11 Ingredient Swaps For Chocolate Chips You Should Know About

Person making cookies
Person making cookies - Elisagh/Getty Images

Looking to elevate your cookie game beyond the classic chocolate chip? Say goodbye to the ordinary and hello to a world of flavor exploration with 11 stellar substitutes. We know chocolate chip is the OG and quintessential cookie, and we're not trying to take away its glory, but we're all for change and innovation. We're diving into the delicious realm of ingredient swaps for chocolate chips that will take your treats from good to unforgettable. From the seemingly conventional to some delightful surprises, these ideas will encourage you to swap out those traditional chocolate chips for something extraordinary.

Whether you're a baking enthusiast or someone with a sweet tooth craving something new, get ready to tantalize your taste buds and impress your friends and family with cookies that are anything but cookie-cutter. Let's break free from the chocolate chip cookie mold and discover a whole new world of irresistible treats with 11 substitutes that will change the way you bake and snack -- guaranteed!

Read more: 11 Discontinued Chocolates We Miss The Most

Peanut Butter Chips

Peanut butter cookies
Peanut butter cookies - Juliaka/Getty Images

A quick and easy way to switch up your chocolate morsels for something different is by using peanut butter chips instead. Sans chocolate, peanut butter chips provide a rich and creamy texture that melts in your mouth, creating an earthy, sweet treat with a nutty flavor.

Peanut butter chips can be used in various ways, too! From classic peanut butter cookies to peanut butter blondies, and even mixed into a chocolate dough base, these bits offer a wealth of possibilities to explore. And hey –- you can always mix and match for an even more outrageous flavor combination. Add some regular chocolate chips in with your peanut butter chips -- like in this cookie recipe -- to intensify your treats, or consider some caramel for a decadent alternative. With the caramel, add some sea salt to really bring out the nutty flavor of the peanut butter, balancing the sweet and savory profiles in every bite.

Lastly, don't be afraid to decorate your cookies with some peanut butter drizzle or even some melted chocolate to really enhance all the flavors. From being key ingredients to adding aesthetic choices, peanut butter chips are the new black when it comes to cookies.

Candy Bars

Pile of candy bars
Pile of candy bars - Steve Cukrov/Shutterstock

In the mood to get wild with your chocolate chip substitutes? Chop up some of your favorite candy bars into bite-sized pieces, and add them to your cookie dough. Just like with chocolate chips, you'll still get the rich chocolate goodness you seek, but with an array of candy bars to choose from, you can play around with the flavor profile to customize it to your taste preferences. Try out options like Snickers, Milky Way, Nestle Crunch, 100 Grand Bar, Twix –- the possibilities are pretty endless, which means so are the flavor combinations. Plus, you get an added textural component that you just can't get with chocolate chips.

Candies like M&Ms and Reese's Pieces are even easier alternatives to use. Fold your favorite into the dough, and just like chocolate chips, these candies will add flavor, texture, and sugary goodness to every bite. You can also get a little creative and stuff the candies in the middle of the dough, letting them become a melted surprise in the oven.

Yogurt Chips

Yogurt chips
Yogurt chips - Kovaleva_Ka/Shutterstock

Stepping away from traditional sweets, you could consider another alternative: yogurt chips. This option can give you the same mouthfeel as chocolate chip morsels with fewer calories. Yogurt chips offer a creamy sweetness with a hint of tang, creating a delightful contrast to the richness of the cookie dough with a lighter and more refreshing flavor profile. And, since yogurt chips are lower in fat and sugar compared to some of the other substitutes, this swap is a healthier option for those keeping an eye on nutritional values.

While you can simply swap out yogurt chips for chocolate chips in your cookie recipe, you can also get creative and mix yogurt chips with other options, such as nuts, coconut flakes, or dried fruits like strawberries, to create a flavorful and colorful medley of ingredients in your cookies. For an out-of-the-box approach, melt the chips down and swirl them into your cookie dough before baking, creating beautiful marbled patterns of creamy goodness throughout.

Various Types Of Caramel

Chunks of caramel
Chunks of caramel - NataliaZa/Shutterstock

Looking for decadence? Who isn't? Swapping caramel for chocolate chips introduces a luxurious sweetness and gooey texture to your cookies, elevating them to indulgent treats that are sure to impress. Since caramel comes in a variety of forms, from soft and chewy candies to creamy sauce or caramel chips, the options are endless, allowing you to experiment with different types to achieve your desired flavor and texture profile. This is one swap you can truly customize.

Don't be afraid to get creative! Try encasing soft caramel candies or caramel chips inside cookie dough balls before baking to create cookies with a delightful surprise center. You can also mix caramel chips with chocolate chips for a decadent combination. Add some sea salt for a savory mix, too, but don't stop there. You can also swirl caramel sauce into your cookie dough before baking to create fun marbled patterns throughout your cookies, adding a visually stunning touch to your baked goods, along with the perfect bite every time.

White Chocolate

White chocolate macadamia cookies
White chocolate macadamia cookies - Lauripatterson/Getty Images

White chocolate –- some people love it; some people hate it. It's definitely the most contentious of the chocolate types. But when it comes to cookies, you can't go wrong. Swapping white chocolate chips for regular chocolate chips offers a delightful twist on the classic cookie flavors, infusing them with a creamy sweetness and a hint of vanilla.

We want to make it clear: White chocolate isn't just for macadamia nut cookies. While that's a killer cookie option, you can expand your view and push the boundaries of the cookie classics. Grab some dried cranberries and fold them into your favorite dough to make cranberry white chocolate cookies. Still seeking innovation? Combine your white chocolate chips with shredded coconut for a tropical twist, incorporate lemon zest with them for a refreshing flavor, or combine white chocolate chips with oats and cinnamon for a comforting treat.

Don't sleep on white chocolate. Haters gonna hate, but a delicious cookie with a fun twist can heal wounds and end conflicts.

Cocoa Powder

Cup of cocoa powder
Cup of cocoa powder - Valeri Vatel/Shutterstock

If you're looking to keep that same rich chocolatey flavor in your cookies, consider cocoa powder instead of chocolate chips. This swap intensifies the chocolate flavor while allowing you to oversee the sweetness level, adding a fudgy texture and a decadent taste that's sure to delight chocolate lovers. Since cocoa powder is unsweetened, you have the freedom to add the exact amount of sugar or sweetener to your cookie dough, giving you greater control over the final taste.

Incorporate cocoa powder into your cookie dough solo or get wild and throw in some chocolate chips for double the chocolatey goodness. You can also roll cookie dough balls in powdered sugar before baking to create classic chocolate crinkle cookies, with cocoa powder cracking through the sugary coating for beautifully crinkled tops and a soft interior. Alternatively, make chocolate thumbprint cookies by rolling dough balls in chopped nuts or sprinkles, then filling the center with chocolate ganache or your favorite spread for an extra decadent treat. No matter which option you choose, we don't see you leaving the kitchen disappointed.

Mini Marshmallows Or Fluff

Chocolate cookies with marshmallows
Chocolate cookies with marshmallows

For a nostalgic twist, add some mini marshmallows or even some Marshmallow Fluff into your cookie dough, replacing the OG addition. Reminiscent of campfire s'mores and middle school lunches, these cookies offer a velvety mouthfeel and sugary flavor that simply can't be beat.

There are several creative ways to use marshmallows or Fluff in your cookies. One option is to fold mini marshmallows or swirl Marshmallow Fluff directly into your cookie dough before baking, creating pockets of ooey gooey marshmallow goodness throughout each cookie. This technique results in cookies with a soft and chewy texture, with the marshmallow adding a delightful melt-in-your-mouth quality. Additionally, you can top each cookie with a marshmallow before baking for a toasted marshmallow effect, adding an extra layer of flavor and visual appeal. However, if you choose to use Marshmallow Fluff within your cookies, the dough will become extremely sticky. Be sure to have your flour handy when prepping and working with the dough.


Cookies with various nuts
Cookies with various nuts - olepeshkina/Shutterstock

To keep some texture in your chocolate chip swap (and some health benefits), add nuts to your dough. From macadamia to almonds, nuts can bring a lot of fun to your cookies. Nuts have a natural richness and earthy taste that complements the sweetness of the dough, creating a well-balanced and satisfying treat. And hey –- it doesn't hurt to throw a few chocolate chips in there, too.

There are various kinds of nuts you can use in your cookies, including pecans, walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, and macadamia nuts, each offering its own distinct flavor and texture. Pecans add a buttery richness, while walnuts provide a robust earthiness. Almonds offer a subtle sweetness, hazelnuts bring a hint of nuttiness, and macadamia nuts provide a creamy crunch. Each kind brings its own strengths to the cookie table. Don't be afraid to experiment with different combinations to create unique flavor profiles, such as combining pecans with chocolate chips for a classic chocolate pecan cookie or mixing walnuts with dried cranberries for a festive holiday treat.

Using nuts is super easy, too. Simply chop the nuts and fold them into your cookie dough before baking, creating cookies with a delightful crunch and nutty flavor in every bite. But hey, don't stop there. Step outside the cookie-cutter box and toast the nuts before adding them to your dough, enhancing their natural flavors and adding depth to your cookies.


Cacao beans and powder
Cacao beans and powder - Fcafotodigital/Getty Images

Derived from the cacao bean, cacao is the purest form of chocolate and is known for its rich taste and numerous health benefits. Its connection to Mesoamerican culture also showcases its spiritual uses, as cacao ceremonies are used to clear energy, open the heart, and heal the soul.

There are different kinds of cacao products you can use in your cookies, including cacao powder, cacao nibs, and raw cacao beans, each offering its own unique flavor profile, benefits, and texture. Cacao powder adds a deep chocolatey flavor and smooth consistency to your cookies, while cacao nibs provide a crunchy texture and intense chocolate taste. Raw cacao beans can be ground into powder or used whole for a bold and robust chocolate flavor, too.

Swapping cacao in any form for regular chocolate chips adds a deeper and more complex chocolate flavor to your cookies, making it an excellent choice for those looking to elevate their baking experience. Research your cacao and see if you can support local producers in Central and South America. You won't be disappointed -- from cacao's origins to its rich flavor profile sans additives.


Carob pieces
Carob pieces - Tati Liberta/Shutterstock

Swapping carob for chocolate chips presents a compelling option for those seeking an alternative to traditional chocolate due to dietary restrictions, allergies, or personal preferences. Carob is a pod from the carob tree that is dried, roasted, and ground into a powder resembling cocoa. Unlike chocolate, carob is caffeine-free and contains no theobromine, making it suitable for individuals sensitive to caffeine or for pets who cannot tolerate chocolate. Additionally, carob is lower in fat and calories compared to chocolate, offering a healthier alternative for those looking to indulge without compromising their dietary goals.

To incorporate, simply swap your chocolate chips for pieces of carob. Carob chips offer a similar texture and appearance to chocolate chips, providing a smooth and creamy consistency with a sweet and nutty flavor. Another option is to use carob powder in your cookie dough, either in combination with carob chips or on its own. Carob powder adds depth and richness to the dough, imparting a subtle sweetness reminiscent of caramel or honey. You can also experiment with different ratios of carob chips to achieve your desired level of sweetness and flavor intensity in your cookies. By swapping carob for chocolate chips, you can still enjoy the rich and satisfying flavor of chocolate without the potential drawbacks associated with cocoa-derived products.


Oatmeal raisin cookies
Oatmeal raisin cookies - DenisMArt/Shutterstock

We know what you're thinking –- sweet treats shouldn't necessarily be healthy, but hear us out. Substituting raisins for chocolate chips adds a chewy sweetness and a burst of natural flavor to your cookies. Raisins are also rich in vitamins and minerals, providing a healthier option while still satisfying your sweet cravings. Who says a sweet treat can't taste good and be good for you?

This swap doesn't need to feel mature or boring; there are different kinds of raisins you can use in your cookies to shake things up. Try regular raisins, golden raisins, or sultanas, each offering its own unique flavor profile and texture. Regular raisins have a slightly tart flavor and a chewy texture, while golden raisins are sweeter and softer. Sultanas are white raisins that are smaller and sweeter than regular raisins, with a more delicate texture. Whether you're looking for a healthier alternative to chocolate or simply want to add a fruity twist to your cookies, raisins are a versatile ingredient that can add sweetness and depth to your baked goods.

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