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[Photographs: Erin Jackson]

Like Leandra Palermo, Serious Eats' resident cereal obsessive, Hershey's Cookies 'n' Creme is one of my favorite chocolate bars. When I saw a box of Hershey's Cookies 'n' Cream Cookie Mix ($2.99), it was as if the supermarket's harsh fluorescents transformed to a soft white light, and the muzak pumped over the sound-system momentarily changed to a chorus of sweetly singing angels. Clearly, I had to try it.

I read Leandra's take on the Cookies 'n' Creme cereal in advance, so I was prepared for the cookies to bear little resemblance to their candy bar origin. But I figured cookies made from smashed up cookies and white chocolate chips would either be pretty good, or downright awesome.

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Cookies 'n' Creme baking mix

Unlike making cookies from scratch, which, in my home, is a time-consuming endeavor that requires careful measurement of all the dry ingredients and creaming the butter and sugar for-fricking-ever, these cookies came together quickly and with little effort. All you need is three tablespoons of water and 1/3 cup of softened butter (or three tablespoons of vegetable oil and three additional tablespoons of water). Once you've got all the components in a bowl, the actual mixing takes about two minutes.

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You've got two options for portioning the cookies on your baking sheet: using a teaspoon or tablespoon. I went with a tablespoon, since small cookies almost always burn in my oven.

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After eight minutes at 375°:F, the edges of the cookies were set and slightly browned. The instructions state to let the cookies sit for one minute before removing them from the cookie sheet, then allow the sheet to cool between batches. I hoped five minutes was long enough, but you might want to wait longer. The pan didn't completely cool down, so the second round of cookies was noticeably flatter, but they didn't taste any different than the first round.

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One thing you've got to be ready for with this mix is the role the crushed chocolate cookies play in terms of texture and flavor. In chocolate bar form, those crisp, crumbly bits are a welcome addition to the white chocolate, but crumbled in a cookie, they struck me as strangely gritty. Using crushed cookies within a cookie mix also (unsurprisingly) results in a double-sweet cookie, maybe even triple-sweet when you factor in the white chocolate chips. That being said, if you love Hershey's Cookies 'n' Creme chocolate bars, this isn't necessarily bad news. These super-sweet cookies bear a noticeable resemblance to their super-sweet candy bar origin.

The novelty factor, easy preparation, and two-minute clean-up makes this mix worth a try, even more so if you're a fan of the candy bar.

About the author: Erin Jackson is a food writer and photographer who is obsessed with discovering the best eats in San Diego. You can find all of her discoveries on her San Diego food blog EJeats.com. On Twitter, she's @ErinJax

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