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!

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

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

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

Description

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!


Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  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 10-12 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.

Notes

  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 Olsen

Keywords: cookies, chocolate chip cookies, chocolate

Soft-batch style chocolate chip cookies using a few tricks to make them extra thick and soft! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

1183 Comments

  1. Seriously, THANK YOU so much for sharing THE chocolate chip cookie recipe with us!!! I have tested and restested my own recipes for years just to get the right recipe! But nothing had done justice until now. Yesterday, I baked these cookies and they are still soft and delish! My family is more than satisfied…they love these chocolate chip cookies that they’ve asked me to bake for other people! Thank you so much! My next recipe to try will be the White Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies! Your site is awesome!

    1. Hi Martha! Thank you so much for the kind comment, it means a lot! I’m glad you like my website. Also, these cookies are the best ever. And I’m never going to take that back – it is such a fabulous base recipe for chocolate chip cookies or any cookie variety. They get softer as each day passes, which we love. 🙂 Thank you so much and I’m glad you enjoy them as well!

  2. Melanie! What a sweet comment to read! Thank you so much for reporting back about these chocolate chip cookies. They are my favorite chocolate chip cookie ever. We can never get enough of them!

  3. I just made these and substituted about 1/4-1/3 cup of vegetable oil for the egg. They turned out wonderfully! I also used margarine instead of the butter, dark chocolate instead of semi-sweet, and nobody’s the wiser that they just ate vegan cookies.

    1. Ha! I love it Lexie! I’m going to have to try that sometime! And sometime soon. I always have readers asking me for vegan recipes. I’m not vegan so I hardly ever make vegan recipes for us at home. This sounds wonderful, thank you!

  4. On my baking bucket list was to make some proper American-style chocolate chip cookies (I’m British!). These didn’t disappoint! They’re amazing, and I think you’re right about the two sugars – it makes them have a certain je ne sais quoi! Thanks for bring this recipe to my knowledge – my life has changed!

    1. Life changing? Thanks Beth! I’m so glad you made these! They are our favorite chocolate chip cookie, no doubt about it. And yes the two sugars is key. 🙂

  5. Do you always use unsalted butter in your recipes? Do you know how much the taste would differ if one were to use margarine or salted butter?

    1. Hey Maddy! I actually use unsalted and salted pretty interchangeably in my recipes. Some may disagree, but I have never tasted a noticeable salty difference using salted. So use salted butter or margarine if you wish.

  6. These are, by far, the best chocolate chip cookies I have ever made or eaten! I made a batch night before last and was in love…. then stuck in the house with a sick little one the next day and I made another batch, along with cupcakes, and passed them out at my daughters school to teachers, my coworkers and my family. Everyone loves them! I sent them all here to get the recipe. This is my one and only chocolate chip cookie recipe from here on out. Love all of your recipes… I have made alot of them. Keep up the awesome work!!!!

    1. Hey Niki! Thank you SO much! This is wonderful – I’m happy you love these cookies too! It’s my one and only chocolate chip cookie recipe. The BEST! Your coworkers, family, and the teachers were very lucky to snag some. 🙂 Let me know any other recipes you make. I love hearing about it!

  7. After trying a few different cookie recipes I accepted the fact that I would never be able to make a cookie as good as I could buy. I have never felt the need to leave comments on recipie sites. I made a batch and halved the amount, I now have another doe sitting in the fridge anxiously waiting for 30 minutes. These are by far the best cookies I have ever tasted, I will never need to try and find another recipie again. Kids also said these were the best ever. Thank you for a fantastic recipie

    1. Hi Jess! Wow, this comment is wonderful to read. Thank you SO much for taking the time to write to me saying how much you love these cookies. I’m worked they worked out for you and YES, these are easy to make, the recipe is straightforward, and they are beyond delicious. Glad you agree!

  8. Hey there! Quick question… making these today, but noticed that it says to add flour, soda, salt, cornstarch but it doesn’t say to mix them first as most cookie recipes require. Am I correct in assuming that you do indeed add these ingredients separately?
    Thanks!

    1. Hey Stephanie! I’ve done them both ways. Mixing the dry and adding to the wet or mixing all the dry in at once. No noticeable difference. Whichever you you prefer. Thank you!

      1. Thank you so much! Super excited about trying these! I have used my great grandmother’s 1927 chocolate chip cookie recipe for 35+ years and have been looking to shake things up a bit. Found your blog via Pinterest and became an INSTANT fan! Keep up the good work… you’re an inspiration for sure!

      2. Off. The. Hook. Good!! I just texted my husband a picture of ’em and told him he better hurry home before I eat ’em all! LOL! And I don’t typically eat while I’m baking… seriously, I baked 3,000+ cookies at Christmas and only ate 3 of them, but I can’t stay out of these! I’m making the Salted Caramel Pecan Chocolate Chips tomorrow… can’t wait!!
        Thanks again!

  9. Oh my these are dangerously good! My husband who never eats sweets ate about 8 of these this morning. My son and I were very disappointed! We only have 6 left. I’m definitely making more! Thank you for such a great recipe!

    1. Hi Ingrid! Thank you so much for sharing this with me, I’m so happy you an your family love these cookies! We are obsessed with them. 🙂

  10. Took these (2nd batch!) to the dog show yesterday and EVERYONE wanted the recipe! …and my husband ate all the ones I had left at home! These are excellent cookies!

      1. You should go to one! They’re fun. We’re trying to get our dog ready to show and I used these cookies to make friends!

  11. Just made these now with white chocolate and chopped macadamia’s as i didn’t have that much chocolate. They were amazing and i will definitely be making them again 🙂 Thank you xxx

  12. Best cookies ive ever made in my life and I make A LOT of cookies! Listen to the 10 minute rule the cookies may look undone but they puff down into little perfect cookies

    1. Hey Rach! Exactly – they slightly deflate. The 10 minute mark is the latest to keep them in the oven. Thanks for reporting back! I am SO glad to hear you think these are the best!

  13. We go through a batch of cookies fast in our house. Have you doubled this recipe with much luck? I have my dough chilling now, excited to taste them!

  14. Hey, I just found your blog via the brown eyed baker and I love it!! It’s like a treasure trove. I’ve bookmarked so many recipes (mostly the cake batter ones) and can’t wait to make them!
    So last night I made these cookies, and I was inspired by your peppermint pattie cookies to put some chopped patties on the top. So. Good. I can’t get over the incredibly soft texture! Love! I also made them gluten free by replacing the flour with GF flour mix and adding 1 tsp xanthan gum and they were still perfect! Thanks so much for the recipe, and I plan to post it on my blog soon!
    -Victoria

    1. Hey Victoria! How fabulous that you made these GF. 🙂 And yes, I adore how soft they are! Definitely my favorite cookie recipe ever. I’m so happy you found my blog. We have a love for cake batter everything in common. Let me know what else you bake!

  15. YUM! These are absolutely delicious. I used light brown sugar, but next time I will use dark brown. I can’t wait to try your peanut butter cookies. I am on the search for a soft PB cookie, so yours look perfect!

    1. Hey Kara! That’s great – I love these cookies. A perfect recipe in my mind. Let me know how you like the soft PB cookies too.

  16. I hope this doesn’t sound blasphemous, but do you think a butter substitute like soy hutter or smart balance would be ok, or would this ruin the cookie? Would you be willing to try it?

    1. Hi Rebecca! We do not buy butter spreads or substitutes, so I won’t be trying that out myself. Nothing can replace butter for me in these cookies, but let me know if you try it out!

  17. These cookies were amazing!!! My family has a recipe that we always use, and I baked a batch of them today along with a batch of yours–yours were the winners by far! Also made the chocolate cupcakes with Nutella frosting with great results. Thank you!!!

  18. I made these cookies today and tried to do everything you said..so the first batch I baked for about 9 minutes and the edges were just slightly browned so I took them out, but they never set up. Then I baked the rest for about 11 minutes..and they got more brown and solid around the edges, but still didn’t ever really set up in the middle. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Danae- do you have an oven thermometer? It sounds like the oven temp may be off. My oven runs very hot so I have to use a thermometer.

  19. These cookies were absolutely amazing!! I made the white chocolate cranberry ones awhile back and fell in love! 🙂 my coworkers want me to being cookies into work, so I’ll be on a baking mission today and will be using your recipe for then!. Making a variety, but how do you think m&ms would work out in this recipe? How much would you suggest putting in?

  20. Sally this is by far the best recipe! They come out so most and chewy. I have made so many batches it’s ridiculous, and I just can’t stop. Now on to try your Easter recipes!

  21. The cookies taste pretty good and I love them with the dark brown sugar. However, next time I make these I will use far 1/4 to 1/2 chip less chocolate chips. I also reduced the size of the cookies on the second half of tyhe batch which helped. With the tablespoon measure and so many chocolate chips the cookies spread and the chips stayed join the center. Perhaps I could have chilled the dough longer as well. Thanks so much for the recipe! I look forward to using this again and trying so many more from your recipe box!

    1. So sorry yours spread Rachael! Yep, dough chilling is a key step to avoid spreading. Do you have a silicone baking mat, such as Silpat? They help “grip” onto cookie dough and prevent spreading as well. http://www.silpat.com/

  22. THANK YOU for this amazing recipe! It takes no time to prepare and bake, and it tastes amazing! My family loved it and are demanding more of these delicious babies. 🙂

  23. Hi Sally! I just wanted to let you know that I did half/half unbleached all purpose flour/whole wheat pastry flour, added an egg white, and they came out great! A tad thicker than the original recipe, but still moist and soft and chewy. I also chop a good quality baking bar of 70% dark chocolate instead of using chocolate chips. Oh, and I used smoked chocolate sea salt in the cookies and also topped them with it. Love your recipes!

    1. WOW! So many amazing changes Andrea – the smoked chocolate sea salt sounds incredible. I’ll have to try your version sometime!

  24. Here’s the link for the Smoked Chocolate Sea salt, in case you wanted to snag some for yourself 🙂 Also, check out their sugars. The salted caramel sugar is my favorite!

    http://www.spiceandtea.com/chocolate-sea-salt-p-569.html

  25. Thank you for the best chocolate chip cookie recipe EVER!!! I have been on a lifelong quest to find a great one and these could not be better! Perfect amount of chewiness and flavor. Your blog is the best! 🙂

  26. Hey Sally! This week, I plan to make a bunch of sweets for my Mom(i want to try the snickerdoodle blondies, cake batter rice crispy treats, the caramel dipped pretzels, and these amazing-looking chocolate chip cookies :D). She is in charge of ordering food for events that are going at her work. But the catering company never brings the food on time, which puts a lot of stress on her. So, I decided to make her things to bring to work for a smaller event going on this saturday and surprise her with them. My only problem though is time; it’s hard to juggle high school and a baking obsession :/ haha so if I make these cookies on thursday and freeze them, will they still be nice and soft? I hope you’re having a great week 🙂

    1. Hi Teresa – if you make these on Thursday for an event on Saturday, you won’t have to freeze them at all. Just make sure they are covered tightly and left at room temperature. So sweet of you to do all that baking for your mom!

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