Best Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate chip cookies are deeply personal. Everyone has an opinion on what it takes to make the very best, but when it comes right down to it, no one can resist a plate of freshly baked ones, no matter their texture (or degree of doneness).

It all comes down to mastering a few tricks we've picked up after talking to baking pros—and spending way too much time testing copycat versions of the top bakery treats. Below, our 5 commandments to chocolate chip cookie perfection.

Gimme Some (Brown) Sugar.

Many chocolate chip cookie recipes call for even parts white and brown sugar (classic back-of-the-yellow-bag Toll House recipe included!), but for that rich, chewy, caramel-y flavor, tilt the scales, using a little more brown sugar.

Get Your Fats Right.

Sure, there are plenty of substitutes for butter, but they'll have a serious impact on your end result. If you love fluffy cookies that are like barely baked dough, skip the butter entirely and go for cream cheese instead. Margarine causes cookies that spread wafer-thin, but regular, room temperature butter gives you chewy, crowd-pleasing results. (And if you're feeling really fancy, go for European butter, which gives the treats a richer, more buttery taste.) For an extra nutty, rich flavor, try browning your butter: Heat the butter in a small stainless sauce pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Continue stirring as the butter melts and foams, and until the milk solids at the bottom of the pan start to turn golden brown, about 6-7 minutes. The butter should become very nutty and fragrant. Remove from heat and pour the butter with browned milk solids into a heat proof bowl. Let it cool slightly before using so that it isn't too hot to add to the eggs. 

Let Your Chips Hit the Fan.

Go on, pour that entire 12-ounce bag of semisweet chocolate chips into the dough. Better yet, make it a bag and a half. As much as people debate the texture of the perfect chocolate chip cookie, what really makes all the difference is your chip-to-cookie ratio. The more chips, the better. For an extra-special treat, try chocolate chunks or chopped chocolate. Thinner, wider pieces will make for multiple decadent layers of chocolate and cookie.

Gimme the scoop! 

Using an ice cream scoop for the cookie dough means perfectly portioned cookies that will bake evenly and stack well for storage. Scoop the entire batch, bake what you need (or want) and pop the rest an a zip top freezer bag.

Give Them a Finishing Touch.

Pressing a few extra chocolate chips on top of each cookie before baking gives them that Instagram-worthy look you see in just about every cookie ad, ever. To really take things up a notch, lightly sprinkle flaky sea salt on the cookies too—going easy on the salt. It'll amp up the chocolate flavor, making them taste even more decadent.

Store Them Just Right.

If you've ever baked cookies, only to have them turn rock hard in a few hours, you know what it's like to have your heart broken. Some swear by adding an apple slice to the cookies, then sealing them in a resealable bag or Tupperware container, but that can give the treats an apple-y taste. A better choice? Put them in a resealable bag, squeezing out any excess air, and adding half a slice of bread (or less), Cook's Illustrated found. 

You can also freeze the cookie dough to bake off on a as-need basis or even freeze the cookies after baking. Warm them up or let them thaw at room temperature for a like-new cookie! 

If you are a true chocolate chip cookie fiend then you'll love these boozy Milk and Cookie Shooters or these "healthy" Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Made these? Let us know how it went in the comment section below!

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Cal/Serv: 262
Yields: 24
Prep Time: 0 hours 10 mins
Cook Time: 0 hours 10 mins
Total Time: 0 hours 20 mins
2 1/2

sticks unsalted butter

1 c.

packed brown sugar

1/2 c.

granulated sugar

2 tsp.

vanilla extract



2 3/4 c.

all-purpose flour

1 tsp.

baking soda

3/4 tsp.


2 c.

semisweet chocolate chips

  1. Preheat oven to 375º and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Slowly beat in vanilla extract and eggs.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda and salt. Stir into butter-sugar mixture. Fold in chocolate chips.
  4. Roll dough into 1-inch balls, placing them about 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Bake cookies for 10 to 12 minutes, or until lightly golden.

Nutrition (per serving): 262 calories, 3 g protein, 33 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 21 g sugar, 14 g fat, 9 g saturated fat, 124 mg sodium

Parker Feierbach
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