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I Tried 9 Store-Bought Chocolate Chip Cookies & the Best Were Buttery and Crunchy

From miniature crunchy bites to giant, doughy, soft-baked cookies, find out which brand does it best.
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Chocolate chip cookies may be one of the most beloved and nostalgic American desserts. It's not hard to find giant chocolate-packed cookies at bakeries, chain restaurants, or in the snack aisle at the grocery store.

A fresh-from-the-oven homemade cookie is best, but when the craving strikes and you don't have dough on hand, your best bet is to get a package of cookies at the store. From miniature crunchy bites to giant doughy soft-baked cookies, there's no shortage of varieties to quell your cookie craving.

With all of these options, it can be hard to know what, if anything, differentiates one store-bought cookie from the next. To answer those questions and make your dessert shopping easier, I tested nine of the most popular store-bought cookies at grocery stores.

I tried each cookie straight from the package and took note of its looks, flavor, and texture. Pour yourself a tall glass of cold milk and get ready to dunk. Here's how the nine chocolate chip cookies ranked, in descending order:

Pepperidge Farm Nantucket Cookies

pepperidge farm nantucket cookies
Lizzy Briskin, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition (Per Cookie):
Calories: 140
Fat: 7 g (Saturated Fat: 3.5 g)
Sodium: 65 mg
Carbs: 19 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 11 g)
Protein: 2 g

As a Massachusetts native, I had high hopes for these Nantucket-branded cookies, but they left something to be desired when it came to texture and chocolate content.

The look: These were some of the larger chocolate chip cookies I tested. The photo on the front of the pouch shows a golden cookie brimming with huge chunks of dark chocolate. Unfortunately, the cookies inside were lacking in the chocolate department. One cookie contained a single, sad chocolate chunk.

The taste: These cookies were crisp and hard, bordering on stale. Additional chocolate would have improved the texture and made things more interesting, but I found them dry and a bit bland overall.

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Chips Ahoy! Original Chocolate Chip Cookies

chips ahoy cookies
Lizzy Briskin, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition (Per 3 Cookies):
Calories: 160
Fat: 8 g (Saturated Fat: 3 g)
Sodium: 105 mg
Carbs: 22 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 10 g)
Protein: 2 g

The classic grocery store chocolate chip cookie was reliable and uniform but couldn't quite stand up to some of the more interesting cookies in this test.

The look: Chips Ahoy! Cookies are almost eerily similar. Each piece looks like a carbon copy of the cookie next to it, which is slightly unsettling with a treat that's usually charmingly unique. These cookies are splattered with mini chocolate chips on top and have just a few chocolate pieces mixed into the center.

The taste: These cookies are two-bite-sized and quite crisp. They break and crumble into a sandy texture very easily, and the chocolate pieces are so tiny you can barely taste them.

Keebler Chips Deluxe Soft Batch

keebler cookies
Lizzy Briskin, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition (2 Cookies):
Calories: 150
Fat: 7 g (Saturated Fat: 3 g)
Sodium: 115 mg
Carbs: 21 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 12 g)
Protein: 1 g

As someone who prefers soft cookies over crisp ones, I was excited about these soft-baked cookies from Keebler. These cookies are made with more soybean and palm oil than the crunchier cookies I sampled—ingredients that help maintain their bendy texture and prevent them from tasting stale.

The look: These cookies looked different from every other treat I tested. They're quite smooth, almost yellow (they contain caramel color and yellow No. 6 food dye), and have very few visible chocolate chips.

The taste: I did enjoy the soft, chewy texture of these cookies, but I also found them super sweet and a little fake tasting, certainly far from homemade. They're low on chocolate, and the few chips you get are quite sweet.

Back to Nature Mini Chocolate Chunk Cookies

back to nature cookies
Lizzy Briskin, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition (Per Pouch):
Calories: 170
Fat: 8 g (Saturated Fat: 2 g)
Sodium: 85 mg
Carbs: 23 g (Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 11 g)
Protein: 1 g

These petite cookies are packaged in snack bags to pop into a lunch box. They're plant-based and made with wheat flour and semi-sweet chocolate chips. They're marketed as 170-calorie bags. This was the highest per-serving calorie content of any product I tested.

The look: Each plastic pouch contains about six miniature cookies plus some chocolate chunks that fell off in transit. These cookies have a great showing of chocolate chunks and a warm golden color.

The taste: It might be whole wheat flour, but these cookies tasted healthier than the other treats I tested. They're made with safflower oil instead of butter or eggs because they're plant-based. The cookies don't have as rich a flavor as some of the others I tested.

Tate's Bake Shop Walnut Chocolate Chip Cookies

tate's cookies
Lizzy Briskin, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition (Per 2 Cookies):
Calories: 140
Fat: 7 g (Saturated Fat: 4.5 g)
Sodium: 160 mg
Carbs: 18 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 12 g)
Protein: 2 g

It's impossible to escape the iconic green Tate's cookie packages at the grocery store, at least in New York City, where I live. The chocolate chip variety is a favorite among crisp cookie lovers.

The look: Chocolate chips are the first ingredient listed on Tate's packaging, and these cookies do contain more chocolate than most of the others I tested. The chocolate pieces are small, so don't expect big, satisfying chunks. The cookies are super thin and flat with tapered edges. They're larger in diameter than most of the cookies I sampled.

The taste: As a soft cookie gal, I didn't love the crunchy texture of Tate's, but the classic flavor (these cookies are made with real butter, not oil) made up for my textural preference. This version contained walnuts, but the nuts were so finely chopped that it was easy to overlook them. Still, they added a nice nutty background note and extra crunch. I would love a more chocolaty bite, but I can't complain about the not-too-sweet, buttery flavor.

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Made Good Chocolate Chip Cookies

made good cookies
Lizzy Briskin, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition (Per 4 Cookies):
Calories: 160
Fat: 9 g (Saturated Fat: 4 g)
Sodium: 75 mg
Carbs: 19 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 9 g)
Protein: 1 g

These cookies have the lowest sugar content per serving and contain "nutrients from vegetable extracts." A closer look at the ingredient panel confirms that the cookies are made with spinach, broccoli, carrot, tomato, beet, and mushroom extracts (that's a lot of extracts!). You can't tell from the look or taste, but if you're desperate for vitamins in your dessert, these chocolate chip cookies offer 20 percent of your recommended daily intake of vitamins D, A, E, C, and thiamin.

The look: These bite-sized cookies have a paler tan color than others and a sandy, crumbly texture. They're made with a good amount of tiny chocolate chips.

The taste: I enjoyed the lightly sweet flavor of these cookies. They're vegan and don't have the classic buttery flavor, but I like that they're not cloying or overly rich. Thankfully, there was no trace of mushroom flavor.

Newman's Own Chocolate Chip Cookies

newmans own cookies
Lizzy Briskin, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition (Per 5 Cookies):
Calories: 150
Fat: 7 g (Saturated Fat: 4 g)
Sodium: 105 mg
Carbs: 20 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 10 g)
Protein: 2 g

These crunchy little cookies are packed with chocolate chips and made with oats and traditional ingredients like flour, sugar, and chocolate chips. Though not vegan, they're made with palm fruit oil instead of butter.

The look: These cookies had a promising dough to chocolate chip ratio. They're crisp and crumbly and about the same size, maybe slightly thicker, as the other bite-sized treats I tested.

The taste: These cookies are all about the chocolate I love. The chocolate chips are assertive and plentiful, and the cookies aren't overly sweet. Yes, they're crunchy but have a satisfying texture and near-homemade flavor bolstered by the nutty oats.

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Matt's Bakery Chocolate Chip Cookies

matts cookies
Lizzy Briskin, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition (Per Cookie):
Calories: 140
Fat: 7 g (Saturated Fat: 3 g)
Sodium: 40 mg
Carbs: 19 g (Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 10 g)
Protein: 1 g

This soft-baked option from Matt's Bakery is made with familiar ingredients you'd likely use for your chocolate chip cookies. The packaging lists flour, chocolate chips, oil, brown and white sugars, and eggs as the top ingredients.

The look: These soft-baked cookies are pleasantly packed with dark chocolate chunks and have an old-fashioned homemade look. They're delightfully lumpy and uneven and could easily pass for a fresh batch from a home oven.

The taste: I love the chewy texture, ample inclusion of chocolate chunks, and perfectly sweet flavor. These cookies have a subtle caramel flavor (likely from the brown sugar) that adds richness.

Milk Bar Crunchies Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

milk bar cookies
Lizzy Briskin, Eat This, Not That!
Nutrition (Per 6 Cookies):
Calories: 150
Fat: 6 g (Saturated Fat: 3 g)
Sodium: 90 mg
Carbs: 21 g (Fiber: 0 g, Sugar: 12 g)
Protein: 1 g

This grocery product from cult-favorite bakery Milk Bar lives up to what you'd expect from Milk Bar founder and sweets queen Christina Tosi: over-the-top flavor, sugar, and general indulgence.

The look: As the name suggests, these cookies are crunchy and crisp. They're petite bites that don't have the factory-perfect look of some other packaged cookies I tried. Instead, they have the natural ridges and lumps of a homemade cookie with plenty of visible mix-ins.

The taste: Like many Milk Bar items, these sweets are well balanced with a touch of salt. That savoriness brings out the richness of the browned butter and cuts any cloying notes from the sugar and chocolate chips. These cookies are even crunchier than your typical crispy bite-sized snacks thanks to the genius inclusion of puffed rice cereal, which enhances the texture and satisfying bite.

Lizzy Briskin
Lizzy is a trained chef, food writer, and recipe developer for print and digital outlets including Insider, Real Simple, and the Chicago Tribune. Read more about Lizzy
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