Where I live, they only just recently opened up a Trader Joe’s. It’s in a corner of the city that’s out of the way of my usual habits, so I don’t go there very often. When I do, well, it’s pretty neat, but I’m not one of those fanatics who digs deep into brand loyalty and will stop at nothing to get their products.
That said, sometimes a treat comes along that I really enjoy. More unfortunately, those treats end up discontinued, and then I’m left to live without them. The berry Dr. Pepper, a Queso tortilla chip I liked… and now this.
Trader Joe’s Cocoa Meringue Cookies look like this:
Like any good meringue, they’re a little chalky, crisp, and melt in your mouth. They were surprisingly good for a cookie we impulse purchased from a store we rarely visit.
The next time we went by, they didn’t have any, nor did they have them the time after that. So, I looked into it, and I discovered that they were discontinued months ago! Another one bites the dust.
But, you know what? Meringues aren’t really all that hard. And, I noticed something. When my partner made his fancy Chocolate Cherry Pavlova a while back, the crispy outer bits of the meringue tasted just like the Trader Joe’s Cocoa Meringues I liked.
So, I decided to make some.
As far as recipes go, it’s super simple. A few eggs, some sugar, a bit of cream of tartar, corn starch, cocoa powder, a pinch of salt, and some chopped chocolate. It’s almost note-for-note the same as the pavlova meringue, just cooked differently.
Here’s how they look when they turn out.
Pretty close, right? The Trader Joe’s meringues are a little darker in color, but that’s pretty much it. Mine are still crispy, a little chalky in texture, and super tasty with bits of chocolate in them. So, want to know how to make this copycat treat?
Copycat Snacks: Trader Joe’s Chocolate Chip Cocoa Meringues
- Stand Mixer With whisk attachment.
- Baking Sheets
- Parchment Paper
- Piping Bag Any tip that can pass your chocolate chunks.
- Rubber Spatula
- 6 Egg Whites Warmed to room temperature
- 1¾ Cup White Sugar
- 1 Tsp Cream of Tartar
- 1 Pinch Salt
- 2⅔ Tbsp Corn Starch
- 3 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
- 1 Oz Chocolate Bits Finely chopped
- Crack your eggs one at a time, carefully separating them, and pouring the whites into your mixing bowl. I recommend cracking them into a separate bowl and pouring that into the mixer, just in case a yolk breaks (so you only lose one egg, not all of them.)
- Add your sugar and pinch of salt to the mixing bowl and start to whip with the whisk attachment on medium-high. Don't go too high.
- Preheat your oven to 225°F Line your baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Whip your egg whites until stiff peaks form and the mixture is fluffy and shiny; about 10-15 minutes.
- Sift your corn starch and cream of tartar into the meringue, and fold carefully to mix.
- Sift in your cocoa powder, and add your chopped chocolate, again folding to mix.
- Scoop your meringue into a piping bag. Carefully pipe out your cookies, to the size/shape you want. Leave a small amount of space between them, but they shouldn't spread. This recipe makes about 40-50 cookies, depending on size, so you may need more than one batch.
- Bake for 90 minutes. Then, turn off the heat and let them cool with the oven door closed, so they cool gradually. Rapid cooling will make them crack (like in my picture) but doesn't affect the texture or taste. Enjoy when fully cooled, usually 2-3 hours.
Crossing my fingers they’re chalky (such a strange statement) – I’ve tried several recipes and none of them has had the right consistency but I enjoy these so much I am holding out hope!
They definitely do! If the centers turn out a little chewy, you can make them a bit smaller. The goal is to dry them out, but if the cookies are too big, the crisp outer meringue insulates the inner meringue from fully drying. It may take a couple of batches to get it just the way you like it, but hey, even if they aren’t quite right, they’re still delicious.
Thank you so much for this recipe! I have been so sad not having my chocolate meringues from TJs and the vanilla are not a good substitute! These turned out great!!
Glad to hear it!