Any Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia fans out there??? These cookies were inspired by my New England Food Trip summer vacation that included a trip to Ben & Jerry’s in Vermont. While there, I learned that their Cherry Garcia flavor was one of their best sellers. I knew it was popular, but I didn’t realize it was THAT popular! These Chocolate Cherry Chunk Cookie Bars are full of chopped dried cherries and chocolate along with a chocolate ganache on top! They don’t contain any ice cream, although they would be a great base for a sundae topped with Cherry Garcia ice cream!
Welcome to the latest cookie of my holiday cookiepalooza! Today’s cookie is my Chocolate Cherry Chunk Cookie Bars and they are full of cherries and chocolate! Again, I used the dough from my favorite Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe, added some cherries and chocolate, baked the dough in a jell-roll pan, and topped the cookies with a chocolate cherry ganache. The cherry taste is quite subtle, but you could definitely use more cherries or if you don’t like cherries you could use a different dried fruit and fruit preserves. Check out my other cookies that I’ve already made using the same Chocolate Chip Cookie dough including my Mexican Hot Chocolate Sandwich Cookies, Elvis Inspired Cookie Cups, Chocolate Turtle Cookies, and stay tuned over the next few days for more to come!
Again, be sure to read my post for my Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe that I posted last week for a better overview of the dough. To quickly summarize once again, I’m going to use the same basic dough for these cookies that I used for the chocolate chip cookies. I used an unbleached all-purpose flour with 10% protein and weighed the flour. I also do not suggest substituting margarine or anything else besides real butter and I also do not suggest using a whole egg rather than the egg yolks. If you do any substitutions, just know that your results will vary greatly. Baking is a science and if you change one thing, everything else can be off. You can double or multiply the basic dough recipe and make several different kinds of cookies that I have already posted or will be posting this week. Just divide the basic dough between bowls then add your add-ins and other ingredients.
Again, I will highly recommend refrigerating the finished cookie dough for a few hours or better yet overnight or up to 2-3 days. You can also make the finished cookie dough, ball it up, and freeze the balls in plastic bags for a few months then bake the cookies into regular drop cookies or defrost until softened and spread cookie dough into jelly-roll pan to form bars.
I used Gold Medal unbleached all-purpose flour and weighed it. It has a 10% protein content. You can find good kitchen scales all over, but this one is from Williams-Sonoma. Most stores will carry kitchen scales and they’re definitely a good buy!
Add some dried cherries and chocolate to the cookie dough.
While the cookies are cooling, place 12 ounces of chocolate, 1/4 cup heavy cream, and 1 (12oz) jar cherry preserves/jam in microwave safe bowl and microwave on high for 30 second intervals, stirring after each time, until smooth. If your cherry preserves/jam is chunky, place it in a food processor (or blender) and process until smooth. Spread the chocolate mixture over the cookies and cool completely.
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|Chocolate Cherry Chunk Cookie Bars||
- 14.42oz flour (408.75 g or about 3 cups + 6½ tablespoons) unbleached all-purpose (10%protein) flour
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 7.62oz (216g or about 1 cup + 2 tablespoons) light brown sugar
- 5.93oz (168g or ¾cup + 2 tablespoons) granulated sugar
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted & cooled
- 1 large egg
- 2 large egg yolks
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 (12oz.) bag chocolate chips or chopped chocolate
- 1 (6oz.) bag dried cherries, chopped
- 1 (12oz.) bag chocolate chips or chopped chocolate
- 1 (12oz.) jar cherry preserves/jam
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- In large bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, salt, baking powder, and baking soda until well combined; set aside.
- In a separate large bowl, beat together brown sugar, granulated sugar, and 1 cup butter with an electric mixer on medium speed until well combined. Add egg, egg yolks, and 2 teaspoons vanilla, and beat until well combined.
- Beat flour mixture into wet mixture until combined. Stir in 12oz. chocolate chips or chopped chocolate and chopped dried cherries. Press dough into a lightly greased 15×10-inch jelly-roll pan.
- Refrigerate dough for 2-3 hours or overnight and up to 2-3 days. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F for about 20-25 minutes.
- Meanwhile, place 12oz. chocolate, cherry preserves, and heavy cream in microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 30 second intervals, stirring after each interval until smooth. Spread mixture over cookies and cool cookies completely for chocolate to set.
- Cut cookies into bars.