Chocolate Chip Tea Cookies

Chocolate Chip Tea Cookies - A super simple, buttery shortbread-style chocolate chip cookie, perfect for the holidays! | browneyedbaker.com

These little tea cookies have been a holiday staple for the last 10 years or so. I still don’t recall where the recipe came from, but the first time I made them and had my mom and grandma give them a taste test, they declared that these were a must-make going forward. The cookies are a fantastic buttery shortbread loaded with miniature chocolate chips. They’re more soft and tender, less crisp and crumbly, than traditional shortbread, which I love.

Chocolate Chip Tea Cookies - A super simple, buttery shortbread-style chocolate chip cookie, perfect for the holidays! | browneyedbaker.com

I adore these little cookies for multiple reasons, the first of which is that they are extremely easy to make. I typically use my hand mixer for them and give my KitchenAid a break, which is a nice change of pace if you’re churning out tons of cookies and candy during the holidays. They are mixed together in less than 10 minutes and spend less than 15 minutes in the oven. I like to balance my Christmas baking list with things that are simple and less time consuming to compensate for the more labor-intensive recipes.

The second reason I love these cookies? They’re truly tea cookies, which means that they are itty-bitty and that I feel no guilt downing multiple cookies in one sitting the way I would with my favorite ginormous chocolate chip cookies. Their size also makes them perfect for a cookie tray, when people like to take a sampling of different cookies. Again, for some reason, eating numerous small cookies just does not seem to consume people with guilt. Win!

Do you have a favorite super-simple go-to holiday recipe?

Chocolate Chip Tea Cookies - A super simple, buttery shortbread-style chocolate chip cookie, perfect for the holidays! | browneyedbaker.com

Chocolate Chip Tea Cookies

Yield: About 3 dozen cookies

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 to 12 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

A buttery shortbread-style cookie loaded with mini chocolate chips.

Ingredients:

8 ounces unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup powdered sugar, sifted
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup miniature chocolate chips

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

2. Beat the butter, sugar and salt with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy. Add the vanilla and mix well. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour until just combined. Using a rubber spatula, stir in the miniature chocolate chips.

3. Shape into 1-inch balls (a small cookie scoop is perfect for this) and place 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until set but still pale in color. Allow to cool on the sheets for 5 minutes, then remove to wire racks to cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

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61 Responses to “Chocolate Chip Tea Cookies”

  1. bakingblonde on December 19, 2007 at 10:33 pm

    Those sound perfect! I am adding to my list to bake for my sister’s goodie box

    Reply

  2. kayte on December 20, 2007 at 4:15 pm

    these sound so easy and so delicious! and they look fantastic.

    Reply

    • Judy on December 27th, 2014 at 3:40 pm

      Therse are definitely easy and are quite tasty. I already just this am make a double batch and they came out beautifully. Altho I have an electric oven and baked them at 325 for 11 minutes. Couldn’t ask for an easier recipe that also tasted great!

      Reply

  3. MrsPresley on December 21, 2007 at 8:01 pm

    these are almost identical to the chocolate chip shortbread sticks i made this year! your recipe includes a little vanilla and lots more chocolate chips though :) i like the idea of making them into little bite sized balls

    Reply

  4. Beth on December 22, 2007 at 8:37 pm

    These look so good!

    Reply

  5. Amber on December 27, 2007 at 10:46 am

    Mmmmm these look so good. Thank you for sharing.

    Reply

  6. Kristin on September 1, 2008 at 1:58 am

    Stumbled Upon this recipe and promptly got up to make these delicious little cookies! Thanks for sharing!!

    P.S. I added Heath chips (because I had some leftover from another project) and I couldn’t be any happier with how the cookies turned out! :)

    Reply

  7. Chelle on September 1, 2008 at 7:59 am

    Hi Kristin – so glad you enjoyed these, and great to hear that the Heath chips worked out so well! :) Thanks for visiting!

    Reply

  8. Ali on December 20, 2010 at 8:23 pm

    Making them right now, just put them in the oven, the batter is delicious! lol

    Reply

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  10. Camille on December 29, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    I made these to go in gift tins this year and they were a hit! Thanks!

    Reply

  11. Abby on September 11, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    Should I use salted or unsalted butter?

    Reply

    • Michelle on September 12th, 2011 at 1:42 pm

      Hi Abby, Unsalted butter. You can add a pinch of salt to the recipe if you’d like.

      Reply

  12. Angela on December 16, 2011 at 12:23 pm

    How many does this recipe yield? I’m thinking of making these for a tea party. :)

    Reply

    • Michelle on December 16th, 2011 at 1:14 pm

      Hi Angela, Depending on the size, it will make about 2 to 3 dozen.

      Reply

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  15. Naomi on November 13, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    These are in the oven right now! The dough tastes great, and I’m sure the baked cookies will to! As soon as I saw this recipe I knew I was going to make them. They looked so yummy and cute! Thanks for sharing all of your great recipes! I love your site, and eagerly await each new email! Thanks again!

    Reply

    • Naomi on November 13th, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      These are in the oven right now! The dough tastes great, and I’m sure the baked cookies will to! As soon as I saw this recipe I knew I was going to make them. They looked so yummy and cute! Thanks for sharing all of your great recipes! I love your site, and eagerly await every new email!

      Just tasted one of these! They are sooooooooo good! You’re right, they do taste like shortbread with chocolate chips in them! Yummy! Thanks for another great recipe.

      Reply

      • Pam on December 23rd, 2014 at 1:32 pm

        the recipe asks for 1 cup divided, so if you add 1/2 cup when do you add the other 1/2 cup?

        Reply

  16. Janell on December 19, 2012 at 7:24 pm

    made these today for holiday gift tins. for some reason they did not turn out so well :( they are pretty dry, almost chalky in texture, and have a strong powdered sugar taste, instead of buttery. i know i followed the recipe correctly, so i’m not sure why they didn’t work for me. i was so looking forward to these too.

    Reply

  17. Sandra on December 26, 2012 at 11:01 am

    Do I use icing sugar or confectioner’s sugar?

    Reply

    • Michelle on December 26th, 2012 at 10:43 pm

      Hi Sandra, Confectioner’s is closer to powdered sugar, I believe.

      Reply

      • None of Your Business on December 22nd, 2014 at 11:45 pm

        They’re the same thing. “Icing” sugar, confectioner’s sugar, and powdered sugar are ALL THE SAME.

        Reply

  18. Sandra on December 27, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Hi Michelle,
    I didn’t have powered sugar, so I used granulated sugar and the cookies turned out great! Please clarify this on your recipe. Is powered sugar like icing sugar? I use icing sugar on top of desserts once they are baked. Is powered, confectioner’s, and granulated sugar the same? This recipe will definitely be a family favourite! My nephew is allergic to eggs, so these cookies are perfect for him. Thanks!

    Reply

    • Michelle on December 27th, 2012 at 9:47 pm

      Hi Sandra, From the information I’ve been able to find, powdered sugar, confectioners’ sugar and icing sugar are all the same and interchangeable. Granulated sugar is different from powdered sugar.

      Reply

  19. Kaera on December 8, 2013 at 10:42 pm

    I added about 1/8 tsp of allspice, nutmeg, and cloves, and 1/4tsp cinnamon to the cookies, and a bit of cayenne pepper to the chocolate on top. They taste wonderful with Earl Grey tea!!

    Reply

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  22. bee on December 25, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    hi! i tried this recipe for christmas and wanted to give them away as gifts but they came out FLAT and really really crumbly, not a ball shape at all! can you tell me what went wrong?

    Reply

    • Michelle on December 25th, 2013 at 10:42 pm

      I’m not sure what would have caused that. Did you make any substitutions or do anything differently? Do you have an oven thermometer to ensure your oven is at the correct temperature?

      Reply

      • bee on December 26th, 2013 at 1:28 am

        hmm i was in a rush so i microwaved my butter that i had just taken out of the fridge for a minute or so so that it would have creamed more easily. could it be the reason?
        thanks so much :)

        Reply

        • Michelle on December 26th, 2013 at 10:22 pm

          Hi Bee, Definitely! Microwaving butter can make it much too soft for creaming, which would definitely cause the cookies to spread.

          Reply

    • bee on December 29th, 2013 at 3:47 am

      oh wow okay haha totally a case of more haste less speed here. thanks for the reply! so can i just check: was the butter supposed to be at room temperature (softened) or just out of the fridge?
      is the standard for any other recipe that calls for butter to be creamed with sugar?

      Reply

      • Michelle on December 29th, 2013 at 4:33 pm

        Hi Bee, You are welcome! The butter should have been at room temperature, I have updated the recipe so that is clear. 99% of the recipes that call for creaming together butter and sugar should have the butter at room temperature, but always check the recipe just in case.

        Reply

  23. Lorr on December 28, 2013 at 1:40 am

    Could you possibly make these older recipes printable before presenting them again?

    Reply

    • Michelle on December 29th, 2013 at 4:35 pm

      Hi Lorr, I am working on getting all of them formatted appropriately. It is time-consuming as there are over 1,000 recipes on the site, but I’m getting there. I have updated this one; I apologize for any inconvenience, but appreciate your patience!

      Reply

      • Lorr on December 29th, 2013 at 5:12 pm

        Thank you so much! Sure was nice of you to do that right away. I really, really appreciate it. (I should be apologizing for MY impatience) Absolutely love your site. Happy New Year!

        Reply

  24. Margaret Smith on May 11, 2014 at 1:46 pm

    Wow these look amazing! I can’t wait to try them. Unfortunately my entire family has the flu and i’m just getting over it. but as soon as i’m better, Back To Baking!

    Reply

  25. Susan on August 29, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    I will have to make these for my 3 wonderful grandkids, Allison -Carissa-and Luke When I go to see them in Illinois. They look soooooooooooooo good.

    Reply

  26. Sarah @ Bonjour Sucre on December 22, 2014 at 5:12 am

    Yum! These look great – perfect for Christmas! I can’t wait to try them out myself. Have a very Merry Christmas!

    Reply

  27. Lynnette Kelley on December 22, 2014 at 9:10 am

    This is almost my recipe! I used to bake for the local farmer’s market, and these were one of my specialities. I use 1-1/2 cups regular chocolate chips, though. And also, I melt chocolate chips and apply a design to them. For my bakery, I used to make smiley faces, but for the holidays, I make an artsy Christmas tree shape. It makes them look special. They are an absolute favorite with everyone I give Christmas cookies to.

    Reply

  28. lisa on December 22, 2014 at 9:31 am

    Just wondering why the chocolate chips need to be divided as mentioned under list of ingredients. Sounds great otherwise!

    Reply

  29. Kathy Rupff on December 22, 2014 at 9:33 am

    Wow, Awesome! Sugar cookies and chocolate chippers are my favorite…. how ingenious to combine them together. Can’t wait to try! Thanks so much for sharing, Michelle! (Keeping you and your upcoming delivery in prayer.)

    Reply

  30. Ramona @ The Merchant Baker on December 22, 2014 at 10:02 am

    Love a buttery, chocolate chippy cookie…this one looks like a breeze to make!

    Reply

  31. Amanda on December 22, 2014 at 11:00 am

    Teacakes were my granny’s favorite and always make me think of her. I love that these have chocolate chips!

    Reply

  32. Laura @ The Green Forks! on December 22, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    Yummy! I am going to use Earth Balance Vegan Sticks to make these vegan so that I can enjoy them too- hopefully the substitution works!

    Reply

  33. Josh the Baker on December 22, 2014 at 2:33 pm

    Why are we dividing the chocolate chips?

    Reply

  34. joan willett on December 22, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    divided chips?

    hey! i love your cookie recipes and many others. i just think i’m done baking and then you come out with another cookie recipe and away i go to the store to buy ingredients! your chunky chocolate pecan pie squares were a HIT at thanksgiving! thanks for all your wonderful recipes and good luck with your baby. love your posts!

    Reply

  35. Kaycee on December 22, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    These sound amazing! Do you think I could change it up and do different variations? Maybe with peppermint and chocolate? Or orange? (I made orange and chocolate cookies a couple years ago and they were surprisingly good!)

    Reply

    • Michelle on December 24th, 2014 at 11:48 am

      Hi Kaycee, Absolutely!

      Reply

      • Kaycee on December 24th, 2014 at 3:24 pm

        Thanks for the response! I made it with the orange and everyone loved them. Also, I made your dark chocolate chunk eggnog cookies last night and they are amazing! Definitely a new favorite. Merry Christmas!

        Reply

  36. Shannon on December 22, 2014 at 7:17 pm

    My mom used to make Kookie Brittle. They had similar ingredients to these cookies. They didn’t have eggs and were pressed in a jelly roll pan. They are super simple to make. They come out thin and crisp. LOVE THEM!

    Reply

  37. Andrew on December 23, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    the cookies are looking yummy!
    I hope I try these chocolate cookies for Christmas. Merry Christmas

    Reply

  38. Cheryl on December 23, 2014 at 9:25 pm

    Made this into snowballs, great classic recipe that is fast, easy and I had all the ingredients on hand. Used a small cookie scoop that made fast work of shaping cookies.

    Reply

  39. Alley @ Alley's Recipe Book on December 25, 2014 at 11:58 am

    I have been making a similar recipe from Hershey’s since 2002… but the ones I make have a Hershey’s kiss in the center. I wonder if you saw that recipe and adapted it?

    Reply

    • Michelle on December 29th, 2014 at 1:12 pm

      Hi Alley, Not the same one, but my mom has made that one in the past!

      Reply

  40. Emily @ Life on Food on December 27, 2014 at 4:35 pm

    Yum, yum, yum!!

    Reply

  41. Seanagail on December 28, 2014 at 6:33 pm

    I made these as a last minute addition to my Christmas baking. They are absolutely a new favorite! So easy and not too sweet. Next time I want to try half chocolate chips half toffee bits. They are great with coffee or tea.

    Reply

  42. Sheryl on January 4, 2015 at 1:02 pm

    Not to be missed! Made these little gems exactly by the recipe. They turned out great and stored well too. This recipe is going into my ‘tried & true’ binder!

    Reply

  43. alyr on May 13, 2015 at 2:59 pm

    Ohhh I have been trying to recreate a similar cookie from a 1970’s coworker!
    This is VERY close. Her’s were taller and crisp like a Brown Edge wafer but I’m excited to make these, they look delish! Then I can adapt perhaps to try and crisp them up! Thanks!

    Reply

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