Ree Drummond found recipe inspiration in an unlikely place — at a chain restaurant. The Pioneer Woman star has a perfect copycat recipe for Chili’s skillet chocolate chip cookie dessert, but she uses a sheet pan so it can easily feed a crowd.
Ree Drummond was inspired by a dessert at Chili’s
Drummond shared how a trip to Chili’s inspired a copycat cookie sundae recipe. She explained the details in a 2012 blog post on The Pioneer Woman website.
“A few weeks ago, after an away soccer game, my daughter and her best friend, who happens to be my best friend Hyacinth’s daughter (confused yet?), launched a full-on begging fest regarding their post-soccer dinner,” she wrote. “’Can we go to Chili’s?’ they cried. ‘No,’ both Hyacinth and I replied. It was getting dark, and we wanted to go home.”
The kids pleaded and the moms kept telling them ‘No’ — until they finally gave in. “So we went to Chili’s. As mothers, Hyacinth and I believe in sticking to our guns,” Drummond added.
The visit to the chain restaurant gave Drummond a recipe idea. “This dessert is inspired by one of the gooey, drippy desserts on their menu — a dessert we didn’t let the girls order no matter how much they begged!,” she explained. “We got the molten lava cake instead. So we got the last word!”
Ree Drummond makes a copycat skillet chocolate chip cookie recipe
Drummond demonstrated how to make the dessert on an episode of The Pioneer Woman called “Alex’s 16th Birthday,” which featured a surprise party with all of her daughter’s favorite foods.
In addition to the dinner spread, Drummond made what she called “a delicious take on a birthday cake” — her chocolate chip caramel ice cream sundae recipe. “I wanted to make all of Alex’s favorite foods for the party and she loves these sundaes,” she explained. “My daughter Alex loves dessert in pretty much any form but she’s particularly partial to cookies, so this dessert has her name written all over it.”
The Pioneer Woman star made the cookie base, creaming together butter, brown sugar, and sugar, then added eggs and vanilla. She combined the dry ingredients — flour, salt, baking soda, and “my secret weapon in any chocolate chip cookie recipe,” instant coffee. Drummond explained how the surprising ingredient “adds a nice richness of flavor to the cookie dough.” She slowly added the dry ingredients, then mixed in semisweet chocolate chips.
Drummond turned the dough out onto a baking sheet sprayed with baking spray and spread it to the edges of the pan. “I want this cookie base to bake really evenly,” she explained. “I don’t want it to have a lot of mountains and craters.”
The Food Network host baked the cookie in a 375 degree Fahrenheit oven for 18 to 20 minutes, removed it, and allowed the cookie to cool slightly. She cut the cookie into squares and topped each serving with ice cream, caramel sauce, hot fudge sauce, and whipped cream.
The full recipe is available on the Food Network website.
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