The Very Best Chocolate Cookies Recipe - Skillful Cook
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The Very Best Chocolate Cookies

944 reviews / 4.8 average

These are really the very best Chocolate Cookies! Thick, soft-centered, and crispy-edged. All your basic cookie ingredients here plus dark cocoa powder and ground cardamom to make things extra festive!

Let no holiday pass without cookies! Really, let nothing pass without cookies. Especially thick, soft-centered, crispy-edged, dark, rich, melt-in-your-mouth chocolate cookies. Laced with espresso powder and with a snowy sprinkle of cardamom sugar on top (optional, but such a wintery treat). They're beautiful, festive, deeply delicious, and you're going to be lucky if they last a day in your house. Be prepared when you set them out. People will come in, friends, neighbors, the Amazon delivery person may wander in and grab one for the road.

They are truly remarkable. So put some in your pockets before they're gone.

In This Post: Everything You Need For Chocolate Cookies

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Dark chocolate cookies on a plate with a bite taken out of them.

Bigger Is Better When It Comes To Cookies

This recipe will make about twenty-four very large cookies. We're not messing around here with baby cookies. We want a cookie that says we mean it. Because we DO.

The larger size of the cookie also helps achieve that perfectly thick sunken soft middle. The kind you just want to curl up in, the kind that pull apart at each craggy little crack. The kind that makes you think, “Maybe I should eat just one of these”, but you know it will probably be two. Or ten.

Also, with a little bit of settling on the pan after you pull them out of the oven, not only will you have soft chewy middles but you also get those nice crispy little edges. That tiny crunch in each bite. And, yes, it's all a part of the same cookie but it just tastes different, you know? The oven crisp edge with the melty fudgy center...

HELLO IS THIS A DREAM COOKIE OR WHAT? Honestly tearing up just writing about it.

Ingredients For These Chocolate Cookies

Cardamom is interesting because you can't exactly place it, but you can tell when it's not there. It's just slightly warmer, a tinge of something special, a little Christmasy speckle on your palate. It is certainly not required to make these cookies delicious, they are unbelievable with or without, but it really is worth a try. And let's be serious here, you're going to wind up making batch after batch of these on repeat, so why not dust one batch with this wintery spice?

To make the rest of the magic happen, you'll want to gather up:

  • your cookie basics: butter, brown sugar, eggs, flour, baking soda, salt
  • vanilla
  • cocoa powder
  • extra sugar for rolling
  • cardamom (optional)
  • espresso powder (also optional, but let's be fun)

A warm heart? A festive spirit? A readiness to chomp chocolate cookies for the rest of your holiday days? Also on the list.

How To Make Chocolate Cookies

It's hard to choose what to love most about these cookies, but the fact that they're a real mix & bake, no-fuss kinda situation certainly makes the list!

  1. Make the dough. Cream butter and sugar and then add the eggs and vanilla until just combined. Then, in goes the flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder (if using, but remember, let's be fun), baking soda, and salt. Stir and mix it all together.
  2. Form into balls. About 1/4 cup per ball because you mean it. Roll each in the extra sugar (or cardamom sugar if you're feeling festive!).
  3. Bake in batches. We recommend 6-8 at a time. Remove from oven and LET. THEM. REST. so you get the crispy edges and soft craggy middles. Transfer to a wire cooling rack.
Dark chocolate cookies on a cooling rack.

We're feeling all the feelings these days. Admittedly, the Christmas music is already playing and we're so ready for things to be glowy and merry and bright. We're so ready to keep our stand mixers busy and our rolling pins dusted because there's nothing quite like deep chocolatey cookie smells swirling through the air and your home being filled with the extra warmth from the oven. Merry, merry indeed. Happy cookie-making!

Chocolate Cookies: Frequently Asked Questions

How should I store these cookies to keep them soft and chewy?

Store them at room temp in an air-tight container for maximum freshness.

Can I add chocolate chips?

Great idea! Yes, that definitely works. All the chocolate, please.

Can you freeze the cookie dough?

Yes! To make it even easier when you're ready to bake the cookies, form the cookies into little balls you can just pop on a baking sheet.

Can you freeze the chocolate cookies after baking?

Yep! These are shockingly delicious cold/frozen and will keep for up to 6 months!

Can I use regular cocoa powder?

Absolutely. The dark cocoa powder just adds a bit more rich flavor and deeper color.

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Chocolate cookies on a plate

The Very Best Chocolate Cookies

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 24 very large cookies 1x


These are really the very best Chocolate Cookies! Thick, soft-centered, and crispy-edged. All your basic cookie ingredients here plus dark cocoa powder and ground cardamom to make things extra festive! 


Units Scale
  • 2 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 1/2 cups brown sugar, loosely packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 1/4 all-purpose flour (see notes for exact grams)
  • 1 cup dark cocoa powder (see notes for exact grams)
  • 1-2 tablespoons espresso powder (optional, but recommended if you're using regular cocoa powder to give the flavor more depth)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • extra cane or granulated sugar for rolling
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar until fluffy and light. Add eggs and vanilla, mixing gently until just combined.
  2. Add flour, cocoa powder, espresso powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix until combined into a soft dough.
  3. Form into balls (about ¼ cup per cookie / ball). Roll each ball in the extra sugar (mixed with cardamom, if you want). Bake for 10-12 minutes (I recommend 6-8 at a time on the baking sheet, so you’ll need to bake in batches). Remove from oven and let them rest - you want the cookies settle down a bit and give you crisped edges with thicker, soft-baked centers.


These cookies are delicate and they can break easily, so be sure to let them cool fully before handling them too much. I'd recommend storing them in the fridge so they stay a bit stronger for transporting around to all your various Christmas events. 🙂 

If you find the dough is very sticky, or if you aren't getting the slightly puffed centers like you see in the photos, try adding a tablespoon more flour to the remaining dough.

Cocoa Powder: We suggest about 100 grams of dark cocoa powder if you're making a standard batch of these cookies. Regular cocoa powder will also work, we just prefer dark here.

All Purpose Flour: We suggest using 470 grams of flour if you're making a standard batch of these cookies.

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: chocolate cookies, chocolate cardamom cookies, cookie recipe

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    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Approximately how much “extra sugar for rolling” should I mix with the tsp of cardamom? Thanks!

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        Find a better recipe. These cookies come out very thin without adding more flour and doctoring up the recipe.

  1. Skillful Cook Logo

    Yum! Any chance you tested these with gluten free flour or how you think it would go to use it in place of the all-purpose?

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      We haven’t tested with gluten free flour, but we think it’s worth a try!

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        I made them with Bobs Red Mill 1 to 1 gluten free flour and they were amazing! Also very glad I did the espresso powder and cardamom. Very subtle coffee flavor even with the 2 T, but I love coffee.

  2. Skillful Cook Logo

    I want to make these EXACTLY like the PoY team did so how much espresso powder did you use (recipe says 1-2 T)?

  3. Skillful Cook Logo

    Where do you get dark cocoa powder from? In Canada these special ingredients can be more difficult to find. What brand did you use?

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        You can also get it on, the brand I used is called Barry Cacao! Turned out incredibly.

        1. Skillful Cook Logo

          These were so good and the batch makes a ton. We had a hard time not eating the dough. I highly recommend adding in the espresso powder.

  4. Skillful Cook Logo

    Well I see what I’m making for my next potluck 😀 Are you rolling them in brown sugar at the end, or are you rolling them in white sugar?

        1. Skillful Cook Logo

          Hi, Mary! This can happen when either 1) your oven isn’t hot enough or 2) your baking soda has expired. We’d suggest double-checking your oven temp to make sure it’s at 350 degrees F and using fresh baking soda next round. Hope this works well for you!

  5. Skillful Cook Logo

    I would like to know about exchanging with GF flour as well, please. They look incredible – can’t wait to try. Crispy – chewy is the ultimate!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Hi Aimee! We haven’t tested this recipe with gluten free flour, but we think it’d work out just fine!

    2. Skillful Cook Logo

      These cookies are to die for! I brought them to Thanksgiving and everyone raved. Way better than pie!

  6. Skillful Cook Logo

    Had to make these immediately & it was well worth it. The cardamom sugar pushed it over the top, and the crispy edges with rich, gooey middle is beyond satisfying. I’ve made so many outstanding recipes from Skillful Cook. This one was so good, I finally had to leave a comment.

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Same, it’s my favourite cooking site. I just made half a batch cause I did not have enough butter for a full one. These cookies are perfection.

    2. Skillful Cook Logo

      Thanks so much for the comment, Paige! We’re so glad you enjoyed the cookies!

  7. Skillful Cook Logo

    If we freeze the cookie dough, do we need to defrost it before we pop it into the oven?

  8. Skillful Cook Logo

    Which dark cocoa did you use? It’s hard to find and the really dark stuff says to use sparingly, so I want to make sure I have the right stuff!

  9. Skillful Cook Logo

    These are the best cookies I’ve ever had. Easy to make & absolutely delicious! Can’t wait for my husband to try them.

  10. Skillful Cook Logo

    These are soooo good! I made them today and loved it but it was a bit too sweet. I’m just curious if I can lower the sugar quantity?

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        Agree about the sugar … I think I’m going to cut it significantly next time … also, this recipe produced 34 good sized cookies for me … I also added a couple tbsps of bourbon for an extra kick!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Highly recommend these cookies. The cardamom sugar is so good. We have an egg allergy in the house and used Bobs Red Mill egg replacement with great results. These will be made again and again!

  11. Skillful Cook Logo

    These look delicious and I can’t wait to try them! Can you confirm the butter amount? Is it really a pound of butter?!

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        I made them, and was worried about that too. So, I made a half batch and can confirm the amounts are correct and dangerously delicious.

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Yes, one pound of butter! This makes a batch of 24 really big cookies!

  12. Skillful Cook Logo

    These are delicious! I found them to be like a thin brownie. They are chewy and crispy, and even won over my boyfriend who isn’t a huge chocolate fan- especially not dark chocolate.

  13. Skillful Cook Logo

    I would actually recommend halving the butter. I do this for the Nestle Chocolate chip cookie recipe as well and they come out much fluffier, not all flat and crispy. But it’s a preference thing, I guess! I also used black cocoa and they just taste slightly of Oreos!

  14. Skillful Cook Logo

    Do you recommend lining the baking trays at all? I usually use Silpat mats but I’m afraid it might make the edges less crispy if I do that.

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      If you’re wanting to line for ease of clean-up, use parchment paper instead of silpat, that way it won’t interfere with crispiness!

  15. Skillful Cook Logo

    Yep these are amazing and definitely the best chocolate cookies I have ever had. I baked half on a Silpat mat and half on the pan and it didn’t seem to make a difference in the texture. The ones on the Silpat were just a little easier to remove. I’ll have the halve the recipe next time because my mixer was too small for the full batch and I made quite a mess. I’m definitely making these again!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Thanks so much for sharing, Jennee! So glad you enjoyed the cookies!

  16. Skillful Cook Logo

    I’m not so sure…
    I was a little concerned about the sheer volume of the ingredients and I should have trusted my gut! My standard Kitchen Aid Artisan mixer was struggling a lot to mix this dough, and it’s not an old mixer!
    Then maybe the dough should have been chilled a bit before baking? They came out of the oven completely flat. The edges are crispy like described, but they don’t have any of the height of the cookies in your photos! Is 1 pound of butter really correct?
    Sad I wasted so many ingredients!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      So sorry to hear that happened, Emily. Yes, 1 pound of butter is correct. A bit more flour may have helped, but it’s hard to say since we weren’t there with you. We really appreciate the feedback!

    2. Skillful Cook Logo

      Yes mine came out fairly flat too. I’m an experienced cookie maker. I even chilled these 24 hours and tried chilling after rolling in tall cylinder ball to help. Now I’m trying to add more flour to the mixture even though it’s chilled because I don’t want to waste them all. They taste good—not the best by any means, but they’re not bad either. Oh yeah, I also measured my flour initially in grams so that shouldn’t have been an issue. I was thinking 3 1/2 cups of brown sugar was a ton though.

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        I had the same issue with spread. The cookies taste ok but look terrible, nothing like the photos. Should have trusted my gut and chilled the dough.

  17. Skillful Cook Logo

    I made these exactly as written and they were AMAZING!! My husband, my college age boys and their friends devoured these cookies in no time!! Definitely going into our favorite cookie recipe folder!

  18. Skillful Cook Logo

    These are delicious! However I always cut down on sugar and thought 700g was a ton so I used about 500g of brown sugar and in my opinion, I could have cut back even more (it didn’t effect the cookies texture). I do typically love less sweet desserts so if you feel the same definitely cut back! I just realized that this also called for four sticks of butter….complete oversight on my part but I only used two and they came out great. Can’t imagine if I had used four sticks! I definitely suggest cutting back on both the butter and the sugar!!

  19. Skillful Cook Logo

    These cookies are perfect. I didn’t have any cardamom so I did half a teaspoon of salt in with half a cup of sugar to roll the dough – incredible. These are DEFINITELY a recipe to save and make over and over and over

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Thanks Emma, I was looking through the comments to see if anyone else increased the salt, so this is helpful. I made these last night, and they truly are amazing, I just think a little more salt would really make the espresso & chocolate combination pop.

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        I was thinking of giving fresh baked cookies to my family fir Christmas. Thought I’d give these a go but due to the volume of ingredients I tried half the amount (12 cookies…about 70g per dough ball). My first batch of six came out flat and they merged on my tray…..I reduced the size of each dough ball to 45g, added a bit more flour and pistachios pieces ( hoping it would prevent them going flat) and reduced cooking time – still came out a round flat.
        They taste good but not ones I would give to others.

  20. Skillful Cook Logo

    These cookies are superb!! I highly recommend both the espresso powder & cardamom to make these cookies extra special.