Summer’s here, which means no more school lunches, but it does mean trips to the beach, the pool, hiking, camping and day camps, and kids need portable fuel to power them through their outdoor activities. Rather than rely on packaged granola and cereal bars, make a large batch of cookies crammed with granola – add any type of chopped nuts, seeds and dried fruit you like as well – and wrap them individually or in twos to stash in backpacks and even in the glove compartment of the car for snacks at the ready when you need them.
These sturdy cookies freeze and travel well – if you don’t want such a large batch, freeze blobs of dough on a baking sheet and then transfer to freezer bags to thaw and bake whenever you need them. To make jumbo cookies, use an ice cream scoop and flatten a little with your hand to make a sort of patty of dough before they go into the oven.
Campers Chocolate Chip Cookies with Granola and Dried Cranberries
This recipe is easily halved if you don’t want as large a batch; the dough and baked cookies also freeze well.
3/4 cup butter, softened¨
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar¨
2 large egg¨s
1 Tbsp. vanilla
2 cups flour (all-purpose, whole wheat or a combination)
¨1 tsp. baking soda ¨
1/2 tsp. salt¨
3 cups granola¨
1/2 cup dried cranberries¨
1/2 cup chopped nuts and/or seeds (such as walnuts, pecans, sesame, pumpkin or sunflower seeds)
1-2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a large bowl cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy; beat in the egg and vanilla. Add the flour, baking soda and salt and stir until almost combined; add the granola, cranberries, nuts and/or seeds and chocolate chips and stir just until blended.
Drop spoonfuls of dough an inch or two apart onto cookie sheets that have been sprayed with nonstick spray. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until barely golden and set around the edges but still soft in the middle. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.¨¨ Makes about 2 dozen cookies.