If you love a soft, classic chocolate chip cookie, these are for you!

The Softest Chocolate Chip Cookies

I am quite sure that the sentence “these cookies have too much vanilla and are GROSS” has never been uttered in the whole of human history. 

The limits of this theory were put to the test in this recipe, where the secret ingredient is instant vanilla pudding mix!

Yes! Pudding mix IN A COOKIE!!

I have had instant vanilla pudding mix in two baked goods prior to this recipe: in these pumpkin muffins, and in a rum cake which will likely never be featured on this blog unless I am making it for a party, because I do not trust myself to be home alone with an entire rum cake.

Super Soft Homemade Cookies

ANYWAY. Historically speaking, I’ve found the addition of instant pudding mix to baked goods doesn’t have much of an impact on the flavor, but makes said baked goods very pleasantly soft, and also acts as a kind of preservative so they stay fresh for longer. (This is good if you are a person with abounding self-control who eats a batch of cookies over, say, a week and not in 1.5 days.)

When I learned people use the vanilla pudding mix trick in their chocolate chip cookies, I had to jump on the bandwagon!

The Secret to Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

And it did not disappoint:  These are the softest homemade cookies I have ever had. 

They actually might be the ideal chocolate chip cookie. Their shape is perfect (they don’t flatten out, but also don’t get really puffy); their consistency is right at the midpoint between dense and fluffy; and their flavor is every bit as buttery and sweet as you would hope.

I did sample the cookie dough (a no-no, I am aware!), at which point I could distinctly taste the pudding mix, and was doubtful that the final product would be successful. But after baking, the pudding mix is completely undetectable!

Instant Pudding Mix Chocolate Chip Cookies

I am a big fan of a secret ingredient. It makes it so fun when people ask what’s in you cookies, and you tell them vanilla pudding mix, and a lot of excitement and disbelief ensue!

Secret Ingredient Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • Servings: Makes approximately 36 cookies
  • Print

Use instant vanilla pudding mix for the softest chocolate chip cookies!


  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 (3.4 ounce) box instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar until fluffy. Add pudding mix and beat until combined, scraping down sides of the bowl as needed. Mix in eggs and vanilla. Gradually add in dry ingredients. Stir in chocolate chips.

Place tablespoon-size balls of dough on cookie sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes, until edges just begin to turn golden brown. Remove from oven promptly. Allow to cool for a couple of minutes on cookie sheets, then remove to parchment paper to set.

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

Adapted from Allrecipes.