I have been making these cookies for seven years now; seven years! They are quick, easy and delicious. It is my everyday chocolate chip cookie of choice. When a cookie craving hits, we can be enjoying these within 30 minutes, warm out of the oven.
These cookies call for melted butter cooled to just warm, which makes them so quick – no waiting for butter to warm or soften to the right temperature. The melted butter also helps to make these chewy. According to Cooks Illustrated, by melting the butter it separates the water and fat molecules, which lets the water immediately attach to the proteins in the flour and start to form strands of gluten. The gluten that forms makes the cookies chewy.
I make plain chocolate chip cookies all the time, but this is a great base for creative variations too; at the bottom of the recipe, I’ve listed some of our favorite mix-ins.
Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip CookiesAdapted slightly from Cooks Illustrated Makes about 18 large cookies 2 cups, plus 2 tablespoons (10 5/8 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled to just warm 1 cup packed (7 ounces) light or dark brown sugar 1/2 cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar 1 large egg, plus one large egg yolk 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1 – 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
Adjust oven racks to upper and lower-middle positions; heat oven to 325 degrees. Prepare two large baking sheets by lining with parchment paper or spraying with non-stick spray.
Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl with whisk; set aside.
By hand, or with an electric mixer, mix butter and sugars together until well combined. I’ve used both mixing methods over the years, and both work equally well. Beat in the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla until incorporated. Add dry ingredients and beat at low speed until combined (by hand will work too – just takes a little more effort). Stir in the chocolate chips to taste.
Roll a scant of a quarter cup of dough into a ball. Hold the dough ball at opposite ends, and then pull apart into two equal halves. Rotate halves upwards 90-degrees so the craggy tops are facing upright. Join halves together at base to form back into a single ball, being very careful to not smooth the jagged surface just created. This is the only tricky part in the recipe; see the photo below for a visual.
Place dough balls onto baking sheets, jagged sides face up, and 2 1/2 inches apart.
Bake until the cookies are light golden brown, and the edges start to harden; about 15 to 18 minutes, rotating the sheets top to bottom, and front to back half way through. The centers of the cookies should still be soft and puffy. Cool cookies completely on baking sheets. Remove cookies from sheets with a flat, metal spatula. Store in an air-tight container.
Other Delicious Variations:
Chocolate Chip Cookies with Toffee Bits - substitute 1/2 cup of broken up toffee bits for 1/2 cup of chocolate chips.
Chocolate Chip Cookies with Candy Pieces - substitute 1/2 cup of chocolate candy-coated pieces for 1/2 cup of chocolate chips; decorate tops of cookies with additional candy-coated pieces if desired.
Chocolate Chip Cookies with Coconut and Toasted Almonds – add in 1 cup of sweetened flaked coconut and 1 cup of toasted silvered almonds.
Black and White Chocolate Chip Cookies with Macadamia Nuts - substitute 1/2 cup of white chocolate chips for chocolate chips, and 3/4 cup of slightly chopped macadamia nuts.
Chocolate Chip “Chunky” Cookies - Add one cup of chocolate chips, 3/4 cup of raisins and 1/2 cup of rough chopped dry roasted peanuts.