We Tried More than a Dozen Brands of Chocolate Chips — These Were the Best

updated May 1, 2019
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(Image credit: Emma Christensen)

When you grow up on Nestle Toll House cookies, it’s easy to knee-jerk reach for that ubiquitous yellow bag. But that’s just one chip in a sea of chocolate. What about all the other brands out there?

If you, like us, are always striving for the ultimate chocolate chip cookie, it helps to start with the best chocolate chips. We hit a few supermarkets to gather up all the brands we could find.

Here are the brands that rose right to the top.

The Best Semisweet Chocolate Chips: Guittard Semisweet Chocolate Baking Chips

Believe it or not, Nestle ranked among the lowest for its lack of chocolate flavor compared to the rest. The two Fair Trade and organic brands we tried were even worse: Sunspire tasted oddly like carob, and Equal Exchange tasted burnt.

The hands-down favorite was Guittard for its rich, creamy texture and deep chocolate flavor. Ghirardelli, which is sweeter, came in second. Coming in tied at number three were the bargain-priced duo of Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods’ 365, for $2 and $3, respectively. TJ’s was a little gritty and candy-sweet, but still had more chocolate flavor than Nestle. The Whole Foods option was creamier in texture but its vanilla notes crowded out the chocolate.

The Best Bittersweet Chocolate Chips: Scharffen Berger’s Bittersweet Chocolate Baking Chunks

In terms of chocolate so good you want to eat it right out of the bag, Scharffen Berger’s Dark Chocolate Chunks take the top spot for its super-complex, almost wine-like flavors and aromas. It reminded us a lot of the fruity flavor of cacao nibs.

If you’re looking for something more quintessentially chocolate chippy, Guittard, once again, earned our highest praise. The texture is smooth and creamy, with a deeply chocolatey flavor. Even though it’s 63 percent cacao and labeled “Extra Dark,” it isn’t overly bitter in the least — just really, really chocolatey. Once again Ghirardelli was chasing on its heels with its 60 percent cacao chips. Smooth, creamy, sweet, and chocolatey, these chips tasted more semi-sweet than dark.

Do you have a go-to bag of chocolate chips? What is it?