Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

I have a few tricks that make these the best soft chocolate chip cookies that you’ll ever try. With hundreds of positive reviews from bakers around the world, I’m confident you’ll fall in love with this chocolate chip cookie recipe too. Chilling the cookie dough is imperative and cornstarch makes them extra soft and thick!

Rows of chocolate chip cookies

Chocolate chip cookies are a household favorite, a timeless classic, an unparalleled snack, warm, cold, dunked in milk, in dough form, or in baked form. No one can resist the comfort of a chocolate chip cookie and everyone has their favorite recipe whether it’s on the back of the yellow Toll House bag or scribbled in your grandmother’s recipe book.

Heck, I even have separate recipes for crispy chocolate chip cookies and chewy chocolate chip cookies!

Like many of you, I’ve searched far and wide for the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe: the best chocolate chip cookies, a recipe I can bake again and again for years. I’ve lost sleep, I’ve burnt dough, I’ve tested and retested and retested… and retested countless times. And I’m so happy to report that I finally found a chocolate chip cookie recipe that I’ll treasure for years. And I know you’ll enjoy these cookies too!

Chocolate chip cookies

How to Make Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

  1. Start with Butter: Use room temperature butter. You can soften butter quickly with this trick or set the butter out 1-2 hours before you begin.
  2. Use a mix of Sugars: Cream the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar together. This process aerates the butter, which promises soft chocolate chip cookies. Brown sugar yields soft chocolate chip cookies and white sugar helps the cookies spread. For chewier and more flavorful cookies, use more brown sugar than white sugar.
  3. Dark Brown Sugar: Light brown sugar and dark brown sugar are interchangeable in most recipes. Though either works in this chocolate chip cookie recipe, I love using dark brown sugar for extra flavor because it holds a little more molasses.
  4. Add Egg & Vanilla Extract: Eggs provide structure and richness, while vanilla adds flavor.
  5. Use Cornstarch in Dry Ingredients: Cornstarch, a thickening ingredient, is the secret weapon in this cookie recipe. 2 teaspoons give the cookies extra lift and leave them extra soft. You can’t taste it! You also need all-purpose flour, baking soda, and salt.
  6. Add Dry Ingredients to Wet Ingredients: Combine all the ingredients, then add the chocolate chips.
  7. Chill the Cookie Dough: For extra thick chocolate chip cookies, chill the cookie dough for at least 1 hour. Chilling cookie dough will make or break the recipe! The colder the cookie dough, the less the cookies will over-spread. If you’re interested, here are 10 tips to prevent cookies from over-spreading.
  8. Extra Chocolate Chips: This is optional, but as soon as the cookies come out of the oven, press a few chocolate chips on top. They’ll melt right down into the cookie, making them extra pretty. And melted chocolate is never a bad thing!

stick of room temperature butter

Room temperature butter is cool to touch and about 65°F (18°C), which may be cooler than your kitchen. To test it, poke it with your finger. Your finger should make an indent without sinking into the butter. The butter should not be shiny or greasy. You can’t cream cold butter and you can’t cream partially melted butter either. Room temperature butter is imperative to the outcome of these cookies! You need 3/4 cup, which is 1.5 sticks.

Warm chocolate chip cookies on silpat

Don’t Have Time to Chill Cookie Dough?

If you don’t have time to chill the chocolate chip cookie dough, try my Crispy Chocolate Chip Cookies, Giant Chocolate Chip Cookies, or Nutella Chocolate Chip Cookies. Or even these soft chocolate chip cookie bars, which don’t require individual cookie rolling either!

I also have an entire section of no chill cookie recipes. 🙂

warm chocolate chip cookies on black plate

How to Freeze Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

Freezing chocolate chip cookie dough is really easy.

  1. After the cookie dough has chilled in the refrigerator, roll the cookie dough into balls. Chill the cookie dough balls in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
  2. Place the solid and cold cookie dough balls into a labeled zipped-top bag– large or small depending on how much dough you have.
  3. Label the bag with the month and the baking temperature and place the bag in the freezer.
  4. Freeze cookie dough for up to 3 months. The date will help you determine when the cookie dough is fresh and the temperature is written for obvious reasons. Really, you can write whatever is helpful to you. The date, temperature, time, recipe name, etc.
  5. When it’s time to bake the cookies, remove them from the freezer. Preheat the oven according to the recipe’s instructions.
  6. Bake the cookies for a minute or two longer since the dough is frozen.

Bake the frozen cookie dough balls whenever the craving hits or when you need a big batch of fresh-baked cookies. I do it all the time!

Chocolate chip cookies on black plate

Sometimes the simplest recipes are what stick. I really don’t need to convince you– it’s a chocolate chip cookie. THE chocolate chip cookie!

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warm chocolate chip cookies on black plate

The Best Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
  • Yield: 2 dozen
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


I have a few tricks that make these the best soft chocolate chip cookies that you’ll ever try. With hundreds of positive reviews from bakers around the world, I’m confident you’ll fall in love with this chocolate chip cookie recipe too. Chilling the cookie dough is imperative and cornstarch makes them extra soft and thick!


  • 3/4 cup (1.5 sticks or 170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (150g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/4 cup (225g) semi-sweet chocolate chips


  1. In a large bowl using a hand-held mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat the butter, brown sugar, and sugar together on medium speed until combined and creamy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Add into the wet ingredients, then beat on low speed until combined. The cookie dough will be slightly thick. On low speed, beat the chocolate chips. Cover dough tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days. Chilling is mandatory for this cookie dough.
  3. Remove cookie dough from the refrigerator and allow to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. (Always recommended for cookies.) Set aside.
  4. Once chilled, the dough will be slightly crumbly, but will come together when you work the dough with your hands. Roll balls of dough, about 1.5 Tablespoons of dough each, into balls.
  5. Bake for 11-12 minutes, until barely golden brown around the edges. The cookies will look extremely soft when you remove them from the oven. Cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet. If the cookies are too puffy, try gently pressing down on them with the back of a spoon. They will slightly deflate as you let them cool. If desired, while the cookies are still warm, press a few extra chocolate chips into the tops. This is completely for looks.
  6. Transfer cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely. Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week.


  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. Allow to come to room temperature then continue with preheating the oven in step 3. Baked cookies freeze well for up to 3 months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well for up to 3 months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw. Click here for my tips and tricks on freezing cookie dough.
  2. Adapted from Anna Olson

Keywords: cookies, chocolate chip cookies, chocolate


  1. These cookies blew my mind! Best chocolate cookie recipe I’ve ever eaten! Thank you so much! I’m sharing the recipe with all my friends and family.

  2. Hi Miss Sally,

    I would like to ask, aside from some of the difference in ingredients, how does the recipe of soft choco chip cookies and chewy choco chip cookies differ? I have yet to try this. By the way, I have tried your chewy oatmeal cookies and I must say, I finally found the recipe I’ve been looking for! Even after 4 days, the cookies are still soft and chewy! Thank you so much for sharing your recipe. Now, I’m excited to try the choco chip cookie recipe. My preference are both chewy and soft. I’m just baking as a hobby and for home consumption. I’ll be looking forward to your reply. Thank you.

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Norlyn, the soft chocolate chip cookies are not quite as chewy and dense as the chewy chocolate chip cookies, but they’re way softer. We share more about the differences in our chocolate chip cookies here if you’re interested. Can’t wait to hear how you like them!

  3. Sally, I need help…..I was using this recipe thinking it was one for oatmeal cookies….I got the dry ingredients ready first,,,2 c flour, 2tsp cornstarch, 1 tsp soda, No salt because I only had salted butter. Then I added a rounded tsp of cinnamon because I thought they were oatmeal….OK I mixed up 2 bowls of dry ingred so I could make 2 batches. Then I noticed this was for chocolate chip cookies….would they taste ok with the cinnamon in them? Prior to mixing these dry ingredients I had made 2 batches of chocolate chip cookies which are chilling in the fridge…I want oatmeal… How do I make oatmeal out of the dry mixtures I already have? If you can help I would so appreciate it. These are for a mens group church meeting tomorrow night. Thanks, Rhoda

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Rhonda, for best results, we’d recommend continuing to make these cookies as written (the cinnamon is okay — it pairs wonderfully with chocolate!) and then freeze the dough for another time. Then, you can start fresh making the oatmeal cookies. Hope the cookies are a hit!

  4. Thank you so much! Through the years my cookies have gone downhill and I didn’t know why. One of my dil’s and I went on a search for how to make cookies that weren’t flat, but thick and chewy. We read a lot, asked friends etc, but didn’t gain enough to be satisfied…Then I got serious about it and started finding tips for mixing and baking good cookies….After a few hit and misses I discovered any cookie I made from your website was beautiful and the flavor is delicious. Soon I quit looking anywhere but “Sally’s Baking Addiction”….I’ve made 2 different chocolate chip recipes, 2 different oatmeal cookies, 2 different monster cookies and last but not least snickerdoodles…they were all great…. I’ve began selling cookies I bake at home on a small scale..I live in Wichita KS…so there should be plenty of business. My son leads at mens group at church and tonight 35 men attended. I sent over 100 cookies with my son for the meeting..Afterwards my so said “Everyone loved the cookies!” and “James” even said it was the best chocolate chip cookie he’d ever eaten. Sally, thank you for your hard work,,,the details and the fact you’re sharing this information..I’ve certainly got a hobby now that I hope will turn into a small home business….God Bless, Rhonda

  5. is it possible to freeze the dough for 30 minutes instead of refrigerating it

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Muneera, freezing the dough will chill it unevenly. We recommend sticking with the refrigerator for best results.

  6. I will actually revise my own comment, since I tasted them again today, after they had time to set. They were absolutely delicious, firm but soft, perfect balance of flavours. I found them greasy and almost underbaked when I tried them about one hour after cooking, guess they can use some rest. I replaced half of the chocolate chips with macadamia nuts, I love that combination. Thanks again for the recipe!

  7. HI. What do you mean by ‘the cornstarch gives the cookies extra lift’, and ‘keeps them moist’? Cornstarch has no lifting agents in it and no gluten either, so it neither acts as a raising agent itself nor traps gases from the baking soda (like the gluten fibres in flour does). Could you explain?

    1. Happy to explain. Cornstarch keeps the cookies thicker so they don’t spread quite as much. I find they’re also a little softer (even at the same bake time) compared to using an extra 2 teaspoons of flour. This recipe does not state that cornstarch keeps the cookies moist.

  8. Hi Sally, Thank you for sharing this delicious cookie recipe and giving us all the tricks to making them, it made me a star with my family, and, being my names sally too, i just said”heres sallys delish cookies”! So they all assumed it was my recipe hahaaaaa!

  9. Just finished making these. They taste good, the dough looked great. I followed the instructions to a T. My cookies are as flat as pancakes. No, as thin as a piece of paper basically. There’s holes in them. They spread so much it’s ridiculous. What happened?

    Butter was room temperature. Dough was refrigerated for 2 hours. Cooked according to directions. Measurements precise.

    1. Michelle @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Justine, For help troubleshooting cookies that spread, visit the post 10 Guaranteed Tips to Prevent Cookies from Spreading.

  10. Suzanne Bridges says:

    I have friends asking for more !! Thank you. Can I simply add walnuts to this recipe? in addition to the chocolate chips

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Suzanne, absolutely. You can add 3/4 – 1 cup of chopped nuts to the cookie dough when you add the chocolate chips.

      1. Thank you! Wow I honestly wasn’t sure if I was going to get a response back so soon. This team is amazing!!!!!

  11. Laurance Gay says:

    Sally- I have not made the soft chocolate cookies in a few years. How far apart do I place the 1.5” balls on the cookie sheet. Sorry if I missed but read through the recipe a couple of times.
    Thanks Laurance

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Laurance, you want them at least a few inches apart – we usually bake 8 on a cookie sheet at a time. Enjoy!

  12. Wow! These cookies ate AMAZING! Can I double the dough and still have the same consistency? And can I use clear vanilla instead? Thank you!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Jasmine! Yes, this recipe can be doubled. You can use clear imitation vanilla extract if desired.

      1. Thanks! I wasn’t expecting a respose so soon! The cookies are amazing!

  13. I made these cookies after seeing this specific recipe recommended everywhere. They were so good! I was curious though if any adjustments should be made for high altitude because mine didn’t look as pictured? Thank you!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Laura, I wish we could help, but have no experience baking at high altitude. Some readers have found this chart helpful:

  14. Ridiculously DELISH!!! I weighed, rather than measure the ingredients and used salted butter so reduced additional salt to 1/2 teaspoon (I made a double batch)
    Baked for 12 min @ 350 degrees.
    These are a birthday gift for my son and he will be delighted! Thanks for a perfect recipe.

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I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally