Cookies are a delicious treat when baked perfectly. Every minute counts during cooking, so it is important to set the timer to the minimum recommended time. When it does, open the oven and test to see if the cookies are set. You can also see if the color is slightly darker, but not enough to get burnt. Remove the cookies, let it cool and enjoy a well-deserved snack.
Method 1 of 4: Performing a Visual Check
Step 1. See if the edges are golden
Cookies with a lighter dough will change color during baking. The center will be light gold, but the edges can be dark gold or light brown. Remove cookies from oven before edges turn dark brown or they may end up burning.
For example, use this method to see if peanut butter, oatmeal, or stuffing cookies are ready
Step 2. Observe if there is a darkening of the coverage
If you have covered cookies with brown sugar or streusel, check to see if the color has changed. The frosting should have a golden appearance. If you wait too long to remove them from the oven, the ingredient on the surface may end up burning and turning dark brown.
If the bar cookie recipe calls for topping at the end of the cooking time, you'll need to watch the crumbs carefully to see if they don't burn. The insides of cookies are usually completely baked by now
Step 3. See if there are any cracks
Cookies that contain small amounts of flour, such as fudge cookies, are ready when they crack in the center and around the edges. It can be helpful to look at a photo of a ready-made cookie before you bake it to know what to expect. With these types, you will see more firmness and an almost opaque color.
Step 4. Remove them while they are still slightly fluffy
A light-colored cookie retains its shape when it's ready. However, it can be a little fluffy and fluffy in the center as well. This is normal and means you can continue to bake in the pan and on the grid for cooling once removed from the oven.
Removing the cookies from the oven at this point will make them softer and juicier. Overcooking will make them brittle
Step 5. Avoid relying on visual indicators when baking dark cookies
In many cases, when this type starts to get even darker, it means it's past the point. To avoid this, make sure you're done using physical, not visual, methods.
Method 2 of 4: Performing a Physical Check
Step 1. Press the edges with your finger
Open the oven, pull a little out of the pan and lightly press the edges of the cookie with a spatula or your finger. If it's steady and doesn't fall in, the cookies are ready. If it has a noticeable indentation, it needs to be baked for a few more minutes.
- This method is even better for dark cookies, such as chocolate or ginger, where the color is not the best indication of when they're done.
- If you choose to take the finger test, be very careful not to burn yourself on the baking sheet.
- If you are working with a fragile cookie, such as a buttery biscuit, test by pressing lightly on the center, not the edges. This lessens the possibility of breaking them on contact.
Step 2. Lift the cookie to check the background
Open the oven and slide a metal spatula under a cookie. Lift only halfway up and check the color, which should be dark brown or golden and with a firm texture.
- Be very careful when lifting the cookie as you may end up breaking it in half.
- This method works well with sand, spritz, or other pale-colored cookies.
Step 3. Insert toothpick into bar cookies
Sometimes it's hard to see if this type is ready because it's so dense and dark. Take a toothpick or barbecue and insert it into the bar. Continue until you get halfway through the cookie and remove it. If there are too many crumbs, the cookies are not ready yet.
It is important to use wooden toothpicks or barbeque sticks as the crumbs slip easily off the metal skewers
Method 3 of 4: Baking for the Correct Time
Step 1. Follow the directions in the recipe
Read the recipe carefully before starting to mix or bake cookies. You can place the baking sheet on a certain rack or even change the temperature when baking cookies. If you decide to change the ingredients, understand that this can also change the cooking time or temperature.
Step 2. Use a timer and set it to the minimum cooking time
Once you've placed the cookies in the oven, set a kitchen timer or set one in the oven to keep track of time and avoid burning the goodies.
See if the timer sound is loud enough for you to listen from wherever you are at home
Step 3. Check cookies at one minute intervals when time runs out
If cookies aren't ready when you test them at the end of the minimum cooking time, you'll have to keep an eye on them from then on. Every minute that passes, take a look through the oven glass or open it to check again.
You shouldn't be doing this throughout the entire cooking time, just at the end. Opening the oven changes the internal temperature
Method 4 of 4: Creating Good Cooking Conditions
Step 1. Check the oven temperature
Get an oven thermometer and use it to see if it's getting to the correct temperature. This instrument is inexpensive and can save you several batches of burnt cookies and other items.
Step 2. Adjust cooking time and temperature depending on the pan
The darker ones retain heat, so you need to bake them for a shorter time. Shiny baking pans reflect the heat outward, and you need to add a minute or two. If cookies often get burnt on the bottom, try lowering the temperature.
Step 3. Use borderless baking sheets to make it easier
It's easier to remove ready-made cookies from this type of baking sheet, and it also has more space. Use thicker metal to prevent bending in the oven.
Step 4. Grease the pan
Take a piece of paper towel, dip it in shortening or butter and place it on the baking sheet. The goal is to create a thin layer of oil. You can also use a non-stick spray or a piece of parchment paper.
Step 5. Place only one baking sheet in the oven at a time
Place it on the center grid. If you're going to bake more than one at a time, you'll likely overfill the oven and change the cooking time. However, if you choose to use two pans, rotate them to ensure even cooking.
Step 6. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet
After removing them from the oven, do not remove them from the baking sheet for three to five minutes. Then lift each one gently with a spatula and transfer them to a grid for cooling, which should be about 10 cm above the table to prevent moisture from accumulating under the cookies.
Step 7. Make adjustments for higher altitudes
If you're cooking at higher altitudes, you'll need to alter the ingredients a bit and monitor the time even more. Start by decreasing the amount of butter, fat or sugar if the cookies get too big and burnt. Time may also vary.
- When placing the dough on the baking sheet, place each cookie at least 5 cm apart so they can spread out when they're baking.
- Measure all ingredients carefully when preparing the cookies.
- Wash your hands when handling raw ingredients, such as flour, to prevent disease transmission.
- When opening and closing the oven, use a kitchen glove or silicone tong. A kitchen towel is usually not thick enough to protect you from the heat.