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Everyone needs a fast, foolproof recipe to bake for last minute occasions. These Easy Chocolate Chip Cookies are it for me, and wouldn't be surprised if they become the same for you!
I've lost count of how many times I've made these cookies for parties, tailgates, thank you gifts, or to satisfy a sudden sweet tooth. They are so incredibly easy to whip up and with the exception of one secret ingredient, they're made with pantry staples that you probably already have at home.
One of the things that makes these chocolate chip cookies so easy to make is the fact that they call for melted butter. That means that there's no need to remember to soften the butter and you can skip the creaming process that is required in most chocolate chip cookie recipes.
The result is absolutely mouthwatering, soft and chocolatey cookies that you won't be able to get enough of. As my sister once said after taking a bite, "These might be THE BEST things I've ever eaten!"
This recipe is naturally vegetarian and can be made gluten-free and vegan. (See Variations & Substitutions area below.)
- All-purpose flour
- Baking soda
- Sea salt
- Unsalted butter. I almost always bake with unsalted butter so that I can control the saltiness of the recipe.
- Brown sugar
- Pure maple syrup. This may be an unusual ingredient in chocolate chip cookies, I can't tell you the science behind why adding 1 tablespoon of maple syrup makes these cookies special, but trust me, it does. You can't taste the maple syrup, but it definitely adds a certain something. In a pinch you can make them without it and they'll turn out fine, but not as good as they do with it. Only real maple syrup, please.
- Egg yolks
- Vanilla extract
- Chocolate chips. Any kind will do. I usually use milk chocolate or semi-sweet, but you can use dark chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, butterscotch chips or skip the chips altogether and use chunks.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
In a small bowl, whisk together melted butter, sugar, egg yolks and vanilla extract until combined and smooth. Pour into dry mixture and mix until fully combined.
Stir in chocolate chips (these are my favorite) and mix well to distribute.
Using a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop, portion out dough balls and place about 2 to 2 ½ inches apart on the baking pan.
Bake for 12-14 minutes or until they are puffed and the edges just begin to turn golden. (They bake for exactly 12 minutes in my oven for the perfect doneness.)
Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5-8 minutes, or until they've firmed up a bit.
Carefully remove from baking pan and place on a cooling rack.
Science! Baking is a form of chemistry and changing up the variables like moisture content, fats and bake time can all contribute to the texture of a cookie. This article from King Arthur Flour does a great job of explaining some of the things that can affect cookie-baking outcomes.
If you'd like to get a head start on your baking, you can make the dough up to 24 hours in advance. Just make sure to cover the dough well and refrigerate until you're ready to bake.
YES! Chocolate chip cookie dough freezes beautifully. In fact, I love to make a double batch of dough, scoop half the cookie dough into balls, place them on a baking pan and "flash freeze" them until hardened. Once the cookie dough balls are frozen, I remove them from the pan and place them into air-tight, freezer-safe zip top bags and keep them in the freezer for any time I need cookies on the fly. They can be baked from frozen, but may take a minute or two longer in the oven.
Store cooled cookies in an airtight container at room temperature and enjoy within 3 days for the best results. Some people swear by placing a slice of fresh white bread in the container with the cookies to help keep cookies from drying out.
Variations & Substitutions
Try these variations any time you want to jazz up your chocolate chip cookies!
- Add about ½ cup of chopped, toasted nuts such as walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts or slivered almonds.
- Stir your favorite spices such as cinnamon or pumpkin spice into the dry ingredients. About ½ teaspoon should do.
- Give your cookies a burst of fruity flavor with dried fruit such as cranberries or even candied ginger.
- Add in up to a ½ cup of toffee bits or chopped candy bars for an extra sweet treat.
Diet Specific Substitutions
- Gluten-Free: While I have not tried baking these using gluten-free flour, I think a one-to-one gluten free flour blend would work in place of all-purpose flour.
- Dairy-Free or Vegan: Use a plant-based butter and plant-based egg replacer (such as JustEgg) in place of regular. I have not personally tried these as a substitute, but in theory, they should work.
Easy Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 2 egg yolks
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 325°F. Prepare a baking pan by lining with parchment or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
- In a small bowl, whisk together melted butter, sugar, egg yolks and vanilla extract until combined and smooth. Pour into dry mixture and mix until fully combined.
- Add chocolate chips and mix well to distribute.
- Using a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop, portion out dough balls and place about 2 to 2 ½ inches apart on the baking pan. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until they are puffed and the edges just begin to turn golden. (They bake for exactly 12 minutes in my oven for the perfect doneness.)
- Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5-8 minutes, or until they've firmed up a bit. Carefully remove from baking pan and place on a cooling rack.