New Recipe: Chocolate-Chip Cookie Baking Mistakes You’re Making and How to Fix

  • I made more than 10 batches of chocolate-chip cookies and uncovered mistakes that can ruin them.
  • Improperly measuring flour will alter the cookie shape and texture drastically. 
  • Adding too much egg turns your crunchy cookie into a miniature cake.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Chocolate-chip cookies are a classic when it comes to people-pleasing desserts. They fill a home with an identifiable, heartwarming smell and can put a smile on any cookie-lover’s face.

But they can also be hard to get right, even when using a simple recipe. 

As Insider’s food reporter, I’ve made more than 100 chocolate-chip cookies in a single day (most recently using the Nestlé Toll House recipe). During my baking marathon, I learned there are some wrong moves that won’t negatively affect your batch and others that’ll make you want to turn down a cookie maybe for the first time in your life. 

Here are five common baking mistakes you might be making that are ruining your homemade chocolate-chip cookies:

Using baking powder instead of baking soda won’t end well

baking powder

Chocolate-chip cookie made with baking powder.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider

Baking powder and baking soda don’t sound too different, but they can drastically change the flavor profile of your cookies. 

The Nestlé Toll House recipe calls for baking soda. When made with baking powder, chocolate chips take on a metallic flavor and the whole cookie tastes more like artificial flavoring was added.

Packing the flour will mess up your treats

too much flour

Chocolate-chip cookie made with too much flour.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider

If you load up a measuring cup with flour the wrong way — packing the flour in rather than spooning it gently and scraping off any excess — you can end up using too much and drying out your cookies. 

In addition to being dry, they likely won’t expand in the oven, and you’ll end up with ice cream scoop-looking cookies. 

Rushing through the recipe could lead to bumpy cookies

all mixed at once

Chocolate-chip cookie made by mixing all ingredients together at once.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider

Ignoring the steps laid out by recipe instructions may cut down on prep time, but it will also keep you from making the perfect batch. 

Combining all ingredients at once creates lumps, bumps, and air bubbles in the finished cookies. 

Be careful not to miscount your eggs  

too much egg

Chocolate-chip cookie made with too much egg.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider

When making less than a full batch of cookies, you’ll have to measure out less than a full egg. Yes, it can be done. 

Skipping this step and using a full egg rather than half of one, for example, will give your cookies a cakey, spongy texture rather than a crunchy or chewy bite. Thinking you can forego eggs altogether is also a mistake that will result in dry, crumbly, salty cookies. 

Cutting back on sugar will make a texture difference

too little sugar

Chocolate-chip cookie made with too little sugar.

Rachel Askinasi/Insider

If you’re thinking about leaving out most of the butter or sugar from your cookies, don’t. 

Skimping on sugar will dry out your cookies, create a bread-like texture, and cause them to inflate in the center — resembling a scone.  

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