Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip/Chunk Cookies, 2 Delicious Recipes

by Jeanne on May 3, 2009

5/11/14: Due to questions I’ve been getting, I’ve added a few notes to the recipes to describe their texture in relation to each other. 

It’s been major meeting/potluck/gathering season for me, and I always need some cookies to bring. When I think cookies, I usually think chocolate chip–they are my favorite cookie by far. I have a go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe that I’ve adapted to be gluten-free from one of my favorite cookbook authors, Ina Garten, aka The Barefoot Contessa (LOVE. HER.). I’ve been making it for years. I bring this to every event that requires food. And it always gets rave reviews–from gluten-free and non-gluten-free people alike. Her recipes are wonderful and every single one tastes delicious. Seriously, if you haven’t tried any of her cookbooks, go out right now and get one–any one will do. Once you’ve tried one, I can almost guarantee that you will want her other ones. They are excellent.

NOTE:  Garten’s recipe creates a cookies that is relatively flat–and crispy vs. cakey.  They are a lot like those made with the Nestle Tollhouse recipe.  If your kitchen and or dough is warm, the cookies will spread quite a bit.  My kitchen is fairly cool most of the time, so they hold their shape and are buttery and crispy.  If you don’t like the way they are spreading during baking, chill your dough before you shape and put the cookies on the baking sheet.

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Recently, I’ve become aware of another chocolate chip cookie recipe that called for my attention. I realize that I’m kind of late on this bandwagon. David Leite adapted a chocolate chip recipe from chocolatier Jacques Torres and published the recipe in the New York Times in July 2008.

One of the main things about Leite’s recipe is that the dough requires a 24-36 hour stay in the refrigerator for a long “hydration” time. This allows “the dough and the other ingredients to fully soak up the liquid–in this case, the eggs–in order to get a drier and firmer dough, which bakes to a better consistency.” (that’s a quote from Shirley O. Corriher, another of my favorite cookbook authors, from Leite’s article on his cookies).

OK, so I adapted Leite’s recipe, just to see. I was skeptical, because I’m loyal to Garten.  Well, my fears were put to rest after making these cookies–they are delicious. I brought my version of this recipe to a meeting. At first everyone was disappointed that I had brought a different recipe. But, once they ate these, they were thrilled. And I was thrilled. They are more crunchy and more cake-y that Garten’s cookies–which are lighter and more crispy. But both are very good! So, now I have two chocolate chip recipes in my repertoire that I love. How lucky I feel! Below are my gluten-free adaptations of each recipe.

Recipe #1: Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies
adapted from Barefoot Contessa Parties, by Ina Garten

NOTE:  this recipe creates a cookies that is relatively flat–it’s crispy vs. cakey.  If your kitchen and or dough is warm, the cookies will spread quite a bit.  My kitchen is fairly cool most of the time, so they hold their shape and are buttery and crispy.  If you don’t like the way they are spreading, chill your dough before you shape the cookies and put them on the baking sheet.

NOTE:  If you want a more crunchy and cake-y cookie, use the Chocolate Chunk Cookie recipe below.

Yield: 4 dozen (can be halved)

Ingredients
2 cups (280 g)  Jeanne’s Gluten-Free Flour mixture
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon coarse salt (like kosher salt)
1 cup (2 sticks; 225 g) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup (215 g) dark brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup (100 g) granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 extra-large eggs at room temperature
4 cups (24 oz; 680 g) semisweet chocolate chips or chunks
1 cup (120 grams) chopped pecans, toasted (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F/180 degrees C/Gas Mark 4.

-cream butter and two sugars in the mixer with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy
-add vanilla, mixing to incorporate
-add eggs one at a time, mixing after each
-in a different bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, and salt
-add flour mixture to butter mixture on low speed, mixing just enough to combine
-with a spoon, add chocolate

-line baking sheet with parchment paper or Silpat mat
-drop dough by tablespoons onto baking sheet
-bake for 16 minutes

-cool slightly in pan and then carefully transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

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Recipe #2: Gluten-Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies
adapted from David Leite’s recipe, NYT July 9, 2008

NOTE: If you slightly under-bake this recipe, you will get more cake-y cookies.  If you bake them as written, they will be more crunchy

Yield: 3 dozen

Ingredients
2 cups (280 g) Jeanne’s Gluten-Free Flour mixture (or just regular flour for non-gf)
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon coarse salt (like kosher salt)
10 tablespoons (5 oz; 140 g) unsalted butter at room temperature
1/2 cup (110 g) dark brown sugar
1/2 (100 g) granulated sugar
1 extra-large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
12 oz (340 g) chocolate disks or feves (Valhrona makes these), at least 60% cacao content
Sea salt for sprinkling

-cream butter and two sugars together using a mixer with a paddle attachment until fluffy–at least 5 mins.
-add egg, mix to combine
-add vanilla, mix to combine
-in a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt
-add dry ingredients, mix just until combined
-add chocolate disks by hand, incorporate (try not to break the pieces)

-cover with plastic wrap, pressing the wrap against the dough, and refrigerate for 24 to 36 hours. Can be refrigerated up to 72 hours (although I went away for several days and came back, made the cookies, and they tasted fine).

-when ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F/180 degrees C/Gas Mark 4.
-line baking sheet with parchment paper or Silpat mat
-scoop up dough into golf ball-sized amounts (this is hard because the dough will be hard and cold–I had to use a butter knife to carve out chunks of dough to work with. I then shaped these into balls with my hand).
-place on baking sheet
-press down each cookie a bit flatter with the bottom of a glass (not too flat, just so they’re not ball-shaped)
-sprinkle each cookie with sea salt (at first I used flake-type sea salt–I found these to be a bit too salty, though other people liked them. Then I used coarse sea salt–again, a bit to salty for me. Then I used regular-grained sea salt–this tasted best to me).

-Bake for 17 minutes (they will look underdone, but they’re not).

-cool slightly on sheet, then transfer to wire cooling rack.

-These are best eaten warm from the oven. When they are cooled and have been sitting around for a few hours, they get harder and harder–more like a store-bought cookie. Still yummy, but not as sublime as the just-out-of-the-oven cookies.
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{ 46 comments… read them below or add one }

Blondie November 14, 2014 at 4:27 pm

I just made chocolate chip #2, and I did NOT wait 24 hours. I mixed and baked half of the batch right away because I’m greedy and impatient sometimes. They are stunning. They held their shape beautifully, puffed up just the perfect amount in the center like a gentle dome, and yielded a tender crisp/crunch that gives way to a firmly soft but not gooey center. My only complaint is that they are a little gritty/sandy. PRAH-BUBBLY because (did I mention?) I am greedy and impatient and couldn’t wait to taste them.

The other half of the batch of dough is hanging out in my fridge, chillin’…waitin’….

PS – I also tossed in a tiny dash of cinnamon and a whisper of a grate of nutmeg because it’s almost Thanksgiving. I do mean tiny dashes and whispers…the merest hint. Tis nice!!!

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Jeanne November 17, 2014 at 2:25 pm

Blondie: The gritty texture is usually due to the grind of the flour. I recommend using the flours from Authentic Foods.com. They are superfine grind.

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Tracie Cornella August 18, 2014 at 5:38 pm

I’ve been following your blog and using your book for a while now. I have to say, THIS IS THE BEST CC COOKIE recipe. Other GF cookie recipes turn out flat or just don’t taste like a cookie should. This was amazing. And my picky husband, who knows his cookies, gave it a perfect 10!! Thank goodness we found you. We finally can eat baked goods because of you. (BTW, your pie crust is the best too!!)

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Jeanne August 19, 2014 at 12:21 pm

Tracie: I’m so glad!!

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Valerie June 18, 2014 at 7:44 pm

So I’ve run into the flat cookie thing in the past with GF recipes and I decided to add a little extra to this recipe to see how it would do. I did a half batch and added a 1/4 c cocoa powder and a 1/4 c almond meal (my favorite gf baking addition!) and they turned out lovely, slightly puffed up and a solid texture (doesn’t seem to crumble). I haven’t tried them cooled though yet, they’re still warm xP couldn’t wait.

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Jeanne June 24, 2014 at 1:43 pm

Valerie: Sounds great!

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Jennifer Fashian May 10, 2014 at 2:54 pm

Update and further comment on recipe #2: I cooked the next batch of the #1 cookies a bit longer and they still ran together and had to be cut into squares, but they held together much better and are a great crispy cookie if you are looking for that. I just pulled out the first batch of recipe #2 (again with weighed ingredients) and they are nice and puffy looking like a traditional cc cookie. However, I think I prefer the TASTE of cookie #1 and will just bulk them up with a a bit more flour next time.

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Jeanne May 10, 2014 at 7:18 pm

Jennifer: If the cookies from Recipe #1 are spreading like you describe, then the dough is too warm. Put the dough in the fridge to chill before shaping and baking. Mine never spread that way–but my kitchen is relatively cool most of the year.

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Jennifer Fashian May 10, 2014 at 2:44 pm

I think we are all assuming we’ll get a traditional puffed up chocolate chip cookie since all the commenters talked about flat, spread out and pancake like cookies. Indeed I came here to comment on the same issue. I just made these for the first time. I weighed the ingredients exactly and the cookies all spread together into thin, fall apart discs of deliciousness. Yes, they taste GREAT, but I can’t really stack them in my Tupperware for the picnic as I had planned, as they will fall apart. Also I thought the 4 C. of chocolate chips was a bit much for my taste and the sheer number of chips and thin dough made the chips all float together into the middle of the cookie. For those who want to remedy the very flat cookie issue you can simply add more flour as I will do next time. The remaining dough is currently in the fridge to firm it up some.

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Jeanne May 10, 2014 at 7:20 pm

Jennifer: Again, if your cookies from Recipe #1 are spreading like you describe, then the dough is too warm (it doesn’t matter how you are measuring). Place the dough in the fridge to chill and firm up before you shape and bake them. I always stack these in a Tupperware container for transport–without breakage. And, yes, if you don’t like the number of chocolate chips, then reduce the amount.

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Rebecca February 19, 2014 at 6:54 am

Hi, I purchase Large eggs, not extra large. Just wondering if I would be okay just using Large eggs in this recipe? Thanks!

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Jeanne February 21, 2014 at 10:57 am

Rebecca: Yes–for cookies that is just fine!

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Ruby Hylton February 18, 2014 at 2:31 pm

Jeanne.

I bought your cookbook and after reading the recipe for chocolate chip cookies I knew I had to make them for my grandsons (both in their 30’s). They came home from an outing to the cookies I had left on the counter. They are gluten free by choice and sent out a message to Facebook friends about these amazing cookies. Both said they are the best chocolate chip cookies they have ever had (gluten or no gluten). They don’t like cakey cookies so I am not going to try recipe # 2. I did make some soft (12 minutes) and some crispy (14 minutes in my oven). They are Delicious!!!!! They won’t let me make any more for 6 months (no resistance to reaching into the cooks jar). I can hardly wait for your new book and the English muffins (and maybe get selected to be a tester).

Thank you again.

Ruby Hylton

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Jeanne February 21, 2014 at 11:00 am

Ruby: Yay! I am so glad! Thank you for letting me know! Also, I am still developing recipes–so the call for recipe testers will come out in a few weeks. :)

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Tae August 20, 2013 at 1:59 pm

Hi Jeane, I love your website!! I’m totally okay with gluten but decided to go gluten free three months ago and have never looked back! I’m pretty close to getting my wife to join me but haven’t quite succeeded. Anyhow, I’m having same issues with Tara above, my cookies are relatively flat. I’ve made them 3 times so far and I initally thought it was a result of old baking soda but no so. I’m using recipe #1. If I want smaller cookies, I only have to use a small spoonful of dough but then, I end up making way too many cookies since I only have one cookie sheet and spend way too long baking (total time). If I use more dough, they end up being 4inch diameters. I wish it would just rise up a little for volume. Regardless, they taste good. I am using warm butter so I’ll change that up and see what happens.

Also, I’m not sure if this is the place to ask questions but have you played with adding Amarath flour to your flour blend? Regardless, people love your cookies! So far made the brownies and blueberry muffins. Very tasty! Will be planning to make banana bread next week. Thank you for this awesome website!!

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Jeanne August 20, 2013 at 2:26 pm

Tae: These cookies are supposed to bake up flat and crispy-chewy. If you want a more dense and crunchy cookie, try the Chocolate Chunk Cookie recipe.

Also, I have tried amaranth flour. Check out my post about my flour mix recipe for the reasons I don’t use it on a regular basis.

Happy baking!

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Tae August 23, 2013 at 6:11 am

Thanks Jeanne! Also, I’ve been using half butter and half coconut oil in the cookies and it’s been turning up delicious!!

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Jeanne August 30, 2013 at 12:57 pm

Tae: Ooo, yum! I will have to do that! Yummy!

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Tracy July 30, 2013 at 3:14 pm

I made the first recipe as I like my cookies chewy/crispy. Another hit! They were flat, but I like them flat. I think the dark brown sugar gave them a great flavor. Thanks (once again!) for another great recipe.

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Jeanne July 30, 2013 at 4:44 pm

Tracy: Yay! I’m so glad!

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Sherri Carroll May 25, 2013 at 8:49 am

I just made these this morning. My Gluten eating 5 year old ate 4 cookies and my GF 2 year old at 2.5. Mommy ate the other half plus. Very yummy cookies. I hope they aren’t crumbly tomorrow. That’s my GF pet peeve. Cookies never seem to taste the same the next day (unless they have sour cream in them). Thanks for the great recipe!

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Jeanne May 25, 2013 at 11:34 am

Sherri: Yay! I’m so glad you guys like them!!

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Elizabeth December 18, 2012 at 12:32 pm

The flour mix has worked really well for my sugar cookies, but today I tried the chocolate chip cookies and have ended up with puddles instead of cookies. Delicious puddles, but puddles all the same. Will try chilling the dough…..thanks!

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Jeanne December 19, 2012 at 11:12 am

Elizabeth: When you say puddles, what do you mean? With chocolate chip cookies, the temperature of the butter in the dough will affect the resulting baked item. The warmer the butter, the more flat and crispy they will become. The colder the butter, the more cakey they will be.

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Michelle December 3, 2012 at 6:24 pm

These are soso good! It may be time for an intervention- I am becoming like the lady who cooked her way through Martha Stewart’s baking book… If only your recipes weren’t so good! I made version #1 with 1/2 choc chips and 1/2 peanut butter chips and they are really good. Thin, crisp and delicious! My gluten-eating hubs and daughter kept getting into the dough. (we personally know the chickens who give us our eggs, so I don’t worry about the raw egg thing) We are having the cookies for dessert after some yummy potato- leek soup and dinner rolls from this great gf site- you may know about it…

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Jeanne December 4, 2012 at 7:42 am

Michelle: LOL–I love it! I’m so glad you are enjoying my recipes!

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Sue October 23, 2012 at 5:50 am

Hello from Ireland! Firstly thanks for sharing your recipes and enthusiasm, so encouraging. Just made a successful batch of the chocolate chunk cookies. I rolled the dough into a sausage shape before wrapping and refridgerating – I found it easier then to simply slice the cookies as needed.

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admin October 23, 2012 at 6:35 am

Sue: Welcome! And that is such a good idea–I like it!

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Trish August 27, 2012 at 9:48 pm

I just discovered your site today and I’m so glad I did. There are so many of your recipes I want to make. I made version #1 of these cookies and they are fantastic! My husband can’t tolerate rice in any form and both of us are gluten intolerant. I used Sorghum 300 g, Millet 100g and 200g each of Tapioca starch, Arrowroot and Cornstarch for the flour mixture. Thank you for a wonderful recipe!

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admin August 27, 2012 at 9:49 pm

Trish: Yay! I’m so glad! And I love the adaptations you made.

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Rachel G. August 27, 2012 at 5:08 pm

I made the GF Chocolate Chip Cookies #1 and my nephew that’s the pickiest eater I’ve ever know said “Nana this is my MOST FAVORITIST SNACK EVER!!” =) Today was his first day of Kindergarten and AM SO HAPPY that I was able to make a DELICIOUS afterschool snack like I used to for my boys many years ago!! You are truly a blessing to me and my family!! THANK YOU & May God Bless You Tenfold!!!

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admin August 27, 2012 at 5:24 pm

Rachel: Yay! I’m so glad!

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Rachel April 2, 2012 at 8:06 pm

First of all, I must say, that I adore this blog! You are amazing and have wonderful recipes. But I tried the first chocolate chip cookie recipe and followed everything exactly and they cookies completely flattened out (thinner than pancakes) and after 15 minutes in the oven were a dark brown and very crunchy! :( I double checked the recipe and I had followed the directions exactly and my butter was at room temperature. Any idea what would have happened?

Thanks for your wonderful blog!

Rachel

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admin April 4, 2012 at 11:50 am

Rachel: Aw, I’m so glad this blog is helpful for you! Also, the first recipe does create flattish and crispy cookies. So, nothing went wrong. The second recipe, with the sea salt on the top, bake up a bit more cakey-crunchy. And thanks for the kind words!

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Stacie March 22, 2012 at 8:35 am

I tried the first cookie recipe, they turned out great!!! Best cookies i have ever made :)

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admin March 22, 2012 at 12:10 pm

Stacie: Yay! Thanks for letting me know!

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Cindy December 2, 2011 at 1:26 pm

I see that most of your cookie recipes use butter. I am allergic to milk/butter. What do you recommend to use instead? I have used Butter flavored Crisco, in many of the family recipes that I have changed into GF recipes, that have come out good.CM2 D

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admin December 3, 2011 at 4:28 pm

Cindy: For dairy-free stuff, I usually use Earth Balance Soy-Free Buttery Spread or sticks. My daughter is soy allergic, so we can’t use soy replacers. But, I like their soy-free butter replacer. Does a pretty good job!

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Ana November 14, 2011 at 5:04 pm

Thank you so much!! Finally I’m doing something right! I will use room temp butter from now on.

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admin November 15, 2011 at 11:47 am

Ana: Awesome!

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Ana November 13, 2011 at 11:20 am

I have a different problem, I don’t have a stand mixer so I use a hand held one. I have notice that the batter get all the way up on the beaters n this happens to me with all cookie recipes. And when I’m done mixing the batter is very sticky n I have a hard time getting it off the spoon n my cookies don’t get flat like I guess they are supposed to be. They stay the shape of however they were place on the sheet.. My butter is room temp or slighty cooler. What am I doing wrong?
Thanks
Ana

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admin November 13, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Ana: You are doing nothing wrong. Most cookie batters are like that–stiff and sticky. I would say just mix them by hand. To be honest, the main reason to use an electric mixer is to beat air into the dough to help it rise higher. You don’t really need to do this with cookies–so don’t worry. An electric mixer is most important for cakes and breads! Also, the flat thing is related to how soft the butter is when you put the cookies in the oven. So, it sounds like the butter is cooler, so the cookies will retain their puffy shape a bit more.

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Tara February 20, 2011 at 3:39 pm

I made the first recipe…they might be worth the wait but my 5 year old cannot wait 36 hours…Ha!!

They were extremely flat…maybe my butter was too warm after mixing. It wasn’t just your recipe…I have tried numerous GF chocolate chip recipes and they all seem to have the same effect. I thought that I was doing something wrong. I made your Victoria Sponge cake the other day and it was soooo delicious!!! I love your recipes so keep them coming and thanks for the tips!!

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admin February 20, 2011 at 3:51 pm

Tara: Yes, it’s the warm butter temperature that makes them so flat. Also, they are just kind of like that–this recipe will never make a thick cookie. If you want a less flat cookie, use the second recipe and just bake them right away–no need to wait if you don’t want to. That recipe makes a more crunchy and thick cookie. Also, I’m so glad you liked the Victoria Sponge cake–that one is a winner for sure!!

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Tara February 20, 2011 at 12:09 pm

Jeanne I just made your cookies and they look like pancakes. This has happened to me before and it is driving me slightly crazy!!! What am I doing wrong??

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admin February 20, 2011 at 12:33 pm

Tara: Hi! First of all: which recipe did you use? Also, what do you mean by “look like pancakes”? Do you mean they were flat? If so, that is normal for the Chocolate Chip cookies. Also, the warmer the butter, the more flat they will be once baked. If you’re talking about the Chocolate Chunk cookies (the ones that you refrigerate for 36 hours), I need more info on what they look like in order to help you. Thanks!

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