German Chocolate Cake Cookies
Cake is a staple at any birthday party. But for me, I'd waaay prefer a cookie. So why not turn that cake into a cookie.
My Mom's very favorite cake is a German chocolate Cake. She has always been a lover of texture and flavor (where do you think I get it from) And a German Chocolate Cake is full of both these.
The cookies is super soft with a slight fudgy center. And the frosting is this delicious creamy custard frosting packed FULL with pecans and cocoanut flakes.
As always the recipe is so simple, obscenely decadent and nostalgic with the best update to cookie version. So lets talk about the details of this cookie.
"Funny, how one good cookie could calm the mind and even elevate a troubled soul." - Dean Koontz
For the cookie base, I wanted there to be a soft, fudgy texture. This had to last the shelf life of the cookie. No hard crumbly cookies here. While cake cookies are no new thing, I also didn't want this cookie to be fluffy or cakey (I know, confusing, right) I wanted the texture to be a happy marriage of a cake and cookie.
I used a German Chocolate Cake Mix (Betty Crocker is my girl) and added flour, oil, an egg and milk. But the secret to the soft fudgy center is cream cheese. Adding just enough to make the cookie chewy while not altering the flavor.
As I mentioned this is my mom's favorite cake. She has perfected the frosting recipe and the frosting to cake ratio. I didn't see a need to go changing things up as the frosting is, like I said, perfection. However, you don't need as much frosting for cookies as you do for cake. I mean, I guess it is always acceptable to eat frosting with a spoon, but for the cookie sake, I halved the recipe.
I had never before made this frosting, mom always did. But when I tell you it was EASY, I can not exaggerate that enough. Custards make people nervous, but really it's all about tempering the eggs and not rushing ANYTHING. If you've got patience you can make this frosting.
Tempering eggs means that you are combining eggs with a hot liquid in a controlled environment to create a stable base for recipes like custard. If you get this technique down the options are limitless- crème brulee, custard, ice cream and so much more.
My tricks are to have room temp eggs (yolks) set out in a heat safe mixing bowl. While these come to room temperature start to heat the liquid. I like to get it to a simmer state while stirring. Simmering means there are small bubbles forming around the edge of the liquid, not boiling. If you want to be technical you can use a candy (or meat) thermometer and have the temperature read about 180* F.
Slowly pour a portion of the hot liquid over the egg (yolks) while stirring the eggs. This will cook the eggs and keep them from seizing up and making a curdled mess. Then add back to the pan and cook over heat till thickens. Perfectly flawless custard every time
And can we take a second to talk about how CUTE these German Chocolate Cake Cookies are when you turn them into little bird nests? So perfect for a spring party or Easter Brunch. Cadbury Eggs make any bake instantly Springy. The little speckled Robbin's egg blue gets me every time.
If you are planning on using this cookie recipe for a crowd, I highly recommend doubling the recipe. This German chocolate cake mix makes 14 cookies. While that is enough for a small gathering, I can guarantee you, they will go so fast.
While cake is a stunner at any gathering, cookies are the comforting best friend. You will love watching your crowd grab cookie after cookie. All while singing your praises.
So lets get to the recipe, shall we?
German Chocolate Cake Cookies
Makes 14 medium cookies. Can easily double the recipe
For the German Chocolate Cake Cookies
1 box German chocolate cake mix (Betty Crocker is my favorite)
2 oz. super soft cream cheese
1/4 c flour
1/4 c oil of choice - preferably not olive oil
1 TBSP milk of choice
For the German Chocolate Frosting
7 oz evaporated milk
2 egg yolks
1/2 c granulated sugar
4 TBSP butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
3/4 c chopped pecans
1/2 shredded cocoanut
Starting with the frosting so it can cool before adding to the cookies
To a medium, heat safe mixing bowl add 2 eggs yolks and 1/2 c of granulated sugar. Mix together till combined. Set aside.
To a sauce pan add 7 oz milk, 4 TBSP butter and vanilla. Place over medium low heat till butter melts. Allow mixture to come to a simmer or 180* F. Take off heat.
Now slowly add a portion of the simmered milk to the eggs and sugar while quickly stirring the eggs. Add the egg mixture back to the sauce pan with the rest of the milk.
Place over medium heat and cook. This will require you to stir constantly for 8 minutes or till thick to a pudding consistency.
Take off heat and stir in chopped pecans and shredded cocoanut. Allow to sit at room temp while making the cookies.
To make the cookies
To a mixing bowl add soft cream cheese. You can microwave this for 15 seconds.
Cream together with egg, oil and milk till combined. Add in flour and cake mix. Mix together just till combined.
Scoop out 1 oz dough and roll into smooth balls. Place on a baking sheet to chill for 30 minutes or up to 1 day.
When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350* F, place on a cookie sheet evenly spread apart.
Press the top of the cookie down to make a flat top. These cookies do not spread but you will want a smooth surface to add your frosting to.
Bake for 8-10 minutes. Cookies are done when they no longer have a glossy exterior.
Once they are done baking gently press down the center with the back of a table spoon to create a well in the cookie.
Let cookies come to room temperature before adding 1 TBSP ( or desired amount) of German Chocolate Frosting.
Serve and enjoy.