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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, just like in shortbread cookies. 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 on how to prevent cookies from 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! I recommend doing the same with double chocolate chip cookies.
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. 🙂 Snickerdoodles are a favorite!

warm chocolate chip cookies on black plate

How to Freeze Cookie Dough

Freezing chocolate chip cookie dough is really easy. I have a whole post dedicated to how to freeze cookie dough, but here’s a recap:

  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 1x
  • 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 3-4 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 3-4 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. Read my tips and tricks on how to freeze cookie dough.
  2. Be sure to check out my top 5 cookie baking tips AND these are my 10 must-have cookie baking tools.
  3. Adapted from Anna Olson

Keywords: cookies, chocolate chip cookies, chocolate

Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. This recipe was delicious, definitely best fresh out of the oven. My wife wants me to add walnuts to it, any suggestions. Ty

    1. Hi Paul, So glad you loved this! You can add 3/4 – 1 cup of chopped nuts to the cookie dough when you add the chocolate chips.

    2. Why the corn starch?
      I have all your cookbooks. Love them.

      1. Hi Robert, cornstarch is a thickening agent and gives the cookies extra lift and leaves them extra soft. Thanks so much for making and trusting our recipes!

  2. Sally, could I scoop the cookie dough first, before refrigeration? The recipe says to do it after chilling, but I am hoping to use this recipe for a function and wanted to make all my dough a few days ahead of time, so the day prior I can just bake them off.

    1. Hi Maggie, yes, that will work just fine. The dough may be a little soft to roll, but it should work. Hope they’re a hit!

  3. I give this recipe 5 stars! I bake a lot of cookies and this recipe is the best I have come across.

  4. Love this recipe! Is it possible to make the size of the cookies bigger? How would you adjust baking time/temp to accommodate?

    1. Hi Vina, You can make them larger without making any changes. The bake time may be a couple of minutes longer depending on their size.

  5. This was great I baked some for my class and they loved them! These were soft and even the raw cookie dough tasted amazing. 5 stars!! I will make again

    1. I loved this recipe too! But please, oh please, don’t eat the raw dough!

    1. Hi Judith, absolutely!

  6. Oh, my soul. I have found my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe. These cookies stay yummy for several days (if you can refrain from devouring them all at once). I’ve tried many… oh, so many recipes and this one tops them all so far. For the first batch, I rolled them put them on a pan and chilled in the freezer for 15 minutes. Then, I rolled the rest of the dough and put it in the freezer for ready-to-bake cookies.

  7. I’ve made these for multiple events and I absolutely love them. They’re so soft and chewy and pretty easy to make! Everytime I’ve made them I get tons of compliments! It’s so nice that the recipe makes 2 dozen because 1 wouldn’t last long!

  8. What all purpose flour do you suggest? I always use King Arthur but it does have a higher protein count vs other flours. Thanks.

    1. Hi Nora! We often use King Arthur all purpose flour, but also buy store brand or whatever is on sale – use whichever you prefer 🙂

  9. I’ve made these a few times and they were delicious! I’d like to make bigger batches. Can I simply double the ingredients?

    1. Hi Sherry, it shouldn’t be a problem to double this recipe. Glad you love them!

  10. I was so excited to make this recipe and they looked exactly like yours!!! WOW Deee-lush!!! Thank you so very much!!! ❤️

  11. I’ve never been one to follow a recipe exactly; I tend to use them more for ideas than guides (I’m also a “pinch of this, dash of that” sort) but I incorporated the extra yolk and tbsp of cornstarch to the choc chip cookie recipe I’ve been using since I was ten and WOW! They stay chewy much longer! Thanks so much, ur brilliant!

  12. Hello from Turkey Sally. Great recipe! Everyone loved it, thank you so much. Cookies will go to the dorm with my son tomorrow

  13. These are hands down the BEST chocolate chip cookies I’ve ever had. I add half semi sweet and half dark chocolate chips but I don’t think you can go wrong with any chip choice! I’ve made these countless times and they’re always soft and perfect. When I mentioned giving them a break from our cookie jar it broke my husband’s heart. Lol! After searching for years to find a decent chocolate chip cookie recipe I have found the holy grail!! Thank you!

  14. Absolutely scrumptious!!!! Best I’ve made! Does it matter though if I use unbleached or bleached flour? My friend says never to use bleached.

    1. Hi Catherine, we try to use unbleached whenever possible — but either works!

  15. Do I have to add cornstarch? If not what do you think is a good replacement?

    1. Hi Yari, cornstarch gives the cookies extra lift and leaves them extra soft. We strongly recommend using it if you can, but you can simply omit it if you don’t have it on hand.

  16. Hi! I made this and it came out really great.
    I was wondering if it was possible to omit the cornstarch or if there was a alternative? I have a family member who is really sensitive to cornstarch. Thanks!

    1. Hi Ren, you can just leave the cornstarch out, no need to substitute anything for it in its place. They should still be pretty soft!

  17. hey! Just wondering, can I do it w/ out chilling? Thx!

  18. I have used a lot of different chocolate chip cookie recipes and this recipe by far is my favorite. The cookies are absolutely delicious. I am using the recipe today to make a kitchen sink cookie. I am adding m&ms, pretzels, heath bar, marshmellow tid bits, and mini chocolate chips. Super excited to see how they turn out.

  19. My dough was very dry, I hope they bake ok, any idea why this would happen?

    1. Hi Jo Ann, how did you measure your flour? Be sure to spoon and level or use weight measurement to ensure just the right amount of flour — otherwise, too much flour can result in overly dry dough. This post on cookie baking tips may also be helpful to review for next time. Thank you for giving these cookies a try!

  20. I made them according to your recipe but they came out puffy so I pressed gently with the back of a spoon, added a few chips on top but the cookies don’t look like you photo at all. They are dark and still too puffy looking. What went wrong?

    1. Hi Val, how did you measure your flour? Be sure to spoon and level or use weight measurements to ensure the right amount of flour. Otherwise, too much flour can prevent cookies from spreading properly. This post on cookie baking tips may also be helpful to review — see end of #2 “What to do if cookies AREN’T spreading?” for more. Thank you for giving these cookies a try!

  21. Just wondering why you use baking soda instead of baking powder. I usually use the soda when using buttermilk or other acidic liquids.

    1. Hi Maureen, we typically use baking soda when a recipe contains an acid–in this case, brown sugar. You can read more about it here: Hope this helps!

      1. Well, I’m a whole lot smarter now. I had no idea that brown sugar and honey (as well as many other things in your article) are considered acid. You’re never too old to learn something new. Anyway, I prepared your recipe just as written and the cookies were wonderful. Thanks for a great recipe and a whole lot of great baking education!

  22. 10/10!! These cookies are so good. I did half chocolate chips and half butterscotch chips and they turned out amazing. I also really like that there’s minimal ingredients. All things you have on hand usually.

  23. Amazing!! Do you know the nutritional intro for these?

    1. Hi Loraine! We don’t usually include nutrition information as it can vary between different brands of the same ingredients. Plus, many recipes have ingredient substitutions or optional ingredients listed. However, there are many handy online calculators where you can plug in and customize your exact ingredients/brands. Readers have found this one especially helpful:

  24. This recipe worked well for me; I will use it again and again! My family and I loved them! The cookies looked perfect; they tasted perfect, and they had the perfect fluffiness! Thank you!

  25. This has been my go to recipe for years. Nothing can top it, so tast!

  26. Hi from Mexico!
    My british partner loves these cookies and they are so easy to make.
    I have a question, though. Should the dough be a bit sticky after adding the chocolate chips or am I doing something wrong?

    1. Hi Isabel, This batter is very soft and sticky before chilling! Chilling the dough for at least an hour before rolling it into balls is mandatory.

  27. I make this recipe with regular softened butter instead of melted butter so no refrigerating dough, and they turn out perfect.
    Love these cookies!

  28. hi there, i’ve a qn! why do my giant cookies tend to break apart more easily on one side (i.e. like at the edge), after baking? i usually bake these from frozen cookie dough. does freezing it dry it out hence change the texture significantly?
    this has been quite a consistent issue among my giant cookies across various batches hence i’m concerned…

    1. Hi CC, we freeze cookies often and have never had an issue with them drying out if properly sealed. Perhaps the cookies are baking differently from frozen (the edges cook faster and the middle stays solid for longer). If you find the edges are spreading out while the cookies are baking, you can remove them from the oven and gently reshape with a spoon – you can ready more about that in this post on preventing cookies from spreading. Hope this helps!

  29. Hi Trina

    thanks for your reply. my cookies do spread but not too thin that i dont want them. there’s still thickness in the cookies. my issue is with the edges kind of breaking off at certain angles. could it too much added choc within?
    also, what happens if cookies are not fully sealed?


    1. Hi CC, it’s hard to speak to a specific recipe that is not our own. Cookies can dry out a bit and take on the “freezer flavor” of other things in the freezer if not properly sealed. Hope this helps!