Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies


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Soft Chocolate Chip M&M’s Cookies — The softest, thickest, best M&M’s cookies ever! People love these big cookies loaded with M&M’s and chocolate!

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People love these big cookies loaded with M&Ms & chocolate!

Easy Valentine’s Day Cookies

This is some of the best cookie dough I’ve ever made. The cookies are great, but the dough base itself, wow. Allow me to explain.

If you don’t care about cookie science, scroll down to the recipe. But if you do, pour a cup of coffee and enjoy.

For nearly the past two years, when I make chocolate chip cookies, I use this recipe. I use it for Twix Bar CookiesSnickers CookiesSmores Cookies, and so many others when I want a hearty, but buttery dough base. Any cookie I’m going to be stuffing with add-ins or candy, and that’s not going to be a peanut butter cookie, I use that base.

It produces amazingly consistent chocolate chip cookies, and one reason the cookies always turn out beautifully is from the cornstarch in the dough. I’ve used cornstarch in about 20+ cookie recipes, including Peanut Butter Coconut Oil CookiesLofthouse CookiesCandy Corn and White Chocolate Chip CookiesVanilla Melting Moments Sandwich CookiesOrange Creamsicle Cookies and more.

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People go nuts for these big cookies loaded with M&Ms and chocolate chips!

It helps create softbatch-style cookies that are so soft, moist, and supple, without turning cakey.

However, for these chewy M&M’s cookies, rather than using cornstarch, I used 1/4 cup instant vanilla pudding mix. Pudding mix is mostly modified food starch (aka cornstarch) and some sugary flavorings. So it turns out pudding cookies and cornstarch cookies really aren’t that far apart.

If I was forced to pick between the new dough base and the old, I choose the new, and so did my family. They went nuts for these cookies and they’re not even ‘cookie people’. I have no idea how that happened. But they devoured these.

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People go nuts for these big cookies loaded with M&Ms and chocolate chips!

The only other significant recipe change is that the cookies are slightly larger. A typical batch size for me is about 22 cookies, about 2 1/2 tablespoons per dough for each. However, here I made just 15 cookies, at nearly 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) each. That sounds big, but the cookies are still so much smaller than cookies I see for sale at bakeries and coffee shops, and 8 comfortably fit on a baking tray.

And as a selfish bonus, only having to roll, shape, and insert M&M’s into the top of 15 cookies is nice.

I didn’t use many chocolate chips, only 3/4 cup for the whole batch, but it’s just enough to boost up the chocolate profile. Since the M&M’s are milk chocolate, a little semi-sweet is nice.

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People go nuts for these big cookies loaded with M&Ms and chocolate chips!

I added 3/4 cup M&M’s into the dough, formed the mounds, and then inserted another tablespoon of M&M’s onto the tops for a nice visual pop. I want to really knowing I’m eating M&M’s cookies. 

They’re thick enough to sink your teeth into and they’re so very soft and moist. There’s a hint of chewiness at the base and edges, and it’s just enough to balance the softness and give me the mouthfeel I’m looking for in a perfectly baked chocolate chip cookie.

The texture is dense yet light, and they remind me a bit of the texture in the Softbatch Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies, minus the cream cheese.

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People go nuts for these big cookies loaded with M&Ms and chocolate chips!

The crunchy candy coating shells of the M&M’s also breaks up the soft, buttery dough and is a perfect texture contrast to the smooth, melted semi-sweet chocolate chips.

These Valentine’s Day cookies get my vote as my new chocolate chip cookie dough base to beat, and that’s a big statement.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People go nuts for these big cookies loaded with M&Ms and chocolate chips!

What’s in Chocolate Chip M&M’s Cookies? 

To make these easy M&M’s cookies, you’ll need: 

  • Unsalted butter
  • Light brown sugar
  • Granulated sugar
  • Egg
  • Vanilla extract
  • All-purpose flour
  • Instant vanilla pudding mix
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Semi-sweet chocolate chips 
  • M&M’s

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People go nuts for these big cookies loaded with M&Ms and chocolate chips!

How to Make Chocolate Chip M&M’s Cookies

The dough for these easy Valentine cookies comes together quickly. Simply cream together the butter, sugars, eggs, and vanilla. Then, stir in the dry ingredients. Fold in the M&M’s and chocolate chips last. 

Shape the cookie dough into balls using a 1/4 cup scoop, then press more M&M’s into the top. Chill for at least 2 hours before baking. 

Once the dough has had time to chill, bake until the edges have set and the tops are just set, even if slightly undercooked, pale, and glossy in the center.

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People go nuts for these big cookies loaded with M&Ms and chocolate chips!

Can I Substitute the Instant Pudding Mix? 

The pudding cookie craze is nothing new, but not everyone likes or has access to pudding mix. If that’s you, rather than using pudding mix, use 2 teaspoons cornstarch, which means you’re back at my gold standard dough base (which is still great!). 

Do I Have to Chill the Dough? 

Yes! As with all my cookies, I chilled the dough before baking. It’s absolutely crucial for thick, puffy, full cookies. If you bake with warm, limp dough, your cookies will spread and bake thinner and flatter. Why bother? Plan ahead and chill your dough.

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People love these big cookies loaded with M&Ms & chocolate!

Tips for Making These Easy Valentine Cookies

Note that this recipe calls for instant vanilla pudding mix, NOT cook and serve. You also can’t use sugar-free pudding mix.

Once the chocolate chips and M&M’s are added to the dough, mix until just combined an no further. You don’t want to activate the gluten in the flour (which makes for tough, chewy cookies) nor do you want to crush the M&M’s.

I made this chocolate chip M&M’s cookie recipe for Valentine’s Day, but you can make them for another holiday by using different colored M&M’s! 

Soft M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies - The softest, thickest, best M&M cookies ever! People love these big cookies loaded with M&Ms & chocolate!

Soft Chocolate Chip M&M's Cookies — The softest, thickest, best M&M's cookies ever! People love these big cookies loaded with M&M's and chocolate!

Soft Chocolate Chip M&M's Cookies — The softest, thickest, best M&M's cookies ever! People love these big cookies loaded with M&M's and chocolate!

Pin This Recipe

Yield: 15 large cookies

Soft Chocolate Chip M&M's Cookies

Soft Chocolate Chip M&M's Cookies

The softest, thickest, best M&M's cookies ever! People love these big cookies loaded with M&M's and chocolate!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 11 minutes
Chill Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 26 minutes


  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened (1 1/2 sticks)
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup instant vanilla pudding mix*
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • pinch salt, optional and to taste
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup milk chocolate M&M’s mixed into the dough + about 1/2 cup for placing on top of dough mounds


  1. To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or large mixing bowl and electric mixer) combine the butter, sugars, egg, vanilla, and beat on medium-high speed until creamed and well combined, about 4 minutes.
  2. Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the flour, pudding mix (or cornstarch), baking soda, optional salt, and beat on low speed until just combined, about 1 minute.
  3. Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the chocolate chips, 3/4 cup M&M's, and beat on low speed until just combined, about 30 seconds.
  4. Using a large cookie scoop, 1/4-cup measure, or your hands, form 15 equal-sized mounds of dough, roll into balls, and flatten slightly.
  5. Add about 1 tablespoon M&M's to the top of each dough mound.
  6. Place mounds on a large plate or tray, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to 5 days. Do not bake with unchilled dough because cookies will bake thinner, flatter, and be more prone to spreading.
  7. Preheat oven to 350F, line a baking sheet with a Silpat or spray with cooking spray. Place dough mounds on baking sheet, spaced at least 2 inches apart (I bake 8 cookies per sheet).
  8. Bake for 11 minutes, or until edges have set and tops are just set, even if slightly undercooked, pale, and glossy in the center. Cookies firm up as they cool.
  9. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for about 10 minutes before serving. I let them cool on the baking sheet and don’t use a rack.


*Pudding mix: Do NOT use sugar-free or ‘cook & serve’ pudding mix. If you don't have instant vanilla pudding mix, use 2 teaspoons cornstarch instead.

Storage: Cookies will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 6 months. Alternatively, unbaked cookie dough can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, so consider baking only as many cookies as desired and save the remaining dough to be baked in the future when desired.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 477Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 39mgSodium: 363mgCarbohydrates: 62gFiber: 2gSugar: 30gProtein: 5g

More Valentine Cookie Ideas: 


Frosted Heart Cookies— These heart cookies are soft, chewy, dense, made in one bowl, and you don’t have to roll them out. The easiest Valentine’s Day sugar cookies ever!

Valentine’s Frosted Sugar Cookie Bars – Sugar cookie bars are so much FASTER AND EASIER than making sugar cookies!! The sprinkles and tangy cream cheese frosting help to make the bars a PERFECT Valentine’s Day treat!

Strawberry Cookie Bars — The bars are incredibly easy to make because I used strawberry cake mix and it gives the bars exactly the consistency I want. 

Loaded Soft and Chewy M&M’s Cookie Pie — If you like M&M’s cookies, you’ll love this biggie version! Super easy & always a big hit!

Chocolate Chip Red Velvet Cookies — These chocolate chip red velvet cookies have a secret ingredient — cake mix! These cookies are super ooey gooey and ultra rich! 

Glazed Cherry Bonbon Cookies — Soft, buttery, pink cookies with the surprise of a juicy, sweet maraschino cherry in the middle that also helps keep the cookies moist. 

About the Author

Welcome to AverieCooks! Here you’ll find fast and easy recipes that taste amazing and are geared for real life. Nothing fussy or complicated, just awesome tasting dishes everyone loves!

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Please note: I have only made the recipe as written, and cannot give advice or predict what will happen if you change something. If you have a question regarding changing, altering, or making substitutions to the recipe, please check out the FAQ page for more info.

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  1. These are seriously the best fricken cookies. My new go to cookie dough recipe!!! Thank you so much for sharing this 💗

    Rating: 5
  2. Oh my! what a different taste. The vanilla pudding mix added flavor that was noticed when savoring each bite. I baked 5 dozen and a double batch was easy in the 6 quart bowl of my kitchen aid mixer. Follow the mixing directions exactly. It works. Almost too much chocolate in the cookie for me but most of my fellow RN’s loved them. I want to try this recipe with French Vanilla pudding mix the next time and I’ll cut the chocolate chips to 1/2 cup and keep the same amount of M&M’s as they make the aesthetics of the cookie presentation more favorable to others.

    Rating: 5
    1. Thanks for the 5 star review and I am glad you are going to make these again and customize them with French Vanilla pudding mix and a bit less chocolate chips based on your preferences. Good call on reducing that not on the M&Ms as you say, for aesthetics they are golden.

  3. I never comment on recipes but WOWZA these cookies were INCREDIBLE!!!! I made them for my husband for Vday and normally I eat one cookie out of a batch but I couldn’t stop eating them! They looked just like the picture and were so chewy and soft. Love your recipes and your detailed instructions, Averie!!

    Rating: 5
  4. Made these last night, and taste is on point! But, I ended up flattened cookies for sure; even with extended chilling time. Somehow, this consistently happens to me no matter the food blog, even when using all of the tips and tricks, and I am a relatively experienced baker. Maybe I’ll get it someday!

    Rating: 5
  5. I made these cookies with Christmas M&M’s and they are outstanding! Me and my son made them and we love them! So soft, so yummy, sooooooooo good! I loved this recipe!

    Rating: 5
    1. I never have but times are tough right now and if that’s all you have, maybe you want to try it. The reason I don’t typically recommend it is that baking with aspartame or other sugar-free substitutes can alter the final results in a variety of unintended ways, but…if you end up trying it, please LMK how things turned out.

  6. Hi Averie – I haven’t tried this recipe yet but 1/4 cup sounds like a humongous cookie! Is there a way to make the scoops smaller to yield a higher number of cookies in the batch? Needed them for my team of 20+ at work – thanks!

    1. 1/4 cup of dough does make a big bakery sized cookie, like what you’d get at Starbucks or a coffee shop, so I don’t think ‘humongous’ but big. If you want to reduce the size and increase the yield, make smaller dough balls and bake for less time; all will vary on how big your dough balls end up being.

  7. Hi Averie,Just making my second batch of your valentine choco chip/M&M cookies….delicious!! Question…I left them in my fridge for about 4 hours before attempting to bake…they were a very hard dough upon taking out of fridge….could that effect the baking time? I measure them with a 1/4cup scoop, trying to stay within the size you suggested, but they were not done in 11 minutes. Realize ovens can differ in their actual temps, but I have a very new Wolf oven …just wondering …I ended up baking for a total of 13-14 minutes….again, curious about the dough hardness.

    Rating: 5
    1. Thanks for the 5 star review and I too have a new Wolf! However this recipe was not posted/made with that oven. Bottom line, as you said all ovens vary and dough ball sizes so just bake until they are done and don’t worry about what the clock says if they are a few minutes over the baking time estimates given. And very cold dough is what you want!

  8. Someone I bowl with brought in your cookies, all I can ssy, out of this world! Want to make them! Would one 3.5 oz instant vanilla pudding equal the 1/4 cup the recipe asks for? Thanks so much for your help!

    1. 3.5 oz is probably about 1/2 cup, just guessing, but you will not need all 3.5 oz if you’re using a standard size packet of pudding mix, just measure out 1/4 cup. Glad you loved the cookies!

  9. AMAZING!!!! The best recipe I have ever found fo cookies. They are so thick, gooey, and the chocolate melts in your mouth! I received so many compliments on them. I will never use another cookie recipe!

    Rating: 5
  10. I am not much of a baker but made these for a cookie exchange and came out great. I doubled the batch but still didn’t make as many cookies as had hoped (may triple next time). I accidentally bought the wrong kind of dry vanilla pudding mix so used cornstarch instead, but didn’t read well enough and put in the pudding mix amount. Next time will use everything in correct amount.Also, as I am not a baker, I used one stainless steel sheet and those cookies spread like crazy and were not puffy/soft like the others. Should I have used parchment paper or just waited for the non-stick sheets to be ready for another use? Thanks and looking forward to trying the other recipes.

    Rating: 5
    1. I would definitely wait until you have the proper pans for baking them because if you bake them on the wrong type of pan, as you said, they’re going to spread. I would also recommend using a Silpat rather than parchment. It helps prevent spreading, they’re about $20.

      I’m glad these came out great for you!

  11. What if you don’t have pudding mix or cornstarch (I used the last bit yesterday) and it’s storming so you can’t get to the store? Can I omit? Use something else? Thanks.

    1. If you omit them it will change the texture of the cookies fairly dramatically. They will probably still ‘turn out’ but they won’t have the same texture at all.

  12. just made these and have to say the flavor is amazing! Love this recipe! I am confused though because my cookies flattened out tremendously and aren’t thick like yours are! Any idea why this would happen? I baked them for about 12 minutes at 350 and followed all the directions correctly. I also allowed them to completely cool down on the tray

  13. Hello, These look really good but Im trying to find a mint choc chip +M&M recipe. Do you think I could add a teaspoon for mint extract or would that totally mess up cookie?

  14. I’ve left comments and questions before but just wanted to come by again and say my hubby LOVES this recipe. I am NOT a baker but this recipe is fool proof. He won’t eat any other chocolate chip cookies. If he is having a craving I have to bake these!

    1. Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it’s a favorite and that it’s foolproof! Great to hear this is your go-to!

  15. Just wanted to say I can put these high on the list of some of the best cookies ever made. Love your blog.
    I seriously did 5x recipe today and was thinking I somehow miscounted on something but no. They came out perfect, thick, soft, chocolatey goodness! I did the valentines m&ms and mixed in some of their dark chocolate too.. so good

    1. Thanks for trying the recipe (in a 5x batch no less)! And glad it came out great for you! Glad these are some of the best cookies you’ve ever made!

  16. So I am not sure what I did wrong.. I bake all the time and had a lot of problems with this recipe.  They never seemed to cook all the way through. :(  I started with 11 minutes and then went up to 14 minutes.  Maybe I am just not used to a soft cookie?  I threw away 2 racks. 

    Any suggestions on what I could do different next time?

    1. They are a VERY soft cookie and I think that you’re mistaking the softness for not being done all the way through. You could flatten the mounds of dough a bit more next time, that may help decrease cooking time. But I always tell people, bake until the recipe is done. All ovens, preferences, etc vary and don’t get too hung up on minutes on a clock; watch your recipe and bake until it’s done.

  17. Hi!
    This recipe sounds great. I’m definitelly making it for valentine’s day. I’m just wondering, what if I use chocolate pudding mix for more chocolate flavour? Do you think that would turn out great? :)

    1. I wouldn’t use chocolate pudding mix because these aren’t chocolate cookies. I feel like the chocolate will cloud the other flavors and I would stick with vanilla pudding. The recipe is great as written!

  18. Hi Averie! I LOVE this recipe and I’ve made it many times, thank you so so much! I have always struggled with cookies, but this is my go-to recipe for sure. I do have a question though, I need to make a lot of cookies for next week and wanted to get a head start on making the dough. Would it be ok staying in the fridge for 3 or 4 days before baking?

    Thanks again!

    1. Yes totally fine for 3-4 days before baking. Just shape into balls (don’t let it sit in the fridge in one big mass or it’s too hard to chisel out) and you’ll be set. Glad you love the cookies!

  19. Hello everyone,
    These cookies are yummy!  Mixing cookies and  M&M candies is an innovative way to make my family happy. They would really love it! Thanks for sharing this unique recipe!
    Wishing you a  sunny day,

  20. I made these with our 4 year old tonight.  They turned out fine, but are too sweet for my taste.  He loved them though!  I am sure they will be a hit for his little friends as gifts.  

  21. Just wondering if we can substitue egg in m&m cookies. The cooies must be really good ad I made for my son’s friends and all of them vanished in minutes

    1. I haven’t tried making these egg-free or using anything other than a real egg in this recipe so can’t say for sure how to go about that or if it would work.

  22. Yes to the silpat, but I just checked my flour and no its NOT King Arthur. I wonder if the brand of flour really changes them?? I will try to find that flour and then make them again with it, I am interested to see if there is a difference! Thanks for the tips :)

    1. KAF all-purpose has about an 11% gluten content. Other flours have less; usually in the 8-9% range. Doesn’t seem like a big difference until we’re talking structure and stability (prevention of spreading) and then it becomes very important. So yes, brand of flour does matter! When I’m traveling outside of the U.S. and can’t get KAF, I notice a marked increase in the amount of spreading in cookies and cakes and muffins being prone to falling upon cooling.

  23. I made these yesterday to share with coworkers today, and while they taste phenomenal, they don’t look at all like yours! I followed ALL of your cookie making tips, even chilled the dough 6 hours, and they still came out pretty flat. Oh well, I guess the taste is most important and these definitely had that goin on!!! :)

    1. Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad they taste great. Are you baking with King Arthur flour on a Silpat? Those two things REALLY help me achieve thick cookies. Not sure what other suggestions I can offer if you say you’ve already tried all my tips. Let me know what kind of flour you bake with since I do think it matters.

  24. Thank you so much for these instructions, I made these with peanut m&ms for my boyfriend and they turned out beautiful!!!

    1. Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad it came out great for you with the peanut M&Ms! I bet your boyf was a happy camper :)

  25. I have these cookies cooling right now but I am worried they look sooo doughy on the inside! I even baked them for 15 minutes instead of 11. I seem to run into this problem a lot with cookies and low bake times. I know they will harden up a little bit as they cool but geez 11 minutes would be hardly cooked. Is that how they are suppose to be? Thanks

    1. It sounds like your oven runs slow/cool if this happens to you frequently when you bake….so as long as you know that I’d recommend baking longer than most recipes suggest. Bake until a normal point of done-ness. Don’t overbake, but they need to be set and not raw. And I would also get your oven checked out since this seems to be an issue for you. Good luck!

  26. Hi. I love the sound of your cookies. Problem. I live in New Zealand and our ingredients are quite different. One example is our butter is salted. Light brown sugar (is that our raw sugar) Wonder if our instant pudding is the same as your pudding mix?Guess I just have to try. I’ve seen so many yummy American biscuit Or cookie receipes but to scared to try as they may not come out the same. Any ideas greatly received with thanks

    1. Guess I just have to try. = YES the best and really only way to know for sure with baking and cooking! I’m sure for this recipe, your brown sugar will be fine as will your salted butter. Your instant pudding is probably the same as ours (I use Jell-O brand or generic storebrand that’s like Jell-O but half the price).

      Read this post for cookie spreading issues and troubleshooting.

  27. I just wanted to let you this is the best recipe I have tried. I have made them several times and my husband loves them. He is a cookie king and is very particular. I will be experimenting with peanut butter, so wish me luck!

    1. I haven’t personally tried it with coconut oil in this recipe, but I have made many recipes that are similar using coconut oil, so I would say yes, make sure it’s solid-state (freeze it for a few mins to get it solidify if it’s not already solid) so you can cream it with the egg, sugars, etc. Please LMK how it goes!

  28. These cookies came out amazing!!! Thank you for the great recipe, I can’t wait to try out your other cookie recipes!

    1. Thanks so much for trying these & glad you love them and plan to try other recipes. LMK how they go for you!

  29. These cookies are delicious, however, mine didn’t turn out a pretty as yours. The first batch, I took the cookies out at exactly 11 minutes and they were way undercooked, so I put them back in for another minute and cooled them on the cookie sheet as instructed. After waiting 10 minutes, they were still undercooked. I finally got a good consistency leaving them in for 12-13 minutes, but they still weren’t the color or height of yours.

  30. The recipe looks great but… How much is a cup? I have tried looking it up online but different sources say different things.

    1. Well it depends on what’s being measured if you’re asking in terms of weight. 1 cup of raisins would weigh more than 1 cup of Corn Flakes. Use google to find what you need for conversion tables.

    1. It’s really hard to say since I wasn’t with you and can’t see the dough and can’t see what you did. They’re one of my most popular cookies and I’ve made them tons and never have any problems. Maybe retry the recipe and just make sure you’re using high quality ingredients and I’d try using King Arthur brand all-purpose flour. It’s the best flour for baking and worth the extra couple bucks for me personally.

  31. Hello! Sorry if this is a duplicate comment but wanted to know of I could quaduaple the recipe?

    1. I haven’t personally tried but I’m sure you could if you have a mixer big enough to hold it all! I maybe would double it, twice, for mixing ease.

    1. Thanks for linking back to my post on yours – so appreciated :) And happy bday to your son! Thanks for trying the recipe & your cookies look great!

  32. 1/4 cup of pudding mix…is that more or less than a box? I never have pudding mix in the house so I’d like to know before I go buy some!

      1. Thank you! The cookies are WONDERFUL! I won’t have to worry about what I’ll do with the rest of the pudding mix. I’ll be making more soon!

      1. They were still delicious! And a big hit. I brought some into work to share and they were gobbled up :)

  33. Hi! I have made several batches of your different kinds of cookies and I have loved them all. The only problem I have is that the cookies always spread thin instead of staying thick. I follow the recipe exactly and chill the dough like you said but they still always spread flat. Is there anything else I can do to stop this from happening?

  34. Do you form them then chill or chill the dough then scoop, form and top with M’s? I hate when my cookies go flat.

    1. I indicated this in the recipe, but you form the balls, THEN chill them. Way too difficult to try to chisel rock hard dough out of a mixing bowl that’s been chilled so balls first, then chill.

      1. I am sorry. You are correct it was in the recipe. I read all the cookie science, but not the actual recipe,. Please forgive me, I got excited.

  35. I followed this recipe exactly like it said & was disappointed with my cookies. They did not turn out plump like these pictures; mine spread out & were kinda thin. I refrigerated the cookie dough but they still spread out during baking. I was hoping they’d look like the pics of these ones.
    What went wrong?

  36. I tried making these for Valentines Day. And I must say they tasted fabulous! But my cookies did not turn out good. I followed all of the instructions and they just turned out flat. Not plump like the ones in the picture. I was very disappointed!

    1. If you used a cookie scoop, chilled your dough before baking, and baked on a Silpat, and they still turned out flat that’s a shame! Did you do all those things? I’m glad they tasted great though! Sometimes flat cookies happen if you aren’t really careful. This dough isn’t super prone to flattening, but all dough can if you’re not careful. Thanks for trying the recipe.

  37. Oh my gosh. I made the dough last night and kept in the fridge. Baked 5 of them today (to pace ourselves) and these are unbelievable. My hubby asked if I made them from scratch. Then goes on to say they are the best cookies I have ever made. Sooo yummy! Can’t wait to try your other variations! Thanks!

    1. That’s awesome that they’re the best cookies you’ve ever made! And baking off 5 at once is so smart :)

  38. I love this recipe, I forward the website to my sister. She loves baking from scratch and I’m sure she will have a blast with your recipes.
    The only thing was that they dough was super sticky when I was trying to make it into mounds. What do you recommend to avoid this or what did I do wrong?

    1. It’s dough, it IS going to be sticky :) and this dough is about average I think. To help, you can flour your hands. That should help or just use a scoop! Glad you like the cookies!

  39. Thank you SO much for sharing this recipe! My cookies have always been super flat, but by following your clear instructions, these turned out amazing! My husband and teen sons thank you too :)

  40. Hi, I wanted to be smart and put the yesterday cookies into the microwave just to make the chocolate melt before serving them and they started to burn! Do you know why? Is it because of the alcohol in the vanilla extract or what? The chocolate inside the cookies didn’t look like the one on your photos even 15 minutes after baking. Do you make photos when they are still hot?

    1. If you microwave cookies for more than maybe 5-10 seconds, yes they can and sometimes will burn.

      I bake the cookies, wait about 10 minutes until they’re cool enough to handle, then take photos. I think your oven should be calibrated. Make sure to test it with an an oven thermometer to make sure it’s running at the correct temp.

  41. From all the good comments I have decided to try these cookies. However I can’t find valentine m&ms anywhere! Do you think smarties could work?

    1. Try Target and also drug stores like RiteAid or CVS are great but otherwise just use regular M&Ms of any color. I would not use Smarties.

  42. Made these today and they are definitely to die for! I cheated a bit and put the cookie balls in the freezer for about 25 minutes instead of in the fridge. It didn’t seem to hurt the outcome. (Also must have made the cookies much smaller, I ended up with 39!) Will definitely be back to try more things from your site. Thanks for all the great photos & detailed instructions. Happy Valentine’s Day :)

    1. Glad you loved them! And yes if you make them the size of ‘traditional’ cookies, about 3 dozen could be a possibility. I’m going for more bakery size these days…less to roll/scoop..ha! :)

    2. Hello, you said you made about 39 cookies. Since you made them a bit smaller (as did I), How long did you cook them for?

  43. Very GOOD! Made these tonight. They came out perfect after 10 minutes. Thanks for a delicious, soft cookie recipe that doesn’t turn out flat.

  44. These were the best cookies I have ever made. Thank You! Made them Saturday and gave some to kiddos at Sunday School. I am going to check your site first for any cookies I want to bake.

    1. Thanks for trying them Cindy & glad they’re the best cookies you’ve ever made! What a wonderful thing to hear :)

  45. I usually don’t comment on these things. I’m still learning how to cook and bake and I wanted to treat my boyfriend with actual homemade cookies, and I found this recipe tried it out and OMG this is an amazing cookie dough recipe! so soft! and we can’t stop eating them! Definitly gunna use this recipe for a long time, thanks! :)

  46. What should I do if I don’t have a stand mixer with paddle attachment… or any kind of electronic mixer? Will it still turn out good?

    1. I would whip by hand then like you would do with any other cookie you make. That’s your only option unless you go buy a mixer.

  47. I purchased all the ingredients to make these for a Valentine’s luncheon for a group of college students, but I’m worried I may run short on time chilling and baking multiple batches. Any reservations for turning these into bars? They look and sound so good and I’m sure would be a hit! Thanks!

    1. I haven’t tried the dough as bars but I’m sure you could press it into a baking pan & bake that way.

  48. I was wondering if there is a limit to how long you can chill the cookie dough. I wanted to make the dough on wed morning and bake them thurs evening in time for vday. Do you think thatd be okay?

    1. Totally fine. Reread the recipe section of the post “Alternatively, unbaked cookie dough can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, so consider baking only as many cookies as desired and save the remaining dough to be baked in the future when desired.” Enjoy!

  49. I absolutely love your cookie science! I baked these earlier this week, and they turned out amazing. Super soft, chewy, and moist. Thank you for your amazing recipes!

    I was curious why you would pick this new cookie dough vs. your other cookie dough with corn starch. I’ve never tried your other cookie dough recipe with cornstarch, but wanted to know if you noticed a difference (if there is any) in texture/taste between the two cookie dough base?

    1. Well I detailed most of my experiences in the post about how I thought this base differed with using the pudding mix in place of the cornstarch as the major point of differentiation in the recipes. And why did I try a new cookie dough base? Because I’m a food blogger and that’s what I do…always trying new things :) Glad you love the cookies!

  50. Hello !!❤️❤️❤️ made these Valentines M&M cookies and these are the most amazing cookies ! The dough !! Oh my gosh ! Love them. They are so fun to make. My 10 year old son and me are planning on trying lots of your cookie recipes ! We are a fan ! We ❤️Averie !!
    Thanks !
    Love Alice Cains

    1. Thanks for trying them Alice and glad you love them! And how sweet that you’re baking with your 10 y.o. :) Happy VDAY!

  51. Just wanted to say thank you for your helpful tips on even better cookies!!! Now my great cookies are FABULOUS cookies!

    1. Everyone’s ‘melon balls’ are different but if you’re talking a 1-inch ball I would say 7-8 minutes, tops. Not overbaking is key but that’s a guess because I haven’t tried it.

  52. I did these a little different- refrigerated the dough in a roll of Saran Wrap (a log) then just sliced and baked- they were so yummy! Will be making again! Thanks for the recipe!

      1. Ahh great idea putting in the tube :-) that would help transporting to fridge! It worked great for this recipe- I sliced them on the thick side, I got 18 cookies out of the recipe and put more M & M’s on top too! :-) Thanks again for the yummy recipe can’t wait to try all the other candy bar mix ins :-)

  53. Honestly M&Ms are one of my favorite candies. The peanut butter ones are to die for! Pretty cookies. :)

  54. I’ve been looking for a recipe that is similar to these gourmet cookies we have found at a local grocery store. The dough is thick (almost seems like we are eating cookie dough) but very tasty. I wonder if they use cornstarch in their cookies. I’ve been trying to figure out how they achieve such a thick doughy cookie. Would like to try this recipe and see if it’s similar.

    1. Thick doughy cookies…it can be so many things. Over-flouring, under-baking, cornstarch, pudding mix, extra egg yolks, packing the dough with shortening. So many variables.

  55. Made these last night and they turned out perfectly. Soft, moist, and chewy. Love them! Great recipe…I will for sure be using it again and again!

    1. I’m glad you loved them, Veronica, and that they turned out perfectly for you and you’ll be using the recipe again and again!

  56. I will definitely be making these! I really want them right now, but I think I’ll make them for the Super Bowl with M&M colors to match the team I’m cheering for :-)

    1. When people change the recipe from what I wrote, it’s impossible for me to ‘guess’ accurately. Purely a guess, but I would start with 7-8 mins.

  57. I would love to make this cookies for valentinesday!
    May I ask you where you got these coloured m&ms? I looked everywhere but I cant find them.

      1. Well you can use any kind of M&Ms you want. These were just Valentine’s colors but all colors taste the same :)

  58. Pudding mix? Say what?! A recent convert to the cornstarch craze, I’ll have to give pudding mix a try. Love your Valentine’s Day themed M&Ms. Too cute!

  59. Hi Averie,
    These look scrumptious so, of course, I needed to try them…my cookie dough came out really crumbly. Not sure why…any suggestions?

    1. Hmm not sure. My dough was very moist. Are you sure you measured everything correctly and didn’t accidentally over-add flour or other dry ingredients? The only change to this dough and literally 25 other recipes identical to it was adding the 1/4 c pudding mix instead of 2 tsp cornstarch which isn’t enough to make a noticeable difference in the dough crumble factor. So many thousands of people have tried all those other recipes and I don’t usually hear about crumblyness. Not sure what to say. Maybe add less flour next time if you’re 100% sure you measured everything correctly.

      1. I’m 99.9% sure I didn’t over-add any dry ingredients. I did wonder if it was the 1/4 c. of pudding mix myself… I’ll do another batch later in the week and see what happens. But, right now, the dough is in the refrigerator, I’ll see how it turns out. Thanks for the quick reply!

      2. Ok when you measured the flour, you didn’t pack it down into the cup. You need to measure flour with a light hand. Sounds like you may know that but just pointing it out. Also initial creaming step, the butter was set out to soften, creaming wasn’t shortcut..the brown sugar was nice and moist and not dried out. Those are all other things that come to mind. You used a large egg rather than medium. Keep me posted.

      3. lol that’s funny I thought the same thing about the egg, ran to the fridge to make sure I had bought large eggs.
        Those are really good tips! The brown sugar wasn’t as moist as it could have been and my hand may have been heavy with the flour. When I red0 the recipe I’ll keep those things in mind. Moistening up that sugar as we speak.
        Thanks Avery!

      4. It’s the SUGAR! Brown sugar that’s not moist can kill dough. Plus, then using anything other than a light hand with flour, that’s a double whammy. I think the little tweaks will work and start with 1 1/2 c flour next time and as necessary, work your way up to 2c, just to be safe. LMK how it goes!

      5. Averie!
        I re-did them, and even though I was super careful with everything, I ended up using 1.5cups of flour only (strange huh?). But OMG, they are amazing! I took the first batch to work, but these, these babies I kept for myself! Thank you for all the tips. mwah!

      6. Well I’m so glad you got them to work and they are JUST what you needed! And yes, keep these all for yourself :) And 1.5 is lower than I’d expect but hey, whatever works, works!

      7. Yep. Whatever works, works is what I thought too…I probably could have done another 1/4 cup of flour but I was afraid to dry it out again.

  60. These are so pretty and they do look really good, I’ve never made cookies with pudding mix before I shall definitely have to give these a go.

  61. Pudding mix in cookies is really something new for me, but I have to admit the cookies look just awesome! So I’ll try this recipe asap.

  62. Made these last night and baked the first ones this morning. I realized I forgot the egg after I put the chocolate chips in. Gave it a try anyway and they came out great! They are nice and puffy too. Who knew! I used dark chocolate chips.

    1. That’s amazing that even without an egg they still worked! God bless the pudding mix! Thanks for trying them!

  63. I must say, I never thought there were so may ways to make M&M’s/chocolate chip cookies! Great job, Averie, I think everyone must have been drooling at this post :) I love how you describe each and every thing- the texture, flavors, softness…it was *almost* like I’ve already tasted these!

    1. I never thought there was so many ways to bake a cookie either, until baking cookies has become my FT job :) Now I can talk about it for days, the little nuances and details that truly do effect results!

  64. I must say I was drooling looking at these pics and reading your post!!! LOVE the pics!! Cannot wait to make them!! :)

  65. You know how I feel about pudding cookies :-) They still top my list of favorites! These are absolutely stunning looking girl! I love how crisp and clear they are, and how the M&M’s just pop! Amazing!!! Pinning for sure!

    1. I know you have scads of pudding cookie recipes. I use it in other things, i.e. banana bread, but never cookies til now. Sold.

      prettiest cookies I’ve ever seen! <-- no way. Not even. But thank you :) And thanks for pinning!

  66. Love these! I’ve never actually made cookies with pudding mix but you may have convinced me to do it! They look absolutely delicious. And the colors are beautiful! Pinning!

  67. These cookies are just perfect for valentines day. Is there something I can use instead of pudding mix as we don’t have that in the UK?

  68. Beautiful cookies!! I love the idea of only using 1/4 cup pudding mix rather than the whole package.

  69. I have some peppermint M&M’s that would be great in these cookies! I’ll have to remember to leave out some butter for cookies : )

  70. I never thought of adding vanilla pudding mix in my cookies…but clearly it worked! These are so adorable and perfect for Valentine’s Day!

  71. My inner geek loves cookie science. I have a recipe for chocolate-chocolate chip cookies which uses instant chocolate pudding and it’s always been a big hit, so I have no doubt that this one is a winner, as well.

    1. My next goal is chocolate pudding mix cookies. I mean they’ve all been done before, but not by me :) So I get to experience ‘new’ cookies! The simple things.

      1. I’m kinda thinking that butterscotch pudding would make a very rich tasting cookie. Hmmm.

        If you’re hard-pressed for new ideas, I’d welcome a recipe for making a one-hour yeast cinnamon bread. But maybe that’s not enough time due to the thickness of bread versus rolls?

      2. Oh I’m not hard-pressed :) I have more ideas than time or metabolism..ha!

        Bread in an hour, i.e. a loaf, can be tricky because just to get a 9×5 loaf to cook through can take 30-45 mins, depending on the oven and the dough, so that leaves virtually no time to even mix up the dough. That’s why rolls or buns in an hour is more of a reality.

    1. I can’t even believe you’re blogging/commenting right now…holy busy mommy!! Thanks, Stephanie :)

  72. I have been using this trick for ages too. We have custard powder in Australia which act in the same way; in fact it is a bit sweeter down under which mean you can reduce the amount sugar.

    I used it recently in batch of soft white chocolate chip cookies which help them not become too sweet. Love cookie science; the best kind of science is one you can eat!

    1. I really want to get my hands on custard powder. It’s a special order and I should just put some in my amazon cart with my next order. I know I could use it to make Nanaimo Bars and other things. That’s interesting it works similar to pudding powder and is sweeter so you can reduce the sugar. I love trivia like this! Thanks for sharing :)

  73. Ah, cookie science. Love cookie science! I’ve never tried pudding mix in cookies but it’s so interesting how different combinations of ingredients yield very different cookies. These look delicious and I love how soft and chewy they are.

  74. I love the texture cornstarch gives cookies, especially in gluten free baking, since the dough can be dry and crumbly normally. I haven’t tried pudding mix though. I also haven’t made cookies in over a month though it is on my to-do list today!

  75. About two years ago, I made my first pudding cookies and even though they tasted fabulous, they would spread during baking like crazy. Now I know to chill the dough. :) Pinning these cute cookies!

  76. I’m going to have to try that pudding/cornstarch trick! It’s been far too long since my oven has seen a batch of chocolate chip cookies – I might have to whip these up this weekend!

  77. I’ve heard of pudding mix in cookies, but I don’t buy pudding mix. However, you did such a good job of talking up these cookies that I’m going to toss a box in my shopping cart. These are gorgeous cookies, and I have two cookie monsters who share a home with me. I think these will be popular while they watch football.

  78. I might be able to go without gourmet chocolates for Valentine’s Day if I have these instead! I know pudding mix is great in quick breads, but I never thought about it for cookies. It makes sense though since cornstarch is a great cookie dough enhancer. Beautiful photos–the cookies look incredibly golden/buttery and the M&M colors really pop!

    1. So, so so good. I loved them so much and they were gone in a heartbeat! If you try this dough base, LMK what you think!

  79. I love how soft and thick these cookies are! And they’re so pretty with the pink and red m&m’s. I’ve never tried pudding mix in my cookies but if these are the results I might just have to try!

  80. I’m not sure why I’d never thought to use chic chips in the cookies and just put M&Ms on top… Genius! I haven’t put pudding mix into cookies for a few years (just trying to make healthier versions) but we have a BIG playoff game tomorrow so I’m thinking these would be awesome with team colors! Of course we’ll need to make them again for Vday because they’re so happy and cute! You’re pictures are gorgeous!!!

  81. Beautiful cookies for Valentine’s Day, Averie! Yes, I remember when pudding drop cookies first went viral via in the 1990s with chocolate chip cookies. And, later, Cook’s Illustrated published an article about modified food starch. For so many, this is their favorite and I bet your recipe is the new gold standard! Pinning!

  82. I have heard pudding cookies are incredible, but have still never tried them. I have got to change this soon. Your cookies look perfect and delicious! Loving the colors of the M&M’s and that melty chocolate! Honest, these look incredible!

    1. Thanks, Tieghan! I know with your altitude, cookie baking can be tricky but I have a feeling these would be successful for you!

  83. I love M&M cookies and used to get them at the mall when I was a little girl. Now, I can recreate them in my kitchen–thanks to you! :)

    Also, I love cookie science and am excited to try the pudding mix instead of cornstarch. I love your cornstarch cookies and for you to say you love these even more: WOW, I’m excited!

  84. I LOVE science posts! These really do look scrumptious – maybe it’s the pudding mix, maybe it’s the extra awesome photos. All I know is that I’d like to carry a few of these in my pockets at work today… (because all ballet teachers should be armed with pink M&M studded cookies).

  85. Pudding mix?! Who would’ve thought?! Maybe I’ll surprise Jason with these epic cookies. He’s been asking for cookies for quite some time but I just haven’t had the time to bake!

    1. Yeah girl it’s so KEY! Just 1/4 cup but boy, you won’t want to make cookies without it! And I wish you lived closer so I could just donate stuff to you!

  86. Ooh, ooh, ooh, now that you are turned on to pudding mix in the dough you have GOT to make chocolate chip cookies with pistachio pudding mix. It is amazing. Glad you got the pudding fix;)

    1. Not the hugest pistachio fan (maybe I’m the only one!) but I’ll take your word for it! I’ve seen others blog about it so it must be good!

  87. Wow, now this is one thing I would never have thought of! Pudding mix in cookies? I’m amazed :) I can’t wait to give this recipe a try! And your photos are beyond beautiful!

    Have a lovely weekend!

    xx Ivana

  88. Pudding mix as the secret ingredient in making perfect cookie dough? Call me stupid, but I never thought that that’d be the key ingredient. Those cookies look INCREDIBLE – can’t beat soft-batch style.

    1. It’s so KEY! Just 1/4 cup but boy, you won’t want to make cookies without it! And yes to Softbatch style! Have a great weekend, Liz! :)