I love pools of chocolate as much as the next cookie monster, but boy am I sick of chopping bars! And juggling bowls. And chilling dough. And sprinkling flaky salt just so. This cookie recipe returns to a simpler time when everything is mixed by hand in one bowl and the baking happens right away. Plus, best of all, it uses actual chocolate chips. If it’s been a while, I encourage you to rediscover how delightful a slightly melted chip can be.
The big twist here is black cocoa powder, the cocoa du jour in baking circles right now. It adds a bitter edge to cut through the sugary base and rich peanut butter notes. It also adds a stunning, coal-black backdrop for the chocolate chips to sparkle.
And do they sparkle.
The other night, I brought a container of these cookies on the subway. The woman sitting next to me asked if I made them and we chatted for a bit. At one point I said, “…is this weird? Do you want one?” She eagerly pulled a rinsed-out salad container from her bag and I gave her one. When I opened the lid to hand over the cookies, the woman sitting on my other side said, "Oh my god, those smell incredible. Can I buy one off of you?" So I gave her one, too (without charge, of course).
I loved that these cookies, a throwback in their own way, brought a few New Yorkers together on a cold, random night on the subway. —Casey Elsass
Set racks in the center and lower third of the oven and preheat to 350°F. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.
Add the butter and peanut butter to a small skillet and set over low heat. Use a rubber spatula to stir occasionally, as the butter melts and the peanut butter softens, to form a cohesive mixture. Remove from the heat and set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, and salt. Pour in the melted butter mixture and whisk to form a smooth, cohesive paste, about 1 minute. Add the egg and vanilla extract and whisk again for about 2 minutes, until well incorporated and slightly aerated.
Add the black cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking powder. Use a rubber spatula to fold and fully combine. Add the flour and chocolate chips. Fold again, until just combined.
Use a 1 1/2–ounce cookie scoop, or three tablespoons, to portion the dough onto the baking sheets, leaving 2 inches between each scoop. Bake for about 12 minutes, rotating and turning the sheets halfway through, until the cookies are puffed and slightly spread.
Remove the sheets from the oven. Lift one of the sheets a few inches above the counter and let it drop. Repeat three more times to flatten and spread the cookies. Repeat with the other sheet. Let the cookies cool completely on the sheets.