Pan-Banging Chocolate Chip Cookies


If you have a thing for the dramatic, these cookies are calling your name.

Pan Banging Chocolate Chip Cookies
Photo: Greg DuPree; Food Styling: Rishon Hanners; Prop Styling: Christine Keely
Active Time:
45 mins
Bake Time:
1 hrs 30 mins
Cool Time:
10 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 25 mins

Few things could be better than coming home from school to a plate of cookies and ice-cold milk. Freshly baked and smelling absolutely divine, they were always a welcome reprieve from a long day and the schoolwork to come. Now, these Pan-Banging Chocolate Chip Cookies take the beloved and humble after-school snack to epic proportions that will guarantee squeals of delight from children and adults alike. What can we say? Very few among us will be able to resist a cookie the size of a small plate. (We're talking six inches in diameter, here. These cookies mean business!) The dramatic cooking method allows the dough to spread with a ripple effect, and the end result satisfies both cookie camps. The edges are crispy—nearly brittle—while the center maintains a gooey consistency. (When you pull them out of the oven, the centers will not look completely done—that is okay.) If you're not one for theatrics but still want to give these a go, know that you're not obliged to slam the whole pan down. Just lift the front about four inches and let go. Be mindful, however, when placing dough on the cookie sheet. The key is to avoid overcrowding, lest you end up with a ginormous sheet pan cookie. If that's not your desired result, stick to two cookies at a time. You'll be rewarded with a chocolate chip cookie reminiscent of a palmier: buttery, sugary, caramel-y, crisp edges and soft, chewy centers.


  • Cooking spray

  • 1 cup salted butter, softened

  • 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar

  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar

  • 1 large egg

  • 3 tablespoons water

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

  • ½ teaspoon baking soda

  • ½ teaspoon table salt

  • ½ cup coarsely chopped semisweet chocolate (from 1 [4-oz] bar)

  • ½ cup coarsely chopped 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate (from 1 [4-oz] bar)

  • Flakey sea salt (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle position. Lightly coat 3 large rimmed baking sheets with cooking spray, and line each with aluminum foil, dull side up. Set aside.

  2. Beat butter with a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment on medium speed until creamy, about 30 seconds. Gradually add granulated sugar and brown sugar, beating on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add egg, water, and vanilla; beat on low speed just until combined, about 1 minute.

  3. Whisk together flour, baking soda, and table salt in a medium bowl. Gradually add to butter mixture, beating on low speed just until combined, about 1 minute. Add semisweet and bittersweet chocolate, beating on low speed just until incorporated, about 15 seconds. Shape dough evenly into 10 large balls (a heaping ⅓ cup, or about 3½ ounces, each).

  4. Place 2 of the cookie balls on a plate, and freeze 15 minutes (set aside remaining cookie balls at room temperature until ready to use). Arrange frozen balls on 1 of the prepared baking sheets, spaced 4 inches apart from each other and the rim (cookies will spread to 6-inch circles as they bake).

  5. Bake in preheated oven 10 minutes (cookies will look slightly puffed in the centers). Open oven door; lift the front of the baking sheet up about 4 inches from rack, then let it drop down onto rack. Close oven door, and continue baking cookies 2 minutes. Repeat procedure of lifting and dropping baking sheet on oven rack and baking cookies for 2 minutes until cookies spread out and look rippled, cookie edges are golden brown, and cookie centers look lighter and not fully cooked, 2 or 3 additional times, for a total of 16 to 18 minutes baking time. Transfer baking sheet with baked cookies to a wire rack; if desired, sprinkle with flaky sea salt. Let cookies cool on baking sheet completely, about 10 minutes. Remove cookies from baking sheet.

  6. While first batch of cookies bakes and cools, repeat Steps 4 and 5 with remaining cookie balls, 2 at a time per batch.

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