I LOVE Monster Cookies! If you're not familiar, allow me to explain. A Monster Cookie is an oatmeal cookie meets peanut butter cookie meets chocolate chip cookie- Genius! Alas, I am allergic to Peanut Butter, so I make mine with Cashew Butter. My Soft and chewy, peanut-free Monster Cookies get tons of compliments, and they always disappear in the blink of an eye.
While these cookies can go right from bowl to oven, I definitely recommend chilling the dough overnight. The flavors mesh better, they won't spread as much, and the texture will be more soft and chewy. So be sure to prep ahead of time.
Like every cookie, start with creaming the softened butter and sugars. Beat in Cashew Butter and Cookie Butter. (I use the Cookie Butter to compensate for the lack of flavor/ sugar in the Cashew Butter. You can also use Almond Butter in place of the Cashew Butter, if you prefer.) Add in your room temperature eggs, one at a time, beating well after each egg. Beat in the vanilla. Set this bowl aside. In another bowl, whisk together your dry ingredients- flour, oats, cornstarch, baking soda, and ground cinnamon. (Be sure to use quick oats!)
Slowly incorporate the flour mixture into your butter mixture, beating well after each addition. Then mix in your chocolate chips and M & M's. I find that semi-sweet chocolate chips give just the right amount of sweetness without being overpowering. For the M & M's, I highly recommend using the M & M Baking Bits. They come in both Milk Chocolate and Semi-sweet, and I think they just hold up better to baking. Cover your dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
When ready, allow the dough to sit out and come up to temperature for a few minutes while you preheat your oven to 350*F and prep your cookie sheets. Allowing the dough to sit out for just a few minutes makes the dough easier to scoop, and will give the finished product just the right amount of spread.
Speaking of spreading- as much as I love my Silpat, I do not recommend using it, or any silicone baking mat, for these cookies. You will get too much spread, and may end up with a flat, crunchy cookie. Instead, stick with parchment paper. (Easier clean-up, too.) Using your cookie scoop, roll out tablespoon sized dough balls and place them on your prepared cookie sheets, allowing enough room between for spread. Someone once asked me why I don't make the huge, Bakery-style cookies. I know a lot of people prefer a larger cookie, but I personally find that they tend not to bake as evenly, so I stick with the tablespoon size.
Slide your cookie sheet into the oven and bake for about 9-11 minutes. They should be lightly golden and just slightly set on top. Do Not Overbake. Keep in mind that the cookies will continue to bake on the pan a bit even after they've been pulled out the oven. Allow them to rest for about five minutes on the cookie sheets before carefully removing them to cookie racks to cool completely. They will be very soft at this point, almost falling apart, but they will set up more as they cool.
Now, enjoy and share, and watch how fast they disappear!