The chewy chocolate chip cookie recipe you’ll make on repeat — crispy edges, chewy insides and gooey chocolate chunks.
Judging by the amount of chocolate chip cookies appearing in our social media feeds we must all need a lot of comforting right now. So much for those resolutions!
It’s tempting to “healthify” cookie recipes. But here’s what I think: Make cookies with ingredients that have a more wholesome profile — sprouted flour, maple syrup, coconut oil and superfood powders — and you’ve still made dessert. So why not just make a great cookie every once in a while and enjoy it?
Search the internet for “chocolate chip cookie recipe” and you get a lot of results. Sifting through the list of “perfect” or “ultimate” recipes begs the question — what makes a simple chocolate chip cookie rank as the best, the ultimate, top-of-the-heap great?
Well, the answer is that it’s personal.
Out of curiosity, I conducted a casual Instagram poll. And — survey says! — 87% of the respondents chose chewy chocolate chip cookies as their favorite.
Ever since I was a kid, my benchmark chocolate chip cookie recipe has been the one on the back of the Tollhouse chocolate chips bag. There’s a reason those cookies are the one and only for me. It’s because they have that iconic ratio of crisp edges to chewy middles.
This recipe is just about identical to the tried-and-true classic. It has a little more brown sugar (adding moisture and upping the overall chewy factor) and slightly more flour, which binds with the butter and keeps the cookies from spreading out into a puddle.
These cookies keep a hefty mound-like shape and don’t flatten too much during baking, something even my childhood favorite cookies do. And they taste perfectly balanced in sweetness, with the proper chew and crisp edges.
There’s just a few basic steps that elevate these cookies to “the best” label (it’s all in the details, folks):
1. The butter.
You need to plan a little bit ahead and use butter that’s not straight from the fridge cold. I made these cookies with butter that sat on the counter for about 30 minutes.
But it really depends on the temperature in your kitchen on any given day. A clue that the butter is soft enough is when it’s still cool to the touch and your finger leaves an indentation, but not so soft that the butter squishes.
Speed up the time to soften butter by unwrapping the sticks and slicing into tablespoon-size pieces.
2. The chocolate chips.
To paraphrase Ina Garten, the usual store-bought chocolate chips are not fine to make these cookies. No, they’re not.
I insist that you use good chocolate. For one thing, additives and emulsifiers in regular chocolate chips are added to maintain their shape, which prevents the chocolate from melting into gooey goodness. I also find them too sweet.
Instead, use whole dark chocolate or semisweet chocolate bars and chop them up, or buy high-quality chocolate chunks. Bags of excellent chocolate baking pieces are available in most well-stocked supermarkets.
3. The cookie dough.
It is SO annoying to start a baking recipe only to learn that you have to chill the dough for hours.
Everybody knows that when you get the urge to make chocolate chip cookies it’s because you want them now, not sometime in the let-the-dough-rest future. For this recipe, you can chill the dough while the oven heats. It’s an easy compromise.
the one and only chewy chocolate chip cookie recipe
Yield about 24 cookies
- This cookie scoop makes perfectly sized blobs of dough and uniformly-shaped cookies.
- The best way to keep these chocolate chip cookies is to store them in a zippered plastic bag.
- Make the dough through Step 3 up to one day ahead.
- 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour (use the scoop and sweep method)
- 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 sticks unsalted butter (8 ounces), at room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, cut into chunks
- Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl.
- Cream the butter and both sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer on medium-low speed (or use a hand mixer) until light and fluffy, 3 or 4 minutes. Add the eggs one at time, mixing until each one is incorporated. Add the vanilla.
- Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in 2 additions, beating on low speed just until the flour is incorporated. Stir in the chocolate. Put the bowl in the refrigerator while the oven heats.
- Heat the oven to 350 degrees with the rack in the center of the oven. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Scoop 2 tablespoon-sized balls of dough onto the sheets, spacing 1 1/2 inches apart. Bake the cookies one sheet at a time for 13 -15 minutes, until the edges turn lightly golden. Transfer to a rack to cool.
Adapted from The Fearless Baker by Erin McDowell.