Go from cookie craving to cookie reality in less than 15 minutes with my Air Fryer Chocolate Chip Cookies! With crispy edges and soft and gooey insides this small batch recipe is perfect for when you're craving cookies but don't want to make a full batch. Gluten-free option included and it's as good as the gluten-filled version!
When those warm cookie cravings hit, don't worry, I've got you. This recipe is designed to make a small batch of incredible Air Fryer Chocolate Chip Cookies FAST. Mix up the cookie dough in minutes and get straight to it. There is no cookie dough chilling required and you don't even need to preheat your air fryer!
This easy air fryer cookies recipe is made all in one bowl and makes just 4 cookies. Like my Chocolate Chip Cookie in a Mug, it's perfect for when you are craving fresh chocolate chip cookies but only need a small batch or for when it's summer and you don't want to heat up the house by having your oven on.
What happens when you air fry a cookie?
If you've been wondering what happens when you air fry a cookie you've come to the right place. An air fryer is basically a small amped up convection oven which with the circulating hot air it creates, can mimic the effect of deep frying.
And it turns out this fast circulating hot air is really great for baking cookies because oh my goodness these air fryer cookies turn out so good. In a chewy and crispy around the edges and an under-baked soft and gooey in the middle kind of way.
Ingredients & equipment notes
(For detailed measurements and instructions, see the printable recipe card).
To make amazing chocolate chip cookies in an air fryer you will need:
We're talking your regular chocolate chip cookie ingredients but with ratios slightly altered to work well and spread properly in an air fryer.
- Flour - Use all purpose flour or plain flour if you are in the UK. Are you gluten-free? Great news because I have tested this recipe with Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free 1 to 1 Baking Flour and it works perfectly. You just need to cook them for a bit longer.
- Sugar - A mixture of brown sugar and white sugar for ultimate sweetness, depth of flavour and for the perfect spreading action and texture.
- Vegan butter - Essential for great flavour and for the spreading (don't sub for oil). It's important to get the flour to butter ratio spot on if you want perfect cookies and it's important that the butter not be too cold. It should be soft and room temperature, but not melted liquid.
- Vanilla extract & sea salt - Flavor! If you've got some I highly recommend an additional little sprinkle of flaky sea salt on the top of each cookie right before baking or right after baking. Salt and chocolate are amazing together!
- Baking powder & baking soda - A combo of both for a balanced result, good browning and cookie lightness and spread.
- Chocolate chips - And plenty of them! I like to use a combination of chocolate chips and chocolate chunks but just chips are fine. Chocolate chips stay firmer and the chunks I use (Enjoy life Mega Chunks) get meltier and softer. The combination of both is the optimum chocolate chip cookies situation.
- Milk - Any plant milk will do. It's such a small amount that it doesn't matter which.
As for equipment, you will be needing an air fryer to make this recipe. I use this Cosori Air Fryer.
How to bake cookies in an air fryer
Baking cookies in an air fryer is easy. Here's how it's done:
- Line your air fryer basket with a square (or circle if it's a round one) of parchment paper.
- Stir up the cookie dough. No hand mixer is required. These air fryer chocolate chip cookies are so easy, made using just one bowl and the dough comes together in minutes.
- Scoop out cookie dough balls with an ice cream scoop or cookie scoop and place them on the parchment paper.
- Slide the basket into the air fryer and air-fry for 7 to 8 minutes until golden brown. If you are making them with gluten-free flour they need an additional 2 minutes cooking time.
Once done, let the chocolate chip cookies cool a bit in the air fryer basket so they firm up before you attempt to remove them and then enjoy the perfect dessert. So good dipped in a cold glass of cashew milk!
If you want to experiment with cooking more baked goods in an air fryer, this air-fryer temperature & cooking time conversion calculator is really handy. And whilst not specifically vegan, this comprehensive guide to tweaking recipes for your air fryer will be really useful too. I'm thinking my chocolate lava cakes would be great candidates to try!
For the very best results when making these vegan air fryer chocolate chip cookies take note of these tips:
- Cookies are finicky and if the fat to flour and sugar ratios end up off, even very slightly, they won't spread properly or they can spread too much. This means measuring accurately is really important. Weighing with a digital scale is always best but if not, use measuring spoons and scoop the ingredient up gently and level with with back of knife without compacting.
- Don't over-mix the cookie dough as you'll end up activating the gluten and making your cookies tough.
- You must line the air fryer basket with a piece of parchment paper as instructed or the cookie dough will melt down through the holes. It's important that it is slightly smaller than the surface area of your air fryer though so that the hot air can circulate. The paper should not go up the sides at all.
- This recipe has only been tested using parchment paper. If you use anything else (like foil) to line your air fryer basket the cooking time will be affected.
- Don't preheat your air fryer. Once it's hot it's very hard to scoop and place the cookie dough in it without burning yourself so I adapted the recipe to work from cool.
- When you slide the air fryer basket with the cookies inside, into your air fryer, do it gently. If you're a bit rough they have a tendency to slide forward on the paper which can ruin their appearance and make them all stick together.
- The short, sharp tap you give the cookies when you remove them from the air fryer is important for great cookie texture so don't skip that step. It's especially important if you are baking gluten-free cookies because they bake up a little puffier. Tapping the air fryer basket knocks the air out of them and the cookies texture improves.
- Once done be sure to let the cookies sit in the basket for at least 5 to 10 minutes before trying to remove them as like all cookies they start off really soft and will firm up as they cool. If you try to move them too soon they will break.
Not in the mood for straight up chocolate chip cookies? Try using vegan brown butter for an extra rich, toasty flavour, or use the base chocolate chip cookie recipe and switch up the add-ins! Here are some ideas:
- Smores cookies - Keep the chocolate chips and add some vegan marshmallows and crumbled up graham crackers.
- Choc & nut - Add a tablespoon or two of chopped nuts. Pecans, walnuts and hazelnuts all work really well.
- Mocha cookies - Add half to one teaspoon of freshly ground coffee or instant espresso powder with the dry ingredients.
- Oat & Raisin - Add 1 tablespoon of oats to the dry ingredients and use raisins instead of the chocolate chips.
- White Chocolate & Macadamia - Vegan white chocolate chips are becoming easier and easier to find and this is such a good combo.
Storage & reheating
If by some miracle you end up with leftover cookies, store them in an air tight container for up to a week.
You can also refresh a leftover cookie to fresh from the air fryer status. Cut a small piece of parchment paper a little bigger than your cookie and place the cookie on it in the air fryer basket. Cook on 300°F for about 2 minutes. It will become perfectly warm, soft and chewy again!
Yes it's fine as long as you cut it to fit so it's just on the bottom surface and not up the sides and you have food on it to weigh it down. Don't preheat or turn your air fryer on with just the paper and no food it in, or with paper going up the sides of the basket, because the paper will move in the air current and could potentially come into contact with the heating elements then set alight. Having food/cookies on it weighs it down and stops this happening.
Without something to sit on, the cookie dough will melt down through the holes in the air fryer basket so parchment paper is necessary.
There are a few reasons this may have happened. One is your flour, butter and sugar ratios could have been slightly off. With cookies they need to be spot on for the best results. The only way to be truly accurate is to use a digital scale to weigh your ingredients. If you make any changes to the recipe at all, like reducing the amount of sugar or fat, that can also cause the cookies not to spread properly. Refrigerating the cookie dough in this recipe can make them not spread optimally too. The dough does not need to be refrigerated.
Some brands of sugar are not vegan, but many regular grocery store varieties are, and all organic sugars are. Check with the brands you have available to you wherever you live. They will be happy to tell you if you call them or email. Or just buy organic sugar then you don't need to worry.
You can but you will need to grease it really well, and you will need to keep a really careful eye on them because foil radiates and holds heat so the bottoms of your cookies will cook much faster than they do on parchment paper. I'd probably reduce the temperature by 10 or 20 degrees to help compensate. It is better to use parchment paper if at all possible so you get a nice even bake and don't have to worry about the bottoms burning.
If you have one that will fit inside your air fryer basket then you technically could. Most won't fit though, and this recipe has only been tested using parchment paper so the cooking time will be affected if you cook them on a metal tray. They will likely take 1 or 2 minutes less to bake.
Hungry for more?
Air Fryer Chocolate Chip CookiesAuthor:
- 3 tablespoons (41 grams) vegan butter , slightly softened (not melted)
- 2 tablespoons (25 grams) dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons (25 grams) cane sugar , or white sugar
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 6 tablespoons (47 grams) all purpose flour , (plain flour in the UK) or 6 tablespoons (56 grams) of Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free 1 to 1 Baking Flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ⅛ teaspoon baking soda , (bicarbonate of soda in the UK)
- 1 tablespoon plant-based milk
- ¼ cup (45 grams) dairy-free chocolate chips or chunks , or a combination of chips and chunks, plus a few extra for decoration
- Flaky sea salt for sprinkling
- Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit in the bottom of your air fryer basket. It needs to be a little smaller than the surface area and not go up the sides of the basket.
- To a medium bowl add the butter, brown sugar, white sugar, vanilla and salt. Mix them together until well combined.
- Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda and milk and stir gently to combine. Don't over-mix.
- Once it's just combined, tip in the chocolate chips and fold them through.
- Using an ice cream scoop or cookie scoop, scoop the cookie dough (about 3 tablespoons per cookie) onto the parchment paper in the air fryer basket leaving plenty of space around each one. If you don't have a scoop roll it into balls in your hands. My air fryer is a 5.8 quart one and 4 cookies fit perfectly. If your air fryer is smaller just scoop in as many as will fit and cook a 2nd batch after.
- Leave the cookie dough heaped. Do not press it down. It will spread on its own. At this point I like to press a few extra chocolate chips/chunks gently into the tops to make them look pretty. A sprinkle of flaky sea salt is amazing too if you have it.
- Slide the basket into the air fryer (do this really gently so the cookies don't slide forward as you close it) and cook on 350°F (175 °C) for about 8 minutes (10 minutes if using gluten-free flour). When done the cookies will be golden brown all over and the tops will look set. They will be more golden than cookies cooked in an oven. It's important to let that colour develop so the bottoms and middle cook properly.
- Once they are cooked turn off the air fryer, remove the basket and give it a sharp, quite hard tap on a hard surface like a thick wooden cutting board, your wire rack or a cast iron stove top. This knocks any air out of the cookies and improves the texture. Especially important if you used gluten-free flour because they tend to be a little puffier.
- Place the entire basket on a wire rack and leave the cookies to cool for at least 10 minutes before attempting to remove them from the basket so that they firm up. If you try to remove them before this they will be way too soft and fall apart (but taste amazing ;O)