Minnesota: T-Rex Cookie (Minneapolis) from The Best Cookie in Every State Gallery
The Best Cookie in Every State Gallery
The Best Cookie in Every State
The humble cookie has been a palm-sized treat and baking basic for decades, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be elevated to greater heights. We have searched the U.S. for the best cookies, from classic chocolate chip in all shapes and sizes to inventive creations like the alcohol-infused Tipsy Velvet at The Cookie Bar in Las Vegas and caramel, toffee, and chocolate Caramel by the Sea at Moonshine Mountain Cookie Company in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Crazy for cookies, we considered bakeries, cookie shops, and cookie trucks. Cookie companies did not have to have a brick-and-mortar storefront to be considered. Small cafes with limited food menus and companies that sell cookies online and ship nationwide were considered, but supermarket bakeries, hotel bakeries, restaurants and bars that sell cookies, and large-scale, nationwide cookie chains were not.
We judged the establishments and their cookies both on essentials, like flavor and texture, and on creativity. Read on to discover the best cookie in every state.
Alabama: Cookie Fix (Homewood)
Cookie Fix’s favorite cookie (and ours) is the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookie, a cookie made by owner Amy Jason long before she opened Cookie Fix in 2016. The cookie is loaded with premium semisweet chips and chunks plus peanut butter chips. “No more chunks could possibly fit!” Jason told us. “The peanut butter makes it deliciously moist, and our secret and unique recipe makes it a ‘tall’ cookie that is crisp on the outside and gooey on the inside. No big, flat boring cookies here.” The $2.40 cookie is a top seller thanks to the staff: “The entire Cookie Fix team loves the classic combination of peanut butter and chocolate in several of our cookies, but this one is definitely the favorite,” said Jason. “Because we are ‘cookie consultants’ and have our customer’s trust, when they ask what our favorite cookie is, they are bound to try it.” The cookie shop also sells “sister” cookies, which rotate monthly; the Peanut Butter Salted Caramel Pretzel, Peanut Butter M&M, and Peanut Butter Oreo are also top sellers. Other cookies on the menu include: Classic Chocolate Chip, Salted Dark Chocolate Caramel Chocolate Chip, Chunky Baby, Brown Sugar Blondie, White Trash, and Magic City Chocolate Chip — all with a twist of sea salt on top. There is also a Healthy Peanut Butter cookie, a flourless oatmeal cookie and, on Fridays, there are Bootie Bars (layers of oatmeal toffee chocolate chip dough with a thick luscious layer of caramel, and another layer of oatmeal toffee). The shop also sells Cookie Fix Frozen Dough to Go (packs of 15 frozen dough balls for customers to bake at home).
Alaska: Fire Island Rustic Bakeshop (Anchorage)
Owner Jerry Lewanski has eaten chocolate chip cookies all over the world and he wanted to sell the best version when he opened Fire Island Rustic Bakeshop in 2009. The $2 Fire Island Chocolate Chip Cookie is made with organic flour, sugar, and dark chocolate chips yielding a domed cookie that is crispy on the outside, yet moist and gooey on the inside with a cake-like mouthfeel. The bakeshop also makes peanut butter cream sandwich cookies, ginger molasses sandwich cookies with lemon cream, and shortbread cookies. The shop also makes scones, croissants, focaccias, and sourdough breads.
Arizona: Super Chunk (Phoenix)
Super Chunk’s superlative cookie is the Mesquite Chocolate Chip that has a satisfying sandy texture that mimics the Arizona desert (in a good way!) and tastes like nutmeg, caramel, and nuts. The shortbread cookie is made with butter, organic raw sugar, and mesquite flour. Located in Old Town Scottsdale, the family-owned bakery, sweet shop, and café also sells sandwiches made on house-baked bread, confections like chocolate bacon caramel corn and house-made licorice with fennel, anise, and green chartreuse, and ice cream, including flavors like Peixoto Coffee, basil hazelnut praline, and Tea & Biscuits.
Arkansas: Chunky Dunk (Fayetteville)
Milk and cookies truck Chunky Dunk lives by a playful adage: “A cookie a day keeps the doctor away. Especially if you add ice cream to it.” Whimsical ice cream sandwiches with creative names like the Taylor Swift (cookie dough ice cream sandwiches between a chocolate chip cookie, a sugar cookie, sprinkles, and chocolate sauce) and the Sweater Weather (cardamom cinnamon toffee ice cream sandwiched between two pumpkin cookies with crushed graham crackers and chai spiced maple glaze) have won over the people of Fayetteville — and us.
California: Cake Monkey Bakery (Los Angeles)
Owner Lisa J. Olin and Executive Pastry Chef Elizabeth Belkind craft sweet treats, including pies, cakes, and snack treats, to satisfy everyone’s cravings at Cake Monkey Bakery. The Summer Camp Chocolate Chip Cookie, a gooey, chewy and crispy treat made with caramelized Rice Krispies, marshmallow, and dark chocolate, is the best seller. Other cookie flavors we love include the whimsical Li'l Merri's, oatmeal cream pie sandwich cookies filled with maple vanilla buttercream, and The Big O, a sandwich cookie that is a twist on the Oreo.
Colorado: Santa Fe Cookie Co. (Denver)
Locally owned and family-run, Santa Fe Cookie Co. has been baking cookies since 1986. Flavors that come out fresh from the oven include classics like chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, sugar, peanut butter, peanut butter chocolate chip, and more complex flavors like harvest cranberry oatmeal, coconut macaroons, pecan praline, Space Chip, and shortbread with piñon nuts. The bakery also makes cupcakes, scones, macaroons, vegan and gluten-free brownies, and gluten-free brown sugar nut bars, almond crisps, and lemon bars.
Connecticut: Sweet Maria's (Waterbury)
The biggest-selling cookie at Sweet Maria’s is the Pignoli cookie, a chewy on the inside, crispy on the outside, pine nut topped almond macaroon. Naturally gluten-free, the cookie is made from almond paste, sugar, egg whites, and pine nuts. The cookies are $14 per pound. When owner Maria Bruscino Sanchez was writing the cookie menu before the bakery opened in 1990, she decided to add this quintessential Italian cookie. After tinkering with the recipe with the help of friends and the Italian community in Waterbury, the results speak for themselves. There are versions with chocolate and sliced almonds, raspberry, lemon, lime, and orange amaretti. The bakery also serves 25 types of biscotti, some traditional ones and others that are more cookie-like (butter based): chocolate chip, oatmeal, gingersnaps, thumbprints, peanut butter balls, butter cookies, pumpkin, maple, peanut butter, cut-outs, apple cider cookies, Snickerdoodles, coconut macaroons, magic bars, and almond triangles. The bakery also specializes in whipped cream layer cakes like the Very Berry, three layers of white cake, filled with blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, and frosted with whipped cream.
Delaware: Bing's Bakery, Newark, Delaware
The traditional Italian Rainbow Cookie has brightened the day for customers at Bing’s Bakery since it debuted in 2005. The Italian Rainbow Cookie is made with a tri-color almond cookie cake filled with raspberry and apricot jam and coated on both sides with chocolate. The colorful cookies are $13.95 per pound. Open since 1946, Bing’s Bakery also makes butter cookies, almond macaroons, chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal cookies, and Chinese cookies along with Napoleons, cannoli, and éclairs.
Florida: Gideon's Bakehouse (Orlando)
The cookies are so popular at Gideon’s Bakehouse that customers are limited to half a dozen per person. There are six daily flavors that sell out practically every day. While all the cookies are equally popular, the cookie most people get addicted to first, according to the bakery, is the $5 Pistachio Toffee Dark Chocolate Chip Cookie. The half-pound cookie is made with sea salt and minimal sugar, filled with chocolate, pistachios, and toffee and smothered on top with more chocolate, pistachios, and toffee. “The core recipe behind the Gideon’s Bakehouse Cookie was an obsessive 15-year journey of trial and error,” said Steve Lewis, owner. The cookies are made in small batches and take 18 hours of prep time before being baked and served. “All of our cookies are thick, soft and chewy, giving you the best of a cookie dough experience in a fully baked cookie,” said Lewis. What started as an “underground bakery” where patrons ordered via word of mouth and direct delivery in 2008 has grown to a 286-square-foot retail space. The bakeshop is on target to sell 20 tons of Pistachio Toffee Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies in 2018. The other core cookie flavors are classic chocolate chip, triple chocolate, peanut butter, and Cookies and Cream, which are offered along with a sixth limited-edition monthly flavor like Peanut Butter Espresso Cookies, White Chocolate Macadamia Nut with homemade Caramel, Salted Andies Mint, and Coffee Cake. The shop also sells cake slices, including an exceptional Southern buttermilk red velvet cake.
Georgia: Back in the Day Bakery (Savannah)
Established in 2002, the small artisan bakery in Savannah’s Starland District was a 2015 James Beard nominee for outstanding bakers Cheryl and Griffith Day. Back in the Day Bakery sells a quartet of cookies that are all equally exceptional: chocolate chip, lavender shortbread, Miss Hanna’s, and Ultimate Oatmeal along with exemplary biscuits, pies, cupcakes, breads, and sandwiches.
Hawaii: Honolulu Cookie Company (Honolulu)
Since 1998, Honolulu Cookie Company has been baking a variety of Hawaii-inspired cookies and specializes in shortbread cookies. Its top-selling cookie is the Chocolate Dipped Macadamia cookie, a classic, buttery, crunchy shortbread cookie hand-dipped in rich milk chocolate. The cookie made its debut as a limited flavor, and now it is the only cookie flavor to have a full collection devoted solely to it. The cookies are sold alone and as part of Honolulu Cookie Company’s pre-set collections like the Signature Gift Box Chocolate Dipped Macadamia. Honolulu Cookie Company also bakes cookies with flavors like guava, Kona coffee, and coconut that feature chewy fruit morsels or coffee beans baked right in; some are hand-dipped in white, milk, or dark chocolate. The cookies can be shipped nationwide.
Idaho: Wildflour Bakery (Garden City)
Wildflour Bakery bakes small batches of cookies, muffins, scones, breads, and coffee cakes that are sold at Wildflour Bakery & Espresso Bar in Garden City and at Boise Co-op, WinCo Foods, and Whole Foods Market in Boise. Founded by owner Mary Cogswell in 1992, the cookies are sold in four- and eight-cookie packs. Large cookies are sold in $4 four-packs in flavors like oatmeal raisin, Oatmeal Power, Oat Chocolate Chip, Oat Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Oat Cranberry Walnut, A Little Bit of Everything, Chocolate Chocolate Chip, Oat Butterscotch Chocolate Chip, and Gingerbread, and small cookies in $4.50 eight-packs in flavors like Salted Chocolate Chip, Snickerdoodles, Chocolate Crinkles, Ginger Thins, and Black & Tan. The bakery also makes muffins, coffee cakes, scones, and breads.
Illinois: big.fat.cookie (Chicago)
The top seller at big.fat.cookie is the Jack Pack, a 6-ounce-plus classic chocolate chip cookie made with Biscoff Cookie Butter and adorned with half Oreo and half Reese’s on top. The concept of this colossal cookie was created in 2015 after the owner spent three decades manufacturing costume jewelry. When customers warm the cookie at home, the $5 cookie is crispy on the outside and melty and ooey gooey on the inside. The cookies are so big that they are meant to be sliced like a pie or like biscotti and shared; they serve two to five people. The hefty cookies are sold online for $7 each. Other top-sellers include a classic cookie stuffed with Nutella and topped with a whole Biscoff cookie and a classic cookie with s’mores topping.
Indiana: Heidelberg Haus (Indianapolis)
Gabi and Jurgen Jungbauer opened Heidelberg Haus in 1968 to offer locals delights from Germany. Over the years, Heidelberg Haus has expanded into a cafe, bakery, pastry shop, German grocery store, and gift shop. The labor-intensive German Springerle cookies have a loyal following. Each cookie is expertly prepared with cake flour, powdered sugar, fresh eggs, vanilla, salt, hartshorn (a source of ammonia used in baking) and flavors like anise oil and anise seeds. The dough is rolled out and century-old hand carved historic wooden molds are hand pressed into the 1-centimeter-thick dough. Once baked, the cookies come out white on top and perfectly golden on the bottom. The bakery is also known for its exquisite wedding cakes and seasonal pfeffernuesse.
Iowa: Thelma's Treats (Des Moines)
Thelma’s Treats uses the owners’ great grandmother Thelma’s recipe to make its Signature Snickerdoodle, a soft, chewy, buttery cookie with a slight crunch of cinnamon and sugar on the outside. (Thelma was known for her snickerdoodles.) Thelma’s Treats delivers their snickerdoodles, chocolate chip, peanut butter, and double chocolate chocolate cookies warm in cute little oven boxes in Des Moines. Cookies are $20 per dozen. Thelma’s Treats also makes ice cream sandwiches, which are sold in stores across the Midwest and can be shipped nationwide.
Kansas: Best Regards Bakery & Café (Overland Park)
Best Regards Bakery & Café’s Cranberry Orange cookie is a quarter pound of perfection. The inch-tall dome of this buttery cookie is tender, and the cookie has a fresh citrus aroma and is packed with orange and cranberries. “Many pastry chefs have tried to deconstruct and back-engineer this recipe, but to no avail,” said Robert Duensing, who created the $3.49 cookie after being inspired during a trip to the Fancy Food Show in 2003: “This was well before cranberry and orange were even thought of as a classic combination. We happened to stop at a booth that had cranberry chutney next to another booth with something orange. We thought, hmmm, I wonder…,” said Duensing. Each cookie is individually wrapped and heat-sealed in a special bag, custom-made for the bakery, locking in the cookie’s scent. “When you first open the package, you will want to smell the cookie. It will smell like a tree-ripened Florida orange!” said Duensing. Opened in 1993, the bakery also sells cream puffs, chocolate éclairs, and croissants. Cookies were introduced in 2002 and the signature Cranberry Orange cookie debuted in 2003 and has been the bakery’s best seller ever since.
Kentucky: Kizito Cookies (Louisville)
Born under a banana tree in Nansana, Uganda, Elizabeth Kizito came to the U.S. in 1975. She went on to create Kizito Cookies, which are sold in dozens of stores in Louisville, a handful of stores in Indiana, and one shop in Ohio. Choosing among the 14 cookie flavors is tough. Fortunately, customers can order a dozen assorted 3-ounce cookies online. Options include chocolate chip, snickerdoodle, pumpkin chocolate chip, deluxe oatmeal, shortbread, white chocolate chip, peanut butter, coconut macaroons, chocolate chocolate chip, nutty chocolate chip, sugar, pumpkin raisin, gingersnaps, and Lucky in Kentucky (dark chocolate, white chocolate, and crispy pecans). Kizito Cookies also makes brownies, biscotti, muffins, and granola.
Louisiana: Poupart Bakery (Lafayette)
Francois Poupart and Patrick Jean Marie Poupart have been making the finest French pastries, Old World French breads, soups, and sandwiches since 1967 at Poupart Bakery. From colorful macarons to meticulously decorated royal iced shortbread cookies, there are plenty of French cookies to try. The bakery also makes Danishes, croissants, biscuits, tarts, and more. Seasonal treats like gingerbread houses, alligator bread, and king cakes are all exceptional and popular.
Maine: Standard Baking Co. (Portland)
Family-owned Standard Baking Co. opened in 1995 and has been making artisanal baked goods ever since. Cookies are sold warm straight from the oven at 1:30 p.m. daily. The menu changes daily and seasonally. The bakery is also known for its breads, like French baguettes, hearty German vollkornbrot, fragrant focaccia, and an all-organic miche made from 100 percent Maine-grown and milled whole grains that are baked in a 12-ton stone-deck oven. The bakery also makes hand-rolled croissants, pain au chocolat, brioche, and scones, which customers can watch being made in the open production bakery.
Maryland: Berger Cookies (Baltimore)
German immigrant Henry Berger came to the U.S. in 1835, and he opened a bakery soon after in East Baltimore. The hand-dipped chocolate fudge Berger Cookie is synonymous with Baltimore and a staple in Maryland homes. The uninitiated may mistake the Berger Cookie for an all-black black and white cookie, but it is not. The proportion of fudgy frosting to vanilla cake-like cookie is overwhelmingly frosted with the cookie just serving as a base for the frosting. Sold in grocery stories, Berger Cookies are also available online: two-cookie snack packs are $2.50 and a 15-ounce pack is $5.99.
Massachusetts: Flour Bakery & Café (Boston)
Crispy on the edges and chewy and soft in the middle, Flour Bakery’s Chunky Lola is full of oats, raisins, pecans, and coconut. One of the headnotes in owner Joanne Chang’s first book, “Flour,” sums up the signature $2.25 Chunky Lola cookie (the book also has the Chunky Lola recipe): Staff put all their favorites — coconut, pecans, and chocolate — into one cookie, then asked customers to submit names for the new creation. Chunky Lola won out, though no one knew who Lola was. Since the book came out, however, Lola has resurfaced: She is an adorable bulldog whose picture is now on the sign for this cookie at Flour, which opened in 2000 and began making Chunky Lola a year later. Flour also bakes chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, peanut butter, ginger molasses, double chocolate, milk chocolate hazelnut, a breakfast cookie, vegan almond macaroon, coconut macaroon, homemade Oreos, gluten-free caramel Oreos along with homemade granola bar and raspberry crumb bars. Flour will debut a tahini and black sesame shortbread soon. The bakery also makes its signature banana bread, butter Breton cake, carrot cake with cream cheese frosting, and mile-high lemon meringue pie. Don’t miss the Sticky Sticky Buns, brioche rolled with cinnamon sugar and pecans and baked with a brown sugar-honey-cream-butter goo, and lots more pecans, which won Food Network’s “Throwdown! with Bobby Flay” and was featured on Food Network’s “The Best Thing I Ever Ate.”
Michigan: Good Cakes and Bakes (Detroit)
The top-selling cookie at Good Cakes and Bakes can be deceiving at first glance. What looks like a typical sugar cookie is actually an amazing Lemon Sugar Cookie with a perfectly crispy edge and satisfyingly chewy center. April Anderson, pastry chef and co-owner of Good Cakes and Bakes, loved sugar cookies growing up and made them often with her mother, which inspired the top-selling cookie’s recipe. “As I got older, I gained affection for any desserts with lemons in them. When we were thinking of cookie recipes for the bakery, I said ‘Let’s change the traditional sugar cookie recipe and add lemons to them,’” said Anderson. Before baking, the cookies are rolled in sugar and lemon zest and brown sugar is added to the dough to create crispy edges to the $2.50 cookie. Anderson, who opened the bakery in 2013, also bakes chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal creme sandwich cookies with a touch of rum in the filling, seasonal red velvet cookies stuffed with cream cheese, crispy peanut butter cookies, and vegan oatmeal cookies made with sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, raisins and dried cranberries. The bakery also makes an amazing lemon and strawberry gooey butter cake. The bakery’s sweet treats have been baked for Oprah Winfrey and former U.S. President Bill Clinton.
Minnesota: T-Rex Cookie (Minneapolis)
The colossal half-pound cookies baked at T-Rex Cookie have put this bakery on the map. Owner Tina Rexing, an avid baker who spent 17 years competing in the Minnesota State Fair Baking competitions, opened T-Rex Cookie in 2015, and when the cookies first debuted, they were average size. “I had taught tennis for a number of years and had developed tennis elbow,” said Rexing, “As I was scooping the small cookies, I thought what if I just made them bigger? Then, I wouldn't have to scoop as many.” Rexing took a bunch of the larger half-pound cookies to the Minneapolis Farmers Market, they sold out immediately, and the rest is history. The signature Sea Salt Caramel Chocolate Chip is so popular it was featured on the “Today Show” just eight months after Rexing started her company and was sold at Super Bowl LII in Minneapolis. The Sea Salt Caramel Chocolate Chip is crispy on the outside, chewy in the middle, and packed with chocolate chips and caramel bits topped with a large flake sea salt. The cookie sells for an average of $7 at retail outlets. Pro tip: Because of the size, the cookies hold a longer shelf life than other cookies. “They freeze very well, and actually, an entire pint of ice cream fits between two cookies to make the best ice cream sandwich,” said Rexing, who also sells 50 other varieties of cookies, including Dill Pickle, Chocolate Chirp (chocolate chip with crickets), Cereal Killer Cookies (various cookie flavors with cereal like Fruity Pebbles), hefty 5-pound cookies, and 15-pound ice cream sandwiches. Rexing’s cafe is located in a 100-year-old building slated for redevelopment, so T-Rex Cookie will be temporarily relocating and launching a Kickstarter campaign to purchase a food truck to continue bringing cookies to the masses during the transition.
Mississippi: La Brioche (Jackson)
La Brioche infuses their creations with Argentinian, Italian, Uruguayan, and Swedish flavors. The French macarons at La Brioche are made in-house with 100 percent almond flour and are filled with buttercream or ganache. The flavorful $2 macarons have a perfectly soft mouthfeel and are bursting with flavors, which change daily. The patisserie, which first sold its treats at a farmers market in Jackson before opening a storefront in 2014, also sells mini macarons, alfajores (an Argentinian shortbread cookie filled with dulce de leche), and entremets (mousse layered cakes with wonderful glazes).
Missouri: Hot Box Cookies (Columbia, St. Louis and Clayton)
Hot Box Cookies bakes and delivers warm cookies in St. Louis and Columbia, Missouri, and Lawrence, Kansas. There are one dozen flavors to choose from. Customers can order six, 12, 18, 24, and 36 cookies in flavors like chocolate chip, Cookies N’ Crème, M&M, Snickerdoodle, peanut butter, peanut butter Reese’s Pieces, peanut butter chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, oatmeal chocolate chip, Monster, red velvet, and chocolate white chocolate. Hot Box Cookies also makes luscious Icing Sandwiches (vanilla icing sandwiched between two cookies of customers’ choices). Cookie cakes and ice cream sandwiches round out the offerings.
Montana: Elle's Belles (Belgrade)
Elle Fine started Elle’s Belles in her home in Bozeman, Mont. in 2003. Elle’s “Belles” are sold in local bakeries and marketplaces in and around Bozeman, Mont. and gift assortments of cookies, brownies, truffles, and whoopie pies are made “to order” in small batches that can be shipped nationwide. The Daisy Sugar Cookies, daisy-shaped, cream cheese-frosted sugar cookies, have been featured on Oprah Winfrey’s All Things Delicious List. Other sugar cookies include emoji and hot lips decorations. Fine also bakes Oatmeal Cookie Pies and Lemon Cookie Pies, both twists on the whoopie pie. For local clients, Fine also makes cakes, cupcakes, pies, cheesecakes, tarts, frosted cream cheese sugar cookies, macaroons, brownies, and bars “to order.”
Nebraska: Carson's Cookie Fix (Omaha)
The chewy, ooey, and oh-so-gooey Caramel Chocolate Chip is the most popular cookie at Carson’s Cookie Fix. The $1.50 delight is an enhancement of the classic chocolate chip cookie thanks to the chunks of caramel. Customers can get their cookie fix with the 17 cookies on offer, including coconut, ginger, salted caramel, and monster. The cookie shop specializes in detailed hand-decorated cut-out cookies. Whether you stop by the store or seek out the cookie truck (the only dessert food truck in Nebraska), try the Double Doozie, two cookies sandwiching a generous slathering of vanilla buttercream frosting.
Nevada: The Cookie Bar (Las Vegas)
The mother-daughter-owned Cookie Bar has been making alcohol-infused cookies since 2012. One of its most popular cookies, Tipsy Velvet, was invented by accident when the duo tried to create a pink chocolate chip cookie in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Crunchy on the outside and super soft in the middle, the $2 Tipsy Velvet cookie is made with white chocolate (the adult version is infused with cake vodka). Another popular cookie is The Kitchen Sink, a chocolate chip cookie on the bottom, stuffed with either a peanut butter cup or Double Stuf Oreo, and topped with a chocolate brownie. The cookies are sold from the Cookie Bar’s cute food trucks and online for local delivery and nationwide shipping.
New Hampshire: The Crust & Crumb (Concord)
Inspired by the Italian gelato flavor, the simple Stracciatella is the most popular cookie at The Crust & Crumb, which opened a storefront in 2012 after a year of selling at farmers markets. The $0.60 Stracciatella is a small, crumbly, buttery shortbread cookie studded with tiny bits of shaved dark chocolate and sprinkled with coarse salt. The Stracciatella is one of many shortbread flavors made at the bakery. Flavors include American classics like chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, and snickerdoodle as well as European styles like Linzer cookies, lemon anginetti, biscotti and Russian tea cakes, and the bakery’s own creations like seasonal pumpkin chocolate chip and German chocolate oatmeal cookies. The best selling non-cookie item is the whoopie pie, which comes in five or six flavors like salted caramel.
New Jersey: The Cookie Corner (Lakewood)
Since 2017, The Cookie Corner has been handcrafting kosher sweet treats. The $2 German Chocolate Cookies, a chocolate brownie cookie topped with coconut-pecan topping and chocolate drizzle, are exemplary. Other cookie flavors include peanut butter, Mad Craving, and pecan caramel. In addition to cookies, the bakeshop is famous for its cinnamon buns and also makes cake jars, tarts, éclairs, French macarons, chocolate babka, and cupcakes.
New Mexico: Cravin’ Cookies…and More! (Albuquerque)
Barb Hively founded Cravin’ Cookies…and More! in 2000, and she has made nearly every single cookie the cookie shop has been produced since. The adobe bakery in Albuquerque’s North Valley is open Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays and sells seasonally-changing flavors made with local ingredients like pumpkin spice cookies and sugar cookies. Other baked goods include pumpkin pound cake and pear pecan bread.
Courtesy of Levain Bakery
New York: Levain Bakery (New York City)
Levain Bakery’s top-selling cookie is the chocolate chip walnut cookie, crispy on the outside with a satisfyingly thick and gooey center. The 6-ounce $4 cookie is packed with semi-sweet chocolate chips and chunks of walnuts (a gluten-free version is also served at the location in Wainscott, New York). Levain Bakery founders Pam Weekes and Connie McDonald started making the chocolate chip walnut cookies as a post-workout treat while they were training for a triathlon. People started asking for them, and the cookies took off (the bakery opened in 1995). A trio of other flavors, oatmeal raisin, chocolate chocolate chip, and dark chocolate peanut butter chip, are also on offer. The crunchy and soft cookies are shipped nationwide. Levain Bakery also serves four kinds of crispy pizzas (olive and goat cheese, caramelized onion and Parmigiano-Reggiano, artichoke heart and Gruyère, and tomato with Parmigiano-Reggiano), brioche (plain, chocolate, and cinnamon), blueberry muffins, oatmeal raisin scones, Valhrona chocolate rolls, and breads (ciabatta, whole grain loaves, baguettes, and whole wheat raisin loaf).
North Carolina: The Cookie People (Raleigh)
Started 10 years ago, The Cookie People sells a dozen-plus varieties of large, chewy homemade cookies. The Cookie People are based out of the State Farmers Market in Raleigh. They make their preservative-free dough from scratch and use local ingredients when possible. The classic chocolate chip is the most popular cookie. Made with real butter, vanilla, and kosher salt, the perfectly dense cookies are chewy in the middle and slightly crunchy on the edges. Other popular flavors include molasses, oatmeal golden raisin, lemonade, root beer float, spicy Mexican hot chocolate, oatmeal chocolate chip (with white and dark chips and sea salt on top!), triple chocolate, sugar, snickerdoodle, and peanut butter cup. The Cookie People bake seasonal flavors, such as pumpkin chocolate chip with cranberries, walnuts, and a brown sugar butter glaze, and, during the warmer months, ice cream sandwiches stuffed with a local university’s homemade ice cream.
North Dakota: Cookies For You (Minot)
Traditional frosted sugar cookies with white icing are what Cookies For You is known for. Chewy in the middle and crispy on the edges, the cookies are approximately four inches in diameter and are $12 per dozen. The company ships its cookies nationwide and to military bases (the bakery is in the same community as a military base). In business for over a quarter century, Cookies For You also makes traditional cookies, and they create cookie bouquets, cookie pizzas, candy bouquets, and sweets trays as well as cupcakes, custom cakes, cake pops, truffles, and assorted bars and brownies.
Ohio: Fat T's Cookies, (Akron)
Fat T’s Cookies’ best seller is the summer seasonal S’mummer Camp, but their Cinn City cookie, a chocolate chip cookie rolled up like a cinnamon roll and topped with cream cheese icing, has been named the top cookie in Ohio by multiple outlets. “Cinn City’s consistency can be described by my motto ‘Big. Fat. Chewy. Quarter. Pound. Cookie,’” said Travis Howe, the bakery’s “chief cookie officer.” The $2.50 Cinn City is the fourth cookie Howe ever made, originally designed as a breakfast treat for Special Olympics volunteers. Fat T’s has six playful flavors on regular rotation, including The OG, chocolate peanut butter, Cookie’s Favorite Cookie, Cinn City, Four the Love of Chocolate, and #MooseHouse (Howe’s personal favorite of the six). Some of the top-selling monthly and seasonal cookies include S’mummer Camp, MidKNIGHT Snack, O-H-I-Dough, Red, White, & Blueberry, High on the Hog, Punk’n Patch, and FATiversary. The S’mummer Camp cookie supports the Akron Rotary Camp, a year-round camp for children and adults with special needs. Fat T’s Cookies celebrated its first anniversary on Oct. 1. The cookies are baked in commercial kitchens and sold at Northside Marketplace in Akron, Ohio, coffee shops, and online. “Everything I make is ‘cookie-centric,’” said Howe, who only started baking in June 2017 and is now experimenting with edible cookie dough and Cookie Puddin’. “In a little over a year, I have gone from selling cookies out of the trunk of my car to pay for a gym membership to being named the top cookie company in the great state of Ohio,” said Howe.
Oklahoma: 1 Smart Cookie (Oklahoma City)
1 Smart Cookie bakes a variety of cookies, from classic to custom iced to cookies with edible images and logos. There are 14 ‘variety cookie’ flavors: M&M, Spritz (almond flavored sugar cookie rolled in rainbow sprinkles), chocolate chip, Smart (oatmeal, banana, and chocolate chips), Snickerdoodle, Heavenly Heath (Heath bar bits and white chocolate chips), oatmeal chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, oatmeal Scotchie, Coconut Paradise (chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, and coconut), double chocolate, lemon sugar, simply sugar and pecan sandie, plus one seasonally-changing flavor. 1 Smart Cookie also sells cookie dough and cookie cakes. 1 Smart Cookie ships its variety cookies and custom iced cookies nationwide.
Oregon: Pearl Bakery (Portland)
The small, artisanal Pearl Bakery has been baking bread and pastries since 1997. The eco-conscious bakery uses as many sustainably produced ingredients as possible. Its bags are made from recycled content and unbleached paper, and printed with water-based ink. The bakery buys pollution-free wind power through Pacific Power’s Blue Sky program and uses all-natural, biodegradable cleaning products. Each morning, Pearl Bakery makes chocolate chunk, oatmeal raisin, ginger, peanut butter, snickerdoodle, and shortbread. The bakery is famous for its French and Italian breads like pain poolish, pain au levain, ciabatta, and the signature Pugliese and its Danish, croissant, and brioche, which are made in the traditional French manner.
Pennsylvania: Famous 4th Street Cookie Co. (Philadelphia)
A Philadelphia tradition since 1978, the Famous 4th Street Cookie Co. is famously fantastic. The cookie shop started with a classic chocolate chip cookie oozing with Hershey’s chocolate chips that made this cookie shop famous. The cookie line-up has expanded to include chocolate macadamia nut, peanut butter chocolate chip, and snickerdoodle. Boxes of the 2-ounce chocolate chip cookies can be shipped nationwide.
Rhode Island: Wildflour (Pawtucket)
Founded in 2010, Wildflour vegan bakery bakes a variety of sweet treats, including its best-seller Double Chocolate Sea Salt Cookie, a large, thick, chewy, gluten-free, vegan cookie made with kosher ingredients with notes of sweetness and saltiness. Debuted in 2015, the indulgent cookie costs $2.75. It also makes a great ice cream sandwich with the bakery’s house-made vegan ice cream. The bakery also serves Cowboy, chocolate chip, and a rotating seasonal flavor cookie along with gluten-free, vegan double chocolate brownies, vegan peanut butter brownies and Raw-reos, which are made to look like a classic Oreo cookie, but are made entirely from raw ingredients.
South Carolina: King Street Cookies (Charleston)
The top-selling cookies at King Street Cookies are the basics: chocolate chip, sugar, and double chocolate, but the signature cookie is the $2.75 Needtobreathe Sinfully Cinnamon Cookie, a sugar cookie with cinnamon chips and topped with cream cheese icing and a light dusting of cinnamon. Named for a local band, Needtobreathe, a portion of the cookie’s sales is donated to the band’s charity, OneWorld Health. Opened in 2014, King Street Cookies, which ships nationwide, makes 40 flavors of soft baked cookies, from the basics to more exotic flavors like Pistachio Cherry, Orange Creamsicle, Strawberry Fields Forever, and indulgent stuffed cookies: Oreo, Snickers bar, Twix, or Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup stuffed inside a cookie. King Street Cookies also sells 15 flavors of bagels.
South Dakota: Queen City Bakery (Sioux Falls)
The top pastries in Sioux Falls are made at Queen City Bakery. Vanilla sandwich, fruit and nut, S’more, Monster, Jammie Dodger, Old Fashioned PB, chocolate chip, and sprinkle cookies are made daily. The bakery, run by husband and wife Mitch Jackson and Kristine Moberg, also makes custom cakes, cupcakes, pies, tarts, quiche, and ice cream.
Tennessee: Mountain Cookie Company (Knoxville)
A trio of cookies, Apple Pie Moonshine, Creamy Choc.Chip, and Caramel by the Sea, run neck-and-neck for best seller, but Mike Maddux, president of Moonshine Mountain Cookie Company, says Caramel by the Sea, a sea salted caramel toffee cookie, reigns supreme. Like all the cookies sold at this bakeshop, the thick, chewy cookie is made with a blend of light enriched flour and rolled oats and has a distinct “hump” in the middle, which gives it a great texture and unique taste sensation. Milk chocolate is subtly blended throughout the cookie and combined with crunchy chocolate toffee and caramel bits and is topped off with a butterscotch moonshine glaze and lightly sprinkled with coarse sea salt. The caramel toffee cookies are sold for $2 in store and $25.99 per dozen online. Moonshine glaze? Yes, really. “We are distinctively Southern and include a splash of flavored Tennessee moonshine in most of our cookies as a tribute to our heritage. There is just enough moonshine to give it a flavor burst but not enough to upset the preacher!” said Maddux. “Our cookies truly are more than a cookie…they’re dessert!”
Texas: Tiff's Treats (Austin)
Tiff’s Treats “started with $20, a cell phone, and a dream” in 1999 when Tiffany Taylor and Leon Chen were college students. Taylor sent Chen a batch of cookies to apologize for standing him up on a date. The couple is now married, and Tiff’s Treats has 41 stores. Tiff’s Treats bakes cookies to order and delivers them hot-from-the-oven. Options include chocolate chip, chocolate chip pecan, Snickerdoodle, peanut butter, peanut butter chocolate chip, white chocolate chip and almond, M&M, sugar, oatmeal raisin, and oatmeal chocolate chip. Tiff’s Treats also bakes brownies and makes ice cream, Tiffwich ice cream sandwich, and Tiffblitz (cold vanilla ice cream blended with chunks of chocolate chip cookies and fudgy brownie bites and topped with crumbled sugar cookies).
Utah: Süss Cookie Co. (Midway)
Located south of Park City, Süss Cookie Co bakes its cookies in small batches. There are 10 regular flavors plus a cookie of the month. The most popular cookie is Cocamel, a soft shortbread with a chocolate bottom drizzled with chocolate, caramel and coconut. Other flavors include a chocolate-drizzled peanut butter cookie, a white chocolate-dipped gingersnap, and sour cream-glazed lemon sugar cookie. Boxes of cookies can be shipped nationwide.
Vermont: Vermont Cookie Love (North Ferrisburgh)
Vermont Cookie Love is a small cookie shop specializing in the most delicious fresh baked cookies in all of Vermont, including its best-seller, First Love (aka chocolate chip), which debuted in 2007 (there’s also a wheat-free version). The cookie shop uses a ‘special cookie rose technique shaping system’ and lots of Callebaut semi-sweet chocolate chips, ensuring every bite of the $1.50 First Love cookie is filled with Belgian chocolate and each cookie is crunchy on the outside and chewy in the middle. “We based this recipe on the classic Toll House recipe but added the best non-GMO ingredients we could source and a few special ingredients to get the rich, satisfying cookie that customers rave about,” said Paul Seyler, owner. “It was easy to name once we came up with the company name since chocolate chip is usually everyone’s first cookie and hence ‘First Love.’” The shop offers discounts for three, six, and a dozen cookies (Tip: The dozen is actually a baker’s dozen!) and cookie dough for those who want to make their own First Love cookies. Vermont Cookie Love offers 10 cookie flavors, some seasonal, including Forbidden Love (triple chocolate chip), Puppy Love (peanut butter chocolate chip), True Love (oatmeal dried cranberry), Addicted to Love (mocha chocolate chip), Mother’s Love (chocolate chip with butterscotch), Enduring Love (coconut-oatmeal with chocolate chips, almonds, and cranberries), Fall in Love (pumpkin spice with chocolate chip), Summer Love (white chocolate with dried blueberries and raspberries), and It’s a Wonderful Love (sugar). The bakery also makes Love Triangles (scones) and, from April to October, sells Creemees, soft serve ice cream that is a northern Vermont specialty.
Virginia: Sugar Plum Bakery (Virginia Beach)
Established in 1987, Sugar Plum Bakery employs individuals with intellectual disabilities, who are trained to expertly bake the sweet treats. The cookie menu includes 14 options: Chesapeake, pecan sandies, white chocolate cranberry, sugar, chocolate chip, triple chocolate, oatmeal raisin, butter, peanut butter, gingersnap, peanut butter chip, black and white, Florentina, and Monster cookies. The bakery also has 40 different signature cakes as well as pastries, pies, cupcakes, donuts, and desserts like cannoli, cream puffs, and coconut macaroons.
Washington: Hello Robin (Seattle)
Hello Robin’s cookies may be on the smaller side, but they are mighty flavorful. The smaller size means you can buy and eat more than one. There are 14 flavors, but the $1.75 Classic Chocolate Chip, a thick cookie packed with chocolate chips, is the top seller. Another popular cookie is the Mackle’smore, a twist on a s’more that is named after the rapper Macklemore, who lives just blocks from the shop. The Mackle’smore is baked on a graham cracker with marshmallows, cinnamon, and chunk of locally-made Theo chocolate. The cookies are made in small batches with mostly local ingredients. Other flavors include molasses, habanero chocolate chip, oatmeal chocolate chunk with dried cherries, lemon glaze poppyseed, salted butterscotch, brown butter snickerdoodle, pumpkin chocolate chip, whole wheat fancy chocolate with sea salt, birthday cake, and a flourless Mexican chocolate. Celebrating its fifth anniversary in December 2018, Hello Robin also sells ice cream sandwiches made with Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream (ranked No. 31 on The Daily Meal’s 50 Best Ice Cream Parlors in the World list).
Washington, D.C.: baked&wired (Georgetown)
Lil' Bertha, two chewy oatmeal cookies sandwiched with cream cheese frosting — a take on the Little Debbie snack cake — is baked&wired’s most popular cookie. The $3.80 cookie is a nostalgic, simple treat. Opened in 2001, baked&wired serves a variety of cookies, including Big Ass and Little Ass Cookie (sugar cookie cutouts with a buttercream glaze), Double Chocolate Espresso (a dark chocolate cookie with coffee and chocolate chunks), Flourless Peanut Butter (a gluten free crispy cookie loaded with peanut butter), Ginjah Lemon Sandwich Cookie (soft ginger cookies filled with a lemon buttercream), Neiman Marcus (oatmeal, grated Hershey bars, toasted pecans, coconut, and semisweet chocolate chips), and Peanut Butter Sin-wiches (dark chocolate satin frosting sandwiched between two peanut butter cookies). The American bakery also bakes pies, cookies, bars, brownies, biscotti, quiche, granola, and biscuits, but it is most known for its cakecups (aka cupcakes), which made The Daily Meal’s 101 Best Cupcakes in America list.
West Virginia: The Best Cookie (Charlestown)
The Best Cookie’s best cookie is the Classic Chocolate Chip. Whether customers opt to have it with or without nuts, the cookie dough is made with organic flour and eggs, Cabot butter and Callebaut chocolate chips Other cookies baked include oatmeal raisin made with organic raisins, eggs, coconut and oats; white chocolate macadamia made with Callebaut white chocolate chips and roasted macadamias; peanut butter with chocolate chips; and chocolate cherry cookie, the second most popular cookie. The cookies are sold by the dozen; 12 individually wrapped cookies in a decorative cellophane bag is $25 and 12 individually wrapped in the bakery’s signature box option is $30. The shop also sells orange cranberry, vanilla currant, and chocolate cherry scones and classic Southern pecan raisin tarts. “We are devoted to our motto, ‘Spreading love throughout the land, one cookie at a time,’” said Flanigan.
Wisconsin: Batch Bakehouse (Madison)
Batch Bakehouse bakes delicious batches of cookies, including its most popular Triple Threat Cookie made with chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, and pecan pieces that is crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside. “We like to make things that people love to eat. White chocolate and pecans is a killer combo!” said Lauren Carter, majority owner and pastry chef of Batch Bakehouse. The $1.75 cookie is not only popular with customers, it’s also the staff’s favorite cookie. Other options include chocolate chip, peanut butter, peanut butter chocolate chip, oatmeal butterscotch, chocolate shortbread with dark chocolate and sea salt, double chocolate, snickerdoodles, and ginger molasses. Batch Bakehouse is also known for its plain butter croissants and ham and Gruyère croissants.
Wyoming: Persephone Bakery (Jackson)
Persephone Bakery’s most popular cookie is the $2.50 Chocolate Chip Cookies with Walnuts and Sea Salt, a dense, chewy cookie with chunks of walnuts and chocolate enrobed in dough and sprinkled with sea salt that yields a subtle salty/sweet finish. The full-size chocolate chip cookies are sold in the café and a packaged miniature version is available to ship nationwide. Cookie dough is also sold at the bakery, which opened in 2013. Persephone Bakery also bakes a gluten-free double chocolate walnut cookie and oatmeal toffee cookies among others. Run by a husband-and-wife team, the Jackson Hole bakery is also known for its cinnamon brioche, a light and flaky morning bun sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar. It’s an ideal stop after enjoying the state’s best brunch at Genevieve, also in Jackson.
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