Thomas Keller Chocolate Chip Cookies

July 20, 2009

So many chocolate chip cookie recipes and we're here on Earth for such a short time. My brain was spinning like a KitchenAid mixer while I was looking through the online recipes. I like my cookies chewy so that helped thin out the herd a little bit. As far as thickness goes, It really depends on my mood. Yesterday I happened to be craving a thicker cookie. Ok. But I also wanted The best chocolate chip cookie in the entire universe. Just as expected, Everyone claims to have the best recipe. I narrowed it down to just a few. One of which calls for vanilla pudding! That particular recipe is on the back burner. Another popular recipe included using melted butter and dough refrigeration. I'm also placing that on my 'to do' list. The Thomas Keller recipe was the winner in yesterdays c.c.chip cookie indecision Battle.

What really interested me was the omission of vanilla extract. Finally it has been confirmed and I am not crazy! ( At least not in this example ). I have nothing against vanilla extract. It's wonderful in cakes and snickerdoodles and actual 'vanilla' flavoured baked goods. But in the classic Toll House cookie recipe it seemed to derail the overall flavour. I've always been a dough eater. One time I forgot to add the vanilla extract and the dough was even better than normal. But being my usual neurotic self, I was afraid to 'go against' the directions. No vanilla in chocolate chip cookies seemed like a sacrilege to me at the time. Years passed and I branched out from my comfort zone of obeying everything I read. But I still kept adding the extract like a good little cookie baking drone. You can imagine my excitement when I found Thomas Keller's recipe! At last I had my permission slip to ignore vanilla.
These cookies are spectacular! A few reviews said that they turned out to be a little on the cakey side. But I was too happy about the vanilla issue to care. Thankfully they are not the least bit 'cake like'. They are just what I had been craving, Chewy and fat! Years of baking sad, flat cookies and now at last I can say that I know how to make a phat cookie. :)

Don't let their appearance fool you. They really are not cakey. The texture is dense and pleasant, As though you are eating several thin cookies at once. They are soft throughout, even the edges are not crispy. These are literally a mouthful of full, flavoured chocolate chips. Because there is no vanilla, you truly 'taste' what I think a chocolate chip cookie should be. A buxom, sexy, cookie. If Sophie Loren were a cookie, This would be it.

Thomas Keller Chocolate Chip Cookies
( Found on the Food Gal blog )
( printer friendly recipe )
2 sticks ( 8oz ) of cold butter cut into small pieces
2 1/3 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp. of baking Soda
1 tsp. of kosher salt ( I used 1 1/2 tsp. of sea salt )
1 cup of packed dark brown sugar
3/4 cup of granulated sugar
2 large eggs
5 oz of 55% chocolate, cut into chip sized pieces *
5 oz of 70-72% chocolate, cut into chip sized pieces *
1 tsp. of ground cinnamon ( optional, not in actual recipe )

* All I had on hand was some Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate. It worked perfectly but I would love to try this with even darker chocolate. *


Position the racks in the lower and upper thirds of the oven and preheat to 350F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, sift the flour and baking soda. Stir in salt and set aside.

Put the chopped chocolate in a fine-mesh strainer and shake to remove the small chocolate 'dust' fragments. Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat half the butter ( 1 stick ) on medium speed until smooth. Add both sugars and remaining butter, and beat until well combined. Continue to beat for about 3 more minutes till light and creamy. Scrape down the sides and beat in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the dry ingredients on low and mix to combine. I had to add mine a little bit at a time. Mix in the chocolate with a large spatula and keep folding it in until the chocolate is evenly incorporated.

Using about 2 level Tbsp. per cookie, shape dough into balls. Arrange the cookies 2 inches apart. Bake for 12 minutes, or until the tops are no longer shiny. Switch the position of the pans ( lower to upper ) and rotate halfway through baking time. For my cookies, I set the timer for 12 minutes exactly. After 6 minutes I switched and rotated without pausing the timer. This resulted in the perfect cookie texture.


  1. Refrigerating cookie dough is the way to go! It makes any recipe taste a thousand times better. Although these cookies look soooo darn good, I doubt they'd need any help! :)

  2. Thanks.:) When it comes to refrigeration, The problem is my impatience. But you are right. It really does make a huge difference.

  3. These look delicious. The Levain Bakery CCC also omits vanilla, but when I made them I put it in plus coffee essence. Eating is so personal, we all have our own preferences. I prefer my CCC to have that extra flavor of vanilla and coffee essence, and I must have crispy edges. But one of these days I know I should try making CCC with no flavoring to see what all the buzz is about.

  4. LOL, I think CCC should be FLAT. I take them out of the oven midway during cooking and deliberately smack the cookie sheet sharply on the counter to make them fall. Interesting about omitting the vanilla...

  5. Good god, I will never have enough with the ccc recipes... I bounced back from your home page new recipe to this one, and although I am one of the very few coconut lovers, I will try the Thomas Keller recipe first!

  6. So on Friday I had a craving for CCCs and while I wanted to make these because I HATE thin cookies I had all the ingredients for the Jacques Torres NYT cookies and so I went with those. I let them stay in the fridge for 48 hours with minimal dough eating along the way but I was kind of disappointed. I mean they are delicious but they just don't have the puffiness that these cookies seem to! These are definitely next on my list!

  7. I had the pleasure of trying a Thomas Keller CCC just a few days ago. I am sure it was the best chocolate chip cookie I have ever had! I was too busy eating to ask for the recipe... So happy I found it on your blog!

  8. Hi Moni! I'm so glad you are a fan of these cookies too! They really are one of the best. :)

  9. Oh. My. God. I made these cookies last night, and am eating one for breakfast (Breakfast!!), they are that good. My Toll House recipe is officially disposed of, as this is the only chocolate chip cookie recipe I will allow in my cookbook now. P.S., these got rave reviews at work, too. Thank you for posting it!

  10. Hi, anon.
    Thanks for visiting, and for the positive review! It's great to spread the chocolate chip love.

  11. Hi Valerie, in case you or anyone else is interested I have reviewed 10 chocolate chip cookies on my site at The Keller cookie is next on my list as soon as I find the right chocolate. Thanks for all the great posts, love your site.


  12. Hi, Pierre.
    Wow! I'll have to check out those chocolate chip cookie recipes. The Thomas Keller should not disappoint. Thanks for the link. :)

  13. I knew you would have this here! I am making the dough right now to bake tomorrow and I have no kosher salt, so I thought I'd see what my CCC expert recommended. Thanks!

  14. Hey Valerie

    I just made these yesterday and mine came out super DARK. I used molasses sugar like the recipe suggests and I'm wondering how yours ended up so light? Did you use light brown sugar instead?

  15. Hi, Kelly
    I did use light brown sugar in this recipe. Even though I made this one so long ago, I remember feeling frustrated because I had run out of the dark. :)
    If anything, I'm sure the dark sugar-versions are even better. I hope you enjoyed them!

  16. Hi

    Is it just me or is the flour missing from the ingredients list?

    And wow those cookies look so delicious and soft. I loved the "bite" photo.

  17. Yikes!
    Hi Anon, so sorry about that. There should be 2 1/3 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour in the recipe.

    Thanks for catching that! :O


Thanks for visiting, and for taking the time to read through my ramblings!
If you have a recipe comment or question, I'd love to hear from you.

Happy Baking!
♥ Valerie


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