There’s nothing like a chocolate chip cookie, still warm from the oven.
For one, the smell of cookies baking has been known to help prospective buyers feel more at home when they’re looking at houses. One study actually found the smell of chocolate chip cookie candles influenced customers to shop more impulsively for luxury items.
This may be because our sense of smell is directly tied to our emotional responses and memories through our olfactory bulb. For most people, the scent of cookies sparks feelings of warmth and comfort because of the memories they have of baked goods or baking with family members.
But achieving the perfect cookie taste at home can be harder to do. Luckily, there are different hacks you can try to level up your baking skills.
Salt Your Cookies
When you bite into a chocolate chip cookie, you should be overpowered by the taste of chocolate and vanilla. But according to some bakers, adding flaked salt is the key to bringing out even more chocolate flavor.
While it may seem counter-intuitive to add bitterness to bring out something’s sweetness, that’s exactly what happens when you combine salt and chocolate. But be careful; adding too much salt to a recipe or to the tops of your cookies can overpower their natural sweetness.
All your cookies need is a pinch of flaked or large-grained salt, like sea salt, over the top when they’re done baking. This not only brings out more flavor but adds more texture to the cookie as well.
Use a Light Baking Sheet
According to one Reddit user, using a light instead of a dark baking sheet will make all the difference.
Dark and non-stick baking sheets are great if you want a crispy pizza crust, but if you want to make the perfect chocolate chip cookie, you’ll want to use light baking sheets. Since dark metal absorbs heat, your baked goods can brown too quickly.
All Recipes recommends adding two minutes to your bake time if you use a steel or aluminum baking sheet. When they tested Calphalon’s Non-Stick Baking Sheet, they found the extra time necessary to achieve a crisp outside of the cookie while maintaining a chewy center.
Bake at a Lower Temperature
You can try a few different tricks if you are baking chocolate chip cookies with a dark metal or non-stick pan.
According to Taste of Home, silicone baking mats are a great layer between your dough and the baking sheet. Unlike parchment paper, silicone will distribute the heat more evenly. Wrapping the pan in aluminum foil can also achieve the same results.
However, even with silicone baking mats or foil, your cookies will turn out better if you bake them at a lower temperature.
Most experts recommend lowering your oven’s temperature by 25 degrees Fahrenheit if you’re going to be doing any baking with dark pans.
Shape When You’re Done Baking
There’s also so much you can do to control how the edges of your cookies will come out when they’re done baking. However, many bakers swear by this post-baking hack to get the perfect circle.
Right after you pull your cookies from the oven, take a glass or jar — whatever is closest to the size of your cookie — and place it over the cookie. Then, spin the jar or glass around the edge of the cookie a few times.
This should give you a batch of perfectly-edged cookies.
Chill Your Dough Before You Bake
If you want to get your cookies into a perfect circle pre-bake — and get a better chocolate chip cookie overall — many bakers suggest chilling your dough before you bake.
One Redditor shared that they shaped each cookie by hand and then chilled them.
According to Real Simple, you’re more likely to get a soft and chewy cookie when you bake your cookies right away. So, if this is your idea of a perfect chocolate cookie, skip the chilling.
But, if you’re looking for a thin, crispy cookie with great taste, chill your dough for about 24 hours before you bake.
This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.
Nicole Tommasulo is Boston-based and Buffalo-born writer and editor. Typically covering all things lifestyle, her beat spans from food, to breaking news, to travel, mental health, and everything in between. She has an MFA in Writing from Savannah College of Art and Design and has been previously published by The List, Heels Down Magazine, Hello Giggles, and several now-dead but not forgotten websites like xoJane and Femsplain. When she's not writing or editing, she's nerding out over books, prestige TV, plants, food, and frisbee golf.