September 12, 2013

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

We call these everyday chocolate chip cookies because they're our perfect chocolate chip cookie without a lot of fuss. Meaning you don't have to brown any butter, refrigerate any dough, or leave any ingredients on the counter to warm up or soften.

This recipe has taken a while for me to develop, almost one full year to be exact. It's not that I don't LOVE these brown butter chocolate chip cookies, which by the way are amazing, but sometimes when I want a cookie I need a cookie NOW. I don't always have time for all of the fussy steps in a lot of cookie recipes (refrigeration, leaving eggs to warm at room temp, etc).

There are days where I want chocolate chip cookies fast fast fast. I want to sink my teeth into warm, chewy, chocolatey goodness within minutes after I finish making a quick, low-fuss cookie dough. The problem in developing this recipe was that I had a hard time getting all of the desirable cookie qualities that I wanted in a quick dough (because it turns out that things like refrigeration are good for chocolate chip cookie dough, you know just generally speaking).

Before I go any further I should explain what kind of a cookie I was trying to create:

  • I didn't want flat cookies, but I didn't want cookies that were mounds either. 
  • I wanted a good amount of spread but I still wanted some thickness to the cookies.
  • CHEW. It's real important to me.
  • Rich, almost caramel-y brown sugar flavor (like what you get from adding brown butter).
  • A little bit of crunch. Just on those edges and on the cookie bottoms. Crunch and chew together are soul mates.

I tried a plethora of different combinations of generic cookie ingredients to try and achieve these results. I wasted a lot of cookies that were just plain gross. At one point I even made cookies that looked like baked cookies but tasted like the texture of cookie dough but were somehow also the texture of cake. They were super nasty, folks.

Can you eat too many chocolate chip cookies in one year? Why yes, yes you can. I'm a little bit tired of chocolate chip cookies over here. Which is why when I came up with this last and final combo of ingredients that I wanted to try about one month ago I was completely drained of any hope that they'd work out how I wanted them to.

But I was ecstatic about the results. I even ate two cookies, which for me is sort of a big deal. I've made a few more tweaks to the recipe since then, and the last time I made them (the cookies down in that photograph) I ate five. I have no self-control around these babies, fo' sho.

Perfect Everyday Chocolate Chip Cookies. Make 3 dozen awesome chocolate chip cookies in an hour or less. Low-fuss #cookie #recipe

Are you ready for the recipe? I'm sure you are but I thought I'd explain why I use the ingredients I use first.

FAT: two parts partially melted salted butter/ one part butter flavor shortening.

I almost always use salted butter when I'm baking. I'm open to using unsalted butter too, but the salt in salted butter will naturally enhance the buttery flavor that's there. Sure, we're adding more salt to this recipe, but that salt will mostly enhance the other cookie flavors--- like the sweet brown sugar, the vanilla and the CHOCOLATE. Why should you partially melt your butter, you ask?

Well, melted butter will give a nice brownie-like chew to the cookie. BUT melting the butter all the way will require that the dough gets refrigerated for at least two hours. Why? Because butter has a low melting point which means cookies that are made with butter spread more, and if that butter is melted beforehand (meaning it's already reached it's melting point) and you don't refrigerate the dough to kind of bring that butter back to it's solid state within the dough, your cookies will end up flat. Very FLAT. Partially melting the butter will also help in the development of that caramel-y brown sugar flavor. Oh yeah, and it helps make the bottom and edges of the cookie a little crispy. In other words, partially melting the butter allows some very desirable cookie qualities to happen (chew, crisp, caramel-y flavor) without making cookies that spread too much and become flat.

I added butter flavor shortening because: a) it's already soft, so that's cool. b) it has a higher melting point than butter so it'll spread along with the butter, but it'll keep the cookies from spreading too much. Why butter flavored? Plain white vegetable shortening won't contribute any coloring to the cookie (another role of butter) and ain't nobody have time for pale cookies. Gross. We want a nice golden brown cookie. Or at least I do, if I'm speaking for myself.

FLOUR: one part bread flour/one part all-purpose flour

Bread flour makes cookies chewy due to it's higher gluten content. But if all of the flour is bread flour there's too much chew. The all-purpose flour gives this cookie some balance in the chewy department.


Dark brown sugar has a higher percentage of molasses than light brown sugar. It gives these cookies the perfect deep flavor I wanted and the added molasses keeps the cookies soft for DAYS.

Also, I did not add white sugar to this cookie at all. Brown sugar gives chew to a cookie, white sugar does not. White sugar also helps cookies spread... sometimes too much. In all of my experimenting (and there was a lot of that goin' on around here) I found that I like chocolate chip cookies made with all brown sugar and not a combo of white and brown sugar.


I don't actually know what works about this for sure, but it just works. Usually in baking you want your eggs to be room temp, so that they incorporate better with the other ingredients. But for real, I hardly ever think to sit my eggs out on the counter four hours before I want to bake. There are tricks to bringing your egg to room temp quickly, but I found that in my recipe a cold egg straight from the refrigerator works best. It's almost like it gives the dough some "refrigeration" along with it.


Baking powder makes things cakey--- not something I EVER want in a cookie. Baking soda is still a chemical leavener, but compared to baking powder it does much less rising. In the end it helps these cookies stay soft and chewy.

LOTS OF VANILLA for color and flavor.

SALT to enhance the sweet flavor of the cookie and the flavor of the chocolate chips. Salt also helps the gluten in the flours stay tight and make a good cookie-like structure while baking.

MILK and SEMI-SWEET CHOCOLATE for a balanced chocolate flavor. Sometimes all semi-sweet chocolate can be overpowering. 

And now for the recipe. I hope you're as excited to make these cookies as I am to share them with you. Please, if you use this recipe on your blog, give credit where credit is due (aka to me). Thanks!

Perfect Everyday Chocolate Chip Cookies

Recipe Source: © Amanda Jenks
Yield: 3- 3 1/2 dozen cookies

1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter
1/4 cup butter flavor shortening *I recommend name brand Crisco
1 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon cold whole milk *use whole milk. It's one tablespoon. It won't kill you. Fat adds flavor.
1 cold large egg
1 tablespoon pure vanilla *use the real stuff. No imitation stuff please.
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup+ 2 tablespoons bread flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup milk chocolate chips
3/4 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips or chunks

Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Soften the butter in the microwave in 15 second increments until butter is about 2/3 softened and 1/3 melted. This takes some eyeballing but it should not take longer than 30 seconds (it takes about 20 seconds in my microwave).

Scrape butter into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and immediately mix in shortening and dark brown sugar until creamed. Stop the mixer and scrape the sides. Mix the egg, vanilla, and milk until fully combined. Scrape down sides again. In a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: both flours, salt, and baking soda.

Switch to the cookie paddle attachment if you have them for your stand mixer. Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until they come completely together. Add the chocolate chips. You can also use a hand mixer to make these, just fold in the chocolate chips with a rubber spatula at the end.

Roll dough into 2 tablespoon portion sized balls (the perfect size for this particular recipe). A number #30 or #40 disher scoop will work perfectly for even cookie sizes. I put 8 cookies on the cookie sheet at a time, arranged with three on the sides and two in the middle (if that doesn't make sense there's a picture of cookies on a cookie sheet here, and that's how place them).

Bake for 8-10 minutes or until cookies have "puffed" up and are lightly golden brown. Cool for 3-5 minutes on the cookie sheet before removing to a wire rack (or shoveling into your mouth, in my case). It should only take 30 minutes to make the dough and get the first batch cooked and cooled, so about 50-60 minutes total time if you include finishing the other batches.

I recommend lining two cookie sheets and even though you're only putting one in the oven at a time you have one on standby so you can put the second one in the oven while the other sits and cools.

Yield: 36 cookies
Calories per cookie: 143
Carbs per cookie: 19g

This recipe has been entered into the Safest Choice Eggs recipe contest hosted on Bakeaholic Mama and Buns In My Oven.

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