Mini Crunchy Chocolate Chip Cookies – Famous Amos Style

Like many, one of my earliest childhood association with chocolate chip cookies stems from the sweet scent of caramelised cookies that wafts into your nose, surrounding you in an almost intoxicating scent, calling out to you as you walk through the busy shopping centres. Irresistible and hypnotic. Before you know it, you’ve found yourself trying to convince your parents that they definitely want to buy you a bag of that signature beige pouch of cookies. Which cookies you might ask? Well, it’s none other than Famous Amos. The name itself is self explanatory with the word ‘Famous’ in front of ‘Amos’, because these cookies are definitely one of the reasons how Wally Amos became the famous personality that he was. Sadly, he no longer part of this global franchise, but fortunately his cookies still live on. For those unfamiliar with these cookies, they are ultra crisp, light and almost crumbly at times. They are mini bite size caramelised cookies studded with compound chocolate chips, and are almost tooth achingly sugary for adults (but perfectly sweet for back when I was a kid). Whilst my description might not sound quite as appealing, you’ll know how addictive they are once you’ve had the chance to try them.

The Difference

If I had to put a percentage of how similar to the famed FA cookies my recipe is, I would say its about 75% there. The difference being a few things:
  • All butter, all day long Whilst I can’t be 100% sure that the FA freshly baked cookies aren’t 100% butter, I am pretty sure that they have used a mix of shortening/oil and butter in theirs. What I do know however is that their packaged longer shelf life products that you find in supermarkets is made with oil.
  • It isn’t as sweet as the original Perhaps as a kid the level of sweetness in FA cookies would have been just perfect for me. But having grown older, I’ve found the them to be too sweet for my liking. Now this fact is both a pro and a con. Unfortunately, a huge part of the signature FA crisp and scent is due to the high amount of sugar in their cookies caramelizing as they bake, but in order to make my version less sweet, it was a tough and delicate balance to try and retain both texture and scent whilst reducing the sugar in the cookies but I think I have got the recipe to a state of my liking.
  • No compound chocolate Given that I get to make them however I like them to be (since I’m making it at home), I like a blend of 54% and 70% couverture chocolate chips. The 70% brings a nice occasion pop of bitterness which balances off the sweetness of the 54% chocolate. But you can use all semi-sweet chocolate chips or bitter-sweet chocolate chips for a more “authentic” vibe.
  • I won’t crumble baby, I won’t crumble If you have purchased a bag of FA cookies before, you would find that after knocking it a few times, you would have a mix of roughed up cookies and cookie dust. And whilst I do occasionally enjoy the cookie crumble at the bottom of my FA bag of treats, these cookies here has a crunch that does not crumble, which I prefer.
Whether these changes are good or bad will be left entirely up to your judgement, but I do hope you enjoy these cookies.

How can I make it more like FA?

Like I mentioned, these cookies are probably 75% comparable to FA. If you wish to take it closer, my suggestion would be to increase the amount of sugar in your recipe which will help with both that caramelized flavour and scent, and to replace 30% of the butter with shortening for that crumbly texture.

The Smell

FA cookies are not FA cookies without the signature intoxicating smell. The warmth scent of sugar caramelising in the oven along with those toffee notes that make you eager for cookies. These do have that scent. These does give you that warm happy craving for cookies. But like I had mentioned, because of the fact that these are quite as sugary, the scent produce also isn’t quite as sickly sweet. To bring out a little more of those toffee notes, we are using malted milk powder in the dough and leaving the dough for an extended period of rest in the fridge before we bake them off.

The Texture

The main selling point of these cookies are that they are crisp. Like uber crunchy crispy cookies. Not burnt, but golden crisp goodness. They are also airy and light, if you flip a FA cookies over and have a look at the base, you will see tiny air pockets showing off proudly just how aerated they are. To give it that aeration we are incorporating as much air as possible in the initial stages of the cookie dough process. Just follow the timings involved and have a look at the texture in the video and you will be good to go. Another thing is to ensure you do not overmix the dough once you’ve added the flour. You want it to be crunchy and brittle, not crunchy and tough (yes, there is a difference). πŸ™‚ The next part is shaping the dough. Just gently shape them to be slightly tall in shape for when they bake and to take care to keep the air in the dough. We don’t want for all that hard work to go to waste because we had pressed all of the air out of the dough.

Baking it and Storage

This is the key part. πŸ™‚ I bake these on baking/parchment paper and not silicon pads or non-stick trays as they tend to spread more. Similarly, a lighter colour tray may take longer in the oven before the cookies are ready over a darker colour tray as well πŸ™‚ When baking the cookies, you want to ensure that the cookies are fully baked through down to its core so that it doesn’t turn soft after a day but you do not want it to be dark brown. They should be nice and golden to bring out those toffee notes. If they are over baked you lose all that sweet caramel notes and it starts to turn a little toasted. In my oven, a big tray of cookies (about 60 cookies), takes around 13 mins to be nice and crisp through. But when I bake around 40 cookies, they are ready around the 11-12 mins mark. My suggestion is to always do a small test batch to get your timings right and to keep your eye on them. Once you have the timing down, your eyes are your best tool (to judge what the right colour is) with the baking times for these cookies πŸ™‚ The good news is, this batch makes a good 150-200 cookies so there is plenty of room for trial and error πŸ˜‰

Bags and Bags of Cookies

Ultimately, my aim for these cookies is to make them my own as with all of the recipes on my blog. Many of recipes on the blog may have been inspired by other shops and their products, but in the end I always make create the recipe to suit my liking. πŸ™‚ After over a dozen trial batches these are my version of the ultra crisp and crunchy famous mini cookies. I won’t go into the different versions and technicalities behind the pain of getting the right proportions given that I had decided to go with an all butter cookie dough coupled with the use of lesser sugar, but I am happy with what I had ended up with. Knowing me, I may continue to experiment even further, but for now this is where it shall stay. And because of how light and airy the cookies are, this batch makes a good 150-200 cookies as mentioned above. (I didn’t count how many but this is my “guesstimation”). Once baked, store them in an airtight container and give them away if you can bare to do so πŸ˜‰

Products used

54% Dark Chocolate 70% Dark Chocolate Malted Milk Powder Brand I use: Nestle Malted Milk 500g | Woolworths Alternatives: Ovaltine Malted Milk 400g | MYDIN ONLINE In a pinch: or you can also try Horlicks If looking for other brands of replacements, look for one closest to the where possible (it’s the ingredient list for the one I used):
  • Extract of Malted Barley (29%) and Rice Or Barley , Milk Solids, Vegetable Oil, Emulsifier ( Soy Lecithin), Mineral (Calcium) Salt, Mineral Salt (500), Vitamins (A, B2, B1, D) Contains Gluten, Milk and Soy
Vanilla Extract In summary:
  • Beat your eggs, butter and sugar well like in the video to ensure that they are light and fluffy. This gives it structure and that light airy crumb.
  • If using an electric hand mixer, it will take longer.
  • Using good quality ingredients will pay off in the long run because you are making these for yourself so I recommend using good quality chocolate
  • The original cookies by my estimation probably uses a mix of shortening and butter to give it that signature crumbly texture, should you wish to give it a go, you can substitute 25-30% of the butter with shortening as a trial, see above for a longer note.
  • It is key to let the dough rest for at least 24hrs but ideally 72 hours as that truly gives the flour in the dough the time to hydrate and for the flavours to mingle and develop
  • The malted milk powder is not optional, this adds to the flavour and gives it that extra dimension so please ensure that you do try to get yourself some. They usually last awhile so I feel it’s worth purchasing one. However, if you feel uncomfortable committing to a new product, then you can try without but you do lose some flavour.
  • Please do not replace malted milk powder with regular milk powder or pure malt powder, it is not the same. I have place suggestions above for you to make it easier.
  • The malted milk powder is there to help boost the flavour and compensate for the reduction in sugar in the cookies. πŸ™‚
  • If you like a more chocolate packed cookie, you can add more chocolate chips to your dough, which will give you more chocolate chips in each of your cookies. But I wouldn’t reduce the amount used. Alternatively, you can add well chopped toasted nuts, dried fruits etc. to bulk up the dough.
  • I used a blend of 54% and 70% to help balance off the sweetness so as to give it that occasional pop of bitterness that only 70% dark chocolate can bring.
  • Each cookie dough portion is tiny, like 3/4 of a measuring teaspoon type of tiny. So just be aware of that when portioning the dough as bigger dough balls will take longer to bake through. And the key is to use a measuring teaspoon and not your regular teaspoon.
  • The dough is portioned straight from the fridge and then baked immediately after, so you do not need to let it come to room temperature before baking.
  • Bake them on baking/parchment paper not silicon mats or nonstick surfaces if you can to ensure they don’t spread too much.
  • When portioning them, just use a light hand, so long as they are like tiny mounts on the baking tray they are good to go. The don’t need to look perfect.
  • Getting the bake times right is key, under bake them and they wont be as crunchy, over bake them and you lose that toffee caramel flavour and it goes into the land of dry toast. You want a nice golden colour on your cookies so my suggestion is to bake off a small batch of 7 cookies or so, taste them and try to get the colour down before doing a large batch. A minute can make a big difference with the final taste and outcome.
  • If you had noticed that your cookies have turned soft despite being crunchy at the start chances are that they were under baked. Alternatively it could have been hanging around uncovered at room temperature for hours which results in them being softer. Whichever it was, simply pop them back into the oven (test with a few cookies first before you do the whole batch) to crisp them back up. Once they cool simply store them in an airtight container. My cookies usually take 15-20mins to cool because of how tiny they are. The longer you leave them sitting out on a wire rack the softer it will be, but you will noticed if they are stacked in a container, even uncovered, it won’t turn soft that quickly.
  • Finally, these are addictive and I can’t even count how many I have eaten, but as you know, once you taste something over and over again, you start losing track as to whether the flavour is right or wrong so I am going to leave the decision to you as to whether you like my take on these Famous Amos style cookies.

Crunchy Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies – Famous Amos Style

Recipe not for commercial use, I hope you would respect my wishes and drop me a message should you wish to use it commercially

What you’ll need

  • 175g light brown sugar
  • 80g granulated white sugar
  • 150g unsalted butter, room temp
  • 3/4tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 10g malted milk powder
  • 1 large egg , room temperature
  • 270g all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 180g dark chocolate chips (I used a mix of 54% and 70% chips)

Making it

In the bowl of a stand mixer, add butter, salt, light brown sugar, white sugar, vanilla and malted milk powder together. Beat with the paddle attachment on medium for 4 mins. Add egg and beat for another 4-5mins on medium until light and fluffy. Meanwhile, mix the flour, baking soda and baking powder together in a separate bowl. Add the flour to the bowl of the stand mixer in 2 parts mixing on low until just combined. Do not over mix as you do not want tough cookies, it’s okay if there is still flour visible. Add the chocolate chips and pulse/mix on low until dispersed through the dough. Transfer the dough to a bowl and cling wrap (or transfer the dough to an air tight container) and store in the fridge for at least 24 hours but ideally 72 hours. Baking it Preheat oven to 160C (refer to my FAQ page for oven settings and preheating notes). Line a baking tray with baking/parchment paper. Remove your dough from the fridge and using a 1 tsp measure, measure out around 3/4 tsp worth of dough and place onto the baking sheet. You want to retain the air as much as possible and want to roughly shape them to be tall mounts rather than flat pieces of dough. (please refer to the video) You don’t need to be exact but just a rough gauge, so long as all the pieces are evenly sized.
Bake at 160C for 11-13 mins (see notes above) until fully baked through and golden. Keep your eye on it, you want them to look golden and not brown and toasted. Every oven is different so just be cautious with your first batch until you have that down. Remember to rotate your tray mid-way to ensure that it bakes evenly.
When ready, let cool on the tray for around 3-4 mins before transferring to a wire rack to cool fully before consuming. You will need to let these cookies cool fully before consuming it as you are not after a gooey/chewy cookie but a crunchy crisp cookie. It won’t take long for it to cool because of how tiny they are so be patient. πŸ™‚ Store in an airtight container at room temperature. I hope you enjoy the recipe and do share it with me on Instagram if you give it a go πŸ™‚
Post updated with further notes: 11/6/2020

Products used in my kitchen:

KitchenaidΒ  Baking Trays (I buy mine from a local kitchen store but this is similar)

Equipment Used

Camera: Mic: Lens:

81 Comments Add yours

  1. Mohamad Ali Zubir says:

    Hi.. I won’t know if in the future I might use this recipe for commercial or not. But thanks anyway for the recipe.


  2. Zeti says:

    Hi dear, I wish to use this recipe commercially to support my family. I feel bless you could share the recipe with me. Thank you so much for your kind help in giving such a great recipe.


  3. Sylvia says:

    Hi, can I substitute all purpose flour to self raising flour?


  4. Josephine says:

    Hi, If I’d like to make them in double portions, should I just multiply all ingredients by 2? I made them by multiplying all ingredients 2 including baking powder and baking soda, my cookies turned out soft but not crunchy. 😦


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