The kind of chocolate used in a chocolate chip cookie is important. A lackluster chip can bring a cookie down, while a chip that is high-quality elevates a cookie to its highest dessert calling. We love semi-sweet chocolate chips in our favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe. The slightly bitter chocolate contrasts beautifully with the rich, caramelized butter, warm brown sugar notes, and hints of vanilla. Biting into a luscious puddle of chocolate encased in the perfect crispy-edge cookie is a glorious yet simple culinary delight.
While it’s common to find a plethora of options in most grocery stores, we set out to find the best chocolate chips for baking. We were joined by Maria from Two Peas and Their Pod – cookbook author and queen of cookies with over 200 cookie recipes on her site to date. We blindly taste-tested 16 widely available chocolate chip brands to find out which will earn a permanent spot in our pantry. While we love to snag a handful of chocolate chips as a snack, we set out to find the best chocolate chips for baking in this taste test so only sampled semi-sweet chips (sorry milk chocolate lovers).
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- Hershey’s Mini
- Simple Truth Organic
- Artisan Kettle Organic
- Lily’s No Sugar Added
- Food Club
- Simple Truth Organic Allergy Friendly
- Nestle Toll House
- Good and Gather Organic
- Enjoy Life Mini
- Nestle Toll House Allergen Free
- Guittard Super Cookie Chips
- Trader Joe’s
- Full Circle Market Organic
- Good and Gather
Least Favorite Chocolate Chips
Nestle Toll House
With a flavor that reads milk chocolate instead of semi-sweet, the Nestle Toll House chips were overly sweet and had a waxy texture. Coupled with a surprisingly strange aftertaste, these chips that we grew up with won’t be ones we recommend in the future.
Good and Gather
These chocolate chips from Target store brand Good & Gather were simply unappetizing. With odd earthy undertones that worsened as the chip melted during each bite, we won’t be grabbing a handful of these chips for snacking or using them in our baked goods anytime soon.
Good and Gather Organic
Similar to the non-organic Good & Gather chips, these semi-sweet chocolate chips are a big miss. The strong burnt flavor that’s apparent throughout the entire bite would ruin any baked good these would be used in. Best to avoid.
Nestle Toll House Allergen Free
While we do appreciate big brands trying to make allergy-friendly products, these chips were not appealing. That classic chocolate flavor we were looking for was absent in these chips, and with an off-putting aftertaste, we do not recommend them.
We wanted to love these premium fair trade-certified semi-sweet chips, but the flavor was lacking and, again, the odd aftertaste was a big turn-off for us.
Lily’s No Sugar Added
Sweetened with stevia instead of sugar, these alternative chocolate chips simply don’t hold up. The softer texture of these chips might be ideal for baking, but the too-bitter flavor and artificial aftertaste are not.
For a solid middle-of-the-road option, go with Trader Joe’s chocolate chips. They have a more subtle chocolate taste but also don’t have any offensive or weird flavor notes.
Food Club, Kroger’s store brand, provides another mid-range chocolate chip. While these chips didn’t scream with chocolate flavor, they are a solid option at a much lower price point and would be great in cookies.
While Ghirardelli chips were significantly sweeter than others, the classic chocolate texture and flavor are there. These chips would be great in any baked good.
Simple Truth Organic Allergy Friendly
For an allergy-friendly and overall good chocolate chip, Simple Truth Organic delivers. While the chocolate flavor wasn’t quite as pronounced in these chips as in others, the texture was great, and we wouldn’t hesitate to buy these again.
Best Chocolate Chips
Guittard Super Cookie Chips
These chocolate chips are the ones we recommend most often. Their significantly larger size and shape are ideal for melting in baked goods, and the high-quality chocolate flavor is especially pronounced compared with other brands. Guittard is the gold standard among widely available chocolate chips.
Rest assured that Guittard’s traditional semi-sweet chips are just as good if the super chips are unavailable. With a slightly lower cacao percentage, these chips aren’t quite as melty as their ultra-large friends but still deliver that high-quality chocolate taste.