The Ideal Baking Temp for Your Chocolate Chip Cookies

Don’t get tripped up by your chips.

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What kind of chocolate chip cookie are you? Crispy along the edges, doughy in the middle (Yes, we’re still talking about cookies...)? Cakey, chewy? How about the crispy-crunchy-lacey? Or, what about the gooey-in-the-center, crispy-on-the-outer-edge cookie? Although many recipes are super similar, your results can wind up different time after time. So, what is up with the chocolate chip cookie?

There are many factors that can alter your chocolate chip cookies, like your ingredients, equipment, how much you mix the batter, the temperature of your kitchen and, of course, your cooking time and oven temperature. In terms of ingredients, there are all different combinations or swaps that will yield a different kind of cookie, like using cake flour instead of all-purpose flour, baking soda instead of both baking soda and baking powder, super fine sugar instead of brown sugar. Additionally, the way you mix your ingredients can alter your final product — creaming the butter and sugar together is a vital step that incorporates air into the dough. If creaming isn’t done properly, your cookies won’t have much volume because of the lack of air in the dough.

The most-variable aspect of the cookie baking process, however, is the oven temperature. There is much contention over the best temperature at which to bake your chocolate chip cookies, but it all boils down to preference. Cookie temperatures fluctuate, with some recipes as low as 300 degrees Fahrenheit, and a few as high as 425 degrees Fahrenheit, but most recipes land on 375 or 350 to evenly bake the entirety of the cookie. A lower temperature will require more cooking time and will ultimately result in a thinner, crisper chocolate chip cookie. For those ooey, gooey chocolate chip cookies, 375 degrees Fahrenheit is your sweet spot. It’s the perfect temperature to ensure super crispy exterior edges, while leaving the center slightly underdone and, thus, doughy and fudgey. If you’re feeling particularly bold, give 400 degrees Fahrenheit a go. This temperature will yield a puffier cookie with a crunchy exterior and delightfully soft center.

The results you get from baking your chocolate chip cookies at these temperatures is also dependent on how long they are in the oven for, so refer to the recipe as a guideline for time. It’s important to remember, though, that every oven is different, so it’s often best to trust yourself and keep an eye on the cookies as they bake away.

The whole cookie baking process is about preference and figuring out what you like in your cookie. Play around with different ingredient combinations, temperatures and cooking times to crack the code on which type of cookie you like the best.

Here are a few favorites:

Think of this as our master plan for great cookies. Know the texture you want? Scroll to step 5, which offers adjustments to account for cakey, crispy, crispy-cakey, chewy, super-chewy and extra-crispy cookies, with temps ranging from 300 to 425 degrees Fahrenheit accordingly.

These cookies call for granulated and brown sugar to balance texture and flavor. They bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Are you decidedly camp Chewy? Go for these cookies, which get their awesome texture from at least an hour’s rest in the fridge. They bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

This fan-favorite, kid-friendly recipe (pictured above) is quick and easy, and bakes at at 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

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