Whole wheat chocolate chip cookies

Chocolate chip cookie project, part 3

Before further experimentation on my perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe, I decided to follow the Cook’s Illustrated recipe since they baked about a bazillion batches and recorded the results. Their technique is unlike any cookie recipe I’ve made before: the butter is melted and browned, then mixed with the sugars and egg until it basically makes a caramel sauce (it tasted just like what would go on caramel corn). Then the flour and chips are mixed in.

The cookies came out somewhat flat, flatter than I want, but the flavor is spectacular. They have a rich, caramel flavor and are chewy. The whole wheat flour worked great — they don’t taste wheat-y to me at all, probably because of all of the sugar and butter.

With this leap forward in flavor, next time I’ll try replacing baking soda with baking powder, adding a bit more flour to beef the cookies up a bit, and a chilling period in the refrigerator.

Cook's Illustrated Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated


  • 8 ¾ ounces freshly-milled hard white whole wheat flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 14 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 ½ ounces granulated sugar
  • 5 ¼ ounces dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 ¼ cups extra dark chocolate chips


  1. Preheat oven to 375° and place a rack in the middle. Line baking sheets with parchment.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and baking soda.
  3. In a regular skillet (not nonstick), melt 10 tablespoons of the butter over medium-high heat and cook, stirring constantly, until it’s dark golden brown. It’s ready when it starts to smell nutty, after about 2-4 minutes.
  4. When it’s ready, pour the browned butter into a large heat-proof bowl (the rest of the mixing will be done in this bowl by hand). Stir in the rest of the butter until melted.
  5. Add the sugars, salt, and vanilla to the butter, and whisk well. Then whisk in the egg and egg yolk until smooth.
  6. Let the mixture rest for 3 minutes. Whisk for 30 seconds. Repeat the resting and whisking cycle two more times. It will be like a caramel sauce.
  7. Add in the flour mixture, lightly combining and not over-mixing, then the chips. The mixture is much stickier than typical chocolate chip cookie dough.
  8. Using a small ice cream scoop, drop the dough onto the baking sheets, leaving two inches between each cookie.
  9. For the most even baking, put just one of the baking sheets into the oven. Bake for 5 minutes, then rotate the sheet and continue baking for 5 more minutes. Remove when the edges are set and the centers are soft, and cool on racks.

Chocolate chip cookie project posts