These Levain Bakery-Style Red Velvet Cookies are SERIOUSLY tasty and for intense red velvet fanatics only! Six ounces of pure red velvet goodness bursting with semi-sweet and white chocolate chips!
If you’ve been around here awhile, you know I have a full catalog of Levain Bakery cookies, including their four flavors: Chocolate Chip Walnut, Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip, Chocolate Chocolate Chip, and Oatmeal Raisin. I also created a Funfetti Cake Batter version, and now THIS version. What can I say? I have been bitten by the Levain bug!
Even if you’ve never been to their famed NYC bakery, you’ve likely heard of Levain Bakery. They’re known for their whopping 6-ounce cookies the size of a baseball with irresistibly gooey and slightly underbaked centers that create huge, long lines snaked down the blocks outside their shops. You can order their cookies online for a pricey fee, and apparently you can get a very sad version in the frozen section (seriously – someone once reviewed copycat versions versus the actual Levain frozen version and preferred the copycat versions!).
There are a few key components to making Levain-style cookies, and those components are:
- Cornstarch: Cornstarch is my number 1 secret cookie ingredient for a light and tender cookie texture. Time and time again, it yields soft cookies!
- Cake flour: Cake flour is Levain’s secret ingredient for their cookies in creating a tender cookie with a lighter texture and fluffy crumb. If all all-purpose flour were to be used, the cookies would be more dense and scone-like, but the addition of cake flour lightens things up a bit.
- Extra mix-ins: Don’t be alarmed by the quantity of the mix-ins in this cookie recipe. I know 3 cups of chocolate chips is a LOT, but this quantity is crucial for maintaining the cookie’s structure, giving the cookie plenty of flavor, and helps prevent too much spreading.
- Brief chill time: These cookies only require about 20 minutes to chill for optimal results. We only bake one sheet of cookies at a time, so while the one sheet bakes, refrigerate the rest of the dough to keep it chilled. This prevents too much spreading as well.
And for optimal, bakery-style results, follow these tips:
- Shape: I like to shape these cookie dough balls very rough and loose. We’re so used to tight, smooth and compacted dough balls, but these are going to have a rougher, craggy exterior and a loose pack which gives it that texture. For accuracy, I recommend using a digital kitchen scale to measure out exactly 6 ounces of dough.
- Size: These cookies are monstrous, so I recommend only baking 4 on a baking sheet at a time, staggering them on the baking sheet so they are at least 3″ from one another. This helps so that when they inevitably do spread a little during the baking process, they don’t all form into one cookie and it keeps the baking consistent.
- Do not over-bake!: These cookies have a signature gooey and underdone center with a drier, duller exterior. While everyone’s ovens operate differently, these cookies take anywhere from 8-12 minutes to bake. I recommend baking one cookie first to gauge how quickly it will bake for you for your specific oven. For instance, mine baked perfectly at about 9:30. We’re also going to bake these sheets one at a time in the center rack of the oven for optimal results and the utmost consistency. Remember, these cookies will continue to finish cooking up and set once they come out of the oven, so don’t over bake!
- One at a time!: For best results, only bake one sheet at a time in the center rack of the oven.
Supremely soft, ultra gooey, richly chocolaty and SO decadent, you’ll love these insanely indulgent Red Velvet Cookies!
Levain Bakery-Style Red Velvet Cookies
- 1 cup COLD unsalted butter, cubed
- 1½ cups granulated white sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp red liquid food coloring
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup cake flour
- 1¾ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups white chocolate chips
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 410° degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners; set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the cubed cold butter and granulated sugar together with the paddle attachment on low speed for 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium and continue beating for 30 seconds. Lastly, increase speed to high and continue beating for 30 seconds or until mixture is light and fluffy, scraping down the bottom and sides of the bowl with a spatula.
- Beat in the eggs, one at a time, and vanilla, mixing well after each addition. Beat in the red food coloring and cocoa powder and mix on low until incorporated. Lastly, beat in the baking soda, cornstarch, salt, cake flour and all-purpose flour until a soft dough comes together. Mix in both types of chocolate chips on low speed until incorporated. Refrigerate uncovered for 20 minutes to chill.
- Using a digital cooking scale for accuracy, use your hands to measure out 6 ounces of dough, forming it into a rough, craggly/rough textured and tall ball (see photo in body of the post for example). Stagger the cookie dough balls about 3" apart from one another, and only do 4 cookie dough balls per baking sheet. Keep any dough not being baked immediately refrigerated.
- Bake one baking sheet at a time in the center rack of the oven for 8-11 minutes or until the tops are dull and dry looking and the centers appear mostly set. Remember, you want them to be gooey in the middle and keep in mind they will continue to set up some more as they cool. Mine baked for exactly 9:30. Remove from the oven and let cool for at LEAST 30 minutes on the baking sheets before serving. This ensures they maintain their structure (otherwise they are far too delicate and will completely fall apart).
You’re going to love these seriously decadent and ultra gooey cookies! I know I did!
Have a super sweet day!
Karen Bernhardt says
This is the second Domestic Rebel recipe I’ve made, and HOLY COW, these were amazing! I halved the recipe so I wouldn’t eat them all and immediately regretted that decision upon first bite. I didn’t have any cake flour, but I found a recipe online for how to make it (measure out 1 level cup of flour, remove 2 TBSP flour, add in 2 TBSP cornstarch) and that seemed to work fine. Ready to make another batch!
Karen, I am so happy you loved these and they worked with your cake flour sub!
Hi, do you think using gluten free flour and xanathan gum would work to achieve this type of cookie? Thanks!
Hi Renee, that may be slightly difficult because of the use of cake flour in the recipe. The cake flour is used to help lighten and tenderize the cookie so it isn’t so dense and scone-like as it would be if all all-purpose flour were to be used. You could certainly try, although I’m not familiar with xanathan gum. What would that be substituting?
Thank you so much for the reply. I have never tried baking with gluten free flour, but a friend of mine is keen to try some baked goods that are gf. I think the gum is supposed to help binding the ingredients together, since the gluten has been removed from the flour. ThNk you again. I think I will try them as per the recipe, so I will be the one who gets to eat them! 🙂
Hi again, I forgot to say that in Europe we don’t have cake flour. According to Google, I will have to use more cornstarch. Also, I have seen that many cookie recipes use soft brown sugar. Why have you chosen not to? And why granulated sugar, that is coarser than caster sugar, to be creamed with the butter? Sorry about the questions, but I bake very little and I would like to do your recipe well. Thanks!
I don’t have a digital scale… can you estimate how many tablespoons per cookie to give me an idea of how big to make each one? I know I need a scale… it’s on my list of things to buy ?
Hi Allison, unfortunately I do not know as I haven’t measured these with a Tablespoon, only a scale. Apologies!
I bought a scale this week and made them today. They are AMAZING. Definitely will make again!
This tastes amazing. I’ve never been to the bakery that this copycat recipe is from, but I can totally see why people would line up for these. They are enormous at 6ounces a pop. I ended up baking mine for a little longer because I didn’t want it to be too gooey. Thank you for sharing this recipe!
Did you use cups or grams when measuring dry ingredients
Hi Ashley, I use cups when baking for my website unless otherwise specified.
These were so good! Great recipe. I would definitely recommend these.
Can these be made ahead and frozen? I want to make these as special treats at Christmas (along with other items), but I don’t want to have to do all my baking at once.
Hi Deanna, I have not tried freezing them. I am afraid they won’t spread at all if they are frozen, so maybe let the dough balls come closer to room temperature before baking.
Monica Wright says
I had the exact question but I wanted them for later this week
I baked them, then froze them. Had an unexpected guest for coffee. We put two frozen cookies in the microwave for 15 seconds. They held together perfectly and the chips were melty. Yum! Thanks for the recipe.
Can you make these smaller, in a normal cookie size?
You can, but they’re definitely formulated to be this giant size. Adjust the baking time though!
Hi in the below comments you said you never froze the cookeis. Is it best to chill in fridge for 24 hours then? Thnx
I followed this recipe *almost to a T… I had to do the cake flour substitute and I didn’t weigh out my cookies. I also popped them in the freezer for about 8 minutes before baking to help them maintain shape.
WOW. These are one of my most favorite cookies. I’m not sure why so many people are having issues with this recipe… these are fantastic and very festive for the Christmas season. The flavor is similar to a Hershey’s Hugs kiss. Chocolate with white chocolate; creamy and chocolate-y. So good!
Hello! I’m eager to bake this delicious cookies! Do you have the measurements in grams?? How many sticks of butter in a cup? Thanks!
Hi Norma, I am sorry, I don’t but I will try and get the grams updated here soon. 1 cup of butter equals 2 sticks or 16 Tablespoons.
Hi! I am about to make these cookies.. can I convert all the measurements in grams .. as I dont work with cups and spoons.
This recipe is sooo good. I made 3 batches already. I do freeze the dough and that works great! I just put the frozen ball in a 200c oven for 16 mins and they come out perfect. They still spread a bit even though they go in totally frozen. It is sooo hard to wait until they cool down.
I don’t use cups and go with the following measures:
White sugar: 300g
Flour: 325g all purpose + 5g of maïzena to mimic the cake flour
White Chocolate 250g dark chocolate 100g (which is slightly less than the recipe calls for but it works better for me)
What if you want MORE cookies and smaller size? Is it okay to follow the recipe and just do 3-4 oz balls rather?
Hi Christen, you can make them smaller, but perhaps adjust the baking time.
Hello! I’d love to make a giant cookie cake out of this recipe. Do you think I should adjust the baking time AND temperature?
No to temperature, but definitely to baking time. I have not made a giant cookie out of this so I honestly have no idea what the time would be.
By far the best cookies i’ve made in awhile! made 2 batches over the weekend because they went so fast definitely recommend. will be trying some of your other recipes soon!
Would you change any measurements to all other ingredients if you didn’t want to put any chocolate or white chocolate chips in them? Wanted to make them then just ice them with frosting.
Hi Aubre, so just make a red velvet cookie without any chips in them? I would choose a different recipe. These bakery-style cookie recipes rely on their mix-ins to hold their shape and structure.
This recipe looks amazing!
Do you happen to have the ingredient measurements in grams and/or ounces?