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I've been trying to make a good, chewy cookie recipe for the last 4-5 months but nothing good ever shown up. I've tried countless recipes on the internet with no success. One thing that I noticed was that my cookie dough always looks different from the pictures or videos that I have found on the internet. My dough looks like ice cream, is wet, and really sticks to the scoop. Sometime when I scoop it up I can feel that it's very light, not dense. I have tried adding more AP flour in and it made my dough a little more stiff. I can roll it into a ball shape without any of the dough sticking to my hand.

Which one is the good dough?

These are the ingredients I use:

1 cup AP flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/4 cup blended oat
123 grams butter

What is the best ratio between wet and dry goods?

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If you want to learn how to design/alter cookie recipes in order to get exactly the quality you want, there are two nice, thorough sources I can suggest. The first one is the cookie chapter in Corriher's book Bakewise, the other one is The food lab's cookie article, sweets.seriouseats.com/2013/12/…. While I am not sure that you want exactly the kind of cookie he is describing, you can see how he arrives at the kind he wants, and repeat the process in your preferred direction. – rumtscho Mar 28 '14 at 16:17
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And, while this sounds silly, it does matter: what is the ambient room temperature where you bake? If you are one of those folks living with 30 C conditions, you are just going to get softer dough. – SAJ14SAJ Mar 28 '14 at 16:48
    
My suspicion is either (1) warm room temperatures (as SAJ14SAJ mentioned), (2) issues with how the flour's been measured (if volumetric vs. by weight) and maybe (3) type of flour used (not all AP is the same) – Joe Mar 28 '14 at 19:18
    
I will direct your attention to The New Best Recipe Book from Cook's Illustrated,pp.777+ In this section of the book they address the balance of ingredients to get great chewy cookies. – Cos Callis Mar 28 '14 at 21:34
    
thank you to you all. What my goal is that i want to bake the soft cookie that have the texture like Pepperidge soft baked cookie.By the way, when we cream together butter and sugar we're looking for pale and fluffy result,right? However, brown sugar in my recipe make it harder to tell when to stop creaming. Do you have any tip for creaming i think this is the most important step and also my weakest point. – Sukanok Donot Mar 29 '14 at 15:57

Cookie recipes vary. There is no single consistency that all doughs should have. The proof is in the finished cookie.

Some of my favorite recipes produce doughs that are sticky enough that I can't "drop" the cookies onto the sheet without using my finger to scrape the dough out of the spoon. In these cases, it's easier to use an ice cream scoop with a triggered blade that will clear the dough from the scoop. Another trick is to refrigerate the dough for four hours, overnight, or for as many as three days. This will give the flour a chance to absorb more of the liquid ingredients. In addition, chilled dough is easier to work with, and produces a superior texture in the finished cookie. I add this step to nearly every cookie recipe.

I want to address, though, your concern that the dough you make doesn't match what you're seeing in pictures or videos. This could be due to the way you measure flour. There are several ways to measure flour, and each of them can produce a different actual amount for the same called-for measurement. Not only that, they may produce different actual amounts each time you measure. I assume that most modern recipes are tesed with a "scoop and level" method, unless something else is indicated. However, measuring by weight is more accurate. I convert all my cookie recipes to weight measurments. That way, I can ammend or reproduce them with complete accuracy. Lastly, I want to address the integrity of the relationship between written recipes and the pictures or videos that accompany them. Over many years of experience, I have found that relationship to be rather loose.

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Maybe you should add 1/4 APF and change the quantity of butter into 1/2. anyway, take note of the type of cookie you really want to achieve bc there's a lot of cookie dough variations. however, if you want a good and amazing cookies, i much prefer books than recipes on net. :) hope this will help you.

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Could you give any details on why you think these changes would be better? – Aaronut Dec 21 '14 at 18:19
    
Hi @Aaronut :) Determining the ratio between flour and butter provides a huge difference to the final product. However, it really depends on what type of cookie you want your "cookies" would be. Moreover, books are BETTER than recipes on net. It's much accurate and you dont have any problems doing the entire recipe by your own bc its provides step-by-step process that can be easily understood. Trust me, ive been doing this for almost 4 yrs now :) – Mary-yet Xuchelle Dec 23 '14 at 12:32
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Of course I believe you; however, the goal of this site is to help people get better at cooking/baking/food prep, which is why we prefer to see explanations as opposed to instructions (or both). Pure recipes or "do this" type answers tend to be seen as incomplete and not upvoted. Not trying to force you to change your answer, it just sounds to me like you probably do know what you're talking about, and it would help other people who find this question a lot more if you could explain the difference in results between the posted recipe and your adjustments, and why it turns out that way. – Aaronut Dec 24 '14 at 4:26

In my experience, what you do with the ingredients make just as much impact as the ratio of the ingredients.

Chewy cookies will generally need melted butter rather than room temperature butter. Creaming the room temperature butter with the sugars will result in a softer cookie as you have introduced air into the batter. You don't want to do this if you want dense chewy cookies.

In addition, one tip I would offer is to bang the cookie tray on the counter top when you first take it out of the oven. You should visibly see the cookie "deflate" a bit. This will also help with creating a chewier cookie.

Lastly, if your dough looks too soft even though you followed the recipe to the t, you should refrigerate it before you bake it. This will make the dough much easier to work with and prevent your dough from spreading too thin while it's baking.

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