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

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 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.

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 Olson

Keywords: cookies, chocolate chip cookies, chocolate

357 Comments

Comments are closed.

  1. Finally! Chocolate chip cookies that don’t go flat. Thank you! Great recipe.

  2. Mine came out very high haha… did not flatten out much! Which I guess is good if you don’t like a thin cookie, but they underbaked a bit and I did have to pop them back in the oven. Not sure if that’s because the height?

    1. Hilari @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Monica, When cookies aren’t spreading, it usually means that there’s too much dry ingredient (flour) soaking up all the liquid. Make sure you are properly measuring your flour. You can see more about this in the post 5 Cookie Baking Tips to Improve Your Next Batch – see tip number two, the section called “What if cookies AREN’T spreading?”

  3. Hi,

    I love this recipe, and it’s helped me finally make the perfect chocolate chip cookie. I want to make them again, but notice I only have self-rising flour in the pantry. Could I swap this in for the all purpose, or will it mess you the recipe ?

  4. Can i just leave it for two hours instead of 2 days??

    1. Yeah, you only have to chill for an hour!

  5. Hands down best chocolate chip cookies I’ve ever made. This will be the only recipe I use from now on.

  6. I love this recipe! Ive successfully done them twice. However that last two times I’ve made them, now in two different altitudes (in Denver and in Charlotte) and both times the cookies are not fluffy! They keep spreading so I’m not getting that fluffiness I want. What am I doing wrong?

    1. Hilari @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Sarah Jane! So glad that you enjoyed these cookies and I’m glad to troubleshoot to help you get thicker cookies. Make sure that the butter isn’t too soft. Here’s a post Sally wrote all about proper room temperature butter— it is KEY in cookie making. We also have this tutorial for how to prevent cookies from over-spreading if you’d like to read further. Our #1 tip, however, is to add 3 Tbsp of flour to the dry ingredients. A little extra flour will soak up the butter and keep the cookies from spreading too much.

  7. The best and so easy! My friends rave about these cookies whenever I make them.

  8. Hi…I want to stuff my cookies with nutella in the inside..so if I follow this recipe and then also do a nutella filling will the cookies be too sweet? Please give me suggestions. Should I reduce the sugar?

  9. GreekPrincess80 says:

    These are incredible!!!! Finally, an amazing chocolate c hip cookie 🙂
    Do you know how many calories are PER cookie?
    sorry…I’m one of those! after losing 45 lbs.

  10. My teenage son just made these. The first tray didn’t spread much, so we slightly flattened the second dozen. The family voted these the best choc chip cookies ever! And we’ve tried quite a few.

  11. This is the first recipe that yielded successful chocolate chip cookies for me so I really want to say thank you for sharing all the detailed tips! Is any modification necessary if I want to add oats? For example, can I add 3/4 cup oats with the 1 and 1/4 chocolate chips?

    1. Hilari @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Alanna, I’m thrilled you had great success with these cookies! As for adding oats, it’s hard to say– playing around with the dry ingredients changes everything! Here is our favorite oatmeal chocolate chip cookie recipe. I think you’ll really like them.

  12. These are really good I only put in me cup of chocolate chips and added crushed walnuts about 3/4 of cup and they were awesome!

  13. Hello,

    I wanted to make this cookie with walnuts, would that be possible?

    Thank you,
    Stephanie

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

  14. I followed the instructions and ended up with small hard cookies. I did half the recipe though, and i might’ve had them in the fridge too long (about 6 hours). Other than this i cant really figure out what could’ve caused mine to fail so badly.

  15. Hi Sally!
    I am looking to make an oversized cookie. About 4-5” in diameter. What would be your suggestions on using this same recipe. Obviously larger amount of dough but do you have a suggestion on how much dough would make that size cookie? Also, how should I adjust my baking time to accommodate the change in size if at all? Thanks Sally!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Amanda, For giant cookies you can follow the recipe/instructions for 6 Giant Chocolate Chip Cookies.

  16. Hi Sally my name is penny and I’m 10 years old this recipe was delicious everyone loved it!❤️I do not understand why this must be frozen before cooking but I did it and it tasted great! thanks Sally

  17. Lady Labrador says:

    This, Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies, recipe is the best I’ve made so far. I’ve tried several different chocolate chip cookies recipes, but this one came out delicious and soft. What a treat, thank you.

  18. Hey, Sally!
    I’ve made these cookies about twice. This last time the chocolate chip cookies formed weird shapes, not really circular but more like bunches. They also didn’t spread as much as I’d like. Any idea why?
    Moe

  19. This recipe is so fantastic! I will only be making these from now on! Seriously the best chocolate chip cookie recipe ever! My cookies turned out perfectly shaped and tasted delicious. I did slightly alter the recipe. I added 2 full sticks of melted butter followed the advice of letting them chill overnight and baked them at 325* for 15-17 minutes. (I also measured the dough using a small ice cream scoop for even sized cookies.)Thank you so much for the great recipe! Can’t wait to try more recipes!

  20. rickie honeycutt says:

    Thank you, Sally, for this amazing recipe! I don’t usually bake because I hate to measure but I’ve been doing a lot of baking lately and these chocolate chip cookies are a huge hit every time and I’ve made them at least 5 times over the last 2 months. The crunchy, chewy texture is amazing!!

  21. i’m confused.. i copied this recipe word for word and my cookies turned out extremely flat

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Tara, Thank you for trying this recipe. If your cookie dough was sufficiently chilled, the most common culprit for flat cookies is butter that is too warm. Room temperature butter is usually colder than you think: Here’s What Room Temperature Butter Really Means. For more troubleshooting tips, here are 10 Guaranteed Tips to Prevent Cookies from Spreading.

  22. I made this yesterday and it turned out to be too puffy and the bottom burned a little bit. Not quite sure if the middle is cooked.

    1. You should “slap them” at the half way point. Take them out of the oven and give the cookie sheet a couple taps on the counter to “deflate” and then finish cooking.

      1. A splendid recipe, especially with dark brown sugar. I flatten the cookies slightly, just with the palm of my hand, before I put them in the oven. This is my grand-daughter’s favourite cookie, and she’s a connoisseur 🙂

  23. Hi Sally! I tried that recipe today and the texture and taste were amazing when they were still hot. As soon as they cooled down they had this dry and sandy texture although they remained soft. What is the fix for that? Could it be the brown sugar which gave it this texture?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Lea, Was your brown sugar fresh and were the sugars and butter completely creamed together in step 1? Brown sugar has great flavor but also adds a lot of moisture to these cookies, so it shouldn’t be drying them out. It should feel almost like wet sand when fresh – if it was harder and dried out that could have been the problem.

  24. Made this today! and They are really really good! This is the best chocolate chip cookies recipe!! Thank you so much for sharing!

  25. This is my favorite Chocolate chip cookie recipe by far and I’ve made it a bunch of times. I’m writing a comment now because of a delicious alteration.

    So, I was making a triple batch of dough to freeze some because my brother and I are cookie fiends but it was only after mixing the butter and sugar that I realized we had barely 1 tsp of vanilla extract left. So using some cinnamon and a slightly dubious packet of instant coffee I made a substitution.

    I recommend 1 part vanilla extract and 2 parts mix of instant coffee and cinnamon to give the cookies an excellent earthy sort of taste. (More coffee than cinnamon)

    1. My kids always wanted soft choc chip cookies and mine were always crisp and flat. Thank you so much for your tips. I now make an amazing soft choc chip cookie.!

  26. Heidi Wraight says:

    Hi I made the chocolate chip cookies. But I added cinnamon and nutmeg and almonds they were delicious thanks

  27. These are quite possibly the best cookies I’ve ever baked! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe!

  28. Best cookie recipe ever – I have added peanut m&ms and dark chocolate chips and it’s heaven

  29. BEST COOKIES EVER!!! I got so many compliments from these cookies, they turned out perfect! I used mini chocolate chips and regular chocolate chips, and that made sure there was chocolate in every bite. To all of the people with flat cookies: it is most likely the butter! Use slightly cold butter, it shouldn’t be shiny or greasy at all! Thanks sally!

  30. Amber Detweiler says:

    5 stars!! My new favorite recipe. I’ve used this quite a few times. I even made a dozen for my husband to take to work to share with the crew. I wrote it down and added to my book of favorites!

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