How to Keep All-Butter Cookies from Spreading


I’m picky about my chocolate chip cookies. I like them chewy, but not flat. I’m not exaggerating when I say I searched for the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe for 15 years. I really liked the flavor of the recipes that called for all butter, versus a butter/shortening combo or all shortening. The problem with all butter is that butter has a low melting point. That’s why cookies spread with butter. Shortening has a higher melting point, so that’s why a lot of recipes will call for a combination of the two.

Now, I understand that we all have different ideas of what makes the perfect cookie. Some like them thin, some like them thick. Some like them chewy and some like them crunchy. So, this may or may not be the method for you. But if you like a chewy, semi-thick cookie, then you’ve come to the right spot.

One day I was trying out yet another chocolate chip cookie recipe (I was still on the hunt for the perfect one) when I serendipitously discovered something that kept my all-butter cookies from spreading too much. 

So, what is my little secret, you ask? Get ready for it… Cream the butter with the sugars for 4 minutes. That’s it. It’s so simple and makes perfect sense. 4 minutes of creaming. Time it. It almost seems excessive, but believe me it’s not. The longer you cream the butter and sugars, the more the sugar can cut into the butter, creating little air pockets and lightening it up.

These cookies spread the perfect amount and are perfectly chewy, moist, thick circles of yummy-ness.

I’ll give you my favorite recipe, but you can try this trick on your favorite recipe and see what a difference it makes.
Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
The most perfect chewy good ol' chocolate chip cookie you will ever eat.
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  1. 1 cup butter, softened
  2. 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  3. 1 cup packed brown sugar
  4. 2 eggs
  5. 1 tsp vanilla
  6. 3 cups all-purpose flour
  7. rounded 1/4 tsp salt
  8. 3/4 tsp baking soda
  9. 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Cream butter and sugars for 4 minutes.
  3. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy. (About 1 minute)
  4. Add flour, salt, and baking soda. Mix to combine.
  5. Add chocolate chips and stir to combine.
  6. Drop onto parchment-lined cookie sheets. (I like to use a #60 cookie scoop.)
  7. Bake for 10 minutes.
  1. I bake my cookies for exactly 10 minutes. When I pull them out of the oven, they don't look quite done, but they continue to bake a little until they're cool, so don't worry. They'll set and be perfectly chewy. If you leave them in for too much longer than 10 minutes, they'll become more of a crunchy cookie.
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