These gooey and crispy on the outside chai spiced chocolate chip cookies are the best cookie you will have this fall. They have the perfect balance of sweet and Chai spice flavors, and are so easy to make at home! Also included in this recipe are tips on how to create the perfect cookies.

Chai spiced chocolate chip cookies on parchment paper with maple leaves next to them.

Chai is one of my favorite drinks in general, but I especially love adding the flavor to my desserts. Some chai recipes I’ve made in the past include my chai spiced cinnamon rolls (a personal favorite!) and chai spiced oatmeal cookies (also a favorite!). For some reason, chai gives me major fall vibes. It makes me feel cozy, like I need crawl under a blanket with a book. These chai spiced chocolate chip cookies give me that exact feeling. They smell and taste like a warm cup of chai, and because of all the spices in the cookie, they are not too sweet!

Chai spice mixture. A mixture of earl grey tea powder, star anise powder, ground ginger, ground cardamom, and ground cinnamon.
Chai spice mixture

Ingredients, Substitutions & Adjustments

  • All purpose flour – The main dry ingredient in these cookies.
  • Baking soda – Baking soda helps create a soft, fluffy cookie.
  • Salt – Salt helps balance out the sweetness from the sugars.
  • Chai spice mixture (cinnamon, ginger, star anise powder, cardamom, and earl grey tea) – This is my version of a chai spiced mixture, but there are a lot of variations. Sometimes, only 1 or 2 spices are used. Use any combination of these spices that you like. I would make sure to include a black tea and cardamom as a minimum.
  • Unsalted butter – Adds a nutty flavor to these cookies. As mentioned in the tips below, browning this butter amplifies the nutty flavor of the butter.
  • Light, dark, and granulated sugar – Through testing, I found that the perfect chewiness (in my opinion) and sweetness come from a combination of all 3 sugars. Light and dark brown sugar make the cookie chewier and the granulated sugar helps give it that crispy edge. You can definitely only use light or only dark brown sugar if that’s all you have. Dark brown will make the cookies sweeter and chewier, and light brown sugar will result to less sweetness and less chewiness.
  • Egg – Makes the cookies richer and chewier.
  • Vanilla extract – Adds flavor to the cookies. Substitute with an equal amount of vanilla paste or 1 vanilla bean.
  • Dark chocolate chips – I personally like using dark chocolate chips because they have less sugar than semi sweet or milk chocolate chips. And for me, it’s all about controlling the amount of sweetness in the cookie because you’re already adding so much sugar. I also think using a 4 oz chocolate bar like Baker’s chocolate bars works better because you get different sizes of chocolate which helps you get that professional chocolate chip cookie look. See examples of this in my miso chocolate chip cookie and Vietnamese cinnamon chocolate chip cookie recipes. They also tend to melt better.

How to make chai spiced chocolate chip cookies

First, brown the butter. Heat butter over medium heat until it fully melts. Lower the heat to medium low and let it cook until golden brown and brown bits start to appear at the bottom of the pan. Pour butter into a large mixing bowl and set aside. Let it cool for 10 minutes. If it’s too hot when you use it, your cookie dough will be greasy. Next, use a spice grinder to turn the earl grey tea into powder. Add to a separate bowl with the ground cinnamon, ground cardamom, ground ginger, ground star anise, flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix until combined and set aside.

Once butter has cooled, add granulated sugar, dark brown sugar, and light brown sugar to the bowl with the browned butter. Mix until combined. Add the egg and vanilla extract to the bowl and mix until a smooth, brown texture. See image above for reference. Add the dry ingredients from step 2 and gently fold into the wet ingredients. Be careful not to overmix. I would stop when there’s a little bit of flour left because you will need to mix in the chocolate chips. Add the chocolate chips and mix until incorporated.

Let the cookie dough rest in the fridge for 40-45 minutes. You need to let the butter get cold enough so the butter won’t melt too fast which will create flat cookies. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C).  Prepare 2 baking sheets by covering them with parchment paper. Use a 2 tablespoon (medium sized) cookie scoop to scoop your cookie dough onto the prepared baking sheet. Make sure there are 2 inches of space between each cookie. Bake for 12-14 minutes until the edges are light brown. Rest for 10 minutes on the baking sheet and then another 10 minutes on the cooling rack before serving.

Tips on how to make the perfect chai spiced chocolate chip cookies

Ingredient Tips

  1. Use all room temperature ingredients. This really does matter because butter and eggs don’t like to mix together, especially when they’re at different temperatures, so having them at the same temperature helps them come together better.
  2. Why are you using brown butter? This is one of the keys to the intense flavor of these cookies. The brown bits add so much extra flavor to the dough. Make sure to cool it down to room temperature before using because using hot butter will create for a greasy dough.
  3. Why are you using both dark brown and light brown sugar? I found that this gives a good balance of sweetness and color to the cookies. Dark brown sugar gives that nice light brown color to the cookies as well as sweetness. I found that using only light brown sugar doesn’t give it the light brown color I like. And using all dark brown sugar makes the dough too wet and too sweet. 
Chai spiced chocolate chip cookies on parchment paper with maple leaves next to them

Method Tips

  1. Mix the butter, sugars, and egg thoroughly. The biggest mistake people make is not mixing the wet ingredients properly. When you mix the wet ingredients, especially the butter and sugar, you’re really trying to incorporate/dissolve the sugar.
  2. Don’t over mix the cookie dough after adding the dry ingredients. You want to mix the dry ingredients as little as possible because mixing encourages gluten formation which creates tough, chalky cookies. I like to mix the dough until there is a little bit of flour not incorporated into the dough. I then add the chocolate chips and finish mixing the dough.
  3. Why do I need to rest this dough so long? Resting/cooling the cookie dough allows the butter to solidify, so it doesn’t melt so quickly in the oven. This matters because if it melts too quickly in the oven, your cookies will spread more, creating flatter cookies. In addition, allowing it to rest makes it more flavorful. The cookie dough is sort of like marinating while it’s cooling.
  4. How do I make my cookies flat? How do I make them more chunky? This will depend on how much time you allow the dough to rest in the fridge. The more you chill the dough in the fridge, the chunkier the cookie will be. If you don’t chill the dough at all, the cookie will be very flat.
  5. Why is scooping your cookie dough with a scoop important? This is important because the scoop helps give your cookies their round shape. To get the perfect round shape, scoop the dough, press it into the scoop with your hand, and then level it off so you get a flat bottom.
  6. Why is cooling your cookies important? I know it is SO HARD to not eat a cookie right away, but your cookies are still baking when they’re on the baking sheet! The center will still look soft but it will slowly get firmer as it sits on the baking sheet.
Chai spiced chocolate chip cookies on parchment paper with maple leaves and earl grey tea leaves next to them.

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Chai spiced chocolate chip cookies on parchment paper with maple leaves next to them.

Get the Recipe:
Gooey Chai Spiced Chocolate Chip Cookies

Gooey chocolate chip cookies flavored with chai spices, making this the ultimate fall cookie.
5 from 4 ratings

Ingredients
 
 

Instructions
 

  • Brown the butter. Heat butter over medium heat until it fully melts. Lower the heat to medium low and let it cook until golden brown and brown bits start to appear at the bottom of the pan. Pour butter into a large mixing bowl and set aside. Let it cool for 10 minutes. If it’s too hot when you use it, your cookie dough will be greasy.
  • Use a spice grinder to turn the earl grey tea into powder. Add to a separate bowl with the ground cinnamon, ground cardamom, ground ginger, ground star anise, flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix until combined and set aside.
  • Once butter has cooled, add granulated sugar, dark brown sugar, and light brown sugar to the bowl with the browned butter. Mix until combined.
  • Add the egg and vanilla extract to the bowl and mix until a smooth, brown texture. See image above for reference.
  • Add the dry ingredients from step 2 and gently fold into the wet ingredients. Be careful not to overmix. I would stop when there’s a little bit of flour left because you will need to mix in the chocolate chips.
  • Add the chocolate chips and mix until incorporated.
  • Let the cookie dough rest in the fridge for 40-45 minutes. You need to let the butter get cold enough so the butter won’t melt too fast which will create flat cookies.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C). 
  • Prepare 2 baking sheets by covering them with parchment paper.
  • Use a 2 tablespoon (medium sized) cookie scoop to scoop your cookie dough onto the prepared baking sheet. Make sure there are 2 inches of space between each cookie.
  • Bake for 12-14 minutes until the edges are light brown.
  • Rest for 10 minutes on the baking sheet and then another 10 minutes on the cooling rack before serving.

Notes

  1. Use all room temperature ingredients. This really does matter because butter and eggs don’t like to mix together, especially when they’re at different temperatures, so having them at the same temperature helps them come together better.
  2. Why are you using brown butter? This is one of the keys to the intense flavor of these cookies. The brown bits add so much extra flavor to the dough. Make sure to cool it down to room temperature before using because using hot butter will create for a greasy dough.
  3. Why are you using both dark brown and light brown sugar? I found that this gives a good balance of sweetness and color to the cookies. Dark brown sugar gives that nice light brown color to the cookies as well as sweetness. I found that using only light brown sugar doesn’t give it the light brown color I like. And using all dark brown sugar makes the dough too wet and too sweet. 
  4. Mix the butter, sugars, and egg thoroughly. The biggest mistake people make is not mixing the wet ingredients properly. When you mix the wet ingredients, especially the butter and sugar, you’re really trying to incorporate/dissolve the sugar.
  5. Don’t over mix the cookie dough after adding the dry ingredients. You want to mix the dry ingredients as little as possible because mixing encourages gluten formation which creates tough, chalky cookies. I like to mix the dough until there is a little bit of flour not incorporated into the dough. I then add the chocolate chips and finish mixing the dough.
  6. Why do I need to rest this dough so long? Resting/cooling the cookie dough allows the butter to solidify, so it doesn’t melt so quickly in the oven. This matters because if it melts too quickly in the oven, your cookies will spread more, creating flatter cookies. In addition, allowing it to rest makes it more flavorful. The cookie dough is sort of like marinating while it’s cooling.
  7. How do I make my cookies flat? How do I make them more chunky? This will depend on how much time you allow the dough to rest in the fridge. The more you chill the dough in the fridge, the chunkier the cookie will be. If you don’t chill the dough at all, the cookie will be very flat.
  8. Why is scooping your cookie dough with a scoop important? This is important because the scoop helps give your cookies their round shape. To get the perfect round shape, scoop the dough, press it into the scoop with your hand, and then level it off so you get a flat bottom.
  9. Why is cooling your cookies important? I know it is SO HARD to not eat a cookie right away, but your cookies are still baking when they’re on the baking sheet! The center will still look soft but it will slowly get firmer as it sits on the baking sheet.
Serving: 1cookie, Calories: 250kcal, Carbohydrates: 27g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 16g, Saturated Fat: 11g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 0.5g, Cholesterol: 51mg, Sodium: 167mg, Potassium: 108mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 24g, Vitamin A: 387IU, Vitamin C: 0.1mg, Calcium: 56mg, Iron: 0.5mg
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