Recipe Review

This Popular Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe Has One Super-Smart Tip That Anyone Can Steal

published Jul 29, 2021
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Credit: Justin Burke

I’m always game to try a new chocolate chip cookie recipe. I don’t believe there’s one “perfect” chocolate chip cookie — everyone has different opinions on the matter. I say, always try something new. You might just find a trick or ingredient to add to perfect your favorite chocolate chip cookie. 

This is how I felt when I saw Hummingbird High’s chocolate chip cookies with powdered sugar on Instagram. The recipe is adapted from pastry chef Melissa Weller’s latest cookbook A Good Bake: The Art and Science of Making Perfect Pastries, Cookies, Pies, and Breads at Home. The idea of using powdered sugar in place of some of the granulated sugar and brown sugar intrigued me — especially after reading how the powdered sugar absorbs moisture to give the cookies a unique bumpy exterior and chewy texture. This new trick was something I had to try. 

How to Make Chocolate Chip Cookies with Powdered Sugar

The recipe is as traditional a cookie recipe as it gets — unless you typically don’t chill your cookie dough overnight, then this recipe might seem unusually long to you. First, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract. Finally, add butter, dark brown sugar, granulated sugar, and powdered sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. 

Start by creaming the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy. Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add the egg mixture until evenly combined. Add the flour mixture all at once and mix until just combined then add the chocolate. The recipe calls for portioning the cookie dough with a three-tablespoon cookie dough scoop and placing it on a baking sheet, covered loosely with plastic wrap, and chilling overnight. I skipped this step and chilled the cookie dough in the bowl of the mixer and portioned right before baking. 

When ready to bake, remove the cookie dough from the refrigerator and thaw for about 10 minutes while the oven preheats. Place portioned cookie dough three inches apart and flatten slightly with your palm. Bake at 375°F, rotating the pans halfway through for even baking, until the edges are slightly golden-brown and centers are still gooey, about 16 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool the cookies on the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes. I was reluctant to keep the cookies on the pan to cool, but followed the recipe as directed.

The recipe also included a food styling tip to get the Instagramable pool of melted chocolate on top of the cookies. Once the cookie dough is flattened, add a chocolate disk to each cookie. The chocolate will melt when baked. 

Credit: Justin Burke

My Honest Review

Visually, the cookies are beautiful and I’m glad I followed the food styling tip. Unfortunately, I should have followed my gut and removed the cookies from the pan after baking to cool on a wire rack. When I removed the cookies from the oven, the cookies were lightly golden and still very soft in the center. Cooling them on their hot pan kept baking the cookies — I watched my perfect cookies quickly get darker and crunchier. If you like crispy cookies, then follow the recipe as directed. 

I wasn’t the biggest fan of the flavor. I felt subbing in powdered sugar took away from the molasses-like flavor additional brown sugar adds to chocolate chip cookies, and the flavor fell a little flat to me. Knowing that the powdered sugar absorbs some of the moisture, I wonder if the crispier texture was a combination of both powdered sugar and leaving them to cool on their hot pan. 

If you like crispy, buttery-vanilla chocolate chip cookies then I say give this recipe a try. If anything, the food styling trick is a keeper. 

2 Tips for Making Hummingbird High’s Chocolate Chip Cookies with Powdered Sugar

  1. Remove the cookies from the pan and cool on a wire rack. Leaving the cookies to cool on the hot pan will keep baking the cookies, making them darker and crispier. If you want lightly golden, soft-and-chewy cookies, ignore that step in the recipe and transfer the cookies to a wire rack. 
  2. Add a chocolate disk to the portioned cookie dough before baking. If you want that Instagrammable chocolate chip cookie with a pool of melted chocolate, add a chocolate disk to the portioned cookies before baking. The chocolate will melt and spread over the tops of the cookies. If the chocolate doesn’t spread, use an offset spatula and smear the chocolate as desired.