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I Tested A Shit Ton Of Cookie Recipes To Find The Absolute Best

138 cookies and 10 pounds of chocolate later, I found the recipe you should be using.

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Hello, world! I'm Jesse, and I love to bake — especially chocolate chip cookies. They're simple and delicious, and their flavor takes me right back to my childhood.

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Chocolate chip cookies were also one of the first things my mother taught me to bake before going to culinary school, and to this day, I still use her recipe.

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So I decided to test five of the most popular. A ~chocolate chip cookie showdown~, if you will:

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This was my lineup:

1. Alton Brown: Because he's all about technique — and a good chocolate chip cookie comes down to one thing: proper technique.

2. Thomas Keller: Because he's arguably the most acclaimed chef in America. If HE can't make a perfect chocolate chip cookie, who can?

3. Bobby Flay: Because he seems to be good at beating other people's recipes, so I figured his recipe should be unbeatable. (Right?)

4. Kourtney Kardashian: Because I wanted to include someone who wasn't a professional chef to spice things up (a wild card!). She even has her own food blog where she shares her ~kreations~.

5. Toll House: Because I wanted to set a "control" cookie. Toll House is the OG chocolate chip cookie — and the standard to which I would judge the others.

I tasted everything and also asked about a dozen of my coworkers to try, for maximum cookie feedback. Here are the methods and how they stacked up:

Combine the melted butter and two types of sugar in a mixer and add the wet ingredients followed by the dry.

Stir in the chocolate chips and chill the dough for one hour. Bake for 15 minutes in a 350°F oven and immediately transfer onto a cooling rack.

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So, is bread flour the secret ingredient for perfect cookies?

The bread flour definitely made them chewier ― like the soft-baked kind you get in a grocery store. The cookies also looked great ―perfectly round and cartoon-like with a crinkly top. They tasted exactly how a chocolate chip cookie should taste ― soft on the inside, crispy on the outside, with the perfect amount of chocolate to balance the sweetness.

Rating: 🍪🍪🍪🍪

A note from the tasting panel: “This is such a classic chocolate chip cookie. It’s soft, the right amount of sweet, and perfectly gooey.”

Get Alton Brown's recipe here.

So were they worth the trouble of chopping two types of chocolate?

Definitely! These cookies were damn good! The two types of chocolate balanced each other out and made these cookies ridiculously indulgent. The texture was fudgy and soft — as if a sugar cookie and a brownie had a baby. The dough spread quite a bit (and it looked more like a sugar cookie than a classic chocolate chip cookie), but the flavor was out of this world.

Rating: 🍪🍪🍪🍪🍪

A note from the tasting panel: "It may look a little different than a normal chocolate chip cookie, but definitely don’t judge this cookie by its cover. I could eat a dozen of these!”

Get Thomas Keller's recipe here.

Then came Bobby Flay's recipe. His secret cookie ingredient is muscovado sugar — an unrefined sugar with a strong molasses flavor. He starts by whisking his dry ingredients in a bowl.

Beat butter and sugar in a mixer until fluffy.

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So should you be running to the store to stock up on muscovado sugar?

Eh, don't rush. The cookies looked similar to Thomas Keller's, but they didn't have nearly as much flavor. They were super buttery, soft, and perfectly chewy, but they lacked flavor and needed more salt. The only thing I could taste was butter (which is never a bad thing), but I wanted them to have a stronger chocolate note. Looks like Bobby might have finally been beat...

Rating: 🍪🍪🍪

A note from the tasting panel: “The butter is definitely noticeable (and I love me some damn butter). It’s not too chewy, and they have the perfect bite. I loved how subtle the chocolate is — not overwhelming at all.”

Get Bobby Flay's recipe here.

So was it worth the $50 I spent on all those fancy ingredients?

LOL NOPE — and from now on, let's not call these cookies (because they're not worthy of that sacred title). They were dry, sandy, and all I could taste was coconut oil. I understand that she wanted to make a ~healthier~ version of the classic (and that she isn't a trained chef), but that doesn't mean they should be SO dry that they literally exfoliate my mouth as I chew. When using coconut flour, you have to use A LOT of eggs to counteract how dry it can make things, and it seems that Kourtney may have missed that memo. But hey, she is pretty busy these days. *sips my Fit Tea*

Rating: Zero.

A note from the tasting panel: "This is not a chocolate chip cookie."

Get Kourtney Kardashian's recipe here.

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So were they as good as my childhood memories made them out to be?

I hate to ruin your childhood, but no ― these cookies were nothing special (the white bread of cookies, if you will). The batter didn't spread out and they ended up looking lumpy and sad. The flavor was mild and the chocolate and nuts didn't shine through. I would never turn down a Toll House cookie ― but I wouldn't recommend using the recipe either. Compared with the others, this cookie just didn't do it for me.

Rating: 🍪🍪

A note from the tasting panel: "These look like something my mother would make."

Get the classic Toll House recipe here.

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THE WINNER: Thomas Keller

These cookies were fudgy, packed with chocolate, and seriously good ― it's no surprise that the recipe was written by one of the best chefs in America. Get the recipe here.

SECOND PLACE: Alton Brown

If you're looking for a classic chocolate chip cookie recipe, go with this method ― they're flavorful and soft, and the bread flour makes them delightfully chewy. Get the recipe here.

THIRD PLACE: Bobby Flay

These cookies were good, but they're not mind-blowing. The texture was similar to Thomas Keller's, but the chocolate flavor got lost and it needed more salt to really round it out. Get the recipe here.

FOURTH PLACE: Toll House

These cookies were nothing special — safe, pale, and rather underwhelming. The dough didn't spread out while baking, and they ended up looking like irregular blobs. Get the recipe here.

LAST PLACE: Kourtney Kardashian

THESE. COOKIES. WERE. TRASH. They were dry, gritty, and overwhelmingly coconutty. Get the recipe here.

TL;DR: If you want a seriously decadent cookie that's PACKED with chocolate, go with Thomas Keller's recipe (which was honestly the most indulgent chocolate chip cookie I have ever had). If you want a classic, chewy chocolate chip cookie (that isn't as hard to make), try Alton Brown's recipe.

Interested in even more culinary battles? Check out our ultimate scrambled egg showdown here.

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