Guys, it’s battle time.
It’s the battle for the most amazing, incredible, melt in your mouth, ultimate chocolate chip cookie. *the crowd goes wild!*
Today, we have two contenders.
*Imagine me saying this through a huge, crackly megaphone* Iiiiiiiit’s The Chewy VERSUUUUUUUS The Thick and Soft!
*Cheering, pounding on tables, and chest bumps ensue*
I’m going to go ahead and get my biases out on the table before we begin.
I already have a favorite chocolate chip cookie. I’ve had it for years now. Yeeeeeears.
Spoiler alert: It’s The Chewy. You all have met before.
The Chewy won a previous chocolate chip cookie battle and thenceforth became my one and only true chocolate chip cookie love.
But then I started to see pictures of another cookie. A thick, puffy cookie. A cookie described as the perfect balance between soft and chewy.
I first discovered it on Sally’s Baking Addiction. I was intrigued. This recipe contained a secret ingredient–cornstarch–that was said to produce gloriously puffy and soft cookies.
At first, I passed it by. But I couldn’t stop thinking about the other cookie. I would see it on Pinterest and Facebook. Everywhere I looked it was there. Tempting me, luring me, wooing me.
So I gave in. I made the other cookie.
And you know what? It was good. Reaaaaaally good. They baked up thick and puffy and soft but still had a nice chewy bite.
You guys know how this story ends. There was only one solution.
A battle. A battle of epic chocolatey proportions.
So my friend Cathy and I sacrificed an afternoon to make two batches of cookies. It’s a tough job, but someone had to do it.
We made everything very scientific. The cookies were scooped with the same cookie scoop, baked on the same pans, chilled for the same amount of time in the freezer, baked until just slightly underdone. We put the same amount of chocolate chips in both, just to make sure no one had a chocolatey advantage.
We had taste testers of all ages and genders try both cookies. They were asked to vote for their favorite and share why they liked it.
Here’s the breakdown of the results:
Made with a higher proportion of butter, bread flour, and an extremely high brown sugar to white sugar ratio, these cookies were created by Alton Brown for one purpose: to be unbelievably chewy. He succeeded. Science, y’all.
Pros: Incredibly chewy (obvs), intense rich flavor, buttery, addictive
Cons: Slightly flat
The Thick and Soft:
This cookie has several of the traits that make The Chewy so chewy including melted butter and an extra egg yolk, but it uses all purpose flour and cornstarch to create thickness and keep them extra soft.
Pros: Puffy, thick, and soft, uniformly shaped, stays soft for up to a week, classic cookie flavor
Cons: Less rich, not as chewy, too salty
Thick and Soft- 6
Annnnnnnnd the winner is….THEEEEEEEEEEEEE CHEWY!
Weeeeeelll, kinda sorta.
You see, The Chewy won by votes, but truthfully, I think this battle comes down to personal preference.
Both of these cookies are stellar and I love each of them, but for different reasons. In my humble opinion, this isn’t a problem. After all, you can never have too many fantastic chocolate chip cookie recipes. The trick to finding your ultimate chocolate chip cookie is to know what you’re looking for in advance.
If you love thick, soft batch cookies with a balance of sweet and salty, you’re going to LOVE the Thick and Soft.
If you love buttery, ultra rich, cookies with an impossibly chewy bite, you’re going to ADORE The Chewy.
If you’re looking for pretty, uniform, perfectly rounded cookies to take to a fancy party, go with the Thick and Soft.
If you’re looking for a cookie to bake into a gooey, decadent deep dish cookie pie, go for The Chewy.
If you want a cookie that can stand up to lots of add ins– nuts, pretzels, whatever floats your boat– try The Thick and Soft.
If you want just plain gooooood chocolate chip cookies and looks aren’t a factor, I would still recommend The Chewy.
Whichever you choose, know that you will be rewarded with one of the best chocolate chip cookies you will ever eat. I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.
Before you dive in, here are a few of my cookie baking tips:
Chill the dough. Chilling keeps the dough from spreading and results in thicker cookies. Since both of these cookies are made with melted butter, they require a longer chill time. If you don’t have several hours to let the dough chill in the fridge, you can scoop them onto cookie sheets and slip them in the freezer for 15 minutes before baking.
Use chopped chocolate. I recently started buying bulk chocolate and chopping it at home. The irregular chocolate chunks produce surprise hunks of melty chocolate that mingle with subtle, tiny ribbons of chocolate throughout the cookie. Plus, awesome things like this happen:
Rotate the pans. This may not be necessary for all ovens, but I’ve noticed if I put two sheets in at the same time and don’t rotate them or switch the shelves halfway through, they don’t bake as evenly. So set a timer for halfway through the cooking time and just take a few minutes to pull a little switcheroo.
Finally, double the recipe! Make however many cookies you want then scoop the remaining dough into balls and place them in a zip lock for a later time. Then, all you have to do is pop them on a tray and add an extra minute to the baking time when you get a craving. This is also a wonderful thing to have on hand for last minute company. Trust me, having a fresh batch of cookies within a 15 minute reach at all times is never a bad thing.
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
- 2¼ cups bread flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1¼ cups brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 Tablespoons milk
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup chopped semi sweet chocolate*
- Sift together flour, salt, and baking soda in a medium bowl.
- Pour the melted butter into a large bowl. Add the two sugars. Beat the butter and sugars together with an electric beater or whisk. Add the egg, yolk, milk, and vanilla and beat until combined. Slowly add the flour mixture until combined. Stir in chocolate chips.
- Chill the dough (I chilled for about 3 hours, but overnight is even better. Alternatively, scoop the dough onto baking sheets and place in the freezer for 15 minutes before baking.)
- When ready to bake, heat oven to 375 degrees. Place sheets of parchment paper on two large baking sheets. Use a cookie scoop to dish out 2 Tablespoons of dough onto the baking sheets. Bake for 11-15 minutes, rotating the pans and switching racks halfway through. Remove when edges are just golden brown. They probably won’t look done. Resist the urge to over bake! Remove cookies from the oven and let set up slightly on the baking sheet. Cool completely on a wire rack. Keeps for up to three days in an airtight container.
- *Note: I now use all chopped chocolate chunks for this recipe. I also usually use Kosher salt for a slightly saltier cookie, but that is just personal preference.
Recipe adapted from Alton Brown/The Food Network
- 2¼ cup all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1½ teaspoons cornstarch
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, melted
- ¾ cup light brown sugar, packed
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- ½ cup chopped chocolate chunks
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, soda, cornstarch, and salt.
- In another medium bowl, use a whisk or electric beater to beat together butter and sugars until no lumps remain. Add egg, yolk, and vanilla extract and continue to beat until smooth. Slowly stir in flour until batter comes together. Stir in your choice of chocolate chips and chunks.
- Chill dough for at least 2 hours or overnight. If you're in a hurry, scoop 2 Tablespoons of dough in round balls onto cookie sheets and freeze for 15 minutes before baking.
- When ready to bake, preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 large cookie sheets with parchment paper. Bake for 10-12 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through. The cookies will look soft and underdone. That's okay. Allow them to set up on the baking sheet for 3-4 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Cookies keep in an airtight container for up to a week.
Recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction