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Maida Heatter’s Chocolate Whopper Cookies

4.87 from 22 community reviews

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Maida Heatter’s big, chunky, double chocolate brownie cookies, called “Whoppers”, are packed with chocolate chips, crunchy pecans, and walnuts. Our favorite chocolate cookies ever!

Photo of a stack of chocolate nut cookies on a rack with a black background.


There’s a story behind this chocolate Whopper cookies recipe, very much inspired by Maida Heatter. A long time ago, I lived in Miami and spent a few years working at a wine store.

My job consisted of tasting, spitting, sometimes not spitting (a job perk), unloading cases of wine and every once in a while selling wine to customers.

One of my clients was none other than Maida Heatter, a renowned teacher, baker and cookbook writer.

Best Maida Heatter cookbooks

Maida lived in Miami Beach and would come in periodically to stock up on wine and gourmet goodies. She had a sweetly disarming way about her, and she’d usually bring in some of her cellophane-wrapped homemade cookies for us to sample.

We’d swoon with delight and thank her profusely. Then she’d yell, “Honey, I can’t hear you, I’m deaf as a post. Now where’s that chardonnay I bought last time?”

I hope that she’s been outfitted with one of those high-tech hearing aids these days, because if she were listening I’d tell her — loudly — about how I’ve been collecting her mostly now out-of-print cookbooks and using her remarkably detailed, never-fail recipes for cookies, cakes and all manner of  sweets for years and years. I just love her.

Photo showing a stack of chocolate cookies, split in half to show the inside,

In fact, one of my all-time favorite Maida recipes are these Chocolate Whoppers, big, chunky, brownie-like confections with crisp, shiny tops and moist, dark and nutty chocolate interiors.

Chocolate whopper cookies ingredients

These monster-sized treats are chock full of crunchy pecans, walnuts and two different types of chocolate, semisweet and bittersweet.

The dough includes a small amount of flour along with a “secret” ingredient – espresso powder. The dried concentrated coffee really enhances the chocolate flavors.

All in all, these whoppers are totally worthy of the word “devilish”. The cookie dough comes together easily, and all you need to do is drop blobs of the batter onto baking sheets.

You’ll most certainly be very popular if you make a batch or two to give to friends and family. Just be sure to keep one for yourself, too.

More fantastic cookies for your recipe box

stack of chunky double chocolate whopper cookies

Maida Heatter’s Double Chocolate Whopper Cookies

Karen Tedesco
Chocolate Whoppers are big, gorgeous, super-chocolatey cookies that are crisp on the outside and chewy inside, just like your favorite brownie.
Print Pin
4.87 from 22 community reviews
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 17 minutes
Total Time 37 minutes
Course Chocolate
Cuisine dessert
Servings 12 cookies

Ingredients

  • 4 ounces (125 g) semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 4 ounces (125 g) bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 6 tablespoons (85 g) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons
  • ¼ cup (30 g) sifted unbleached all-purpose flour (sift before measuring)
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup (180 g) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 6 ounces (175 g) dark or semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup (100 g) pecans, broken into large pieces
  • 1 cup (100 g) walnut halves, broken into large pieces

Instructions 

  • Heat oven to 350 (175C) degrees with rack in the center. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Place the chopped chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a medium saucepan of simmering water. Stir gently until melted and smooth. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
  • Whisk the flour in a small bowl with salt and baking powder.
  • Beat the eggs, sugar, espresso and vanilla in a large bowl using an electric mixer on high speed until light and lofty, 2 or 3 minutes.
  • Drizzle in the melted chocolate on low speed until blended. Add the flour mixture and mix until incorporated. Turn off the mixer and stir in the chocolate chips and nuts.
  • Use a ⅓-cup measure to scoop the dough into 6 mounds on each of the prepared baking sheets, spacing about 2 inches apart. Use a small spatula to scrape the dough out – it's a little gooey.
  • Bake one sheet at a time for 17 minutes. The tops of the cookies should look dry and shiny. Cool the cookies on the pan for 15 minutes, then transfer with a spatula to a wire rack cool completely.

Karen’s Notes and Tips

This recipe is from which is an out-of-print treasure. Look out for used copies of all Maida’s books at used bookstores.

Nutrition

Calories: 433kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Sodium: 121mg | Potassium: 280mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 25g | Vitamin A: 236IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 3mg

Nutrition facts are calculated by third-party software. If you have specific dietary needs, please refer to your favorite calculator.

Did you make this recipe? Search @Familystylefood or tag #familystylefood on Pinterest
Recipe developer Karen Tedesco of the popular website Familystyle Food in her kitchen making a kale salad.

Hey, I’m Karen

Creator of Familystyle Food

I’m a food obsessed super-taster and professionally trained cook ALL about creating elevated dinners with everyday ingredients. Find simplified recipes made from scratch and enjoy incredibly tasty food! Read more about me here.

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20 Comments

  1. Estela Tejidor says:

    Two questions for you, Karen!
    1. Is it good to refrigerate the Maida Heatter Whoppers cookie dough overnight? I usually do so the flour can fully hydrate, but there’s barely any flour.
    2. Why do you recommend the new book of Maida’s cookies more than her first book of cookies? I was wondering if the first book would have her lifelong recipes and might be the better of the two.
    Thank you,
    Estela

    1. Thanks for great questions Estela! You’re correct. Because this cookie dough has a higher proportion of fat and chocolate to flour, it gets harder to scoop when chilled. To remedy that, you’ll have to plan on leaving it at room temperature until it feels workable. As for her books, I love all of them, so it’s hard to pick a favorite! Most are out of print (sadly), but The Brand New Book of Great Cookies is easier to find, so that’s why I recommend it to people who are just learning about her.

  2. 5 stars
    I am planning to make these for my next dinner party! What a fun way to change my dessert game a bit. XO

    1. 5 stars
      I made these this past weekend and they were a huge hit! I served them for dessert with some good vanilla ice cream on the side. XO

  3. wow this looks like the perfect cookie combination. I will be making these for a birthday party this weekend. Hope mother-in-law doesn’t mind me showing her up.

  4. maureen turner says:

    I am looking for a very simple recipe from a Maida Heatter book from the eighties? maybe early 90s. It was made with chocolate and condensed milk and flour, I think. I have lost my cookbook which only proves my husband frequent quip: Two moves are as good as a fire!

    Thank you.

  5. Heavens! I don’t even eat cookies, hardly, but I want to reach out and grab several of those right away. I don’t care if it is New Year’s resolution time. Just gorgeous.

  6. Deborah Dowd says:

    These look like a great addition to my Christmas cookie reperatoire… and so easy! Have a very Merry Christmas, and the time to enjoy all its blessings!

  7. SteamyKitchen says:

    making these tomorrow!

  8. Dianne's Dishes says:

    Oh wow! Those look amazing. I love chocolate cookies!

  9. Yum!!! sounds so rich and delicious!

  10. Jenny,now is the time to totally indulge in chocolate. Enjoy…

    Emiline, now that you mention it, malted milk balls might be brilliant in these! Must try.

    Patricia, they might not be typically “holiday” cookies, but they are so good.

    Stacy, I’ll pack them up for you, but hopefully not for a few hundred years.

    Ronnie, enjoy your son’s homecoming and I’m sure he will love some sweet treats.

  11. Ronnie (https://aroundthetable.typepad.com) says:

    These look amazing. This post and recipe come just in time for my son’s arrival home from college. Thanks from me and I am sure from him!

  12. Anonymous says:

    I think when I go to heaven, I want a couple dozen of these babies in my overnight bag!
    Happy Holidays Karen!
    Stacy

  13. Patricia Scarpin says:

    Oh, Karen, these are luscious!
    I’ll have to add them to my holiday baking list… 🙂

  14. They look delicious! Maida Heatter sounds like quite a character. I think I’ve seen her famous brownie recipes on a few blogs.
    At first I thought you left the “Whoppers” out, or the malted milk powder, but I’m an idiot.

  15. Yummmmmm! Bring on the chocolate! I’ve been making chocolate cookies for the past 2 weeks. These will make a great addition.