The Two Most Common Cookie Baking Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
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The Two Most Common Cookie Baking Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Por Eloísa Carmona - Diciembre 2021
Leer en español

You may not be an experienced baker, and even if you have baked before, sometimes the outcome makes you wonder, “What the hell am I doing wrong and why are my cookies hard?!”

Despite being an easy recipe, cookies often turn out to be one of the most difficult foods to prepare as you need to find the perfect balance in each step so that they don’t end up being too thick, too cakey, or too hard.

Whether they are chocolate chips cookies or banana cookies, there are several things you must watch out for to understand what went wrong with your cookies, for example, the consistency of the cookie dough before baking. Some of the most common mistakes made when making cookies include not adding enough flour or adding too much, using more eggs than needed, or even more sugar, and many more that you can read next:

  • Using baking powder instead of baking soda.
  • Mixing all the ingredients at once instead of following the recipe step by step.
  • Adding extra eggs.
  • Completely forgetting about the eggs.
  • Not sifting the flour or adding too much of it.
  • Not using enough flour.
  • Overmixing the dough.
  • Using too much butter.
  • Not using enough butter.
  • Not using enough sugar.

Why do my cookies turn out hard?

If your cookies turn out rock-hard, you must have made one of the two most common mistakes: not adding enough butter or not using enough flour.

Some cookies are crispy and have a firmer consistency, while others, like chocolate chips or oatmeal cookies, can be either soft or crunchy. The secret to a fluffy texture instead of a thin and crispy texture lies in moisture.

For example, forming cookies in high mounds, instead of flattening them with your hands, and cooking them for a minute or two will help them retain more density and will make them softer.

To make the cookie dough moister, you can add extra butter, egg yolks, or brown sugar, which will make them even softer. To make softer cookies, add 2 to 4 tablespoons of softened butter or ¼ cup of sugar to the dough.

Using less flour will make cookies flat, brown, crispy, fragile, and greasy. Moreover, they will be done much faster.

The outcome will be hard and fragile cookies, just as when you use butter that is too soft or slightly melted to the dough, which can also result in flat cookies. The easy solution is to add more flour to the dough, little by little, until the dough sticks to the mixer.

Try these small changes with your next cookies. Finding the perfect way to make cookies that don’t turn out rock-hard is a matter of trial and error.

                                                                                                                                                           Translated by Miranda Perea
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