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Thin & Crispy Chocolate Chip Cookies: how they get that way (+ recipe)

Thin & Crispy Chocolate Chip Cookies: how they get that way (+ recipe)
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Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies: Thin & Crispy Got a pen? You might want to jot this down.

These are real cookies. They’re thin & crispy gluten free chocolate chip cookes. They’re kind of cookie that you really should stop eating in bed, on account of the crumbs. Your husband asked me to tell you that. Don’t shoot the messenger.

Who could blame you, though? They’re a masterpiece of gluten free cookie-art. And they’re simply delightful when you crumble them up and sprinkle them on ice cream. You just might want to give them as a gift to someone special.

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies: Thin & Crispy

And these same cookies are also metaphorical cookies. They are going to help us do some learnin’. You see, there is no “best” chocolate chip cookie. The Internet is littered with the “best” of this recipe, and the “best” of that recipe.

But “the best” is personal. It’s private! Some like their cookies thin & crispy (like me). Others swear by a nice thick and chewy gluten free chocolate chip cookies. They like a cookie meal.

But can’t we all just get along? Sure we can. Let’s go along to get along, and have our own cookies just as we like them.

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies: Thin & Crispy

Did you think that all chocolate chip cookies were created equal?

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies: Thin & Crispy

To make these thin and crispy, these cookies have more granulated sugar than brown, less egg, and more butter. And the way you prep them for baking really matters.

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies: Thin & Crispy

If you want them to look beautiful and graceful on the edges, you must flatten the dough into disks.

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies: Thin & Crispy

If you simply drop them on the baking sheet and bake, without pressing them into disks, they will be all wrinkled and craggy on the edges. Not so beautiful. They’ll also be a little too crispy on the edges. You see, as it melts onto the baking sheet, a ball of cookie dough will melt first around the edges. The center will follow after a few minutes of baking. And that means they’ll need to bake longer just so they’re not raw in the center.

If you want these gorgeous cookies to be in your kitchen, just follow the recipe just so (and not in your own special way).

Cookies as metaphor. It is too a real thing.

Thin & Crispy Chocolate Chip Cookies: how they get that way (+ recipe)
Recipe Type: Cookies
Author: Nicole @ Gluten-Free on a Shoestring.com
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 8 mins
Total time: 18 mins
Serves: 36
Thin & Crispy Gluten-free Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • 2 1/2 cups (350g) high-quality all-purpose gluten-free flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/4 cups (250g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (109g) packed light brown sugar
  • 16 tablespoons (224g) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 extra-large egg at room temperature, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (12 ounces) semi-sweet chocolate chips, tossed with 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Line rimmed baking sheets with unbleached parchment paper and set them aside.
  2. In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, baking soda, salt, granulated sugar and brown sugar, and whisk to combine well (working out any lumps in the brown sugar). Add the butter, egg, and vanilla, mixing well after each addition. The dough will be soft.
  3. Add the chocolate chips and cornstarch to the cookie dough, and mix until the chips are evenly distributed throughout.
  4. Drop the dough by the tablespoon on the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches from one to the next as they will spread during baking. With wet fingers, press down evenly on each tablespoon of soft dough to make a disk, smoothing to ensure a circular shape.
  5. Place the first baking sheet in the center of the preheated oven and bake, rotating once, until lightly golden brown all over, 7 to 10 minutes. Allow to cool on the baking sheet until firm, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  6. Repeat with the remaining baking sheets, one at a time.

If you do not press down the dough, you will get wrinkled edges that crisp unevenly, as the edges of the dough will melt onto the baking sheet before the center does.
The cookie dough should be at room temperature (not chilled) before baking.
If you reuse a cookie sheet, be sure that it has first cooled completely.


P.S. Thank you for buying My Cookbook. Without your support, I very well might fall right over. Or at least have to go back to being a lawyer or something, and let’s be honest. Nobody wants that.

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  • http://www.glutenfreegourmand.blogspot.com Gina – Gluten-free Gourmand

    Yep – everyone has their own way they like chocolate chip cookies. I like mine crisp on the edge and chewy in the middle. I just plop that dough right on the cookie sheet and let it melt as it will. My secret is to cream the heck out of the butter and sugar – it makes the texture softer in the middle.

    Now I want cookies, and it’s not even 10 AM. It’s all your fault! :)

  • http://hanunyahssweetcreations.blogspot.com/ Hanunyah

    Cute cookies! Thanks so much for the tips and everything. You know, I don’t know that I’ll even write a cookbook – just tell everyone to buy yours!

    Thanks again for all you do!


  • Kristi

    Yum! I love knowing the science about it (less brown sugar, etc). So cool! Thanks for doing all the science so we don’t have too!

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      I know you love the science, my friend. Me too. :)
      xoxo Nikki

  • Jennifer

    I recently made your Thick and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies for a Derby Day party, and I was in heaven! They were gone before anything else, and no one knew they were gf! I spend waaay to much time on your site, btw. Yesterday I got on first thing in the morning and didn’t get out of my pj’s until 2pm because I was so into reading your blog! I am looking forward to making many of your recipes. I think we will start with Empanadas tonight!

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      So glad you’re enjoying hanging out on the blog, Jennifer. That’s what it’s here for! Enjoy the empanadas. :)
      xoxo Nicole

  • Rochelle

    Hi Nicole! I love both thin and thick choc chip cookes, so I can’t wait to try this recipe! I’ve never seen a recipe tell you to coat the chocolate chips in cornstarch-can you tell me what this does? Aso I always see GF recipes cal for kosher salt but what’s the difference in using coarse sea salt verses kosher salt? I’ve never seen a reason given, so I’ve never questioned it before!

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      Hi, Rochelle,
      Coating the chips in cornstarch keeps them from sinking to the bottom of the cookie when you bake them. You can read about the differences in varieties of salt in my post about baking substitutions.
      xoxo Nicole

  • jordana

    Great cookies! My children all loved them, called them super duper! My only question is that my cookie batter did not look like yours. Mine was more crumbly. When I went to make the disks, the dough did stay together, but it did not look creamy like your picture. The only difference that stands out in the ingredients I used is that my egg was not extra large. Could that have made a difference? Regardless, they are fantastic! Thank you! I love your blog/website!!

  • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Jim

    Made a batch of these cookies today. Kaazowiee! GF or not, they qualify for inclusion in “The World’s # 1, Flat Out, All Time Great” cookie recipes. Taste and texture match any recipe I have ever tried and eaten; and, I’ve been eating chocolate chip cookies since before God named artichokes. Thanks for a super recipe. Jim

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      Hey, Jim,
      You really made me laugh with that artichoke reference. And I’m with you, Jim. Thin & crispy is how nature intended chocolate chip cookies to be. So glad you enjoyed them!

  • AJ

    Just curious as to what people consider a “thin” or “thick” cookie. It seems pretty subjective to me. My sister makes a tasty chewy chocolate chip cookie, but they’re pretty thin (almost wafter-thin, so maybe about 1/4 inch (?) maybe less). They’re like chewy chocolate chip CDs. So that’s what I picture as being a thin cookie.
    A thick cookie for me seems to be between 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch thick, but I suspect from the comments that most people might actually consider that a thin cookie. Am I right? I’m just a little confused.
    I’m looking to see about making “thick” and crunchy cookies, (similar in size and texture of Chips Ahoy brand to give you a picture, only much better tasting ; ) ). Something that I can store in a cookie jar without worrying about them breaking apart if they fall sideways. I’d appreciate any tips!

    • http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ Nicole

      AJ, I would suggest comparing the pictures between the thin cookies and thick cookies to see the difference. I don’t have a recipe on the blog for thick and crunchy. That would be a difference recipe.

  • Pingback: Weekly Gluten-Free Roundup – May 20, 2012 « Celiac Kitchen Witch()

  • Mariano

    Hi Nicole.
    Just tell me: how many cookies I can make with this recipe?

    thanks, bye!

    • gfshoestring

      The printable recipe says serves 36. So 36 cookies, Mariano.

      • Mariano


      • Mariano

        Oh I see! I missed that detail!

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