Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookies

I have really struggled trying to figure out how to write this post.  What I really want to say is “OMG!  THESE ARE THE BEST CHOCOLATE CHIPS COOKIES EVER!!”  But I feel like most every chocolate chip cookie recipe you see says that.  Up until this recipe, I thought I had found the best recipe.  It was back in my early days of blogging, right around the time the NY Times posted a recipe involving multiple flours, specific chocolate disks, and most importantly the step of letting the dough “rest” in the fridge.  The main part I took away from that was the resting.  It really does make a world of difference.

I’ve made a handful of chocolate chip cookies on this blog.  Everything from Alton Brown’s The Chewy (good but too greasy), Soft & Chewy from Martha Stewart Cookies Cookbook (too puffy), and my previous favorite adapted from Smitten Kitchen.  But something began to happen with my previous favorite.  I had multiple cookie fails in a row.  So, in search of a new recipe I went.  I didn’t have to look too far to find a recipe I wanted to try.  Our wonderful realtor got us (ok, me) the Williams Sonoma Baking Book as a closing gift.  She knew me pretty well I guess you could say!

This is the recipe from that book, doubled (because as written it didn’t make nearly as many cookies!), with the added step of letting the dough rest 24 hours.  And holy cow, these cookies really & truly are the BEST chocolate chip cookies I’ve ever made!  They are better than the previous favorite, even when they turned out right!  I like to bake these using either my smallest cookie scoop, or my medium cookie scoop.  However I will say, when you use the medium scoop they turn out even better because they are thicker!  I’ve made many many batches of these.  It’s funny I was never in a rush to photograph them, because I knew I’d be making another batch again soon!  Often, once the dough has rested and been scooped into balls, I only bake 1 cookie sheet.  The rest of the balls I freeze, for on-demand baking later on.  To do this, just set them on a cookie sheet as close as you can get without them touching.  Then stick the cookie sheet in the freezer for an hour or so.  Transfer the dough balls to a freezer safe ziplock bag and return them to the freezer.  You never know when that chocolate chip cookie craving will hit!

These cookies have the perfect texture, and amazing flavor.  They stay soft & gooey on the inside, but have a slight crunch on the outside.  I’m usually not that much of a nut fan, but the second time I made these I decided to go ahead and toss them in.  I’m so glad I did, because the toasted walnuts really do add depth and flavor to this cookie.  I chop them pretty small, and toast them just until they begin to release a nutty aroma.  I like to use chocolate chunks in this recipe, as opposed to chips, because Nathan & I both like a big gooey burst of chocolate in our cookies.  I sprinkled these with a bit of fleur de sel, but it didn’t add as much to the cookie as I thought it would, so that’s just an option.

I hope I’ve convinced you to give these cookies a shot.  I know I’ve tried many different chocolate chip cookies, and these are definitely my favorite, fail-proof recipe.  I would love to know what you think!  Let me know if you try them!


Chocolate Chip Cookies

I doubled the original recipe, but didn't double the amount of nuts. To me, this keeps the cookies from being overly nutty, and yields a larger number of cookies. I can't even begin to tell you how many though, because between the bites of dough we sneak, and how fast these cookies get eaten, I'm never able to get a good count!


2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups semisweet chocolate chunks or chips
1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
fleur de sel (optional, for sprinkling on cookies before baking)


Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on high speed, cream the butter until fluffy and pale yellow. Add the granulated sugar and brown sugar and continue beating until the mixture smooth and sugar is mostly dissolved. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat on low speed until blended, occasionally stopping the mixer and scraping down the sides of the bowl with a silicone spatula as needed.

Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix on low speed or stir with a wooden spoon just until blended. Add the chocolate chunks and walnuts, if using, mixing or stirring until blended. Press plastic wrap onto the dough, and refrigerate 24 hours.

Once 24 hours have passed, preheat the oven to 350. Using a cookie scoop, or dampened hands, shape the dough into 1-inch balls, and place on ungreased cookie sheets, about 2 inches apart. (Optional: You can sprinkl the cookie dough balls with fleur de sel, for a bit of salty flavor) Bake the cookies until golden brown around the edges, about 12 minutes (or 8-9 minutes if using a smaller scoop). Let the cookies cool briefly on the pans on wire racks before transferring them to the racks to cool completely.

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32 Responses to “Chocolate Chip Cookies”

  1. 1
    Jessica — September 13, 2011 @ 9:32 pm

    Fine. You convinced me. I am making the dough tonight to try them tomorrow! 😀

  2. 2
    jaclyn — September 13, 2011 @ 10:08 pm

    i am insanely addicted to chocolate chip cookies! seriously, i never make them because i eat SO MANY OF THEM.

    the NYT choc. chip cookies are my absolute #1 favorite cookie of all time, but they are kind of a pain in the ass. so many steps, so involved. so time consuming.

    these cookies, however seem less complicated and just as delicious! i will totally be making these soon!

  3. 3
    Traciwilbur — September 13, 2011 @ 10:10 pm

    Yes, please!! I’ve never been able to make them like I want them! I’ll have to go egg-free for a batch for my son – but will adjust accordingly. Yum!!

    PS your Pumpkin Truffles were at hit at my daughter’s French/History celebration at school last week. I can’t remember if I tweeted to you or not. Thank you!!!

  4. 4
    Stephanie — September 14, 2011 @ 2:37 am

    These look amazing!! I will definitely be trying these!

  5. 5
    Susan in the Boonies — September 14, 2011 @ 4:40 am

    I’m going to print these out and try them in the future! For today, we still have apple pie to eat, from my yesterday’s pie crust showdown! 😀

    I’m so excited because I signed up at “Salud!” for a cooking class with Deb Paquette, and she is going to share HER favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe!

    Wonder if it will be THIS one? 😀

  6. 6
    Susan in the Boonies — September 14, 2011 @ 4:42 am

    P.S. One of the biggest pluses to letting the cookie dough rest for 24 hours is that I get to go back and sneak-eat cookie dough when my kids aren’t watching.

    Wouldn’t you agree? 😀

  7. 7
    Jen @ BeantownBaker.com — September 14, 2011 @ 5:26 am

    I’ve always been a fan of the Chewy. But, you might have just convinced me to give these guys a shot…

  8. 8
    Sasha @ The Procrastobaker — September 14, 2011 @ 10:19 am

    Cant really argue with that amazing write up! You have ME convinced! They sound utterly perfect 🙂

  9. 9
    Heather — September 14, 2011 @ 1:16 pm

    Alright, I am taking your word for it. I have been scouring the internet for a cookie dough recipe to make for a friend and this just might be it. Question though, do you think the dough freezes well? I am making her a huge batch of cookie dough to keep in her freezer for when a cookie craving hits.

    • Erin replied: — September 14th, 2011 @ 2:19 pm

      I know for a fact this dough freezes fantastically! I always scoop it into balls before I freeze.

  10. 10
    Stephanie — September 14, 2011 @ 1:26 pm

    Lots of people say their favorite CCC recipe is “the best,” but let me tell you something. These LOOK like the best. The pictures say it all — I can tell that they have the perfect texture and the perfect ratio of cookie to chocolate chips. Love!

  11. 11
    Vivek — September 15, 2011 @ 11:10 am

    I’m gonna give your cookies a try, because I think mine could give you a run for your money! But who’s kidding – if you have a choc chip cookie, everyone’s a winner!

  12. 12
    Mrs. Jen B — September 15, 2011 @ 1:38 pm

    Okay, they look ridiculously crazy stupid good. Just an FYI in case you didn’t already know. And I pinned this so I can come back to it later. Because oh, I will.

  13. 13
    Kelsey — September 15, 2011 @ 5:32 pm

    I am trying these tonight, I’ll let you know how they turn out 🙂

  14. 14
    Lesley Eats — September 16, 2011 @ 4:48 pm

    I appreciate you including the pertinent information here–that they are soft and chewy! I know some people like crisp chocolate chip cookies, but not me!

  15. 15
    lsmith — September 17, 2011 @ 4:39 am

    Definitely going to try these this weekend. I have a go-to favorite recipe (Butter Flavor Crisco Recipe) but am tired of those and can’t wait to replace it with yours! They sound divine.

    Where do you get the fleur de sol?

    Also, if you freeze the balls for later, do you need to let them thaw a bit before popping them in the oven, or can you just add a little time and toss them right in? (As if there would be extra dough to freeze…yeah, right!) 🙂

    Thanks for another great recipe, Erin! You TOTALLY rock!

    • Erin replied: — September 17th, 2011 @ 7:10 am

      I was able to purchase my fleur de sel at a local French bakery/cafe. I’ve used it in many other desserts where I’ve tasted the difference. I don’t think it matters as much in these cookies. A fine sea salt would suffice.

      When I freeze the balls, I usually pull them out of the freezer when I turn the oven on to preheat. I arrange them on a cookie sheet, and they thaw a little while the oven is warming up. I think I may still need to add an extra minute or so to the baking time. Just watch them closely, and take them out when they begin to golden! They do finish baking a bit more while they’re on the sheet.

  16. 16
    Brett — September 17, 2011 @ 6:40 am

    Making these today to have while watching college football. I’m sure if it’s like other things you have made on here that I have tried, they will truly be the BEST EVER. ROLL TIDE ROLL!

  17. 17
    lsmith — September 17, 2011 @ 7:30 pm

    Thanks, Erin. They’re in the fridge…..OMG….the dough tastes yummy (shhh…don’t tell the kids!). One more ? — I creamed the butter and sugar for probably 20-25 mins and could still feel a tiny bit of grit. ??? I finally gave up and just went ahead with the rest of the recipe. Does the sugar ever actually dissolve? It wasn’t nearly as gritty as when you first add the sugars, but I could still feel it a little between my fingers…. Should I have creamed it longer? Can’t wait to try these tomorrow.

    • Erin replied: — September 17th, 2011 @ 9:25 pm

      You know, I don’t think mine are ever fully grit-free, now that you mention it. That’s what the original recipe says to do. I think I’m going to revise that so readers don’t get confused! Let me know how yours turns out.

      PS. I totally have some in the oven RIGHT NOW! We just got back from a get-together, and I was craving dessert, so I pulled some frozen dough balls out of the freezer! Nothing like on demand cookies!

  18. 18
    Ashley — September 19, 2011 @ 8:34 am

    Ok, these cookies looked so amazing, I had to try them out this weekend. The 24-hour wait was agonizing! Unfortunately, the cookies came out very flat. They tasted great, just not nice and thick like I was hoping. I’m sure I followed the recipe exactly. Any ideas on what could have gone wrong? 🙁

    • Erin replied: — September 19th, 2011 @ 9:46 am

      Oh no! I really hate to hear that! Part of the reason I was so confident in posting that these cookies were amazing is because they have never failed me, and I’ve made them many times.

      Let’s see, first up, was your baking soda & baking powder fresh? If they are expired, that could be a culprit. Second, was your butter too soft? Maybe if it was warm the day you bake, the butter got too soft. (This has happened to me in the past, with another recipe.) Third, when you added the flour mixture were you careful not to over mix? That could possibly cause it. What size scoop did you use? I know that when I use my medium scoop, the cookies are thicker, but not much bigger in diameter than when I use my small scoop. The small scoop does make them a bit thinnger. (The cookies in the photograph are ones that were scooped with the medium scoop). And finally, when you baked them, did you let the dough come to room temp before you put them in the oven? I advise, to keep them in the refrigerator until the oven is preheated. Once it’s preheated, scoop the dough into balls and immediately put the cookie sheet in the oven. I have found chilled dough helps a LOT in preventing spreading. When I freeze dough balls, I only remove them from the freezer when I turn the oven on. They are still frozen but beginning to soften when they go into the oven. (My oven seems to preheat pretty fast) This also really helps. And finally, I wonder how accurate your oven is? The oven at my old apartment was so wonky, I finally got an oven thermometer to ensure the temperature was what I wanted it to be. The dial might have been set to 350, and the preheat light when off, but my oven thermometer would show me it was only 320 degrees.

      Again, sorry this recipe didn’t turn out like you’d like! Let me know if you try again, and what the results are!

  19. 19
    Ashley — September 19, 2011 @ 12:25 pm

    You know what, it was probably the baking soda! I haven’t checked the expiration date, but it’s probably been over a year. Yikes. Thanks, and I’ll definitely have to try them again once (with some fresh soda, this time!)

  20. 20
    L — September 27, 2011 @ 7:34 am

    Your most recent ccc recipe has been my go to recipe ever since you posted it, and is always a huge hit (I usually double the recipe, add both cc and heath pieces, and top with fine sea salt)! I used to be obsessed with finding the perfect ccc recipe since I love eating them, but I’ve never wanted to try another one after that….but now I’ll have to!!! Thanks for sharing!

    • Erin replied: — September 27th, 2011 @ 9:31 am

      Please let me know how these turn out! They’ve never failed me, but I worry because someone else said theirs were flat. 🙁

      PS. Heath chips are a GREAT additions!

  21. 21
    Ariel Givens — October 1, 2011 @ 8:47 am

    Hey Erin! I tried these cookies and they turned out excellent! Thank you for the yummy recipe! It is a keeper:)!

  22. 22
    Aimee — October 6, 2011 @ 10:16 am

    Erin, I made these over the weekend and they were perfect! I posted about them today – thanks for the great recipe!

  23. 23
    Melissa — October 10, 2011 @ 8:39 am

    Hi Erin! I just wanted to let you know that I featured your recipe as my choice for the October Crazy Cooking Challenge. They were delicious and definitely a hit with my family (and my husband’s co-workers!) Thanks for a great recipe 🙂

  24. 24
    Mary — November 16, 2011 @ 4:17 pm

    Try the recipe off the back of the bakers chocolate chunks bag. Except instead of actually using those chunks, use toll house chips. But follow that bakers recipe exactly, and add the flour mixture really slowly to the rest of it. Best chocolate chip cookies ever. My boyfriends grandma wanted my recipe because she said in all her life she’d never had such a great chocolate chip cookie.

    • Erin replied: — November 16th, 2011 @ 4:40 pm

      I’ve never tried the Baker’s Chocolate recipe.  Maybe that will be next.  However, it will be hard to this recipe!!

  25. 25
    Judy — February 8, 2012 @ 10:11 pm

    I made these cookies tonight and they are delicious! They are chewy on the inside and slightly crunchy on the outside. They taste great and they look beautiful. I have tried the New York Times recipe and although it is very good, this recipe will be the one that I make from now on. Perfection!

  26. 26
    Ashley — February 22, 2012 @ 1:16 pm

    Hi! I just wanted to update you – I had posted a few months back about trying the recipe, but having cookies turn out flat. Well, I finally got around to baking them again, but with fresh ingredients this time. And they were amazing!!! Seriously, it’s the best cookie recipe I’ve ever tried. They stayed nice and thick and had the most perfect texture. Thanks again for posting the recipe and your help in figuring out where I went wrong! 🙂

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