Lovin’ Cookies sits inside an unassuming plaza on Scotch Road in Ewing, doling out joy to the masses for a nominal fee.
OK, so that’s a little grandiose; it’s just a cookie shop. But when Robin and Laurie Vitullo opened Lovin’ Cookies last May, looking for a creative outlet and a new career, establishing the build-your-own cookie shop and delivery service made them quite happy. And it’s probably not too much of a stretch to say the recipients of their warm, homemade cookies are feeling the love, too.
Students can call or order online — even late at night — to customize a batch of cookies to be delivered hot to the College. Students can order three ($4.50), six ($8.50), nine ($12.50) or 12 ($15.50) cookies, choosing the dough and ingredients from drop-down menus online, but they will get more flexibility over the phone. (Larger, custom orders are welcomed.)
Orders usually take approximately 30 minutes to arrive.
Available doughs include plain (the type used in chocolate chip cookies), oatmeal, peanut butter, chocolate and red velvet. All doughs are made at Lovin’ Cookies daily.
“Some of the (cookie) companies around the country do it like a Domino’s — they’ll get their dose from a huge manufacturer. They’ll shape it into patties and freeze it and ship it out to these stores,” Robin Vitullo said. “We want customers to know if they show up here, we’ll be way ahead of them in terms of quality.”
This commitment to quality spills over into the Vitullos’ ingredient choices as well.
“We made a determined effort to use only great ingredients. We use real vanilla as opposed to imitation. Belgian chocolate, real eggs, real butter,” Vitullo said.
“Moms wouldn’t cut corners when making cookies and neither do we,” Lovin’ Cookies’ website’s About Us section reads.
Lovin’ Cookies offers 21 choices of “fixins” — toppings and ingredients such as marshmallows, Reese’s cups, chocolate chunks and caramel syrup customers can elect to add to their dough.
Some of the most popular selections include the red velvet cookie with white chocolate chips and anything made with the plain dough. Red velvet cookies come with a complimentary cup of icing created by Laurie — it’s composed of cream cheese, cinnamon and vanilla.
“We put it on the side so if you want it, you want it. If you don’t you don’t. What’s great about that in terms of its development is it’s the only thing we made when we were experiencing with recipes where the first version was perfect,” Robin Vitullo said. “I tasted it and I said, ‘Don’t do anything to this. This is perfect.’ The other stuff we messed with.”
Students can also order beverages (milk, chocolate milk, soda, tea, coffee or water) and pints of ice cream (Ben & Jerry’s) with their order. Lovin’ Cookies also offers a special called “Cookies and Cream,” consisting of two cookies a la mode (served with three scoops of chocolate or vanilla ice cream).
“The drivers have an insulated pack so it stays cold,” Vitullo said.
Lovin’ Cookies serves neighboring universities Rider and Princeton as well. Vitullo plans to expand the store’s offerings to include brownies.
“Starting the first week of September, we’re going to introduce a line of brownies,” Vitullo said. “There are four types of brownies — one is a basic brownie and then there are three varieties. One is going be a walnut caramel, the other is going be the regular brownie with peanut butter inside and Reese’s cups on top, and then we’re going have the chocolate brownie with white chocolate and raspberry inside and out.”
The store also continues to mix it up monthly by offering a “cookie of the month.” Past cookies offered include s’more, peanut butter and jelly, and lemon, almond and cranberry.
“And then (for) one cool one — it was either a love-it or hate-it kind of thing — I did a dark chocolate cookie with cherries and chipotle salsa,” Vitullo said. “So it was a hot-sweet thing.”
As the business continues to expand and experiment, one thing seems clear: this lovable shop is here to stay.
For more information about Lovin’ Cookies, call 609-323-7546 or visit lovincookies.com.