That 72-ounce bag of Nestle chocolate morsels sounded like a great ingredient to have handy a month ago when I tossed it into my cart at Costco. But that’s back when I was still a producer at GSN Live. I could have baked up a recipe that served the entire Salinas Valley State Prison and within an hour of busting the results out for the staff and crew, there wouldn’t have been a crumb left standing.
But GSN Live has gone to that great “interstitial-game-talk show heaven” in the sky along with… well, maybe it’s the first to qualify for that particular branch of heaven, but that’s not the point. There’s just suddenly no need to be making recipes that large anymore, and the chocolate chips stuffed to the seams of that gargantuan bag have becomes less of a valuable component in my baking needs, and more of a nightly snack, gobbled down by the handful while I’m clearing out the 12 episodes of Charlie Rose that have accumulated on my DVR.
So whether or not I was going to be able to find enough people to help take these 24 sinfully satisfying muffins off my hands or not, they simply needed to be made.
Luckily, I remembered that even though I’m not employed in production at the moment, MG is! So off he went to work armed with about 10 of them, not counting the three he ate himself (two in a row, which I will never understand). My sister and I each had one, three went down to my building manager and maintenance crew and the rest were divvied up by the owners and staff at my favorite Hollywood food spot, Vintage Enoteca.
So take a look at the ingredient list, and don’t bother asking whether or not they’re going to be worth the effort, because they are. The only thing you need to ask is, “Do I trust myself with 24 of these sitting in my kitchen?” and if you don’t, immediately start that list of people you love… or that list of people you want to love you… and share with them a few of these!
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes
For the Cupcakes:
- 3 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
- 4 eggs
- 2 2/3 cup AP flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup almond milk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup chocolate chips (semisweet or bittersweet)
For the Filling:
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
- 6 tbsp light brown sugar, packed
- 1 cup plus 2 tbsp AP flour
- 7 oz sweetened condensed milk
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips (I didn’t have minis, but as you may have heard, I have a 72 ounce bag of regular chocolate chips, so I used those here as well).
For the Frosting:
- 3 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 3 1/2 cups confectioner’s sugar
- 1 cup AP flour
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 3 tbsp almond milk
- 2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and brown sugar. Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes (yes, you can do it with your hand and a wooden spoon too. I did!)
Mix in the eggs, one at a time, beating well and scraping down the sides after each addition.
Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir together to blend. Add the dry ingredients to the butter/sugar mix on low speed, alternating with the milk, so that you start and end with the dry goods. Mix only until just incorporated. Mix in the vanilla. Fold in the chocolate chips with a spatula.
Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cupcake liners. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. All to cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then place on a cooling rack. Let cool completely.
To make the cookie dough filling, combine the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and cream on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the flour, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla until incorporated and smooth. Stir in the mini chocolate chips. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until mixture has firmed up, at least an hour, or as long as overnight
To fill the cupcakes, cut a cone-shaped hole in the center of each of them. Fill each hole with a chunk of the cookie dough mixture. Keep the cones you cut out as bonus snacks for all your hard efforts!
To make the frosting, beat together the butter and brown sugar on medium-high until creamy. Mix in the confectioner’s sugar until smooth. Beat in the flour and salt. Mix in the milk and vanilla extract until smooth and well-blended. Frost the filled cupcakes as desired and sprinkle with (mini) chocolate chips.