The chocolate chip cookie is a timeless classic that owes its origin to Ruth Wakefield’s ingenious idea in 1939. It all started in the kitchen of Toll House Inn in Massachusetts with her simple addition of chopped Nestlé® Semi-Sweet Chocolate to cookie dough. You can find a variation of her recipe on bags of modern-day Nestlé Semi-Sweet Chocolate morsels. Of course, there are dozens of spins now on the original recipe, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a bakery that doesn’t include at least one chocolate chip cookie variation on the menu. That includes Houston bakeries, which offer chocolate chip cookie versions with milk, dark and white chocolate plus additions of nuts, butterscotch, specialty salt and more — and there are options for folks with dietary sensitivities, too.
Common Bond, multiple locations: This bakery made waves when its first location opened in Montrose in 2014, sporting a custom-built prep space designed for perfect croissants and other delicate pastries. There are now five bakery locations in the Greater Houston area with seating and table arrangements that encourage guests to gather and connect over specialty fare. Can’t-miss standards include three styles of chocolate chip cookies: top-seller Classic Chocolate Chip, Walnut Chocolate Chip and Brown Butter Triple Chocolate Chip. The cookies are baked onsite at each location and sold individually for $3.50 each. The base batters differ depending on the cookies, but the chocolate for all is sourced from Republica Del Cacao in Latin America. The extravagant triple-chocolate version includes milk, white and dark chocolate.
Purchase cookies and other treats in-store, order for pickup or choose delivery via DoorDash, Uber Eats and Toast. To place large and custom orders, email Kim Garver, the Director of Catering and Cakes.
Dessert Gallery Bakery & Café, 3600 Kirby: Sara Brook opened Dessert Gallery in 1995 and continues to share her culinary magic with the Bayou City. Her famous Chocolate-Dipped Chocolate Chunk Cookies are made with semisweet and bittersweet chocolates, and dipped in dark chocolate after baking. (Chocolate-dipped cookies are actually a Dessert Gallery tradition; a signature that Brook has used for 38 years.) Cookies are available either individually or multiples of any quantity. Undipped cookies are $2.95 each, Chocolate-Dipped Chocolate Chunk Cookies are $3.25 each (the 6 Chocolate-Dipped Chocolate Chunk Cookies Care Package is $19.50) and frozen Cookie Dough Pucks, for baking at home, are $2.95 each or $10 for four in the “Cookie Dough Survival Kit.”
Gift boxes are also available and are labeled “Hello, sweet thing.” Find them in the Houston shop, or order them for delivery nationwide.
Fluff Bake Bar, 1701 West 15th: Pastry chef and owner Rebecca Masson has amassed a loyal following for handcrafted desserts that reflect creative twists on childhood favorites. Cookies come in a variety of traditional flavors, including Simply Chocolate Chip for $2.50 each or $30 per dozen. (A week’s notice is required for large or custom orders.) Despite the “simple” name, Masson makes these with carefully sourced ingredients, including Callebaut bittersweet chocolate chips, King Arthur flour, Imperial Sugar and butter. There are Chocolate Chocolate Peanut Butter and Milk Chocolate Oatmeal variations, too, prepared with the same attention to detail.
Harlem Road Texas BBQ, 9823 Harlem, Richmond: Some of the best chocolate chip cookies can be found in the most unexpected places. At this acclaimed, Texas-style barbecue joint, chef and pitmaster Ara Malekian also makes mouth-watering Butterscotch Chocolate Chip Cookies, and these make a perfect little dessert after a feast of smoked meats and side dishes. The creamy butterscotch contrasts with semisweet Belgian chocolate chips beneath the cookie’s soft, cake-like dome. Only two dozen are baked fresh daily and the cost is $2 each. Pre-order a baker’s dozen for $24; half-dozen and dozen are available, too. Advance notice of 48 hours is required for larger orders.
Red Dessert Dive, 1045 Studewood: Jessica Lusk opened her modern Heights storefront nearly seven years ago and named it after her beloved grandmother, whose nickname was Red. A trip to Red Dessert Dive isn’t complete without a Valrhona Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookie made with dark French chocolate. A sprinkle of fleur de sel adds an enticing counterpart to the sweet elements. Order a single or opt for a half-dozen in the shop — pre-order with 48-hours’ notice is required for a dozen or more, and the lead time is two to four weeks for more than three dozen. A dozen standard-sized cookies is $42 and mini-sized are $21 per dozen. You can also get a Valrhona Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookie Cake that serves 12 to 15 people, complete with a buttercream border, sprinkles and a custom message.
Sinfull Bakery, 1714 Webster: Longtime patrons of the Urban Harvest Farmers Market may remember when pastry chef and owner Dylan Carnes helmed a booth loaded with her original-recipe, 100% vegan baked goods. Today, Carnes’ bakery serves an extensive selection of vegan creations. The treats are available at its new brick and mortar location in Midtown, online for pickup, curbside and delivery, at area farmers markets, select coffee shops in Houston and a growing list of businesses across the country.
Carnes says her cookies are “Absolutely Sinfull” with a just-right combo of crunchy exterior and soft interior. The Chocolate Chip Cookies are available as regular or double chocolate flavors in singles or stacks of six; pre-order larger quantities with at least 48-hours’ notice. Pick up cookie dough for home baking that comes 10 balls to a package and costs $6. Visit the Houston shop for the rotational weekly specials that may include a white chocolate variation.
The Everyday Bakeshop: no storefront; contact for pickup and delivery options: Find custom-decorated, special-occasion cookies and classic versions at this specialty Heights bakery opened by pastry artist Shannon Smith Waiter. There are four spins on the essential childhood favorite: Brown Butter Chocolate Chip, Andes Mint & White Chocolate Chip, White Chocolate Oatmeal and the new Toffee Chocolate Chunk. Waiter says that nutty browned butter is her go-to ingredient, as it adds depth and warmth to the dough. Large cookies are $3 each, small cookies are $1.75 each and six-pack containers of small cookies are $10 each. Order cookie cakes, too, that cost $30 for nine-inch and $55 for 16-inch.
Brown Butter Chocolate Chip cookie dough is $15 per dozen, and contains white chocolate chips in addition to the base recipe. Treat yourself or a pal with a sweet Cookie Subscription (contents vary but may include chocolate chip). Place orders online for local pickup and delivery, or find the goods at the Urban Harvest Farmers Market and select pop-up events around town. All large orders require seven days’ notice.
Urban Eats, 3414 Washington: Visit this Washington Corridor spot that seamlessly blends a bakery, bistro, restaurant and specialty foods market under one multi-level roof. (There is a dog-friendly patio, too!). Owner and chef Levi Rollins draws on family recipes, memories and a keen ability to layer flavors for his thoughtful twists on traditional goods.
The “monster-sized” Chocolate Chip Cookies are a whopping quarter-pound each and cost $3. Rollins’ recipe reflects generations of tweaks that include alterations from his grandmother, mother and his own adjustments. Some of these include extra butter, a touch of extra salt, dark brown sugar and vanilla. A bit of molasses adds richness reminiscent of salted caramel. The daily selection is made with semisweet chocolate chips, but occasional swaps include dark chocolate callets. Rollins eschews the practice of chilling dough, and insists on room temperature butter for thinner, crispier edges with a soft and chewy center. Purchase up to six at a time in the bakery; larger quantities require 24 hours’ notice due to limited daily bakes.
Less traditional variations include Toasted Walnut Chocolate Chip, and custom options include White Chocolate Peanut, Chocolate Pecan Praline and Milk Chocolate Cranberry. Each is $24 to $36 per dozen depending on the cookie size; custom flavors and sizes require a 48-hour notice.
Michael’s Cookie Jar, multiple locations: This local bakery is popular for colorfully decorated seasonal sweets, but it’s hard to pass up the rich Chocolate Chunk crammed with jumbo semisweet chocolate pieces. These cost $2.25 each and are available by the tray, which are $43.95 for three dozen or up to $82.95 for six dozen. Fill your kitchen with the aroma of fresh-baked cookies with an order of Bake-at-Home Cookie Dough, which includes 24 pre-portioned, one-ounce cookies for $24.95 (add a baking tray for extra charge).
The baked-to-order Asteroid is a decadent take on the basics. It is a six-ounce chocolate chunk and pecan cookie filled with gooey chocolate that costs $15 for four cookies. Custom cookie cakes are available, too. Choose from three sizes for same-day pickup (flavors and designs other than Chocolate Chunk or M&M with white icing require a minimum of two days’ notice). Call 713-771-8603, extension 0 for custom orders, or visit the website.
Nestle Toll House Cafe by Chip, multiple locations: The cookies served here are based on the previously mentioned original version that Ruth Wakefield baked at her Toll House Inn in Massachusetts. These are available as singles for $1.99 each (buy three, get one free or buy five, get two free), by the half-dozen for $9.95 or dozen for $16.99. Cookie sandwiches are on the menu, too, such as the Double Trouble made with two cookies sandwiched with vanilla icing. The full-sized ice cream sandwich costs $4.99 and the smaller Little Bit of Trouble, made with mini chocolate chip cookies, is $2.69. Frozen fiends can choose an ice cream cookie sandwich for $6.13 with a choice of 10 ice cream flavors such as butter pecan, dulce de leche and mint chocolate chip.
There are also chocolate chip cookie cakes available with icing, letters and other details for special occasions of all kinds; there is no charge for custom designs unless the cookie cake is completely covered in icing.
Three Brothers Bakery, multiple locations: Nothing less than a Houston classic, this long-standing, family-owned and operated bakery is known for its huge selection of daily goodies. The Chips ‘n Friends cookie is a can’t-miss sweet-and-crunchy delight that hits just the right savory note thanks to its companions of coconut and chopped pecans. Most of the ingredients are secret, but Heights store manager Brandon Carpenter assures “it has a ton of love”. Purchase these in-store or buy online for pick-up or delivery. The cost is $1.99 for a single Deluxe Cookie, $18.00 for one dozen, $30 for two dozen and $60 for five dozen. Call to place custom order sizes.
There are also regular chocolate chip cookies for the same prices noted above, and variations such as a Black and Tan Cookie, Choc Choc Chip Cookie, Snickers and Reeses. For an extra treat, try the regular chocolate chip cookies in a button cup, which is filled with mini cookies and vanilla buttercream frosting for dipping. All cookies are available packaged in the bakery’s standard branded box at no charge, or presented in specialty trays or individual packaging for a small fee. Pair with coffees made with house-roasted beans such as Baker’s Brew, Costa Rica and Ethiopia Mokamba.
Tiny Boxwood’s, Multiple locations: This local bistro is popular for scratchmade meals served in elegant-casual spaces, often complemented by natural elements, such as a bevy of plants and flowers. Owner Baron Doke developed the restaurant’s Chocolate Chip Cookie over the course of three months, and Houstonians have been enamored with the final result from the start. It even inspired the restaurant’s newer concept, Tiny’s Milk & Cookies, which is a walk-up bakery focused on sweet and savory goods, artisan breads, housemade ice cream and specialty coffee drinks.
New employees earn their kitchen stripes scooping the famous dough that is baked fresh daily with all-natural ingredients. The resulting cookies sport crisp edges and a gooey center. Buy these for $2.50 per cookie, or choose frozen cookie dough to bake at home. The dough is even available for online ordering nationwide, including to Alaska and Hawaii. Large and catering orders require 24-hours’ notice, and custom designed cards are available for gift boxes (contact for specific notice requirements). There is also a gluten-free chocolate crinkle cookie for those with dietary sensitivities that cost $5 for a bundle of two.
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