale amount that allows for a modest profit. hope this helps.
Widetrack, Livingston, TX
Finding the cost of ingredients in a baked goods recipe is always a challenge, because your results can be wildly inaccurate if you are simply counting the cups of a given ingredient used in the recipe.
The reason is that there are several conversions that need to occur during the ingredient factoring process so that an accurate ingredient cost assessment to be made, and those important conversions are bypassed when the baker is only counting units of measure.
A better method to determine the cost of ingredients in a baked goods recipe is often to: a) determine the weight of each ingredient, then; b) find the weight and cost of the ingredient when purchased, then; c) factor the in-recipe ingredient cost based on those figures.
A recipe-cost calculator - especially one specifically designed for baked goods - is one way to make the challenge of pricing a baked goods recipe much easier.
A well-designed calculator will be programmed to automatically perform the complex math involved with obtaining a true and accurate cost of each ingredient in the recipe, and will accomplish the task quickly, with a minimum of input.
One example of an online recipe-cost calculator for baked goods can be found in the reference links below.
Tips and recipes for freezing cookies and cookie dough. Post your ideas.
We recently found out how well Brownies Freeze.
We always wasted some & finally decided to stick half of them in a freezer bag.It worked Great!
The second half of the batch actually seemed to last longer than the first half did when we defrosted them.
To have fresh baked cookies instantly, freeze cookie "balls" on sheets, then bag them and write directions on bag for baking so that family members will also be able to bake "fresh cookies" Yum
When making cookies for the holiday I make double batches of the dough, roll into a log shape, wrap in plastic then in foil, put in freezer. When you have unexpectedly forgot a gift you just needs to slice and bake.
By Beachers from West Covina, CA
Why do my chocolate chip cookies turn two tone?
By Robbyn from Davenport
It's a matter of them having at one point gotten too warm, the chocolate fats have risen to the top and are visible now. There is no quality issue but if you've had them for a long time, you'll notice they don't taste as yummy.
What do you mean by two tone? Do you mean the bottoms being darker than the top or do you mean the melted chocolate within the cookie spreading into the dough?
What is the best way to care for Rycraft ceramic cookie stamps?
By Nancy Fallert from Leavenworth, WA
Well, you might check the Rycraft Cookie Stamps website for help or to their customer service to ask your question.
I don't have this type of cookie stamp but I have other ceramic baking tools and keep them by washing between uses and keeping them separated in cloth (to avoid chipping) and in a box in the kitchen.
By Nancy F.
ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.
When baking cookies that tend to stick to the pan, use parchment paper made for baking. That way you don't have to use a chisel or throw away your pan, or worse yet; have to soak the pan for a week!
Source: The source is from my own cookbook, "The Duchess and The Cowboy"
By Leea R. from Grants Pass, Oregon
You are so right. I don't know why I had not used parchment paper before (other than the cost). The cookies come out better and do not tend to spread as much and you don't even have to wash the cookie sheets. I use it when baking scones too.
If I am only making a few cookies at a time from my frozen dough I wipe off the crumbs with a small piece of paper towel and fold up and roll up the paper with a rubber band and stick it in the freezer to reuse.
I figured out the cost once and it was less than 10 cents per sheet. I don't remember if that was before coupons or not. Reynolds has $1 off coupons for it quite often especially during the holidays when it tends to go on sale too.
I just started doing this, too. I also line my bread pan with parchment paper when I make my "Extreme Banana Nut Bread". (02/06/2010)
I am going to make cookies to give as birthday gifts. I don't know how to figure the cost into my overall budget. How much does it cost to make 1 dozen chocolate chip cookies? How about oatmeal raisin? Peanut butter?
By Penny from Cuyahoga Falls, OH
All depends if you are making from scratch or buying the pastry rolls you cut up and bake. (01/19/2010)
Like Suntydt said it depends on if you bake from scratch, what part of the country you live in or what store you shop, what you already have in your pantry, if you buy on sale or with coupons or in the bulk section, etc.
Around here chocolate chips don't ever go very cheap unless you just stocked up at Christmas time. Spices can be costly if you don't already have them in your kitchen, although cinnamon is one of the least expensive ones. I always thought PB cookies were pretty inexpensive to make and most homes already have PB in their pantry. (Hopefully the recipient does not have peanut allergies.)
Here is a simple as can be PB cookie recipe that most people love that only uses 3 ingredients: PB, sugar, and one egg. You can also vary the recipe by adding chocolate chips or crunchy style PB, etc. Read the comments there for more suggestions.
The ingredients used for that recipe come under a dollar, more like 50 cents for the whole batch.
This ThriftyFun article talks a bit about calculating the cost of cookies:
I think the best way to do this is to just break down the cost of ingredients and do the math.
I think it's a great idea to make cookies for gifts. This year for my husband's birthday, I am making him a batch of cookies of his choice every month.
Some of my husband's favorites are: chocolate chips (there is a great recipe in the Cook's Illustrated The Best cookbook), oatmeal, Portuguese biscuits, Italian cookies (with vanilla instead of anise), cranberry orange cookies, snickerdoodles, and Congo bars. He does not like peanut butter, so those are out.
Look for older cookie cookbooks at yardsales and used book stores. I find the older recipes have cheaper ingredients and tend to use staples that everyone has in their homes. (01/20/2010)
I've costed out recipes for years at my job and it does take a little math. You must take each ingredient and cost it out individually. For example, if your recipe needs 1 cup of flour and you buy flour in a 5 lb bag for $5.00 then the cost of 1 cup (8 oz) of flour will be 50 cents. You have to take the 5 lb bag of flour and figure out how many cups are in 5 lbs (or 80 oz). So there is 10 cups of flour in 5 lbs. Then the 1 cup costs you 50 cents. Then just do this with every ingredient. If you are planning on doing a lot of baking, then start buying ingredients in larger sizes since the price per oz will be cheaper.
Tips for making cookies. Post your ideas!
While one batch of cookies is baking I prepare the next batch on parchment paper or foil. As soon as a batch is removed from a cookie sheet, the next batch, on the paper, is slid onto the sheet and goes right in the oven. Speeds up things a lot!
I make several batches of cookie dough, different kinds, one right after the other, without washing the mixer or measuring utensils. Saves a lot of time. Then I can bake the cookies or refrigerate some of the dough and bake them at my leisure.
I remove cookies from cook sheets and place them on paper towels or waxed paper to cool. Once they are cool, I put them in tins, or zip-locs and toss the towels in the trash. Remove cookies from cookie sheets while they are still warm or they may stick.
Make double batches of cookie dough, and freeze part in balls or slices. Then you can bake fresh cookies any time.
To save time, avoid making cookies that need to be rolled and cut, then decorated. Stick with bar cookies, drop cookies and refrigerator cookies. Who wants to spend 10 minutes decorating a cooky that will be eaten in 2 seconds?
Toasting nuts or oatmeal before adding them to cookies enhances the flavor. Put them in a shallow pan and toast in the oven at 350 degrees F for 10-20 minutes. Stir them every 5 minute so they don't burn.
If you are making large cookies with more that a tablespoon of dough, I always put my rack up one level higher in the oven. It seems to keep the bottoms from browning too bad. Also use a cold cookie sheet, they work swell. (12/08/2004)
Use the wax paper between layers of cookies in the tins and use the paper towels for spills.Much less wasteful. If you cool the cookies on racks you just need to wipe them and put them away, no need for the paper towels. (12/09/2004)
It is no more trouble to make big batches of cookies than a small batch. You can cook some and make rolls of cookie dough, wrap and freeze for later use.
Be sure to label the cookie dough with baking instructions.
When baking, in order to remember which ingredients have been put into your bowl do this: Place all items to the left of your bowl. As you use them; move to the right of your bowl. You'll know what you've already placed in the bowl and everything on the right is ready to wipe down and put away.
I make small size cookies, and stack them in empty Pringle cans. You can cover the cans with Christmas wrap to give as gifts, or pop them in the freezer to enjoy later.
I stumbled on an easy way to remove cookies from baking sheets while they are still warm (not hot). I used the non-serrated edge of a pie server and it worked great. -
When baking cookies that need to be "rolled" in powdered sugar, it is much easier to put a few at a time in a paper sack or plastic zip lock and just shake them while still warm. Be sure to do it a second time after the cookies have cooled. You can add a drop or two of food coloring to the powdered sugar and shake before you add the cookies.
By Great Granny Vi
When rolling out sugar cookies, I use powdered sugar rather that flour to roll them out. This way I'm not adding more flour to the recipe than called for plus it doesn't leave the white "flour" spots on the cookies after they have baked. (12/27/2004)
If you don't have the air cushioned cookie sheets, just stack two regular cookie sheets together. No more burnt bottoms and lots cheaper than the air sheets!
By Debbie (01/10/2005)
Make cookies taste even better. When rolling out cookie dough, sprinkle board with powdered sugar instead of flour.
By Chell (01/20/2005)
When making sugar cookies use powdered sugar rather than granulated. It's not cheaper but the cookies are so much nicer. (01/20/2005)
I've started lining all my baking sheets with nonstick aluminum foil. It's absolutely amazing how easy the cookies slide off. If the recipe calls for greasing the baking sheet, you don't need to with the nonstick foil. I have a bar cookie recipe that is difficult enough to remove when you've greased the sheet, but next to impossible to remove the one time I forgot to grease it. But when I used the nonstick foil and did not grease it, they still were super easy to remove. AND it makes cleanup a snap! (01/22/2005)
You can make your own powdered sugar by putting a cup of regular sugar in the blender and running it on high briefly. (05/20/2005)
Keep cookie dough from sticking to cookie cutters by chilling the dough before you roll it out. Dip each cookie cutter in oil before pressing into the dough and the cookies will cut cleanly.
If you add about 1/2 cup extra of flour to your choc. chip cookie recipe the cookies bake up nicely and hold their shape better. Nice looking cookies, still taste the same. (06/17/2005)
When saving extra cookies in a cookie jar or some where else like a container throw in a slice of bread to keep the cookies moist. Prevents them from going hard. (07/23/2005)
To entertain the kids, I let them mix the dry ingredients together while I cream the eggs, butter and sugars. By the time it's ready, they have mixed it better than any sifter, then they measure the chips or nuts (we buy bulk) by scooping it from the big container. It might be a little messy, but can cut down the prep time ! (01/13/2006)
I freeze dough in ice cube trays, then pop out what I need for toaster oven or regular oven. A and H baking soda box has a great recipe for 8 dozen chocolate chip. I can only get 6, but I save 32 individual cookies in the trays I have, for rainy day emergencies, and still have enough left over for the guys! I set aside a few plain ones for the baby, not enough teeth for chocolate yet! (01/20/2006)
If you have a lot of holiday baking to do, use parchment paper on your baking sheets.
When you are baking cookies, try to bake only 1/2 a batch and freeze the rest for later.