Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

Appease your sweet tooth with these rich, decadent Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies. These vegan cookies, made completely with pantry ingredients, no butter or eggs, are perfectly light, fluffy and delicious. Makes 36 cookies. 

Cookies, fresh out of the oven, are shown on brown paper with shot glasses of milk

I’m all about silver linings and happy accidents these days.

These Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies are just that—a happy accident.

Adapted from my Pecan Chocolate Chip Cookies, which are adapted from my mom’s friend’s award-winning chocolate chip cookie recipe, they are dairy free, egg free and VEGAN.

This recipe is tried and true in our household. We’ve learned over the years that these cookies offer a LOT of workable substitutions, too. I share them below for y’all.

Since, you know, we don’t always have certain ingredients on hand when we have a hankering for a Chocolate Chip Cookie.

Other cookies you might love: Kitchen Sink CookiesLemon Drop CookiesBrowned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies with Bourbon and WalnutsVegan Peanut Butter Espresso CookiesFunfetti CookiesVegan Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Chunk CookiesOatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Looking for another type of cookie? Check out my Cookies Recipe Index.

Ingredients for cookies, shown from above on a marble surface

What you’ll need to make this recipe:

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In addition to these tools, you’re going to need some ingredients to make these Eggless Chocolate Chip Cookies, too:

  • Coconut oil—you can use refined or unrefined, but it needs to be solid to give these cookies the right consistency.
  • Granulated sugar—also known as white sugar, this adds a nice sweetness to our batter. There is no easy substitution for it.
  • Dark brown sugar—I love the molasses undertones the dark brown sugar brings to this recipe. It also makes for a softer cookie. You can substitute light brown sugar, though the consistency of the cookies will change slightly because of the molasses content.
  • Unsweetened applesauce—I know, it sounds like a weird addition, but trust me on it. Applesauce adds moisture and balances with the coconut oil, creating a cookie that has crisp edges and a gooey middle.
  • Vanilla extract—if you can afford it, the real deal kind is where it’s at!
  • All-purpose flour—we keep unbleached AP flour at our house, but you can use the regular kind, too.
  • Kosher salt—I like to use a fine grain kosher salt. You could also use a fine grain sea salt, too.
  • Baking soda—this is the leavener, so be sure that yours is fresh.
  • Dark chocolate chips—use your favorite brand. If you’re wanting these to be Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies, read the label and confirm that they are dairy free.
Collage of six images showing how to mix ingredients to make the dairy free cookie dough

Combine the coconut oil and sugars in a large mixing bowl. Everything will be mixed together in this bowl, so ensure that you’ve got enough space! Whisk ’em until combined (or use a hand or stand mixer for this step.)

Next, add the applesauce and vanilla extract. Whisk until combined.

After the wet ingredients are together, measure in the flour, baking soda and salt. Use a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon to mix until the batter just comes together.

The batter at this point might be a little crumbly. That’s OK. The next step and a little more mixing fixes it right up, promise.

Measure in the dark chocolate chips. Fold them in—which means to stir them into the batter—using that same spoon or rubber spatula. This step might take a few minutes, so please be patient and take your time.

A cookie scoop has some cookie dough inside it, as it scoops cookies onto a prepared baking sheet

Use a cookie scoop (or a tablespoon measurement) to scoop out your cookies onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cover the baking sheet with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least an hour.

After the dough has chilled, preheat your oven and line another baking sheet with parchment paper (or a nonstick baking mat.)

Place the pre-scooped, chilled cookie dough balls onto the prepared baking sheet. Be sure to space them out about 2″ apart so they can spread as they bake. (If they’re too close, you’ll have a sheet of cookies… that are one cookie. Which isn’t a terrible problem to have, except then they’re a little more challenging to eat.)

Transfer the baking sheet into the oven, and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden brown.

Enjoy warm with your favorite kind of beverage or once cooled completely.

A girl grabs a half-bitten into Dark Chocolate Chip Cookie

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I use refined or unrefined coconut oil?

You can use either. I’m not the biggest fan of coconut flavor, so I prefer the refined variety. However, both types work.

Why does my coconut oil need to be solid? ​

The texture of solid coconut oil is similar to that of softened butter, softened vegan butter or vegetable shortening. Since we’re using coconut oil here, I like it to be firm, yet blendable.

Why do I need to chill the dough?

It lets the gluten rest. Also, it allows the fat to chill, which makes these cookies fluffier than they would be otherwise.

Can I freeze these chocolate chip cookies? If so, how do I reheat them?

Since this batter makes 36 (1 tablespoon) cookies, you can easily freeze them. I’ve written a whole post about how to freeze cookie dough, so check it out.

When you’re ready to bake them, preheat the oven, and place the frozen cookies on a baking sheet. Expect to bake the cookies 2-3 more minutes than the original time, but keep an eye on them!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, in scoops, is shown on a baking sheet before it chills

Easy substitutions for the best Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

Please keep in mind that some of these substitutions will change these chocolate chip cookies. If you’re dairy free or vegan or cannot eat eggs, some of these substitutions, obviously, will not work for you.

  • No applesauce? Use one egg in its place, assuming you are not vegan or are not making Eggless Chocolate Chip Cookies.
  • No applesauce or eggs? Use half of a ripe banana. You can also use a combination of 1 teaspoon baking soda and 1 tablespoon of white or apple cider vinegar.
  • If you don’t have coconut oil, use the same amount of room temperature unsalted butter OR vegetable shortening.
  • Chocolate choices: Obviously, I love dark chocolate, so I use dark chocolate in this recipe. If you don’t have it on hand and eat milk or semisweet chocolate, you can use those. I say only use 3/4 a cup of the chocolate, though, as the cookies will become very sweet.
A girl grabs a Chocolate Chip Cookie, from above, with Pinterest text

Cookies, fresh out of the oven, are shown on brown paper with shot glasses of milk
Yield: 36 cookies

Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Chill Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Rich, decadent Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies are the perfect slightly sweet dessert! These cookies, made with coconut oil and applesauce instead of the traditional butter or vegetable shortening, are light, soft and delicious!

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup coconut oil, solid
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup dark brown sugar
  • ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the coconut oil and sugars. Whisk until well-combined.
  2. Add in the applesauce and vanilla extract, beating until incorporated.
  3. Add the flour, salt and soda into the bowl. Mix until combined and until the batter has come together. (It might be a little crumbly, but this is OK. The next step will fix that right up.)
  4. Measure in the dark chocolate chips, and stir in with a spoon or a rubber spatula. This might take a few moments, and that's OK.
  5. Use your cookie scoop to scoop the cookies onto a lined baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for an hour. (You can also pop them into the freezer like this.)
  6. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  7. Place the pre-scooped and chilled cookie dough balls onto the prepared baking sheet. Space them out about 2" apart so they can spread as they bake.
  8. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown.
  9. Enjoy warm with a glass of your favorite beverage.

Notes

Please note that I used a 1 tablespoon cookie scoop to make my cookies. If you use a larger scoop, you will have less cookies in your batch, though they will be larger. The calories, as well as the number of cookies, will obviously change because of this.

These cookies are dairy free AND vegan, assuming you use my ingredients listed above. If you change certain ingredients, they might not be dairy free or vegan anymore.

SUBSTITUTIONS:

  • No applesauce? Use one egg in its place. No applesauce or eggs? Use 1/2 a ripe banana. You can also use a combination of 1 teaspoon baking soda and 1 tablespoon of white or apple cider vinegar.
  • No coconut oil? Use the same amount of room temperature unsalted butter OR vegetable shortening in its place.
  • Chocolate choices: Obviously, I love dark chocolate, so I use dark chocolate in this recipe. If you don't have it on hand and eat milk or semisweet chocolate, you can use those. I say only use 3/4 a cup of the chocolate, though, as the cookies will become very sweet.

FREEZING INSTRUCTIONS:

Since this batter makes 36 (1 tablespoon) cookies, you can easily freeze them. Simply place the cookie dough balls onto a baking sheet, and pop in the freezer for 3-4 hours. When they're frozen solid, transfer from the baking sheet to a storage baggie. When you're ready to bake them, preheat the oven to the temp listed above, and place however many cookies you want to bake on the baking sheet. Expect to bake the cookies 2-3 more minutes than the original time, but keep an eye on them!

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

36 cookies

Serving Size:

1 cookie

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 76Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 48mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 0gSugar: 6gProtein: 1g

Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

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The photos and recipe for these Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies were originally published on April 14, 2014. The photographs, along with the text of this blog post, were updated on April 20, 2020.

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6 Comments

  1. YUM! I will need to try this recipe out. I used Ghirardelli chocolate last time I made cookies and I don’t think I can go back to regular chocolate. Sooooo good, I have a major chocolate problem 🙂

    1. Thanks, Maria! You absolutely need to give this a try, and those Ghirardelli chocolate chips are my FAVORITE. So so so good.

      High-five for having a chocolate problem and being A-OK with that!

  2. There’s no such thing as a dark chocolate problem! Especially when said chocolate is wrapped up in a few of these cookies. They sound wonderful!

    1. You’ve just made me feel a TON better, Eileen! Cookies ARE wonderful, and in my book, everything is made better with chocolate. Soooo… yeah.

  3. Oh, I totally get the dark chocolate addiction Erin! It’s so delicious. I think the high cocoa content makes it a health food though… right? 😉 These cookies look absolutely delicious. Love the addition of the coconut oil and applesauce! Oh, and my fave chocolate? It’s one that’s made right here in my hometown, called Bahen & Co. sea salt and almond. SO GOOD. I think you’d love it (I should send you some!!)

    1. So glad you get the dark chocolate addiction, too, Laura! And I absolutely agree with you — that high cocoa content has to make it a health food… Thanks!

      The combo of the coconut oil and applesauce works wonders in these cookies, which come from a recipe that calls for a CUP (!!!) of vegetable shortening. I just… can’t bring myself to put that kind of stuff in my cookies these days, so it’s been fun finding a workaround. 🙂

      And now that I’ve checked out Bahen & Co., I think I need to try to find them in the States to sample your favorite chocolate. I mean, it’s only right, right?

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