These Super Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies are perfect in every way. It’ll be hard for me to find a recipe to top this one, I think!
Making cookies has always been one of my favorite parts about baking, but the pleasure I derive from it took a whole new meaning in 2019. The cookie boom from last year seems to have made people a lot more appreciative of them. I never recalled anybody making any particular fuss over cookies whenever I gave some away before, but that changed last year, during what I call the Cookie Boom of 2019. I started to get messages and comments about all manners of chocolate chip cookie-related things whenever I gave away cookies. The funniest comment was: ‘I don’t think I can ever go back to eating Chips Ahoy again after having homemade.’
Now I’m not trying to say I have superior cookie-baking skills, nor am I trying to slam Chips Ahoy and its fans in any way. I just find it interesting how people’s tastes seem to have sharpened or become refined when it came to cookies. I am actually happy to have people I can talk to about super specific cookie things nowadays. Before, only people who baked could relate to some of the stuff I kind of obsessed over; like adding salt on top of cookies to make the flavors pop.
Frankly, as one of the few sweets I willingly binge on, I have some very clearly defined preferences when it comes to Chocolate Chip Cookies. I like them crisp around the edges and super chewy in the middle, but not “moist” to the point that they feel mushy, like raw cookie dough. To maximize the chewiness of the cookie center, they do have to be somewhat chubby, but I don’t want them to be as big as stones, if you know what I mean. An inch thick would be good enough for me to label them as Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies.
The cookies also have to have a good distribution of chocolate—not too little, not too much. As much as I love chocolate, I don’t like it to overpower my cookies. They should exist in harmony with the caramel-y cookie base. I also like them melty inside the cookies! Finally, a sprinkling of sea salt on top is a must for me. I am definitely one of those people who look for that touch of sea salt on top, because of the way it enhances the cookies. It brings out all the nuances of the different sweet flavors within the cookie in a way that’s hard to explain. I think once you get used to salting your cookies, you start to feel something lacking in them when you don’t.
(It might be psychological. I honestly don’t know. However I am firmly in Team Salt Your Cookies.)
Basically, what I’m trying to say with my drawn out explanation is that all of the things I love when I eat a chocolate chip cookie are present in these super awesome, Super Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies. It’s hard to make me shut up about something I love as much as I love these cookies, so thanks for reading this far. Do keep going!
These Super Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies I keep gushing about actually comes from a recipe developed by Stella Parks, aka Bravetart, aka super witty pastry chef/writer. I used to follow her on her blog (when it was still active) since way before I started my own, so it surprises me not one bit that she is responsible for developing my favorite cookie recipe. She also has a cookbook now, which is awesome, and which I bought a digital copy of because I literally forced myself into a physical cookbook buying ban. (So far, I’m doing better than expected lol.)
Anyway, my goodness, I’m dragging things out a lot aren’t I? Let’s talk about the recipe for a change! That’s what you’re here for!
This recipe for Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies starts out like most cookie recipes with a minor difference. You will be creaming together the butter and the sugars, but you also add in the leavening agents in this step. Because it’s important to really get that super fluffy and soft consistency in this step, especially for chocolate chip cookies, I recommend using either a hand mixer or a stand mixer.
The instructions below are for a stand mixer, but the principles are the same if you use a hand mixer. If you decide to use your muscles, 8 minutes is a very long and exhausting length of time for this step. Once you achieve that pale fluffy mixture and you notice there’s barely any grainy sugar left on that batter, stop and scrape down the batter stuck to the sides of the bowl.
Now we add the eggs, one at a time, allowing each egg to incorporate before adding the next one. Nextm we add the flour. I always switch to a spatula to mix in my ingredients to the wet. First of all, I hate seeing flour flying all over. It happens when you use equipment, regardless of how careful you are. Second, I think using a spatula to mix in the flour gives you more control.
You cant to stop once the last streak of flour is incorporated, and then add in the chocolate chips and your choice of nuts. For the chips, I highly recommend Ghirardelli 60% cacao baking chips. I used Nestle Toll House Baking Chips here, but Ghirardelli is my favorite. You can taste the premium-ness!
Once you’ve got your add-on’s mixed in, the next part is crucial. You want to divide the dough into 8 equal parts, each weighing about 170 grams or 6 ounces. Place them on top of clingwrap then use the wrap to shape them into a smooth ball. Try your best not to wrinkle the clingwrap too much because it’ll score the dough. Refrigerate at least 12 hours before baking. I repeat, AT LEAST 12 hours.
I have never tried making these any smaller than what Stella instructs, but maybe if you try going that route, you can refrigerate them for a shorter period. Refrigeration is important because cold dough prevents cookies from spreading too much once baked. The sugar in the dough also gradually absorbs excess liquid from the dough itself the longer it sits in the fridge. This creates a chewier cookie rather than a soft or doughy sort of cookie. If you’re unconvinced about my reasons, let the experts tell you.
The dough will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week if properly stored in an airtight container or wrapped airtight in cling wrap. You can also freeze them up to 6 months, but WHY? I mean, just bake them! This recipe only yields 8 ginormous cookies anyway.
Once ready to bake and oven is sufficiently preheated, make sure to put only four balls of dough per cookie sheet to give them enough room to do their thing. Roll them straight out of the fridge, from the clingwrap to the cookie sheets. Before popping them in the oven, sprinkle with sea salt. OF COURSE!
You might think that these big chunkers wouldn’t bake into gorgeous cookies, but they really do. You want to bake until cookies are puffed and lightly browned. Stella says 22 minutes, but I needed a slightly longer time. Ovens can vary, so start checking yours at the 22 minute mark. If the cookies don’t really seem browned yet, give them another 2 minutes. The edges should look a bit browner/golden compared to the rest of the cookie. It will also look fairly set though still soft when poked.
Fresh out of the oven they look like puffy hills, but once they’ve cooled and set, they get those pretty wrinkles on top that I love so much!
And indeed, these Super Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies are as big as my palm. One cookie can last me up to 4 days because I can’t ever imagine myself finishing up an entire piece of cookie this size. Too much guilt! But I will say, these are absolutely divine, especially when warm and the chocolate inside is all nice and slightly melty. The cookie itself is not too sweet, with a great balance of flavors. The nuts are crucial in maintaining that balance so please do not leave them out!
I actually noted on my print-out for this recipe: ‘THE SEARCH MIGHT BE OVER.’ So you all know how I feel about these. Whether you call them Levain-inspired cookies, or just refer to them as Super Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies as I do, I REALLY hope you guys try this recipe out and FALL IN LOVE!
The Best Super-Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes eight 6-ounce cookies
- 113 grams 4 ounces unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 113 grams 4 ounces light brown sugar, firmly packed
- 100 grams 3.5 ounces white sugar
- 15 grams 0.5 ounce vanilla extract
- 8 grams sea salt, plus more for sprinkling
- 1¾ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- Pinch of grated nutmeg
- 100 grams about 2 large eggs, straight from the fridge
- 283 grams 10 ounces all-purpose flour
- 425 grams 15 ounces assorted chocolate chips
- 240 grams 8.5 ounces raw walnut pieces or lightly toasted pecan pieces
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, place the butter, both sugars, vanilla extract, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and nutmeg. Fit in the paddle attachment. Mix on low to moisten, then increase speed to medium. Beat until soft, fluffy, and pale, about 8 minutes. Pause the mixer to scrape down the sides of the bowl using a flexible spatula as necessary.
- With the mixer still running on medium, add eggs one at a time, allowing the first one to incorporate fully before adding the next. At this point, you can either reduce mixer speed to low or use a spatula to incorporate the flour. Add the chocolate chips and nuts, then mix until dough is homogeneous.
- Divide the dough into 8 equal portions (about 170 grams or 6 ounces each), and shape each into a smooth ball. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least 12 hours before baking. The dough will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week if properly stored in an airtight container or wrapped airtight in cling wrap.
- Once ready to bake, adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat to 350°F (180°C). Line two sheet pans with parchment paper. When the oven is sufficiently preheated, arrange 4 portions of cold dough on prepared pan, leaving plenty of space between each dough round to spread. Sprinkle with additional salt on top, if desired.
- Bake until cookies are puffed and lightly browned, about 22 minutes. (If checking the internal temperature, it should be between 175°F/79°C and 185°F/85°C.) Cool cookies directly on baking sheet until just warm (around 100°F/38°C). Enjoy warm.
- These cookies are best when freshly baked, but leftovers can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days. For best eating experience, rewarm briefly in a preheated 350°F (180°C) oven before serving.