June 8th, 2008

chocolate chips cookies!

chocolate chip cookie stack

if you take a look at my post archive, you might notice that i’ve been going sweet-savory-sweet-savory to keep things interesting. and in planning out my baking schedule (yes, i keep a loose schedule), i realized that i had skipped one of my all time favorites. the first thing i ever learned how to bake.

chocolate chip cookies

is there any more comforting smell than chocolate chip cookies fresh from the oven? of course, my mom’s chocolate chips cookies were the only ones i really enjoyed growing up. no refrigerated cookie dough in our house – only real butter and sugar. watching her bake seemed so effortless, but the end result was a transcendental experience. very rarely did the cookies make it off the cooling racks before being devoured by my sisters, brother and me.

chocolate chip cookies 2

when i started baking in college, i requested the recipe from my mom, and she mailed it on a 3×5″ index card as always. after baking the cookies for the first time, i called her to let her know that they came out great and that i was now an official accomplished baker. but i had to know where she got the recipe. i expected a story of the recipe being passed down from great grandmothers. instead, she asked me if had a bag of chocolate chips there handy. i did. “turn it over,” she said.


all these years, my mom had been making the nestlé toll house chocolate chip cookie recipe, a recipe that’s been on the back of every bag of semi-sweet morsels for about 70 years. i can still hardly believe it. but there’s something so indescribably perfect about the cookies she bakes, so i can’t bear to change a thing. to me, there is no better cookie.

i wanted to make something special this time, because these cookies are the last thing i will bake in my current kitchen. that’s right, i’m moving into a new place, leaving behind my 45 square food baking space that has served me so well for the past 2 years. the next time i post, it will be from a kitchen at least 3 times the size, so i’m ready to be spoiled by extra counter space and a full size oven with a working light.

i want to dedicate this post to my tiny efficiency apartment kitchen, because despite its limited size, i’ve never had any problem baking anything. it reinforces the idea that it doesn’t take anything fancy to produce delicious food that makes people happy. this is my old oven. modest, but never once let me down. thank you, old friend.

chocolate chip cookies and milk

tollhouse chocolate chip cookies
lovingly copied from the toll house semisweet chocolate morsels bag

2 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
12 oz toll house semi-sweet chocolate morsels

1. combine flour, baking soda and salt in a small bowl.

2. beat butter, both sugars and vanilla in a large bowl. add eggs, one at a time, beating well. gradually beat in flour mixture. stir in morsels.

3. spoon dough (about a Tbsp per cookie) onto an ungreased baking sheet and bake at 375 F for 9-11 minutes. i tend to go a little under 9 minutes so they come out just underdone. remove to cooling racks or eat immediately with a tall glass of cold milk.

23 Comments for chocolate chips cookies! - why not leave some love?

  1. bakingblonde says:

    I love chocolate chip cookies, especially warm out of the oven! Yours look great with a glass of milk.

  2. Cakespy says:

    Ooh, I saw these on Tastespotting and had to click over! These look like the perfect cookies–they remind me of the ones my neighbor used to make when I was little. the milk and cookies picture makes my heart melt!

  3. chiff0nade says:

    Well, the cookies may taste good, but they are the ugliest cookies I have ever seen.

    Of course, I am a PROFESSIONAL PASTRY CHEF, so my standards are a little higher than the norm. I think that appearance of a pastry product is VERY important.

    Keep trying.

  4. HoneyB says:

    Great job! I haven’t made chocolate chip cookies in a long time. It is probably about time I made some again!

  5. Heather says:

    Whoa… I have the SAME Barbie Doll-sized oven in my studio!! Makes life interesting 🙂



  6. Rachel says:

    I still don’t believe that you use the unmodified Tollhouse recipe. Yours just come out better than all the times I’ve made them. I think they are one of the things I miss most about crew…

  7. Yummy! Wish I could steal one with a glass of milk!

  8. Alienman says:

    contrary to the PROFESSIONAL PASTRY CHEF, i LOVE the way these look. just from looking at them, i feel like i can already taste them and that they’d end up my favorites, too.

  9. katerine says:

    how did you get such flat and crispy cookies? i use the same recipe, but i dont get the same result. i do know melted the butter creates a thinner cookie (which i do) but never this thin. they look amazing!!!

  10. petebakes says:

    @katerine – i know that using a bit less of the flour mixture can result in thinner and crispier cookies. i don’t measure my ingredients with a scale so i’m guessing that’s what happened. melting the butter also helps, as you pointed out. i’m also happy to report that the cookies have stayed soft and chewy even after a few days.

  11. Things I Do. says:

    […] 1. Chocolate Chip Cookies: […]

  12. sara angel says:

    i LOVE the tollhouse recipe. there is no shame…it’s the best cc cookie recipe ive ever used.

  13. […] white chocolate macadamia nut pumpkin cookies adapted from the from the toll house chocolate chip cookie recipe. […]

  14. DameRuth says:

    Just got turned onto your blog, and am browsing the archives. I completely cracked up when I found this story about thinking the Nestle Toll House cookie recipe was some ancient family secret. Almost the exact same thing happened to me with my mom’s pumpkin pie recipe . . . which turned out to be the recipe on the back of the Libbey’s Pumpkin can. *facepalm* You are not alone . . . 😀

  15. […] i refused to blame it on the recipe and instead chalked it up to my wacky tiny oven (as seen in this post). undeterred, i took another crack at it and lo and behold: what came out of the oven was a thing […]

  16. […] think I want to know anyone who doesn’t like them. Pete over at Pete Bakes reminded me of the classic Tollhouse Chocolate Chip cookie recipe and the words “yields 3 dozen cookies” on the recipe solidified it for me: these […]

  17. […] buds exploding with joy. i chopped up the bacon into tiny pieces and mixed it in with ordinary chocolate chip cookie batter (the tollhouse recipe of course). before i put them in the oven, i worried that the bacon would […]

  18. […] new place. these rhubarb strawberry shortcakes were the very last thing i baked in my old place (the best cookies ever being the last thing i made last time i […]

  19. AK says:

    I don’t know what the pastry chef up there was talking about. I think your cookies look delicious! When I bake that Tollhouse recipe, my cookies look much different, but who cares? I go to a bakery here in L.A. and have paid $4 for one cookie that looks like yours.

    By the way, I grew up on these too. There was nothing like a fresh batch of mom’s cookies. She used to make 6 for me without chocolate chips, as I thought it was simply the best tasting dough on its own. She still makes them every now and then when I come over. They are, arguably, still one of the best sweet things I’ve ever eaten!

  20. PZ says:

    I found that the best Chocolate Chip cookies I’ve ever had were from Alton Brown’s recipe for them on the food network website. They come out deliciously soft and fluffed up and stay soft for days, mine always were good at first but went rock hard the next day.

  21. Stephanie says:

    Wow, these look delicous! I can’t wait to try them out. I’m not much of a baker myself, but I’m hoping some of my friends can help me on the parts I miss. By the way, I’m so glad there’s a chocolate chip recipie here. Your list of cookies wouldn’t be complete without chocolate chip cookes!!!

  22. Geni says:

    You must have been made aware of this by now – you’re a genius! I have made your challah bread and these cookies, and even I couldn’t mess either up. On top of their simplicity, these are the perfect chocolate chip cookies: crispy, chewy, and just the right amount of sweet (although, I used only about half the chocolate chips you recommended). I look forward to trying more of your recipes 🙂

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