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Taste Test: The Top Store-Bought Chocolate Chip Cookies, Ranked

Taste Test: The Top Store-Bought Chocolate Chip Cookies, Ranked


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Which cookie came out on top?

Photos by Dan Myers, Composite by Kathleen Collins

Who doesn’t love chocolate chip cookies? Soft or crunchy, fresh-baked or store-bought, they’re among the most beloved treats. To prove it, we taste-tested 25 brands.

While the standard recipe for chocolate chip cookies is simple — just mix up a batter with flour, baking soda, salt, sugar, butter, vanilla, eggs and chocolate chips — the cookies you’ll find in the supermarket tend to be a lot more complicated. They need to be shelf-stable, so you’ll often find stabilizers and preservatives, and many formulas don’t even contain eggs or milk. When it comes to cookies, home-baked is usually better, but there’s something about the packaged kind that brings out the kid in all of us.

Our panel of 15 tasters sampled each one in a blind tasting, and graded each on factors including taste, texture and amount of chocolate chips per cookie. In the end, one brand was a clear champion.

#25 The Complete Cookie

Dan Myers

Lenny & Larry’s The Complete Cookie may be marketed as a cookie, but our tasters thought otherwise. It tasted more like protein powder than anything else (the cookie contains 16 grams of protein), with an off-putting texture similar to Play-Doh. This could pass as a protein bar, but not as a cookie.

#24 Goodie Girl

Dan Myers

Goodie Girl cookies are gluten free and made with quinoa, rice, corn starch and tapioca. They were very small and hard as a rock with a button-like shape, and many tasters were put off by their dry texture. Several tasters noticed the addition of cinnamon, but it didn’t do much to salvage this underwhelming cookie.

#23 Simple Mills

Dan Myers

These gluten-free cookies are made with several peculiar ingredients, including a nut and seed flour blend, tapioca, coconut sugar, arrowroot, konjac root and tiger nut (which is actually a root vegetable). All of those ingredients lent the cookie a strange flavor that didn’t score many points with our tasters. One even went so far as to say that it “doesn’t taste like chocolate or a cookie.” The texture was also slightly stale.

#22 Fat Badger

Dan Myers

This cookie had an odd pale color and a dusty, chalky texture. As for flavor, it had a strange nuttiness — likely due to the addition of oatmeal and flaxseed — that most of our tasters agreed didn’t belong in a chocolate chip cookie.

#21 Enjoy Life

Dan Myers

These cookies are gluten free, nut free, soy free and milk free, and are made with a flour mix of rice, buckwheat and millet. Our tasters had no issues with the thin and crispy texture, but there was an odd sweetness to these cookies, and our panel nearly universally agreed that the aftertaste was strange as well.

#20 Famous Amos

Dan Myers

The cookies that made talent agent Wally Amos a legend haven’t held up very well. Most tasters agreed that our batch was dry and rocklike, and that the flavor was bland. They struck many tasters as “classic,” however, and there were plenty of chocolate chips to go around. The general impression was that they were nothing special.

#19 Tate’s Gluten Free

Dan Myers

This cookie was crisp, crunchy and buttery, but also tasted burnt. Our tasters also weren’t sold on the overall texture, which was a little bit gritty.

#18 Chips Ahoy Chewy

Dan Myers

While this cookie was indeed soft and chewy, we didn’t get much in the way of real chocolate and found it to have an artificial chemical flavor. It was also overwhelmingly sweet.

#17 Whole Foods

Dan Myers

Whole Foods’ $3.99 offering fared surprisingly poorly. Though they're made with organic wheat flour and organic chocolate, our tasters found these cookies to be bland, dull, slightly sandy in texture and sorely lacking in chocolate chips. They were also too crumbly and dry.

#16 Back to Nature

Dan Myers

These cookies have the fewest ingredients out of any that we tested — just wheat flour, chocolate chips, sugar, oil, brown rice syrup, baking soda and salt — and our tasters were split on whether the slight nuttiness lent by the wheat flour was desirable. The texture had a nice crumble but was slightly too dry, placing these cookies squarely in the middle of the pack.

#15 Linden’s

Dan Myers

Linden’s is a classic hard chocolate chip cookie, and it reminded many of our tasters of their childhood. There wasn’t much in the way of chocolate flavor, though, and it was a little bit too hard and brittle.

#14 Pepperidge Farm Montauk Milk Chocolate

Dan Myers

This cookie had a nice, soft chew, but our tasters weren’t sold on the use of milk chocolate as opposed to semi-sweet chocolate. We were looking for a deep chocolate flavor, but the milk chocolate chips just drew attention to the fact that the rest of the cookie was lacking in flavor.

#13 Entenmann’s Milk Chocolate

Dan Myers

Like the Montauk, our tasters would have preferred a richer flavor here as opposed to that of milk chocolate. We didn’t mind the soft, cakey texture, but if we had been blindfolded, we probably wouldn’t have guessed that this was a chocolate chip cookie.

#12 Oven Arts

Dan Myers

This cookie was very soft and chewy, with a nice buttery flavor, but the vanilla flavor overwhelmed that of the chocolate.

#11 Trader Joe’s

Dan Myers

Our tasters generally found the tiny cookies inside the big plastic tub from Trader Joe’s pretty enjoyable. They were light and crispy, and the fact that they were bite-size made it easy to eat too many of them. They didn’t have much of a “pop,” however, and were lacking in chocolate chip flavor. They also contain coconut, which a couple tasters picked up on.

#10 Pepperidge Farm Nantucket Dark Chocolate

Dan Myers

These cookies had some depth of flavor that our tasters observed — a hint of salt and butter and big, high-quality dark chocolate chunks — but the texture was too crumbly for some.

#9 Pepperidge Farm Nantucket Double Chocolate

Dan Myers

We loved the robust dark chocolate flavor of these cookies, as well as the big chocolate chunks. If you like dark chocolate, you’ll love these. Our only (minor) quibble was that they were a little too hard.

#8 Keebler Chips Deluxe

Dan Myers

Keebler’s offering was pleasantly crunchy instead of dry and crumbly, and there were plenty of high-quality chocolate chips evenly distributed throughout. The pronounced flavor of molasses and a hint of salt also came through.

#7 Chips Ahoy Chunky

Dan Myers

This cookie had almost too many chocolate chips. While some enjoyed the crunch, others thought it was too hard and brittle. We all agreed it would pair well with a glass of milk, though.

#6 Entenmann’s

Dan Myers

We liked the softness and the small size of these cookies, as well as the nice chocolatey flavor. There’s a good reason why these addictive little cookies are so popular.

#5 David’s

Dan Myers

We really liked the texture of these -- right in-between chewy and crunchy -- and we liked the large chocolate chips and big chocolate flavor.

#4 Tate’s

Dan Myers

Tate’s was a polarizing cookie, but it still did extraordinarily well. These were thin and crispy and had a distinct homemade flavor, with plenty of butter, brown sugar and vanilla. While high quality, the chocolate chips themselves weren’t as plentiful as in the other cookies, however, and some tasters complained that the cookies were too crunchy and borderline overbaked.

#3 Chips Ahoy

Dan Myers

It’s no surprise the cookies in the famous blue package came out close to the top. The cookies had a pronounced vanilla flavor and no shortage of chocolate chips, and they looked great as well. It’s pretty much impossible for any chocolate lover to not like these cookies.

#2 One Smart Cookie

Dan Myers

These cookies have everything we look for in a soft cookie: big chocolate chunks, a satisfying texture, lots of vanilla and brown sugar flavor, and an overall home-baked feel. They’re also just the right size to have one and feel satisfied. If you find these in the supermarket, snag ‘em.

#1 Pepperidge Farm Farmhouse Dark Chocolate Chip

Dan Myers


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.


Chocolate Chip Cookie Taste Test: Do You Really Need to Taste Your Food to Know If It’s Good?

Having dietary restrictions, there’s a lot I can’t eat. Luckily, I’m not alone in this plight, with 16 million vegetarians and vegans in America. However, when we have to cook food we can’t actually eat (i.e. a Celiac making brownies for a friend’s birthday), a problem arises: How do we know what the food tastes like if we can’t eat it?

I wanted to prove that you don’t always need to taste your food to know it will be a success. I chose the most beloved food in the world: Chocolate chip cookies. I’ve made chocolate chip cookies before, and years of watching Masterchef prepared me well for this cooking challenge, so I felt confident in my baking abilities.

The test:

I used the classic Nestlé Ⓡ Toll House Ⓡ Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe and rounded up some hungry Spoonies to act as my test group. In addition to tasting the homemade cookies, they also tried store-bought chocolate chip cookies and gave feedback on both.

I prepared a survey sheet to get honest evaluations — I asked the cookie critics to rank both cookies based on desired sweetness, texture, and ratio of chocolate chips to dough.

The results:

Success! (According to my friends.) The combination of perfect ratios and straight-out-of-the-oven warmth set the homemade cookies apart from the store-bought brand.

On a scale from 1-7 with 7 being the best, the store-bought cookies ranked on the lower end of the spectrum, while the homemade cookies received 5-7’s in the taste category.

Some notes left about the store-bought cookies were: “Personally, I like soft and chewy cookies, and these were the opposite,” and “Super dry. Tastes like sadness.”

The final question:

The last question I had for the cookie critics was: “Do you think that it’s necessary to taste your food in order to know if it will turn out okay?”

Almost all answered “no,” but pointed out that there are instances when tasting your food is important. And I agree — especially when seasoning. However, I don’t believe that a gluten-, sugar-, dairy-, and lectin-free foodie, such as myself, should be afraid of baking cookies because she will never know if they taste like they did in her childhood.

I didn’t come up with this test as a source of validation for my baking abilities, but rather to encourage people to take risks when it comes to food, whether that’s trying to recreate a Pinterest-worthy recipe or ordering that dish you’ve always been curious about (#SpoonTip: Beware of sweetbreads).

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or on a special diet, just because you’ve said goodbye to certain foods doesn’t mean you can’t revisit them. We can still gain from cooking we may not get to enjoy — I certainly loved being back in a kitchen filled with the aromas of vanilla and cookie dough.