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Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

4.50 from 6 votes
Upgrade classics with this Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe. Achieve scrumptious flavors and reduce starter discard waste in one go!
Sourdough Chocolate Chip cookies are baked golden brown with pools of chocolate throughout are cooling on a wire rack. They're paired with milk.

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Hi Bold Bakers!

WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS RECIPE: Savor another dimension of decadent flavor and texture with our incredible Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe. It’s the most delicious way to use your sourdough discard! And don’t click away if you’re not a sourdough bread baker. I’ll show you how easy it is to whip up your own starter so you can make these unique bakery-style treats.

  • These thick, soft cookies feature the subtle tang of sourdough that adds complexity and depth of flavor.
  • They’re loaded with hunks of chopped dark chocolate, giving you melty pools in every bite.

While these cakey cookies are rapidly becoming my favorite sourdough snack, we have many options with the addictive zip and beautiful chewiness of sourdough.  Be sure to try The Easiest Sourdough Focaccia, Sourdough Banana Bread, Homemade Sourdough English Muffins, and Perfectly Crusty Sourdough Bread for Beginners.

Table of Contents

Sourdough Chocolate Chip cookies are baked golden brown with pools of chocolate throughout are cooling on a wire rack. They're paired with milk.

What are Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies?

  • Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies are traditional soft-style chocolate chip cookies with a twist: they’re made with sourdough starter discard for added flavor and leavening.
  • Sourdough starter discard is the portion removed before you feed (add flour and water) existing sourdough starter. This discard adds a delightful layer of tanginess to the cookie’s flavor profile, as well as moistness and a satisfying chewiness.
  • Bread leavened by a “starter,” a mix of flour and water left out to ferment from wild yeast in the air, dates back to ancient Egypt. While sourdough starter discard was most likely utilized through the centuries, it recently gained attention during the pandemic. Food shortages led home bakers to rediscover sourdough bread baking, minimize food waste, and discover that starter discard was a secret ingredient that elevates savory and sweet baked goods!

Tools You Need

Key Ingredients and Why

  • All-purpose flour

    • All-purpose flour has a protein content of 9-11%, yielding cookies that hold their shape while having a perfectly soft texture.
  • Baking powder AND baking soda

    • This recipe contains some acid but not enough to react with baking soda on its own, so baking powder helps with the rise. Using both of these leaveners results in puffy and tender cookies.
    • Baking soda promotes browning. It neutralizes the acidity from discard, ensuring that the cookies have subtle, not overwhelming, tanginess.
    • Read my post How to Make Baking Powder and Baking Soda Explained and save yourself a trip to the grocery store!
  • Salt

    • Salt beautifully accents the bittersweet chocolate and keeps these cookies just sweet enough.
  • Butter

    • The fat in butter adds moisture and a rich, creamy flavor. The fat coats the flour, preventing excessive gluten development, which keeps the cookies tender.
    • Make Homemade Butter for the freshest taste and creamiest consistency.
    • You know your butter is at the right temperature when you push the butter and it makes an indent, but your finger doesn’t easily squish right through.
  • Dark brown sugar

  • Granulated sugar

    • Granulated sugar sweetens the cookies, locks in moisture, and contributes to the browning process.
    • In addition, sugar coats air bubbles to retain the air, making the cookies rise and preventing a dense texture.
  • Egg

    • Eggs add rich flavor to the cookies. The yolks act as an emulsifier to bind all ingredients homogeneously, and the egg whites help make the cookies soft.
    • Eggs must always be at room temperature in baking unless specified otherwise.
  • Vanilla extract

    • Vanilla extract works as a seasoning to bring out the flavor of the other ingredients and specifically pairs well with bittersweet chocolate.
    • It’s easy to make your own using our Homemade Extract recipe.
  • Sourdough starter discard

  • Bittersweet chocolate

    • Chunks of bittersweet chocolate bar (63 – 72 % cocoa solids), with its pronounced flavor, is my go-to chocolate.
    • If you prefer sweet chocolate chips, go for semi-sweet chocolate or milk chocolate (or a combination!).
    • Find out more about chocolate here in my Ultimate Guide to the Different Types of Chocolate.

How to Make Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • Mix the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients:

  • Combine the mixtures:

    • Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined.
    • Stir in the chopped chocolate.
  • Rest the dough:

    • Using a tablespoon or a cookie scoop, place the dough onto a small tray.
    • Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least three hours.
  • Bake and serve:

    • Preheat the oven to preheat the oven to 375° (190°C).
    • Place the cookie dough balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet and flatten slightly. Bake for 12 minutes, until edges start to brown.
    • Let the cookies cool on the pan for 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire cooling rack.

Sourdough Chocolate Chip cookies are baked golden brown with pools of chocolate throughout are cooling on a wire rack. They're paired with milk.

Can I Make Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies in Advance?

Yes, you can make Sourdough Chocolate Cookies in Advance. Here’s how to store raw cookie dough:

    • Make the dough and store it in the refrigerator for up to two days.
    • If you want to store the dough for a longer time, Make this dough and freeze it for up to 8 weeks.
    • Take out a few, defrost, and bake whenever you want some freshly baked cookies.

How to Store Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • At room temperature: You can store baked cookies at room temperature in an airtight container for up to two days.
  • In the fridge: For more extended storage, cool cookies completely and keep them in the fridge for up to a week, wrapped with cling film individually or in small stacks.
  • In the freezer:
    • Allow your baked cookies to cool completely on a wire rack.
    • Arrange the cookies in a single layer on the parchment-lined baking sheet, making sure they are not touching each other.
    • Once the cookies are individually frozen, you can freeze them in airtight containers or resealable plastic bags for up to three months.
    • Let the cookies thaw at room temperature for an hour before serving. For a freshly baked taste, you can also warm them in a preheated oven for a few minutes.

FAQs

  • Do Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies actually taste sour?

    • No, these chocolate chip cookies do not taste sour! You’ll enjoy the light tang that beautifully sets off the sweet dough and chocolate.
  • Is it really necessary to rest the dough?

Resting the dough is essential for many reasons.

    • Resting allows the flavors to meld together, improving the overall taste and incorporating the unique sourdough tang,
    • Letting the dough sit also gives the flour time to absorb the moisture, giving the cookies the proper hydration.
    • The rest period also relaxes the gluten, making the cookies more tender.
  • Can I make these cookies egg-free?

Yes, you can make these cookies egg-free.

The close-up shows that Sourdough Chocolate Chip cookies are baked golden brown with pools of chocolate throughout are cooling on a wire rack.

Gemma’s Pro Chef Tips

  • If you have a kitchen scale, weigh the ingredients for the most accurate results.
  • Overnight chilling is always best for cookie dough, but a few hours in the fridge is fine if you don’t have the time to wait. I don’t recommend baking these right away, as the dough needs some time to hydrate and firm up.
  • I always recommend using chocolate bars in cookies and not chocolate chips. The bars usually are of better quality and melt better, making gorgeous pools of chocolate.
  • 1 cup (5 oz/142 g) of toasted and chopped walnuts, pecans, or your favorite nuts are a delicious addition to these cookies.
  • If you’ve never made sourdough, try my easy starter.
  • These soft cookies would make perfect ice cream sandwich cookies with my 2-Ingredient Vanilla Ice Cream!

More Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipes

Sourdough Discard Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe

4.50 from 6 votes
Upgrade classics with this Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe. Achieve scrumptious flavors and reduce starter discard waste in one go!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 28 cookies
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Chill Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 27 minutes
Upgrade classics with this Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe. Achieve scrumptious flavors and reduce starter discard waste in one go!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 28 cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 ⅓ cups (11 ½ oz/327 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (8 oz/225 g) butter, softened
  • cups (7 ½ oz/213 g) dark brown sugar
  • cup (5 oz/142 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (5 oz/142 g) sourdough discard
  • 1 ½ cups (9 oz/255 g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped

Instructions

  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or with a large bowl and handheld electric mixer) beat the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar together on high speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes.
  • Beat in the egg, followed by the sourdough discard and vanilla extract. Scrape down the sides of the bowl to make sure everything is evenly mixed.
  • Reduce the speed and add in the flour mixture, stopping when just combined. Lastly stir in the chopped chocolate.
  • Line a small tray with parchment paper and scoop heaped tablespoons of dough on it. Cover the tray with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours, or overnight.
  • When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375° (190°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Place the dough 2-inches (5 cm) apart on the prepared tray and flatten slightly.
  • Bake for about 12 minutes, until the edges are starting to brown.
  • Remove from the oven and let firm on the tray for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat baking the remaining dough if you wish.
  • Store cooled cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.

 

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Gina
Gina
23 days ago

I can’t have dairy. Can I use vegan butter (basically margarine) instead of butter? I have had very mixed results with baking when I swap it and don’t know what to change in the recipe to make up for it.

Amy
Amy
3 months ago

Would this cookies recipe freeze well, before or after baking?

About Us

Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, a cookbook author, and the creator of Bigger Bolder Baking. I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere with my trusted and tested recipes and baking tips. You may have seen one of my 500+ videos on YouTube & TikTok or as a guest judge on Nailed It! on Netflix or the Best Baker in America on Food Network. No matter your skills, my Bold Baking Team & I want to be your #1 go-to baking authority.

 

Weeknight Family Favorites Chapter from the Bigger Bolder Baking Every Day Cookbook