Baking Steel

makes 10 cookies
Prep time:
Cook time:
1 Rating

This year, all the cool kids will be making Sarah Kieffer's Chocolate Chip Cookies from her new book, "Vanilla Bean Baking Book." These flying saucer size treats are gorgeously flat and oh so flavorful! Sarah came to play with this recipe and her secret for getting the cookies to crinkle and flatten during the baking process, will help alleviate a lot of that built up day to day stress! Boy, are these babies fun to make!


  • 2 cups (284 g) all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ pound (2 sticks; 227 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1½ cups (297 g) granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup (50 g) packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 6 ounces (170 g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped into bite-size pieces averaging ½ inch with some smaller and some larger


  1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 3 Baking Sheets with aluminum foil, dull side up. This helps create the crinkles in the cookies.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a Beater Blade, beat the butter on medium until creamy. Add the granulated and brown sugars and beat on medium until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla, and water and mix on low to combine. Add the flour mixture and mix on low until combined. Add the chocolate and mix on low into the batter.
  4. Scoop the dough into 3½-ounce (100g) balls (a heaping ⅓ cup each). Place 4 balls an equal distance apart on a prepared pan and transfer to the freezer for 15 minutes before baking. After you put the first baking sheet in the oven, put the second one in the freezer.

    This step is essential for getting the crinkles on the edge.
  5. Place the chilled baking sheet in the oven and bake 10 minutes, until the cookies are puffed slightly in the center. Lift the side of the baking sheet up about 4 inches and gently let it drop down against the oven rack, so the edges of the cookies set and the inside falls back down (this will feel wrong, but trust me). After the cookies puff up again in 2 minutes, repeat lifting and dropping the pan. Repeat a few more times to create ridges around the edge of the cookie.
  6. Bake 16 to 18 minutes total, until the cookies have spread out and the edges are golden brown but the centers are much lighter and not fully cooked.
  7. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack; let cool completely before removing the cookie from the pan.