These thick, gooey, chocolate chip cookies have just enough crisp on the outside, a soft, chewy, chocolatey inside, and are the perfect Crumbl Cookie copycat recipe.
Crumbl Cookies are one of my favorite memories from living in my college dorm. Fortunately, my roommate and I shared the same appreciation for warm chocolate chip cookies and milk. We would go out on weekends and make a point of getting back to our dorm in time to order them. We'd actually leave a party if it meant getting back early enough to have Crumbl Cookies delivered. No exaggeration.
After graduating and moving back to my home town, it took a considerable amount of time for a Crumbl to open nearby. So my heart goes out to those of you who don't have one within driving distance. I decided to attempt this Crumbl Cookie Copycat because my niece, who shares my love for Crumbl, is now away at school and the closest Crumbl is over 40 minutes away.
To be honest, "copycat" recipes typically intimidate me. I'm hesitant to call a recipe a true "copycat" unless I've tested it repeatedly and convince myself that it could pass for the real thing. Crumbl Cookies sets a high bar, so before I could call this a Crumbl Cookie "copycat," I made it 4 times in about a week to test it.
Crumbl Cookies, in addition to being delicious, are mysterious little science projects. Developing this Crumbl Copycat recipe required a lot of comparative taste testing and chemistry concepts. The amount of chemistry that goes into baking is seriously underrated and, in my opinion, under appreciated by most people. The good news is I've the done the work for you and this Crumbl Copycat recipe is reasonably fool-proof.
COPYCAT CRUMBL CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES INGREDIENTS
One of the crazy things about Crumbl Chocolate Chip Cookies is that they really don't appear to use any extraordinary ingredients (if you read the list on their website). HOW you use the ingredients is a sizeable piece of the puzzle (note my chemistry reference). I also incorporated a few ingredients that I found provided a very consistent result in the texture of the cookies.
Here is the ingredient list, and a few warnings about substitutions.
Butter: I used salted butter and did not add more salt to the recipe. I tested the recipe using ½ cup of margarine and found the cookie did not taste the same as the cookie with all butter.
Brown Sugar: This recipe uses Dark Brown Sugar. The dark brown sugar resulted in a cookie coloring almost identical to Crumbl Chocolate Chip Cookies.
Light Corn Syrup: glucose would be another option here but I did not experiment with it. Corn syrup inhibits the formation of large sugar crystals, keeping the cookies softer.
Milk Powder: I used a nonfat powder because it was what I had available. A full fat powder would also work. Here is the milk powder that I use (affiliate link)
Corn Starch: keeps the cookies from developing a cakey texture. It also adds to the soft, chewy texture.
Baking Powder: DO NOT SUBSTITUTE WITH BAKING SODA. Baking soda is used as well, but in a much smaller quantity. Although both are leavening agents, baking soda is a much stronger leavening agent. Crumbl cookies are dense, not puffed up.
Milk Chocolate Chips: Crumbl Cookies are known for using milk chocolate chips in their cookies. Although the tried and true recipe calls for semi-sweet, the fattier milk chocolate chips melt beautifully and add to the gooey factor.
All purpose flour, pure vanilla extract, and eggs are also included in this recipe.
How to Make the Perfect Crumbl Chocolate Chip Cookie Copycat (Pre Flour)
The trick to this recipe isn't just what ingredients you use but how you use them. Follow this simple order of operations exactly for the best results. Note-use a stand mixer if available because the mixing time is critical to how the cookies turn out.
Step 1: soften butter. Either let butter sit until it is room temperature and can easily creamed or run a tall glass under hot water, pour out the water, and place the hot glass over the butter standing up on the counter top. The heat from the glass will slowly, evenly warm the butter to soften it without melting it.
Step 2: cream the butter and add sugars and vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix on medium-high for a full 5 minutes. Don't shorten the creaming time here. Butter/sugar mixture will appear light and fluffy at the end of 5 minutes because you're aerating the mixture. The butter/sugar combination has science behind it, as does the air pockets you're creating during the creaming process. You can stop to scrape down the sides once or twice.
Step 3: add corn syrup and mix on medium-high for another 3 minutes.
Step 4: add 1 egg and mix until completely incorporated (no gooey/runny egg visible-you shouldn't be able to see any egg separate from the butter/sugar mixture). Then add the second egg and again mix until completely incorporated.
Step 5: add corn starch, baking powder, and baking soda. Mix until well combined.
Step 6: add milk powder and mix until well combined. Be sure to scrape down the sides and mix another 30 seconds before adding flour.
Adding the Flour and the Chocolate Chips
Does adding flour and chocolate chips and throwing them in the oven really deserve its own heading here? Yes. Flour mixing can make or break your cookie turnout. Overmixing the dough after the flour is added can completely ruin your cookie. Chocolate chips get added after the flour so they fall into this too. And size does matter here if you're truly going for a Crumbl Chocolate Chip Cookie Copycat.
- Add flour 2 cups at a time and only mix until flour is combined. Do not overmix. Do not leave mixer running. Overmixing your flour will activate gluten proteins and can really mess up the texture of the cookie.
- Remove paddle attachment from the mixer and fold chocolate chips into cookie dough with a spoon.
- Preheat oven to 375°F and line 3 cookie sheets with parchment paper
- Scoop (4) heaping, 2 oz cookie scoopers worth of dough into your hand and roll into a ball. Place the cookie dough balls in the 4 corners of the lined cookie sheet.
- Set timer for 9 minutes and at the 9 minute mark, spin the cookie sheet so the cookies closest to the front during the first 9 minutes are now in the back. This prevents the cookie from overcooking on one side. Bake for another 4-5 minutes. Cookies will begin turning a light golden color.
- Remove cookies from oven after 13-14 minutes and leave them on the warm cookie sheets for another 15-20 minutes. Cookies will continue cooking at a slower rate.
- Serve warm! These cookies are dense so warming them up (even days later) preserves the soft gooeyness as if they just came straight from the oven. Store in an airtight container.
Copycat Crumbl Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Cream room temperature butter with paddle attachment in bowl of stand mixer.
- Add sugars and vanilla to butter and beat for 5 minutes on medium, scraping down the sides occasionally.
- Add corn syrup and mix for another 3 minutes.
- Add one egg and mix until well incorporated.
- Add second egg and mix again until well incorporated before adding dry ingredients.
- Add baking soda, baking powder, and corn starch and mix well.
- Add milk powder and mix again.
- Add flour and mix only until flour has been evenly distributed but do not overmix after flour has been well combined in mixture.
- Remove paddle attachment, scrape down sides, and fold in milk chocolate chips.
- Line (3) cookie sheets with parchment paper and preheat oven to 375°F.
- Scoop (4) cookie scoops full of cookie dough into the palm of your hand and roll into a ball. Cookie dough ball will be roughly the size of a baseball.
- Place 4 cookie dough balls in the corners of the cookie sheet and transfer to upper to mid racks of oven.
- Bake for 9 minutes and then rotate the pan so that cookies that were in the front of the oven are now in the back. Bake for another 4-5 minutes.
- Cookies will be ready when they appear a light, golden brown, do not let the edges get dark.
- Remove from oven and let cookies sit on the warm cookie sheet for another 20 minutes to continue slowly baking out of the oven.
- Serve warm.