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"I call these the 'backache' cookies because I always make a double batch, sitting hunched over at the table," says Fran Pepoon of Roseville, California. She has been baking these chocolate cookies, which have a subtle hit of orange and vanilla, every Christmas for 30 years, adapting them over time from a recipe given to her by a friend. Two tips: The cookies tend to stick and spread, so be sure to use a nonstick baking-sheet liner or parchment, and don't bake more than 12 cookies on each sheet.

This Story Originally Appeared On sunset.com


Credit: Erin Kunkel; Styling: Kelly Allen

Recipe Summary

2 hrs
2 hrs
Makes about 50 cookies (serving size: 1 cookie)


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 325° with racks in upper and lower thirds.

  • In a medium bowl, mix oats, sugar, and butter together with a wooden spoon. Stir in egg until well blended, then vanilla and orange juice. Add flour and salt and stir to mix. Batter will be somewhat thick.

  • Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or nonstick baking liners. Drop batter by half-teaspoonfuls onto sheets, at least 2 in. apart (cookies will spread), up to 12 per sheet. Bake until golden brown, switching positions of sheets halfway through, 8 to 10 minutes total.

  • Cool cookies on baking sheets until just holding their shape, about 2 minutes (don't wait until they're completely cool, as they will be harder to remove). With a thin metal spatula, gently transfer to cooling racks and let cool completely.

  • Put chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl and heat in 20-second bursts until almost melted. Stir to melt completely.

  • Thinly spread chocolate on flat side of half of cookies. Sandwich with another cookie and let harden on racks, about 2 hours at room temperature.

  • Make ahead: Up to 1 week, airtight at room temperature.

Nutrition Facts

58 calories; calories from fat 46%; protein 0.6g; fat 3g; saturated fat 1.8g; carbohydrates 7.7g; fiber 0.4g; sodium 38mg; cholesterol 9.1mg.