Welcome back to Sally’s Cookie Palooza! Today’s recipe continues my love affair with red velvet desserts. While I’ve made two kinds of red velvet brownies before, I’ve never attempted a red velvet cookie before. I was never a huge fan of red velvet (is it chocolate? is it vanilla?) until I had a super moist slice of red velvet wedding cake a few years ago. Well, my friends, the more I play around with this divine flavor – the more I’m completely hooked.
Red velvet cake meets a soft-baked chocolate chip cookie today. A blissful marriage of two classic desserts!
I am stoked to tell you that… (I just said stoked)… this cookie recipe only took me one try to get right. Usually it takes me at least 3 tries and sometimes even 11 months to perfect a recipe. You learn through mistakes, right? All I did was play around with my go-to chocolate cookie dough and transformed it into a red velvet cookie dough.
There’s a little bit of cocoa powder, flour, egg, milk, vanilla, brown sugar, and regular sugar. Typical chocolate cookie ingredients. However, I reduced the cocoa powder and replaced it with flour. I added a touch of milk to bring moisture to the dough, as well as used more brown sugar than white sugar. I also slightly increased the vanilla extract so the vanilla flavor is as prominent as the chocolate flavor. The chocolate chips make the cookies even chocolate-ier.
Is chocolate-ier a word? Today it is.
The cookie dough needs to chill. Trust me on this. The cookie dough is much too sticky to bake right after mixing. Do you want thick cookies that don’t spread all over your cookie sheet? Chill your cookie dough. There’s no shortcut!
Once chilled, roll the cookie dough into balls. Make sure there aren’t a lot of chocolate chips right on top of your cookie dough balls. You’ll need to press the cookies down slightly after baking and you don’t want a chocolate mess everywhere. Here is what my cookie dough balls looked like before going into the oven:
The cookies will slightly spread in the oven. Mine sort of looked like cookie mounds after 10-11 minutes. So, I simply pressed them down with my fingers (or you can use a spoon) so they became a bit flatter and had crinkle tops. Then, after I pressed them down slightly, I stuck a few chocolate chips into the tops of each. The chocolate chips melted down into the warm cookie. Let the cookies cool for about 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
The best part is that you have complete control over how red you want your cookies. I added about 1 Tablespoon of red food coloring to my cookie dough. If you want less, add less – if you want more, add more. If you’re not a fan of food coloring, leave it out. Again, you have all the control over it!
So this recipe sounds pretty easy, right? It is! Just your basic chocolate cookie recipe with a bit less cocoa, a bit more flour, some vanilla, and a sprinkling of chocolate chips. A quick cookie dough chill and boom! You’ll have red velvet cookies from scratch in only 90 minutes.
I made today’s red velvet cookies for a Christmas party I’m going to tonight with my friend Erin. Erin said she made my cookie dough pretzel bites to bring. We have a delicious night ahead of us.
Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. ♥
Red Velvet Chocolate Chip Cookies
Soft-baked red velvet chocolate chip cookie recipe made from scratch. Plus, a bonus recipe for red velvet cake mix crinkle cookies below! This cookie dough must chill for at least 1 hour.
- 1 and 1/2 cups + 1 Tablespoon (198g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1/4 cup (21g) unsweetened natural cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature.
- 3/4 cup (150g) packed light brown sugar (or dark brown)
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature1
- 1 Tablespoon milk (I use buttermilk)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 Tablespoon red food coloring (liquid, gel, or 2 tsp beet powder alternative)*
- 1 cup (180g) semi-sweet chocolate chips (plus a few extra for after baking)
- Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside.
- Using a handheld or stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on high speed until creamy, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl as needed. Beat in the brown sugar and granulated sugar until combined and creamy, about 1 minute. Beat in the egg, milk, and vanilla extract, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Once mixed, add the food coloring and beat until combined. Turn the mixer off and pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Turn the mixer on low and slowly beat until a very soft dough is formed. Beat in more food coloring if you'd like the dough to be brighter red. On low speed, beat in the chocolate chips. The dough will be sticky.
- Cover the dough tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour (and up to 3 days-- see make ahead tip). Chilling is mandatory.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.
- Scoop 1.5 Tablespoons of dough and roll into a ball, as pictured above. Place 9 balls onto each baking sheet. Bake each batch for 11-12 minutes. The cookies may have only spread slightly, that's ok. Simply press down on the warm cookies to slightly flatten and form crinkles. Stick a few chocolate chips into the tops of the warm cookies (as explained in the post above) - that's optional and only for looks.
- Allow the cookies to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Make ahead tip: Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week. You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Allow to come to room temperature then continue with step 4. Baked cookies freeze well for up to 3 months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well for up to 3 months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw. Click here for my tips and tricks on freezing cookie dough.
- Room temperature egg is preferred. To bring egg to room temperature quickly, simply place in a cup of warm water for 5 minutes. I usually set out my egg when I set out my butter to soften about 1 hour before beginning.
Update: I've successfully made these cookies using beet powder instead of red food coloring - this is a wonderful natural alternative to food coloring. Use 2 teaspoons for a slight red color to your cookies.
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Want to make today’s cookies in 30 minutes or less? Simply follow my recipe for Strawberry Chocolate Chip Cookies and…
- Replace the strawberry cake mix with red velvet cake mix.
- Use white chocolate chips instead of semi-sweet chocolate chip, if you’d like.
- Once the cookies are baked, sprinkle with powdered sugar while they are still warm.
See all Sally’s Cookie Palooza recipes.
See all red velvet recipes.