15 Chocolate Chip Brands, Ranked Worst To Best

When you think about chocolate chips, you probably imagine the quintessential cookie. Ideally, it's warm and fresh right out of the oven so that you can really focus on the melty chips meant to be the star of the show. Well, that scene is practically heaven on earth, but why not make sure it's as good as possible by choosing the most delicious chocolate chip? Once you discover a fantastic chocolate chip, you're going to want to put it on everything. Whether scattered on warm oatmeal or sitting atop cold ice cream, there are many circumstances that benefit from well-placed chips. And you can always eat a handful plain, particularly if it's a high-quality brand. Yes, the best chocolate chip should be able to stand up to the elements by itself — a tiny little pyramid of rich, sweet, cocoa flavor. So we set out to find that very chip. 

We scoured grocery store shelves for different brands of chocolate chips to try. For the sake of fairness, we aimed for semi-sweet as opposed to milk or dark chocolate, especially since this is the kind most commonly found in chocolate chip cookie recipes or your grandma's pantry. We ate them just as they were, straight out of the bag. We also lightly melted them, and we certainly wish we'd had the time to completely bake them into chocolate chip cookies. But that would have turned this already epic chocolate chip battle into a verified war. Here's how we ranked them.

15. Wegmans

Wegmans Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels sport an old-fashioned package design that makes us feel like we're sitting on a red-and-white checkered stool in a vintage soda shop and enjoying ... chocolate chip cookies? Did they sell those there? Did the original Toll House recipe predate soda shops? These will stay rhetorical questions for now, but know that we're looking up all the answers later, okay? Okay. Either way, it makes us feel even better about Wegmans' chips when we're hit with a little harmless whimsy. They're also vegan, lactose-free, gluten-free, and devoid of artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives. 

Wegmans assures us that the chips are one of many "chosen with care" and that the "yellow banner is your shortcut to great-tasting products. We only offer products we love." Sadly, we didn't love these. It was more of a vague, nonchalant sort of soft spot, a casual relationship as opposed to true, deep love. Maybe they're as old as the packaging suggests? No, that's too harsh, but they did taste slightly funky and chalky. This was a huge 180-degree pivot from the usual amazing products found at Wegmans. But don't get too alarmed if you currently have a few bags sitting in your baking cabinet; they'll cause no harm. 

14. Publix

Publix Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels can be found at the fan-favorite supermarkets prevalent in the Southern United States, so don't expect to unearth these chocolate chips if you live in, say, North Dakota. But if you're searching for the best chocolate chip cookies in every state — including North Dakota — we can help. Publix's bag of chips proudly proclaims that it's "made with real chocolate" which scares us for society as a whole. We're tempted to make the Roasted Pecan Chocolate Clusters recipe on the other side of the bag with the leftovers from this taste test. Otherwise, though, the packaging leaves a lot to be desired. These are nowhere near the most appetizing-looking chips on the shelf. 

They weren't the most delicious to taste, either. They're fine. They're chocolate chips. They would make decent chocolate chip cookies. Publix didn't mess anything up, nor did they give us a game-changing product. The cocoa flavor is a little light, and the color is fairly wan. But we love Publix, and we have nothing against these solidly basic chocolate chips. You won't be mad at these, but you may be slightly disappointed. 

13. Lily's

Lily's Semi-Sweet Style Baking Chips gave us immediate whiplash before we even opened the bag. We were a little disappointed with the steep cost, which will obviously vary depending on where you buy it, but will likely still discourage you. It's also important to note that instead of 12 or even 10 ounces, you're receiving a shifty 9 ounces. The turn-on was the design. We fell hard for the hummingbird serving as an apostrophe, the artsy landscape, and the elegant burgundy color scheme. Then, for better or worse, we read the finer print: No sugar added, "Less sugar. Sweet life," and "stevia sweetened." 

We then felt a little more grounded in skeptical, yet hopeful, reality. Would these chips taste slightly otherworldly in that weirdly addicting Diet Coke way? Or would the morsels be a satisfactory dupe for sugary chocolate chips? There was only one way to find out. With 0 grams of total sugar, these will be a lifesaver for some individuals. But for the rest of you, please know that Lily's Stevia-Sweetened Baking Chips will indeed taste different. It's unavoidable. But they're still actually quite good for a sugar-free version, with vanilla doing some heavy lifting to bring out the sweetness. Many thanks to Lily for her contribution.

12. Baker's Corner

Baker's Corner Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels are found on the shelves of Aldi. Have you ever visited one of these blue-and-orange emblemed stores? It's quite the experience. You need a quarter for carts, the shelves are often a wee bit spare, and the baking aisle is less of an aisle and more of a "section." You won't find many other chocolate chips at an Aldi, but you don't expect to if you're a regular Aldi shopper. 

At first glance, they look a lot like Target's Good & Gather, but the addition of vanilla on the ingredient list made them taste slightly distinct. Aldi includes melting instructions, just like Ghirardelli does, but the resemblance between the two brands ends there. Baker's Corner chocolate chips are in your corner if you need chocolate chips on a budget, and they will always come through in a pinch with no one the wiser. But if you have a little pocket change to spare, treat yourself to a higher quality chocolate chip and save by purchasing one of Aldi's many, many other more affordable dupes for bigger grocery store staples. They are less rich in flavor than others, which wasn't surprising, but melted nicely and aren't too sweet. We recommend these for big-batch recipes that feed a crowd. 

11. Equal Exchange

Equal Exchange Organic Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips are free from many major allergens, eight to be exact. It's not quite as many as Enjoy Life, but that whole shellfish point is probably moot. It advises using "these delicious Organic Chocolate Chips to add something special to cookies, brownies, and even pancakes," so now we're all craving chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast tomorrow. What makes Equal Exchange, well, equal? The promise to be "always small farmer grown." The brand sources from small farmer organizations because it believes that these are the heart and soul of the fair trade movement. The chips we're eating happen to arrive via Peru and only have three ingredients: organic raw cane sugar, organic chocolate liquor, and organic cocoa butter. 

We felt pretty great about taste-testing these for lots of reasons. For one thing, 55% cacao is a whole 13% more than 365 by Whole Foods Market, but it's still not very dark compared to others. These chips are a good middle ground between semi and sweet, meaning that you won't be disappointed either way but you also won't be overly excited by the end result. The have a slight bitterness like slightly burnt coffee for some taste testers, which keeps it from ranking higher on the list (especially when factoring in the slightly higher price).

10. Hershey's Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Hershey's Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips look the part and made us immediately feel like big softies when it comes to classic candy. Speaking of which, want to know a fun hack to make pillowy-soft chocolate chip cookies? Try adding some instant pudding mix. We know it's wacky, but give it a chance, because the end result is really delicious! With these Hershey's chocolate chips and some Jello Instant Vanilla pudding, your cookies will taste like pure nostalgia in the sweetest sense. The bold bag is clearly reminiscent of a classic Hershey's chocolate bar, while the yellow stripe down the right side alludes to the equally classic Nestlé Toll House signature look. That made us feel like there was a direct showdown between Hershey's and Nestlé happening amidst the bigger battle between all 15 chocolate chips on the list. 

When neck and neck with Nestlé Toll House, these Hershey's chips fell a bit short. They come close with their warm, wholesome taste, but veer slightly towards the problematic waxiness of a regular Hershey's bar, especially when heated. Hershey's are less chocolatey and more sweet, so we think they're great for baking up kid-friendly brownies and bars but less ideal for higher-end chocolate desserts or munching straight out of the bag. 

9. Simple Truth Organic

Simple Truth Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips are organically grown, non-GMO, and made with Fairtrade Certified ingredients like organic cane sugar, organic chocolate liquor, organic cocoa butter, and organic vanilla extract. Wait — vanilla extract in chocolate chips? We were taken aback. How many of the others have vanilla? After this surprise, we decided to be on the lookout and see if we could detect subtle taste differences. There's a chocolate chip cookie recipe here, too, and upon close inspection, it does in fact differ slightly from, say, the Trader Joe's recipe. Intrigue! Now that would be another taste test: Which back-of-the-bag recipe bakes up the best chocolate chip cookies? The cookie pictured on the front of the Simple Truth bag makes our mouths water. 

When we tasted these chips, we were slightly disappointed that we weren't hit with more flavor. Of course, they're pricier than other chocolate chips because they're organic, and we'd hoped we taste a slightly upgraded product from what more conventional brands offer. But nope, Simple Truth is pretty basic, though we did prefer them just barely to another organic option, Equal Exchange, for both the richer taste and better cost. 

8. Good and Gather

Good and Gather Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips come from good old reliable Target, a source of the most fun seasonal browsing on earth and sneaky in-store Starbucks. Though Target brand chips aren't going to be as high quality as some others like Ghirardelli and Guittard, they are at least made with real chocolate and contain no preservatives, synthetic colors, or artificial flavors. 

These taste quite generic, like they could be found in middle-grade grocery store cookies packaged clear plastic containers available wherever foods are sold (though some are much better than others). Still, the Good and Gather chocolate chips are an excellent choice for anything that requires a chocolate chip, from trail mix to cookies to peanut butter-coated spoons. There's a 100% satisfaction guarantee or your money back, but we're more than satisfied and will gladly spend even more of our money at Target. By the way, the recipe on the back calls for 2 teaspoons of vanilla, which we highly condone, especially since the chips have none on their ingredient list. More vanilla in chocolate chip cookies is always a secret to success.

7. Enjoy Life

Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Mega Chunks are free from 14 allergens, including wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, egg, dairy, shellfish (thank goodness there's none of that in our chocolate chips, huh?), and more. That's because they're made in a dedicated nut-free and gluten-free facility, making them absolutely school-safe and accessible to a wider audience. It's definitely hinted at in the noticeably brief ingredient list: cane sugar, unsweetened chocolate, and cocoa butter. We picked up the "Mega Chunks" because the only others available were mini chips, and since these chunks are semisweet, we thought the difference was minimal. For the utmost clarity of testing, we chopped a chunk to regular chip size before conceding that it was an unnecessary step. The integrity remains. A minor argument began, however, between the merits of a chocolate chip cookie versus a chocolate chunk cookie, but we had to focus on this serious work, so we made our peace and moved on. 

We were happy that a vegan chip meant very few sacrifices on taste. If you need allergen-free chips in your school bake sale contribution, fear not. These aren't perfect since they weren't the most decadent or complex in their cocoa flavor, so we still could taste the missing pieces when compared back to back with something like Ghirardelli. But overall you don't lose anything major while gaining food safety. Slight differences in depth of flavor did become more apparent when tasted straight from the bag, though, so keep that in mind. 

6. 365 by Whole Foods Market

365 by Whole Foods Market Semi-Sweet Chocolate Baking Chips are, like Enjoy Life and Equal Exchange, made with Fairtrade Certified ingredients. In case you don't know what that really means, Fairtrade America, explains that the ingredients are coming from ethical farms that receive a fair cut, respect their workers, and strive for sustainability.  In return, you get peace of mind that your food products were created in a way that helps — rather than harms — everyone, even down to the beginning of the supply chain. This message is one we can easily rally around, and we hope one day that all products arrive in our hands this way. The recipe on the back takes a real left turn, though: sesame chocolate chip cookies. Leave it to Whole Foods, right? 

There's some vanilla here, and we could taste it. The chips didn't have as deep and dark a chocolate flavor as some others on the list. In all, 365 by Whole Foods Market's chocolate chips would be a great anytime staple, especially if you care about where your food is coming from and the impact your choices as a consumer have on a larger sphere. Still, 42% cacao isn't a lot, so they definitely tasted sweeter, especially with that vanilla added. Good for kids, yes, but these won't exactly make you feel like you're enjoying something extraordinary or even remotely challenging to your palate. 

5. Harris Teeter

Harris Teeter™ Semisweet Chocolate Baking Chips are, as the bag says, "great for baking." Well, we definitely never thought of baking with chocolate chips, Harris Teeter, so thank you for the insight (that's sarcasm, by the way). But we're not yet baking with these, instead, we're trying to sample chocolate chips in their pure state, so does that mean that these morsels are hiding something that would best be disguised with plenty of butter and sugar? We shall see. The recipe on the back of this bag is a bit of a twist, which we appreciate: Chocolate Chip Bars (Blondies). Which do you prefer, classic cookies or chewy chocolate-studded blondies? 

Our taste test team was all for the cookies. These are one of the chips that do not use vanilla, but we didn't think that took anything away from the resulting taste. These have a great flavor all on their own, and for the great price, we were seriously impressed. It was a very well-balanced chip that didn't loudly proclaim one flavor — be it bitter or sweet or decadent — above the others. If you have a Harris Teeter in your neighborhood, give these a try and see if they become a new regular on your grocery list. Harris Teeter rarely disappoints, so this is par for the course. 

4. Nestlé Toll House

Nestlé Toll House Semi-sweet Chocolate Morsels are classic. It's the chip you know and love, from the cute little house sketch on the Toll House logo to the funny lines stretching over the Nestle logo, from the "deliciously rich and creamy" reassurance to the half-split cookie with the chocolate chips oozing out on the signature egg-yolk color palette. It's love at first sight and cookie craving at first suggestion. Notoriety and accessibility are part of the appeal since everyone knows they can likely find a bag of these reliable chips at any store, be it grocery or convenience. The Original Nestlé Toll House chocolate chip cookie recipe on it will produce pure homeyness. Nestlé still promises some higher-level quality, with ingredients you can trust.

We knew what we were getting into when we were getting into a bag of these. They're every bit as tasty and nostalgic as we remembered, though they did pale when directly compared to the heavy hitters. The taste is chocolatey but not rich, more the mildness of hot cocoa than the bold intensity of darker confections. We'll choose smoother, more indulgent chips for fancier occasion baking. No matter what, though, these are the chips we turn to in times of crisis. And they were the "control" chips, aka the ones we kept popping into our mouths for no reason during the taste test. Simply iconic, we can't say a word against them except that they aren't the absolute best. 

3. Trader Joe's

Trader Joe's Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips are gluten-free and dairy-free but happiness-full. The package has a useful note that the chocolate chips on the cover are *not actual size*, which probably didn't occur to anyone until seeing the note. And now we're all slightly disappointed they are not, in fact, the largest chocolate chips known to mankind (though that would make them difficult to bake with unless you were making extra-large chocolate chip cookies). Speaking of baking, there's a recipe on the back for chocolate chip cookies, so you can compare and contrast it to the classic Nestlè Toll House recipe or the best recipe available

Trader Joe's sneaks in a pinch of vanilla when creating this signature chocolate chip. Seems like a definite TJ's touch, doesn't it? Well, the chips had that TJ's bit of magic at first bite. Silky, smooth, pleasantly sweet, and with a surprising depth of flavor, they quickly rose to the top of the list. We were able to detect fun notes of different inspirations, like maybe toffee or nuts, in the same way we can when taste-testing a new high-quality coffee brew. If you're already a "frequent flyer" you've likely added these to your cart by now, but if you haven't yet, take this as a sign to just always choose Trader Joe's over the competition. Unless, of course, you're in the market for a truly luxurious chocolate chip, in which case, read on. 

2. Ghirardelli

Ghirardelli chocolate chips are going for the gold. We simply have to love packaging that's this magnificent. It features a majestic San Franciscan eagle, the royal blue logo front and center, and of course, the crinkly golden color of the bag. Ghirardelli clearly has the design to make you feel ready to do some "premium baking" with these artfully crafted semi-sweet chocolate chips. No, they are not morsels, not baking chips, just confidently exactly what you're looking for. Ghirardelli promises a commitment to ultimate quality thanks to its cocoa farming program, and we don't doubt for a second that these are of ultimate quality. The "Ghirardelli difference" is selecting the best beans, roasting the nibs for intensity, refining them for smoothness, and using a conche for authentic, next-level flavor.

One of our favorite small touches is the section on the back with chocolate melting instructions, which plants the idea in our minds to dissolve these down into blissful hot-drinking chocolate or classy fondue. And those suggestions are very on point since these chips have such a creamy, silky consistency. They melt perfectly into a chocolate chip cookie, holding their shape just enough without dissolving entirely into a puddle of chocolate syrup. And, of course, they're decadent right out of the bag. Ghirardelli makes chocolate chips that are as good as their specialty chocolate bars.

1. Guittard

Guittard makes the very best possible chocolate chips. Established way back in 1868 in San Francisco (were they neighborhood competitors with Ghirardelli? What's with all the good chocolate chip companies hailing from San Francisco?), they deliver their Super Cookie Chips to the modern master baker. Fairtrade Certified ingredients are found over here, too, just in case you assumed the luxe label means snobbery. Oh, and they're also free from peanuts, tree nuts, and gluten because these chips seem determined to have everything going for them. Well, almost everything. For one thing, they are "not suitable for individuals with milk allergies" because they're made on the same equipment that processes their silky milk chocolate chips. For another, the price reflects the significantly superior taste. A 10-ounce bag (many others on this list come in 12-ounce packages, as you might have noticed) costs $5.49 on their website, so maybe keep an eye out for sales and coupons. 

We agree upon tasting that it's still worth it, especially in a recipe that's all about the chocolate, such as classic cookies or ultimate fudgy brownies. Everything from the hint of vanilla to the 48% cacao content is engineered for perfection. Gary Guittard's signature is well warranted on each bag of these golden, decadent chocolate chips. We're believers. We love these and will use them whenever we need to wow the person lucky enough to savor the finished baking product, even if it's just ourselves.