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Mile High Cookie Lovers Unite!

Good morning High Altitude Bakers!

Today is a brisk fall day, and as it gets colder and colder one thing comes to my mind.  Baking.

I love to bake, something about warming the house with the oven makes me feel like I’m providing a sense of security and love to my family, and the warm air from the oven smells so much better than the warm air from the furnace. Plus it makes me so happy to see my husband and daughter indulging in a warm slice of homemade bread or a couple of perfect cookies and milk.

One recipe I think all of us should have easily accessible is the one for Chocolate Chip Cookies. So today, I dedicate this post to all of my High Altitude Friends, and am sharing the Nestle Toll House Recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookies – high altitude style. You can click here for their version, or see below and I’ve changed the recipe to reflect the correct portions for you so you don’t have to keep looking at the bottom of the recipe to make sure you did it right :-).

But wait, before you bake watch this….Yes you Friends Fanatics, it’s Phoebe’s Grandmother’s Recipe – from Nestle Tolouse.

hehe – ok, here we go.


Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies – High Altitude


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp water
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels
  • 1 cup chopped nuts


PREHEAT oven to 375° F.

COMBINE flour, water, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.

BAKE for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

PAN COOKIE VARIATION: Grease 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan. Prepare dough as above. Spread into prepared pan. Bake for 17 to 19 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan on wire rack. Makes 4 dozen bars.

PREPARE dough as above. Divide in half; wrap in waxed paper. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until firm. Shape each half into 15-inch log; wrap in wax paper. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.* Preheat oven to 375° F. Cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices; place on ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely. Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

* May be stored in refrigerator for up to 1 week or in freezer for up to 8 weeks.


Now I’ve made these cookies 1,236,319 times (give or take 1,000,000 times) and just today I started wondering why those of us in the thinner air have to change our recipe from the general one. I know it has something to do with science, but that’s all I knew.  So I did some research and found some very cool information!

1.  Water evaporates faster for those of us in higher altitudes, and this is why we have to add water to our recipe.

2.  Because our water evaporates faster, when baking it leaves a higher concentration of sugar and fat, and this is why we have to reduce the amount of sugar in our recipe.

I think the earth is a fascinating place, and I’m amazed at how minor adjustments need to be made for all of us to survive in our specified climates. My friends in Florida need sunscreen and flip-flops to maintain their comfortable cozy life, and those of us in Colorado need a variety of outfits including wool coats and mittens to do the same. I guess the same goes for recipes, lower altitude needs more sugar to maintain the sweet delicious cookie taste, and those in Colorado need a little extra water to do the same.

For more information on high altitude baking, check out this great site I found, and if you’re really interested, grab her book “Pie in the Sky” it looks great!

So enjoy the fall, no matter where you are, and have fun baking these Mile High Cookies!

Happy Baking my Dish Friends!


2 thoughts on “Mile High Cookie Lovers Unite!

  1. I agree! It took me a couple months to revise my own chocolate chip cookie recipe to work well at a mile high when Nate & I moved here. I can also attest that the books you mentioned are worth the read; those are the exact resources I used to adjust Nana’s bread recipe to make it work in Denver too. 🙂 Yay! Great blog.

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