Secret To Stop Toll House Cookies Spreading?

Baking By Dayti Updated 16 May 2013 , 12:35pm by Annabakescakes

Sassy74 Posted 18 Mar 2011 , 1:14am
post #61 of 82

I also struggled for years to find a good puffy cc cookie recipe. I've even made Alton Brown's Puffy! It came out good, but not great. So I went back on the hunt. I found a recipe that PROMISED big fat cookies so I gave it a try and with just a couple of tweaks, I STRUCK CCC GOLD lol ! A couple of the amount measurements are a little strange, but this recipe was adapted from a BIG restaurant recipe. And obviously, this recipe makes a lot.

3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 egg
2 egg yolks
3 1/3 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325. Sift together dry ingredients. Cream together melted butter and sugars very well. Beat in vanilla, eggs and yolks until light and fluffy. Mix in sifted dry ingredients until just blended. Stir in choc chips by hand. Scoop cookies out in preferred method onto cookie sheets (I use a small/med ice cream scooper), leaving about 3 inches between. Bake 12-15 min or until edges are lightly toasted. Cool slightly on baking sheets, then transfer to cooling racks.

***NOTE: I first baked these using my Silpats, because I am just in the habit of using them. The cookies tasted AMAZING, but spread out like little Frisbees. Grrrr. I tried again without the Silpat and bingo!!! I've been using this recipe/method for several years and have never been disappointed!

Gerle Posted 18 Mar 2011 , 4:16am
post #62 of 82

Sassy, did you use parchment paper or did you spay the cookie sheets with something? I usually use silpats or parchment paper, so was wondering what you did different with the pans to prevent sticking.

Sassy74 Posted 18 Mar 2011 , 2:28pm
post #63 of 82

Gerle, parchment paper works great. It obviously keeps the cookies from sticking, but it's not greasy so it gives the cookie a little resistance as it spreads. These cookies always come out looking like they belong on a magazine cover. Nice and round, but thick and fat. Perfect!

I have used a little no-stick cooking spray as well, but just a light spray. Once, I even baked them right on the cookie sheet with no spray or parchment, and only a couple stuck...these cookies have A LOT of butter in them, so they're quite forgiving. But parchment works best. I forgot to add that I keep this dough in the refrig sometimes for a day before I bake. It adds a minute or two to the baking time, but the cookies bake up so pretty.

I also didn't want a recipe with shortening. Nothing, I mean NOTHING, tastes quite like butter, and shortening leaves a greasy mouth-feel, in my opinion.

This is a large recipe, but I have frozen this dough with great results. It's wonderful if you want to mix up a batch, seal it well and freeze it in smaller batches. Then, you can take out a batch here and there and bake them up.

Gerle Posted 18 Mar 2011 , 3:01pm
post #64 of 82

Sassy, thanks for the info. I'm definitely going to try this recipe. Funny...I don't personally like CCC, but my famiy loves them, so I make them pretty frequently. I'm sure they're going to love this recipe! Thank again!

divinecc Posted 18 Mar 2011 , 3:59pm
post #65 of 82

Lutie is right! I used to have the same problems and I really researched baking cookies. Here is a link that has cookie tips it has really helped me. There is a specific part about spreading cookies under the DROP COOKIE tips. Something that I don't think was mentioned is checking the exp date of your baking soda or powder, if it's expired it can ruin your cookies! Just another thing to think about....good luck!

Dayti Posted 20 Mar 2011 , 2:31pm
post #66 of 82

So I just made more cookies following bits and pieces of advice. Again I used half BS and half BP instead of all BS. I added 10% more flour than the recipe calls for. And I baked some on Silpats and some on parchment. The cookies came out slightly puffier and with a rounded edge on the parchment - still a bit flatter and crispy on the Silpat.

I make quite a lot of cookies and it's just a pain using parchment - I buy it ready sized but I have to grease the trays so the parchment doesn't flutter around on the edges of the trays and stick to the tops of the cookies. Silpat just stays put icon_biggrin.gif I can't reduce the fan speed on my commercial oven.

csue Posted 20 Mar 2011 , 3:15pm
post #67 of 82

Just a thought (and apologize if it was already mentioned) - have you tried placing the cookie dough on your baking sheets then chilling the dough? It works for me on butter cookies, wonder if it would work for you.

ElleW Posted 25 Mar 2011 , 5:02pm
post #68 of 82

I have perfected the round, full, fluffy, big, totally delicious CCC. It is easy. Follow the Toll House recipe but use 3 3/4 C flour instead of the 2 1/4C the recipe calls for. Bake on parchment paper for 11 minutes at 350. PERFECTION!

cutthecake Posted 25 Mar 2011 , 6:18pm
post #69 of 82

My chocolate chip cookies never stick to the cookie sheet, and I never use parchment or spray or mats. The only cookies that ever stick are ones with very sticky, sugary doughs, or jelly fillings. A stiff, thin bladed spatula will remove the cookies with no problems.

OP, you've received some great advice on baking science.
I'll add two things to the debate:
Cookie sheets should be cooled completely before the next batch of dough is placed on them.
I have had luck substituting one-third to one-half of the butter with margarine in the Toll House recipe.

Hello to all the former (and present) Home Ec Teachers out there! I'm so sorry that in so many areas of the country our profession is dying; and that kids aren't learning the wonderful things we once taught.

saffronica Posted 25 Mar 2011 , 10:55pm
post #70 of 82

I just read about this very subject in my new baking science book, "Bakewise," by Shirley Corriher. According to her, the creator of the Toll House recipe, Ruth Wakefield, was most likely using a high-protein flour from spring wheat, which is what would have been available at that time in New England, where she lived. High protein flours hold much more water than the lower protein all-purpose flours that are now available in grocery stores. This is why the dough is so soft and spreads so much. She says that a simple solution is to use bread flour, which would be closer in protein content to the flour originally used, or to simply add more flour to the dough as many PPs have suggested.

Also, baking soda has four times the leavening powder of baking powder, so you can't just swap out equal amounts. If you reduce the baking soda by 1/4 t. you would need to add a full teaspoon of baking powder.

I've always been a nerd, and I love baking, so I'm having a great time reading about baking science. icon_smile.gif

Kristie925 Posted 25 Mar 2011 , 11:46pm
post #71 of 82

I'd pretty much given up on getting a cc cookie that didn't go flat! Now, I can't wait to try out some of these tips! Thanks ladies!!!

915tanya Posted 26 Mar 2011 , 4:32am
post #72 of 82

I know you do not want a recipe with shortening, however i tried it and I love this recipe...

3/4 c Butter flavored Crisco
1 1/4 c Firmly packed brown sugar
2 tb Milk
1 tb Vanilla
1 Egg
1 3/4 c All-purpose flour
1 ts Salt
3/4 ts Baking soda
1 c Semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 c Pecan pieces

Heat oven to 375. Cream butter flavor crisco, brown sugar, milk, and vanilla in large bowl. Blend until creamy. Blend in egg. Combine flour, salt, and baking soda. Add to creamed mixture, gradually. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Drop rounded Tablespoonfuls (about 2 measuring tablespoons) of dough 3 inches apart on ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 375 8 to 10 minutes for chewy cookies (they will look light and moist) DO NOT OVERBAKE or 11 to 13 minutes for crisp cookies. Cool on baking sheet 2 minutes. Remove to coo rack. 3 dozecn 3-inch cookies. Note: if nuts are omitted, use 1-1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, you can also use chunks of chocolate instead of chips...

lilmissbakesalot Posted 26 Mar 2011 , 4:46am
post #73 of 82

Lutie... it's not that I don't understand what you are saying, and I completely agree with creaming the crap out of my butter and sugar for cakes. I am an avid scratch baker and do understand the process, and not because of me watching Food TV. I may not teach food science, but I have years of baking under my belt and have researched plenty and know what works for me.


BUT... for chocolate chip cookies I (personally) don't want all of that air. I don't want to cream the butter a lot because I want a flatter (but not too flat) more chewy cookie that comes from less altering of the fat as opposed to the cookie I would get if I creamed the butter more. Sounded like what the OP was after as well so I shared what works for me. Perhaps I generalized more than necessary, but this was in response to the OP's specific dilemma with her cookies.

I let my butter and sugar for cakes cream until it is light and super fluffy since I want that air in there, but I have made CCC and creamed the butter and sugars a bunch and was not happy with the end result. I do what works for me and my recipe. It's funny how one person's never do it can be another person's works for me everytime.


Chiara Posted 29 Mar 2011 , 1:21pm
post #74 of 82

When you use butter in a recipe it will warm up and that is where some of your spreading will occur.
If you place your dough back in the fridge so that the butter is cold you should have less of a problem.
I even put my cookies on the cookie sheet in the fridge to get the butter to harden.
This way, when in the oven it will melt but won't spread as much since it was cold to begin with. Butter spreads a great deal when warm.
I hope this helps.

luv2bake6 Posted 29 Mar 2011 , 10:14pm
post #75 of 82

I am also looking for that perfect consistency in a ccc. I want a thick soft cookie without the crunchy edges. Tried another recipe from allrecipes that called for baking at a low temp 300 but it just gave me crunchy flat edges with a weird shaped middle. So i just baked the rest of the dough in 350 oven and they came out ok but not what i'd like.
I will try one of the recipes posted above (the one with the weird amounts as the poster said it was scaled down from a restaurant recipe) to see if i can come any closer to what i like in a ccc. The quest goes on....

kelleym Posted 31 Mar 2011 , 4:34am
post #76 of 82

I tried Alton Brown's recipe and did not care for it, sadly.

The best money I've ever spent on a recipe book was Baking 9-1-1. Sarah's recipe for Sarah's Thick-With-A-Chew chocolate chip cookies uses all butter, and it is exactly what it promises. thumbs_up.gif I also love her brownie recipe.

Baking 9-1-1 book

luv2bake6 Posted 3 Apr 2011 , 3:10am
post #77 of 82

I am looking for a cookie that is thick but yet does not mound in the middle or crisp around the edges (one uniform thickness)....almost I know someone who makes these cookies but is keeping the recipe secret.....

bcarb Posted 5 Apr 2011 , 3:52am
post #78 of 82

I prefer the crispier spread out cookies and I only get the softer ones that don't spread. I use butter in my cookies, so it isn't the lack of butter in my case. Maybe I give it a few too many whips, so I will stop that. I can bake other things, but not crispy flat Toll House cookies. darn

lilmissbakesalot Posted 27 Apr 2011 , 4:06am
post #79 of 82

what are you using for leavening, and how much butter?

When I want a nice flat crispy CC cookie (my hubby loves them like that) I only use baking soda and add a bit of extra butter.

cakelady03785 Posted 16 May 2013 , 12:22pm
post #80 of 82

I know this is an old thread but I am also very frustrated at not being able to make my choc chip cookie recipe anymore and I know the reason.  It's because the govt has required all the trans fats be removed from products, specifically, in this case, the crisco.  I never had a problem making my cookies until they changed this product.  I had a cake business and was no longer able to make icing that would hold up.  

Annabakescakes Posted 16 May 2013 , 12:33pm
post #81 of 82


Original message sent by lutie

Divide your fat into 1/2 butter and 1/2 an old Home Ec teacher, I can tell you that it is your fat, not the baking soda issue...the fats have different melting points and the combination of the two will allow the other ingredients to do their job when they are supposed to will notice a tender cookie with some height...[B]nothing worse than seeing a chocolate chip cookie that looks like puke on a floor [/B]when you use only butter [IMG]/img/vbsmilies/smilies/icon_smile.gif[/IMG] ...and if you use only Crisco, it looks like a mound of concrete (and tastes like it)

I used to have the kids do the experiment in my classes and it is amazing how the fats combination makes the difference. You know your oven, and adjust, try and see if this does not make the cookie you envision.

okay, I was seriously laughing out loud! I am so immature... Actually, I am still chuckling...

Annabakescakes Posted 16 May 2013 , 12:35pm
post #82 of 82


Original message sent by cakelady03785

I know this is an old thread but I am also very frustrated at not being able to make my choc chip cookie recipe anymore and I know the reason.  It's because the govt has required all the trans fats be removed from products, specifically, in this case, the crisco.  I never had a problem making my cookies until they changed this product.  I had a cake business and was no longer able to make icing that would hold up.  

Yes the government nanny state is horrible, but why don't you just switch to hi-ratio shortening?

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