The Increasing Price Of Chocolate Chip Cookies Is Disheartening

Inflation and seemingly endless waves of the pandemic have changed most aspects of our lives, including how we shop and what we eat. Eater chronicles the timeline of random pandemic food trends — from the great staple shortage of 2020 to social media-inspired pasta dishes — that seem both long ago and yet too close for comfort. In those trying times, folks understandably turned to baked goods, as few things in life offer satisfaction like a warm piece of sourdough or a sweet treat. Sadly, it seems that nothing is safe from the record-breaking inflation of the past few years, and now it has come for our chocolate chip cookies.

According to Food Dive, just about everything you need to make a batch of chocolate chip cookies has been steadily rising in price. The average price of cakes and cookies rose by 2.4% at the beginning of 2022, resulting from the increasing prices of flour, eggs, and cooking oil. Whether you are buying cookies from the store or whipping up a batch from home, those cookies are going to cost you.

But staple ingredients like flour and eggs are merely the vehicle that carries the ever-important chocolate chip into our mouths when we need a sweet cookie fix. While demand for chocolate remained surprisingly stable in 2020, it has increased since 2021, and Moms notes that a poor crop yield from the cocoa-producing Ivory Coast of Africa coupled with the increased demand has been driving prices up recently.

Increasing prices empty the cookie jar

Despite a minimal reprieve recently from inflated prices in some sectors, food costs continue to increase, and chocolate chip cookies are no exception. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average per-pound price of chocolate chip cookies has increased steadily since 2019 but recently saw a notable price hike.

In 2019, treating yourself to chocolate chip cookies cost an average of $3.49, and even after the pandemic took hold in 2020, the price only modestly increased by $0.21 per pound. Inflation began driving up prices on many items in 2021, but the New York Post noted that an oversupply of cocoa beans kept reserves strong and chocolate maintained some affordability. The combination of stable chocolate prices and higher staple products resulted in a 6.9% increase in the price of chocolate chip cookies from 2020 to 2021.

Ongoing inflated prices and a 20% dip in U.S. cocoa reserves (per New York Post) caused the average cost of chocolate chip cookies to jump up to $4.34 per pound in 2022, a 9.8% increase from 2021. Sadly, the price of chocolate might keep climbing, making our cookies crumble.