Milk Bar’s Compost Cookies

This post is a little overdue as I’ve been down with my yearly bout of bronchitis for the last fortnight. I’m a person who loses my appetite when I’m sick – as usually I lose my sense of smell and taste, and with those gone the allure of my usual favourite foods doesn’t appeal as much as they always do. The main symptoms are gone but the horrid honking cough remains – and apparently it hangs around for a couple of weeks after, which is depressing. I do hope that I am well enough to travel next Tuesday!

With our three week holiday upcoming, I’ve been attempting to clear out the pantry and fridge, and stumbled over this “Compost Cookie” recipe – apparently a famous snack by Momofuku Milk Bar’s Christine Tosi. It’s an ingenious way to use up the baking section of your pantry, and if you maintain a good balance of sweet to salty, these cookies taste amazing and will have people guessing the ingredients – which is quite a bit of fun!


I riffled through the cupboards and decided to make the cookies out of a combination of: roasted, unsalted peanuts, white chocolate, quick oats, salted pretzels, and plain salted potato chips. I also added in a handful of edible rainbow confetti as it was Mardi Gras weekend and I wanted something festive.


These cookies spread, puff, and will sink when baked. They will not cook properly if you bake them at room temperature, and I had to adjust the recipe slightly as the original said to put the whole trays with balls of cookie dough into the fridge. I don’t know what your fridge looks like, but I certainly don’t have the room for that! So instead I rolled the mixture into logs, wrapped them in cling film, refrigerated them, then when they were sufficiently hardened I sliced them before rolling them into balls onto the tray.

You will need:

1 cup potato chips, crushed unevenly;

1 cup salted pretzels, crushed unevenly (or whole mini ones, icupf you can find them);

1/3 cup quick-cooking oats;

1/2 cup white chocolate chips or roughly chopped white chocolate;

1/4 cup roasted peanuts (unsalted if you can);

1/4 cup edible rainbow confetti (optional);

240g butter, at room temperature;

2/3 cup lightly packed light brown sugar;

1 cup caster sugar;

2 tablespoons glucose syrup;

1 egg;

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract;

1 + 1/3 cup plain flour;

1/2 teaspoon baking powder;

1/4 teaspoon bicarb soda;

1 teaspoon salt.

Combine the butter, sugars, and glucose in a large bowl and cream together with an electric mixer on medium-high for 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg and vanilla, and beat for 7-8 minutes.


Reduce the speed to low and add the flour, baking powder, bicarb soda, and salt. Mix just until the dough comes together, no longer than a minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula.

Still on low speed, add the white chocolate, oats and peanuts and mix until just incorporated, about 30 seconds. Add the potato chips and pretzels and mix on low speed, until just incorporated. Try not to crush them too much.



Roll the mixture into 5cm thick logs, and wrap in cling film. Refrigerate for at least one hour, or up to one week.


Preheat oven to 190 degrees Celcius.

Using a sharp knife, slice into 1 cm thick rounds and place 2-3 inches apart on baking paper-lined trays. Bake for 15-18 minutes, until they are faintly brown on the edges yet still bright yellow in the centre.

IMG_6063IMG_6066IMG_6074Cool the cookies completely on the pans before transferring to a plate or an airtight container for storage. At room temperature, cookies will keep fresh for five days – in the freezer, they will keep for a month.




One Comment Add yours

  1. I’ve got to say, these look pretty good! I wasn’t convinced at all until I got right to the end. In the last photo they look so crispy, textured and colourful and I do love salty with sweet. Had a giggle at your statement – “they will not cook properly if you bake them at room temperature”. Did the original recipe call for a low temperature?

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