The recipe for these delightful cookies spent a long time languishing in my “to bake” folder, mostly because I don’t tend to have lemons on hand. And I don’t really consider white chocolate, well, chocolate. (Because it’s not!) However. I am occasionally willing to overlook that fact, and these chewy, fluffy cookies are a great reason to do so.
I suspect it’s the coconut flakes (toasted though they may be) that help keep these cookies nice and chewy. I was also impressed that they didn’t spread into puddle in the oven, and they’ve got a good structure and bite to them. Not to mention the flavor! The flavor is yummy.
Uncharacteristically, I broke out my Silpat baking mats for these, since they didn’t strike me as the kind of cookie I would want to have a crunchy bottom. That, and my butter was really soft — it’s June, so “room temperature” means something different than it does in the fall. I figured the silicone mats would help slow the spread, and it seems I was right!
The coconut flavor kind of disappears into the cookie, but it doesn’t need the help. The lemon is subtle but bright and the white chocolate adds a really nice creamy finish. I definitely recommend using Ghirardelli white chocolate rather than chocolate chips. The better quality is worth it here.
While these haven’t totally converted me to a white chocolate fan-girl, they’re definitely a unique cookie to add to my recipe box!
FYI, the recipe doesn’t make a ton of cookies. I used the larger cookie scoop (1 1/2 Tablespoons), and it made a few shy of 3 dozen.
Lemon Cookies with White Chocolate Chunks and Toasted Coconut (adapted from The Baker Chick)
- 1¾ cup flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 stick of unsalted butter, softened
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- ½ cup white sugar
- 1 egg plus 1 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- zest from one medium-sized lemon (about 1 Tablespoon)
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 1½ heaping cups sweetened coconut flakes – toasted (make sure you get the sweet kind, it’ll affect the texture if you don’t)
- 4 ounces white chocolate, chopped (one Ghirardelli baking bar)
Preheat your oven to 350° F.
Spread the coconut on a baking sheet and toast for 6-10 minutes, stirring every minute or two, until golden. Set aside.
In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugars until light and fluffy – 2-3 minutes. Add the egg, yolk, vanilla, zest and lemon juice. Mix until fully incorporated – about 1 minute.
Add the dry ingredients, mixing on low speed until just combined. Use a wooden spoon to fold in the coconut and white chocolate.
Line your cookie sheet with a silicon baking mat (or parchment paper). Use a cookie scoop or spoon to evenly portion dough, leaving a fair bit of space between each ball of dough. Using the large scoop on a half sheet baking pan, I did four rows of three (to make a dozen cookies per sheet).
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the edges are set and just turning golden brown. If you’re baking on parchment paper, they might bake a little faster. Cool on the pan for 2-4 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.