Raspberry Cheesecake Cookies

Reverse engineering packaged foods has been a hobby of mine for a few years now. It is fascinating how “they” come up with these products and to see if I can recreate them to make them taste better in my own kitchen. As many of you know and hopefully have tried by now, Subway came introduced their raspberry cheesecake cookies through a free raspberry cheesecake cookie promotion on Valentine’s Day just a month ago. As soon as I tried it I thought it was excellent and immediately wanted to make them in large quantities at home!

The steps of reverse engineering:

1. Research: find out all you possibly can about the product and about other reproductions out there

“RASPBERRY CHEESECAKE Enriched Bleached Flour (Flour, Malted Barley Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Sugar, Margarine (Palm Oil, Water, Soybean Oil, Salt, Mono- and Diglycerides, Natural Flavor, Vitamin A Palmitate, Beta Carotene), White Chips (Sugar,Palm Kernel and Palm Oil, Nonfat Dry Milk, Soy Lecithin, Vanilla), Eggs, Raspberry Bits (Dextrose, Palm Oil, Sugar, Corn Flour, Raspberry Powder, Natural Flavor, Citric Acid, Blueberry and Carrot Extracts), Neufchatel Cheese (Pasteurized Milk and Cream, Cheese Culture, Salt, Stabilizer [Carob Bean and/or Guar and/or Xanthan Gums]), Invert Sugar, Maltodextrin, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Baking Soda, Salt, Yellow 5. Contains: Wheat, milk, soybeans and eggs. “

2. Observe & Brainstorm: try to pick out all the ingredients in the product and think of all possible ways that the product could have been made. Also think about how to make the product without special industrial machinery or food chemicals that are not accessible to the general public.

  • Cookie base: basic chocolate chip cookie w/o chocolate chips, sugar cookie dough, something else
  • Raspberry: jelly, jam, pastry filling, raspberry candy, fresh raspberries
  • Cheesecake: an actual cheese cake cut up, cheese cake flavoring, no cheese cake just white chocolate chips

3. Try the most likely solution: look your brainstorming list and pick the most likely solution and try it. Be sure to keep certain variables as controls.

  • The first batch: chocolate chip cookie recipe from the back of a Hershey’s bag of chocolate chips with 2 cups of white chocolate, chunked Sara Lee cheesecake (from the frozen section of the grocery store), seedless raspberry jam chopped up.
  • The second batch: chocolate chip cookie recipe from the back of a Hershey’s bag of chocolate chips with 2 cups of white chocolate chips, no bake cheese cake powder (Jell-O brand) added to the batter, and seedless raspberry jam chopped up.
  • The third batch: chocolate chip cookie recipe from the back of a Hershey’s bag of chocolate chips with 2 cups of white chocolate chips, no bake cheese cake powder added to the batter, and fresh raspberries.
  • The fourth batch: chocolate chip cookie recipe from the back of a Hershey’s bag of chocolate chips with 2 cups of white chocolate, chunked Sara Lee cheesecake (from the frozen section of the grocery store), and fresh raspberries.

  • The results of all these batches were a cake like cookie that tasted good but where not chewy enough and the cheese cake chunks disappeared in the cookie not adding enough cheese cake flavor.
  • Note: The last couple cookies I added the gram cracker crust to the cookies and the taster thought they were much better.

4. Try another solution

  • Disappointed with all the batches, I did a search on cream cheese cookies and found that there are cookies made with cream cheese and they look chewy (unlike the cake-like consistency of the ones I made) So, I changed the dough to a basic cream cheese dough then added white chocolate chunks & chips and raspberry jam.

Raspberry Cheesecake Cookie Recipe

Yield 6 dozen

Ingredients

  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 8 oz Neufchatel cream cheese
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup white chocolate bar broken into chunks (for appearances & richness)
  • 2 1/2 cups white chocolate chips
  • Raspberry jam (no seeds) OR King Arthur Flour’s Raspberry Jammy Bits

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350F
  • Cream butter, shortening, cream cheese, and sugars until fluffy.
  • Add vanilla and eggs one at a time beating well.
  • Stir in dry ingredients.
  • Stir in white chocolate
  • *Add raspberry jam to each cookie (stirring will make the jam gray the dough)
  • Using a cookie scoop place cookies 1″ apart on a silapat or greased cookie sheet.
  • Bake for 6- 8 minutes. Take out when they are lightly browned- under cook slightly. Let them finish baking on cookie sheet. Then let them cool completely on cooling rack before picking them up.

*Raspberry Jam

  • Solution 1: 2 Tbsp of jam + 1Tbsp of cornstarch microwave for 30 seconds. Place in refrigerator immediately to cool. When cooled it should be pliable and you can take some of the sticky raspberry filling and roll them into balls and add to the dough. This is how you don’t turn the dough gray with streaks of raspberry jam throughout. (Probably how Subway does it- some sort of tacky jam product that has the consistency of more of a gummy candy that can be mixed in the dough without changing the dough’s color – then when baked melts into the cookie)
  • Solution 2: take some jam out of the jar and place it in a piping back. As soon as the cookies come out of the oven pipe little blobs of jam into the cookie’s crevasses (produces the best looking cookie)
  • Solution 3: If you don’t care how the cookies look only taste simply chop your cold jam into small pieces and add to each cookie. Don’t stir them in the batter.
  • Solution 4: King Arthur Flour’s Raspberry Jammy Bits as G. Barnhart suggested below
  • Note 1: Try not to have the raspberry jam touching the bottom of the cookie or it will stick to the pan.

Raspberry Cheesecake Cookie Recipe PDF

5. Modify the Recipe

  • Looking at my cookies next to Subway’s there are several things that are still off slightly.
    • One is the color of the cookie. Subway’s raspberry cheese cake cookie is whiter looking than mine. Some possible explanations: I used unbleached flour and dark brown sugar.
    • The second thing that is off slightly is the raspberry jam part. Subway has got to stir in these raspberry jam pieces and just ship the dough to their stores. Although my solution #1 above is close I still wonder what they really do.
    • The third thing that is off is the size of my cookies compared to Subway’s. I used a cookie scoop but if you want them to be larger and more calories be my guest. Just write a comment on this page of how long you baked them for.

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15 comments for “Raspberry Cheesecake Cookies

  1. G. Barnhart
    March 15, 2011 at 6:41 pm

    I do know that the subway cookies come frozen to the stores. I don't know if they are frozen in a roll form and sliced then baked or if they are scooped and frozen. I do know that they do not bake till browned, they are taken out while center is still soft.

  2. G. Barnhart
    March 15, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    I just found Raspberry Jammy bits-8 oz. bag from King Arthur. They also have the raspberry flavor- 1 oz.
    I ordered it and I am going to try making the cookies like subway has. Already have the recipe for the cheesecake dough and the white chocolate chips.

    • Laura
      May 10, 2011 at 1:25 pm

      can you find them at walmart?

  3. Trish
    March 22, 2011 at 12:06 am

    Upon testing these myslelf I came up with a sugar cookie base with raspberry flavorying in it, the other thing i used was frozen raspberries added absolutly at the last moment to cold dough (still not as good but it tasted good to me!), i used white chocolate chips as well. I also pulled mine out so the center would be soft, but i have always done that. hope that helps!

  4. cookie queen
    March 22, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    The ingredients of the Subway cookies states that it uses Raspberry bits.
    http://www.kingarthurflour.com/shop/items/raspber

  5. Lindsay
    April 27, 2011 at 5:22 pm

    I made these cookies with your recipe and loved them!
    Everyone in the house couldn't stop eating them, but it's okay
    cause the recipe made so many! Thanks so much.

    For the raspberry jam I tried to use the first solution of mixing
    2 tbsp jam with 1 tbsp corn starch but I found that it took too long
    to finally cool in the fridge, and it wasn't that sticky afterwards.
    So instead, I scooped the cookies onto the baking sheet, pressed
    them down just a little and made about 4-6 little holes in them,
    then piped just the jam into the little holes. It worked out great and
    was probably the easiest way without actually mixing the jam into
    the batter. The dough didn't gray and the jam didn't get chewy from
    being in the oven. Thanks for the tip of making sure the jam doesn't
    touch the bottom because I missed one and realized just how much
    it actually does stick!

    Over these were the best cookies I've ever made. Thanks!

  6. Lindsay
    April 27, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    *I also wanted to mention that when I tried the subway cookies (before I made these)
    I noticed that the dough was definitely off-color. I thought it was weird until you mentioned
    that it was the jam that would make it gray. So yours were better for that.

  7. Laura
    May 9, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    OMG im so excited! im definately going to try this new recipe and i hope it turns out right because i don't really bake much and i don't know all the tips or rules of baking. (:

  8. Laura
    May 10, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    do you stir the king artur flour's jammy bits into the cookie dough or just set the bits on top of the cookies and bake it that way?

  9. Gabrielle
    July 11, 2011 at 9:12 am

    I work at Subway and the raspberry bits in the cookies (before baking, whilst frozen) look like light pink bits of candy. I doubt that it is any kind of jelly.

  10. Pka
    July 14, 2011 at 2:02 am

    From where do you get the thick white chocolate chunks? I have only seen the nestle white morsels that resemble the normal chocolate chips.

    • Jennfer
      August 12, 2011 at 4:19 pm

      I have found Baker's Premium White Chocolate at Wal-Mart. It is in the same section as the white morsels.

  11. pka
    July 14, 2011 at 2:22 am

    never mind last question, just read your recipe more carefully…

  12. July 21, 2011 at 4:35 pm

    Wow! I made these just now. They are still warm but even warm they are DELICIOUS! I had a small $1.00 decorator tube and filled it with raspberry jam..After I plopped the dough onto the greased pan,, I went thru each cookie and squirted dollips of jam throughout the cookie. They came out PRETTY and Yummy!! I also made a large pizza cookie..for a friend, what a great treat that is going to be! I will definitely make these again.Thanks for the recipe.

  13. Lori
    August 19, 2011 at 5:35 pm

    I read on some other website to use the little raspberry bits from a box of Jiffy raspberry muffins. That sounds to me like a pretty good idea since they are small and when baked, turn out looking like they sort of melted. I will try those. I'll just sift the baking mix through a strainer to get those bits.
    I'm also going to use white chips only, its less work. I might leave out the brown sugar and use more white also, since that may have made the color darker. We shall see…

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