Professional Baker Reviews Chocolate-Chip Cookies From Grocery Stores

I usually bake my own cookies — but sometimes a craving hits and you just want to pick some up at the store.

group of cookies in plastic containers

I got chocolate-chip cookies from Kroger, Safeway, Walmart, and Costco to review.

Alana Al-Hatlani

As a professional baker, I’ve probably made thousands of chocolate-chip cookies from scratch.

Chocolate-chip cookies were also one of the first things I learned to make as a kid and I’ve since spent a lot of time refining my own recipes for different versions of the classic, from soft and chewy to crispy and lacy.

So, of course, I have strong opinions on what makes a good chocolate-chip cookie.

I don’t like them overly sweet, which typically happens when there’s not enough bitter-but-balancing chocolate folded into the dough. Soft centers and crispy edges are ideal, but there are certainly a lot of differing viewpoints on cookie texture.

Although I usually make big batches of my own dough to store in the freezer for a rainy day, I also understand that when a craving hits, you want a store-bought option that will satisfy.

So, I tried chocolate-chip cookies from the bakery section at four national chains near me in Seattle — Costco, Kroger, Safeway, and Walmart. Here’s how they stacked up.

At Costco, I picked up a 24-pack of cookies for $8.99.

costco cookies in a plastic container

Costco’s chocolate-chip cookies looked packed with chocolate.

Alana Al-Hatlani

I could tell at first glance the chain’s cookies — from its Kirkland Signature brand — were loaded with 1/2-inch chunks of chocolate.

The cost of each cookie came out to only 37 cents. Notably, though, Costco’s bakery is only accessible to members for in-person shopping. Memberships to the wholesaler start at $60 per year and come with lots of discounts and special perks.

The cookie’s surface was a rippled texture filled with nooks and crannies of chocolate.

costco chocolate chunk cookie

Costco’s cookies looked really nice.

Alana Al-Hatlani

Texturally, they were soft in the center with slightly firmer edges — but, overall, they’re ideal for those who like cookies soft and chewy.

The cookies also had a pleasant and prominent vanilla flavor. I also appreciated their golden color, which might be indicative of more brown sugar being in the dough. The other cookies I tried were paler.

Safeway’s cookies were the crispest of the bunch.

safeway chocolate chip cookie on plate

Safeway’s cookie was super sweet.

Alana Al-Hatlani

The center of the cookie was soft, but the thinner edges had a pleasant snap. That said, the cookie didn’t have a lot of chew.

In terms of chocolate, these fell somewhere in the middle of the bunch. They had a decent amount of chips but were not loaded with them. The chocolate chips in the cookies also fell on the sweeter side.

Overall, the cookie was a little one-note, coming off as just sweet. Not unpleasant, but also not the best cookie on the market, in my opinion.

A pack of 16 cookies from Kroger cost me $3.50 with a store card (or $5.49 without).

cookies in a plastic container

Kroger’s chocolate-chip cookies were under the Fred Meyer’s label.

Alana Al-Hatlani

The cookies I got at Kroger were labeled with Fred Meyer, a local northwest chain owned by Kroger. Although Fred Meyer and Kroger merged in 1998, some stores and items — like these cookies — still represent the Fred Meyer brand.

At first glance, I could tell they were filled with lots of semisweet chocolate chips.

With my card, each cookie came to only 22 cents. Without it, they were 34 cents each.

Overall, I think you should head to Costco’s bakery section for chocolate-chip cookies.

chocolate chip cookies from safeway, kroger, costco, and walmart on a metal tray

Costco’s chocolate-chip cookies were my favorite.

Alana Al-Hatlani

As a professional baker who makes chocolate-chip cookies daily, I felt Costco’s cookie came the closest to tasting homemade.

The soft texture, vanilla-forward flavor, and ample dark-chocolate chunks set it apart from the others.

The Fred Meyer cookies from my local Kroger were a close second place. Walmart’s version felt a little too much like a sugar cookie to me and Safeway’s fell a bit short. But, really, it’s hard to go wrong with a cookie from any of these chains.

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