Crisp on outside, gooey in the middle. Truly the perfect cookie. My co-workers are constantly asking for them (as in always asking for them).
If you ask me what my 2 favorite foods are, I can answer without hesitation:
1) Buttermilk pancakes (with chocolate chips of course) and
2) Chocolate chip cookies, still warm from the oven.
Yes, I said my 2 favorite foods because I honestly can’t decide between them. I think I might have a bit of a chocolate problem.
These chocolate chip cookies were over 10 years in the making. I baked my first CC cookie when I was around 11 or 12 years old. Initially, I followed the same recipe as many others… the original Tollhouse Chocolate Chip cookie recipe listed on the back of every Nestle Chocolate Chip bag. I made them so much that my brother started volunteering me to bake for the local bake sales.
Over the years I slowly began making changes to the the original recipe.
Who knew there were so many considerations that go into making a chocolate chip cookie?
Now, I am am giving you my secret recipe and the 8 baking tips that make them so good.
Here are my 8 best tips for the absolute most delicious chocolate chip cookies ever (pictures follow in the instruction section).
1.How weather effects the way your Chocolate Chip Cookie bakes.
Baking them on a very hot and humid day will yield a different cookie than if baked on a cool and dry day. If given the choice, choose the cooler, dry day for best results. Hello Fall baking!
2. Use quality, perfectly softened butter to make your chocolate chip cookie dough.
Quality and temperature are very important to the finished product.
Here in Missouri, we have a local dairy manufacturer, Hiland Dairy. I have always bought their butter without thinking much of it, until the day I tried another brand and my cookies WERE NOT THE SAME! I know not everyone has access to Hiland Dairy butter, but I believe in this situation it comes down to quality. This is not the place to pinch pennies (no judgement by the way, I am all about budget friendly…in the right situation…which is not this situation).
The next consideration is the temperature of the butter. You want barely softened butter. Too hard and your butter won’t fully incorporate into the dough, too soft and your cookies will fall and turn into a puddle on your baking sheet. You should be able to easily leave an indention on the butter with your finger but not see any melty drips. If you see melty dripping butter then start over, don’t try to put it in the refrigerator. Tried it, didn’t work.
All the rest that makes this cookie special.
3. What kind of sugar makes the best chocolate chip cookie?
The next key ingredient we need to discuss is brown sugar, or more importantly the ratio of brown sugar to granulated sugar. I go with a 2:1 ratio which results in a slightly crisper cookie on the outside than with the more traditional 1:1 ratio.
4. A little extra “Heap” of baking soda makes the perfect chocolate chip cookie.
This next step is slightly nontraditional. I “heap” the baking soda in the measuring spoon which was a trick I learned from my mother-in-law. Not an exact measurement here (sorry traditionalists) but it works and I don’t have to dirty up an additional measuring spoon (even better). Also, remember to keep your baking soda current as it will loose it’s baking power over time.
5. What kind of flour do I use for the best chocolate chip cookie?
I’m team All-Purpose. I rarely use other types of flour in my recipes. You may need to add a little extra at the end (yes, I know I just broke another rule). It’s important to add enough flour so that the dough is the right consistency. It should be stiff enough that you have to work a bit to get the chocolate chips incorporated. Remember that hot and humid day? You may need to add a little more flour in this case (again, sorry traditionalists).
6. What is the best cookie sheet for baking chocolate chip cookies?
Greased (yes, I said greased) air bake pan if you have it. Darker pans tend to work best but use whatever you have. The dark pan helps get those crispy edges that we love so much.
7. How do I get that perfect crinkly crater top?
I don’t scoop my cookie dough with a cookie scoop. Instead, I want my cookies to have lots of texture so the drop method works best. Just plop the dough on the pan using a spoon and your finger. They aren’t the most Instagram worthy dough balls but trust me when I say it makes a fantastic cookie.
8. What is the single most important tip to achieve the perfect chocolate cookie?
Finally, the most important thing that makes these cookies gooey and perfect…DO NOT OVER BAKE!!! The timing on the bake is everything. 1 minute too early and your “gooey” cookies will be raw, 1 minute too long and your cookies will have a more cake like texture and will be just another cookie. When your cookies are done, they will have lightly browned crispy edges and will still appear a bit underdone in the middle.
When they look like this then it’s take them out of the oven! Immediately! Let them set on the cookie sheet for an additional 10 minutes to continue baking. This may take a little practice and I recommend doing the first bake with just a few cookies until you can find the right baking time for your oven and altitude. Like pancakes, the second and third bake is always the best.
The Missouri Girl Chocolate Chip cookie
Start with the right butter at the right temperature. See the perfect finger indention? Not a melty drip in sight.
Then add the brown sugar and granulated sugar. Beat well with a hand held mixer.
Then add your egg and vanilla. Beat again until all the ingredients are well incorporated and fluffy.
Now add your flour, baking soda, and salt. Remember its all about the “heap”. Most recipes call for sifting these ingredients together but I must admit I rarely do. Hey, I’m a busy mom and if I can save 2 seconds I will.
With the blender on low speed, mix until just combined. The dough should be on the stiff side.
Now stir in your chocolate chips (lots of them) and toffee bits.
Now take a spoon and plop a dough ball onto your greased cookie sheet. Each dough ball should be a little over 1/8 cup. I tend to prefer darker pans but was too embarrassed to show the world my beat up “old faithful” so this particular batch was baked on something a little prettier. This recipe yields about 15 generous sized cookies. They tend to be big and spread some so make sure you don’t overcrowd. A very large cookie sheet pan can hold about 9 cookies, but I would stick to baking 6 at a time if using a standard cookie sheet.
Now bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes. You know its done when you see the edges are nicely browned, the top is just starting to brown, but the center still looks a little gooey. Like this.
Now take them out of the oven and let them sit on the baking sheet for at least 10 minutes to finish baking.
And then you will have this.
See the gooey center and crisp edges? (Sigh)
The Missouri Girl Chocolate Chip Cookie
- 1 stick SALTED butter softened
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar firmly packed
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 "heaping" tsp (or approximately 3/4 tsp) baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
- 4 oz English Toffee Bits
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Lightly grease a large cookie sheet.
- In a medium bowl cream the butter, brown sugar, and sugar with a hand held mixer until blended well.
- Add the egg and vanilla, beat until creamy and fluffy.
- Next, add the flour, baking soda, and salt.
- Mix on low speed until just combined. The dough should be slightly stiff.
- Stir in chocolate chips and toffee.
- Drop by rounded 1/8 cup portions onto lightly greased cookie sheet.
- Bake 8-9 minutes until the edges are lightly browned, the top is just starting to brown, and the center is still gooey.
- Allow them to sit on the baking sheet to finish baking for at least 10 minutes before serving.