Jun 22, 2014

Why Do Cookies Spread Too Much?

Linda asks… Hi Jenny….love your cooking videos…when I see that a new one is available, it is like Christmas around here.       My question is this:     I love making chocolate chip cookies but sometimes the dough spreads so thinly in the oven at 375o   and tends to burn on the outer rim and be a little raw in the middle.   I have tried lowering the temp to 365 but it still happens.    I am wondering what the reason(s) might be for this?

My Response… It’s a common problem and there are a few things I can suggest…

1) Oven is not hot enough. Before placing cookies in the oven, make sure it has reached 375 degrees. You may not be waiting long enough for it to reach 375. An oven thermometer is very handy for this. I usually preheat my oven for 30 minutes.

2) Baking pan is too greasy. It makes sense that things will slide around on a greasy surface so try not greasing your pan and using parchment paper. The added bonus is there is no cleanup.

3) Baking pan is warm. There are two reasons this could happen. One is if you keep the baking pan on the stove while the oven preheats and the pan gets warm. The other is that you don’t let the pan cool completely when making a second batch.

Some other solutions are to shape the cookies and chill them in the fridge for 15 minutes or so. Then put them straight into the oven. If your pan fits, you can shape the cookies on the pan and put the whole thing in the fridge to chill, then put the cold pan in the oven. Also, don’t over-beat your dough. And avoid any substitutions like using whipped butter, etc. If this information doesn’t solve your problem, please send me the EXACT recipe as you make it and I will try to help.

One Comment on "Why Do Cookies Spread Too Much?"

  1. Connie

    Hi there. I love your videos and just found this site. I wanted to offer a couple of suggestions for avoiding flat chocolate chip cookies. The first one is to lower the oven temperature to about 300 degrees and increase the cooking time. The second one is to increase the amount of flour in the recipe to form a rather stiff but not dry dough. When I make mine I have to use my hands to mix it. I will only put about three cookies on the first tray and see how they turn out. If they are too flat I add more flour to the dough and try not too add too much which will result in a hard dry cookie. I hope this helps.

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