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Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

This is the only recipe for chocolate chip cookies that you will need. Perfect cookies with a soft and moist center, melty morsels of chocolate, and crisp edges.

Natasha’s Kitchen

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close-up of the inside of a gooey chocolate chip cookie with melted chocolate dripping out

This is the only recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookies that you will need. These have all the elements of the perfect cookie with a soft and moist center, melty morsels of chocolate, and crisp edges. Best of all, there’s no chilling or refrigeration required so you can satisfy that cookie craving when it strikes!

There is no match for homemade chocolate chip cookies with soft and warm cookie dough, gooey chocolate chips, and the sweetest aroma coming from your oven. It’s just as tantalizing as homemade baked donuts or banana bread. Whether you’re making holiday cookies or surprising your kiddos with a sweet after school treat, memories are made with America’s most loved chocolate chip cookies.

Tips for Making Chocolate Chip Cookies:

  • Measure ingredients correctly, especially the dry ingredients (fluff your flour with a spoon then spoon flour into the cup and scrape off the top for an accurate measure).
  • Sift baking soda to eliminate any lumps
  • Butter and eggs should be at room temperature
  • Use plenty of chocolate chips – they add moisture and give the cookies good form
  • Use a trigger release scoop for equal-sized cookies (3 Tbsp each)
  • For a prettier cookie, stud the top of each cookie dough ball with a few extra chocolate chips before baking.

Which is the Best Chocolate for Cookies?

  • Semi-sweet chocolate chips (46% – 60% cocoa content) – Chocolate chip cookies are classically made with standard sized semi-sweet chocolate chips, but mini chocolate chips or chocolate “chunks” will also work. Nestle, Tollhouse, Ghirardelli, Guittard, Kirkland, Hershey’s,… most any brand will work. If you have the option, look for a package that states the cocoa content.
  • Milk chocolate chips (10% cocoa)- If you like a very sweet cookie, milk chocolate chips are a good option, just be prepared with your glass of milk! You can also mix milk chocolate with semi-sweet.
  • Bittersweet chocolate chips (70% cocoa) – produce a more ‘adult’ cookie – intensely chocolatey and less sweet.

The Secret to Soft Cookies:

Over-baking is the #1 cause of hard cookies. So, when are chocolate chip cookies done? The cookies should be removed from the oven when they are just turning golden at the base and the dough still looks a little raw on top. They won’t look done coming out of the oven and you’ll be tempted to keep them in there longer, but please do not over-bake.

Removing them at the right time is the secret to soft chocolate chip cookies. Our sweet spot for baking is 12 minutes (whether baking right away or after refrigerating the cookie balls)

Why Do Chocolate Chip Cookies Go Flat?

This is usually due to having the wrong balance of ingredients (not enough flour) causing them to spread out too much. Also, check your leavening and make sure your baking soda is not expired and still active. To test baking soda, place 1 tsp baking soda into a cup and add a splash of vinegar – it should fizz and if it doesn’t, replace your baking soda.

Why Did My Cookies Not Flatten?

If your cookies ended up too thick and did not flatten, the usual culprit is too much flour. Be sure to measure by fluffing the flour first with a spoon then spoon it into a dry ingredient measuring cup and scrape off the top. If you push your measuring cup into a flour bin, you will get up to 25% too much flour. Also, do not tap the flour down in the measuring cup.

Also, form cookies with 3 Tbsp of dough. If you make them too large, they will take longer to spread.

How to Freeze Cookie Dough:

This cookie dough is freezer friendly and we love freezing half for another day.

  • To freeze cookie dough: place cookie dough balls onto a baking sheet or cutting board, cover and freeze for an hour or until solid. Once they are frozen, you can transfer them to a large ziploc bag and freeze up to 3 months.
  • To bake frozen cookie dough: transfer to a Silpat or parchment-lined baking sheet and thaw the frozen cookies in the refrigerator for 3 hours over overnight before baking per the recipe instructions.
cookies on a wire rack

Recipe for Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients and recipe follow, but you can also check out the video tutorial for how to make soft chocolate chip cookies.



  1. Preheat oven to 350˚ F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or Silpat liner. In the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment, combine 2 sticks of butter, 1 cup of packed brown sugar and 1/2 cup of white sugar. Beat 5 minutes on medium/high speed until creamy and light, scraping donw the bowl as needed.

  2. Add 2 eggs, one at a time, beating well with each addition, scraping down the bowl as needed, then beat in 2 tsp of vanilla.

  3. In a separate bowl, combine 3 cups of flour, 1 tsp salt, and 1 tsp of baking soda (sifted to eliminate lumps). Add the flour mixture to the creamed butter in thirds, mixing to incorporate with each addition. Fold in 2 cups of chocolate chips.

  4. Use an ice cream scoop to get even balls of dough (3 Tbsp each). Place scoops of dough onto lined baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Mine fit onto 3 cookie sheets and made 26 cookies. Roll balls lightly with your hands then stud tops of cookie balls with reserved chocolate chips. Bake right away or cover and refrigerate until ready to bake.

  5. Bake one cookie sheet at a time for 12-15 min at 350˚F (we bake 12 minutes), until edges are just turning golden. The tops should still look under-baked. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet 5 min then transfer to a rack to cool. 

Recipe Notes

*To measure flour correctly, fluff the flour with a spoon then spoon it into a dry ingredient measuring cup and level the top. Do not dip a measuring cup directly into the flour bin or you can compact it and get up to 25% more flour and your cookies won't spread correctly. 

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This post originally appeared on Natasha’s Kitchen and was published May 14, 2020. This article is republished here with permission.

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