I don’t know why people are still searching for the best chocolate chip cookie recipe, because this is obviously it. Just kidding. But it’s very high on my list. The recipe is adapted from Bon Appetit. It was created by Chris Morocco who made batches upon batches to get the perfect texture of crispy edges and chewy centers with rich caramel, vanilla and butter flavor. The cookies are soft, but not at all cakey, and they are dense but not doughy or corn-starchy. They are very much like the old and well-loved Cook’s Illustrated recipe, but a little more full-flavored. I just really love this recipe. And bonus! It doesn't require any creaming.
Stirring and Standing for Caramelization
Since this recipe appears to be a riff on an old famous Cook's Illustrated recipe, I made it again and added back a step that CI originally used. The step is stirring the butter and sugar mixture, letting it stand for 3 minutes and repeating a couple of times before adding the flour. This is supposed to dissolve the brown sugar more. Dissolved brown sugar means quicker caramelization. This is part of the reason dough that's been sitting in the refrigerator for a day or two browns better. More of the sugar has dissolved into the dough.
Loose Dough Requires Chilling
Even with the stirring, BA's version is still too loose to shape right away. Contrary to what the original BA article says, it seems the dough does need some chill time. When I make the cookies, the shaped dough goes into the refrigerator looking something like this.
The blobs of dough can be shaped into nicer rounds once they're a bit firmer.
A Few More Tips for the Bon Appetit Chocolate Chip Cookies
210 grams works for me. If you don't have a scale, use the stir, scoop and level method of measuring.
Yes! I usually use light, or sometimes I'll mix the two. And sometimes I do use dark.
In my experience it sure does. It's so runny it's barely scoopable at first, but it firms up as it sets. And the cookies just taste so much better when made with chilled dough.
I almost always use Ghirardelli bittersweet chips for these.
Bon Appetit's New Best Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter (170 grams)
- 1 cup packed dark brown sugar (200 grams)
- ¼ cup granulated sugar (50 grams)
- 1 teaspoon table salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour, KA or a higher protein (210 grams)
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 ½ cups semisweet chocolate chips or chunks
- Brown 8 tablespoons (114 grams) of the butter in a large (3 ½ quart) saucepan. Remove pan from heat and add remaining 4 tablespoons of butter, stirring with a heavy duty heat proof scraper until fully melted.
- At this point you can continue to mix in the same saucepan, or if it's easier you can mix in a mixing bowl. If using a mixing bowl, pour the browned butter into a mixing bowl with the dark brown sugar, sugar, salt and vanilla and stir until blended, then stir in the egg and yolks. Let mixture stand for 3 minutes.
- After 3 minutes, stir again for 30 seconds. Let stand for another 3 minutes, then whisk again. The standing time helps dissolve the sugar with the theory being that more dissolved sugar in the batter will contribute to extra caramelization while baking.
- Add the baking soda and stir until blended, than add the 210 grams of flour and stir. The batter will be thinner than typical chocolate chip cookie dough and most likely still a little warm. Allow it to stand for another 5 minutes (or until cool) then stir in the chocolate chips.
- The batter will still be pretty runny, so empty it onto a large plate, cover and chill for about 30 minutes or until it is thick enough to scoop into portions.
- When thick enough to shape, shape into 16 equal portions and keep the portions chilled until ready to bake. You can bake right away, or let them chill overnight.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place on parchment lined baking sheets, 2 inches apart. Bake 10-14 minutes at 375 degrees F. Allow them to cool directly on the baking sheet for about 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack.