Get people caffeine-buzzed off of my cookies
April 18, 2009 6:07 PM   Subscribe

How do I get caffeine into my cookies?

Hi there! I'd like to somehow caffeinate the cookies I bake. I know these exist, and if I were a simple person, I would just buy them. But I'm not simple, and I want more variety! I found this as well, but the people I'm baking for are oatmeal-averse.

I'd eventually like to make caffeinated chocolate chip cookies, dark chocolate cookies, and maybe... peanut butter cookies?

Should I take the advice of the second website and just try to replace some of the liquid with coffee or espresso, and add finely ground beans?

Maybe you've done this before [because you have crazy caffeine-junkie friends] and can guide me.

Thanks, Hive!
posted by rachaelfaith to Food & Drink (20 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Yeah, using coffee/espresso in place of some or all of the water is probably the easiest and most common approach.

If you don't want the coffee/espresso flavor, you could probably use caffeinated water, or maybe even soda (soda has a ton of sugar though, so this route would probably reward some test batches). You could also extract caffeine from caffeine pills (this approach might be a little less baker and a little more meth cook, though).
posted by box at 6:15 PM on April 18, 2009

You can also add instant coffee or perhaps Macha to the dry ingredients before mixing in the wet.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 6:19 PM on April 18, 2009

Try adding chocolate covered espresso beans instead of chocolate chips.
posted by cog_nate at 6:25 PM on April 18, 2009

NoDoz or other over-the-counter anti-sleep pills are basically caffeine; you could try grinding one up and putting it in the dough. Though I don't know if the high temperatures from baking would kill the caffeine.
posted by raf at 6:26 PM on April 18, 2009

Response by poster: Yeah, I don't know about the caffeine pills. I think my friends would give the thumbs up, but it would make me a little uneasy.

I like the idea of the chocolate-covered espresso beans.. I wonder if they would burn, though, and taste like horribly burnt coffee.

Caffeinated water! Who knew?
posted by rachaelfaith at 6:30 PM on April 18, 2009

Best answer: How about adding instant espresso powder to your dough? To me, espresso powder has a much better taste than regular instant coffee. Smoother, not so bitter.

My grocery store stopped carrying Medaglia D'Oro, so I've started purchasing it online from Java Cabana and have been happy with the experience.

It's also really good added to hot chocolate powdered mix.
posted by marsha56 at 6:58 PM on April 18, 2009

Yes ... caffeinated water. I've used it to make coffee for a double jolt. I like the chocolate-covered espresso bean idea. That sounds like a great cookie.
posted by Kangaroo at 6:58 PM on April 18, 2009

Stir espresso powder into a jar of'll have a frosting that makes anything taste good!
posted by aquafortis at 7:44 PM on April 18, 2009 [2 favorites]

Caffeine pills (No-Doz, Vivarin) are more consistent in their caffeine content (typically 200mg per pill) than coffee. You'll be able to say with some accuracy "exactly" how much caffeine is present in each cookie and will be able to offset the bitter taste of caffeine using precise amounts of sugar with no other odd-ball tastes to work around.

A cup of coffee may vary from 200-500mg of caffeine depending on various factors, so I never understand the aversion people have to caffeine pills (which are also a helluva bargain compared to Red Bull et al).

You could make your own caffeinated water by thoroughly crushing No-Doz and dissolving in water. The undissolved portion is mostly a harmless cellulose binder that you could probably filter using a coffee filter.
posted by aydeejones at 7:56 PM on April 18, 2009

And since most cookie recipes I've dealt with don't involve much in the way of liquids (unless you melt your butter for a chewy cookie, which you wouldn't want to replace with caffeinated water), I'd say you should cream crushed caffeine pills with your butter and sugar. Then and there you can taste the creamed combo to adjust the sugar against the natural bitterness of caffeine.
posted by aydeejones at 7:59 PM on April 18, 2009 [1 favorite]

If you're not set on the idea of a chocolate chip type cookie, you could try a sugar cookie dough spiked with Crystal Light Energy drink powder, which is strawberry-flavored. It has a surprising amount of caffeine - 120 mg per little single-serving sleeve.
posted by lakeroon at 8:15 PM on April 18, 2009

What about caffeine powder?
posted by Liver at 8:21 PM on April 18, 2009

Use instant espresso powder, such as Medaglia d'Oro. For some really good ideas on ways to use this, see Dorie Greenspan's Baking from My Home to Yours. I've baked about half the recipes in that book and it is really great. The last thing I made was her Classic Brownies, which use the espresso powder, and they were amazingly, astoundingly good (although I used Valhrona chocolate in them, which I'm sure was a big part of it). They pack a very significant caffeine punch.
posted by HotToddy at 8:52 PM on April 18, 2009

I've made cookies with crushed espresso beans in them.

Not sure if this link will work if you're not a member, but try this. It's low-carb, but you can sub in sugar and regular flour if you want to.
posted by bink at 9:06 PM on April 18, 2009

Response by poster: So many great ideas! I'm thinking I'll try the following so far:
1. Chocolate with instant espresso powder
2. Crushed caffeine pills mixed into regular cookie dough
3. Cookie made with caffeinated water and chocolate covered espresso beans

I also adore the idea of espresso powder mixed into Nutella. Maybe for a sandwich cookie...
posted by rachaelfaith at 9:17 PM on April 18, 2009

I think you should taste a caffeine pill before you crush 'em and put 'em in cookie dough.
posted by box at 9:19 PM on April 18, 2009

Ummm... why not just add caffeine?
posted by Netzapper at 9:31 PM on April 18, 2009

Keep in mind if you add caffeine before cooking, it has a boiling point of 178° C (352.4° F). I don't know how hot your oven will be getting, but if you expect the caffeine to have its desired properties and effects, you should probably try and keep it from boiling (either by adding it later on or by cooking longer with less heat).
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 10:54 AM on April 19, 2009

I've tried using chocolate covered espresso beans in cookies. They tasted good, but the chocolate melted in funny ways, and didn't ever set back up right. I was placing them on top of the cookies, so a recipe with them inside might work better. I have uses espresso powder several times, ant that works very well, especially in chocolate cookies with a rich flavor.
posted by nalyd at 7:00 PM on April 19, 2009

Very late to this thread but I made these chocolate peanut butter cups using dark chocolate with a pinch of ground espresso swirled onto the top and they were pretty awesome. Definitely made your heart thump a bit!
posted by amanda at 10:16 PM on July 3, 2009

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