Our Definitive Ranking of Pepperidge Farm Cookies
We've all got our favorite Pepperidge Farm cookie, but maybe there's a new favorite you should be trying! Check out our definitive ranking of 14 cookies to find out.
When it comes to prepackaged cookies, there’s only one name in my book: Pepperidge Farm. I mean, who doesn’t love a good Milano cookie? (Try our copycat recipe!) But there’s so much more to this iconic brand than just Milanos.
That got me thinking—maybe there’s a Pepperidge Farm cookie out there that’s even better than my go-to? That’s why I grabbed 14 kinds of Pepperidge Farm cookies (as many as my local grocer stocked) and just as many Taste of Home staffers to rank them definitively. Will the Milano take the top spot? Or maybe another classic like Chessmen or Bordeaux? Let’s find out!
What we’re looking for
First off, we’re not expecting these packaged cookies to taste like homemade (though one packaged cookie brand does!). Instead, we wanted a cookie that tasted fresh. We wanted cookies to have the appropriate texture and flavor—so we wanted shortbread to be delicate with a good crumb and buttery taste, chocolate chip cookies to have plenty of chocolate and sandwich cookies to have enough filling. In short: We want cookies to fulfill the promises on the package!
Now let’s get into the test!
14. Strawberry Thumbprint
At the bottom of our list was the strawberry thumbprint cookie. This cookie looks absolutely beautiful but didn’t quite live up to our expectations. The jelly center had a gummy consistency we didn’t love. Though this partiular cookie might not be the best on its own, its adorable design could make a great cake decoration. Grab a bag to line along the edges of Mamaw Emily’s Strawberry Cake.
13. Santa Cruz
Pepperidge Farm’s Santa Cruz cookie was a new one to most testers. For the uninitiated, it’s a soft, spiced oatmeal raisin cookie. For oatmeal cookie-lovers, though, this one didn’t get any exceptionally high marks. Folks loved the number of raisins and the softer texture but found that the cinnamon and molasses flavors were a bit too overwhelming. Spice fans might enjoy this cookie, but for regular oatmeal cookie fans, these just didn’t fit the bill.
When it comes to Pepperidge Farm cookies, Brussels is one of the classics. However, this one just didn’t live up to our expectations. The ultra-thin oatmeal cookies didn’t pair that well with the dark chocolate filling. Testers found the combo to be slightly bitter compared to its sweet counterparts. But that was OK—there are plenty of cookies in the cookie jar.
Macadamia nuts and chocolate chips usually make for the perfect pair, like in these cookies. However, these cookies just didn’t have the right milk chocolate chunk to macadamia nut ratio to us (more of both, please!). However, these cookies did have a pretty good crunch!
10. Salted Caramel
As one tester put so well: “It’s nice to have an alternative to a standard chocolate chip.” That’s a great way to look at this salted caramel cookie. This basic butter and vanilla dough was studded with bits of salted caramel which many testers just loved. We’d recommend this cookie (and these treats) for serious salted caramel devotees.
If there ever was a cookie designed for dunking, the Bordeaux is it. Whether you prefer to dip your cookies in coffee or milk, these cookies are the perfect compliment. Slightly sweeter than shortbread, these ultra-crisp cookies held up to our testers’ strenuous dunk tests. Even after a prolonged dip, these cookies didn’t crumble. Eaten on their own, The Bordeaux still satisfied with their simple and sweet taste.
Love to dunk? Try these cookies designed for a dip.
While these cookies landed in the middle of our ranking they are in no way to be skipped (there were just so many other favorites!). We loved these super buttery shortbread cookies from our very first bite. They had a great authentic butter flavor and the perfect amount of sweetness courtesy of a light glaze over the top. We also loved their great crunch and totally iconic appearance—there are few store-bought cookies that are prettier!
Can’t get enough shortbread? Try our recipes.
Who doesn’t love a treat that transports you to the tropics (these desserts come to mind)? That’s what the Maui cookie does with the right balance of almond, dark chocolate and coconut. These light cookies practically melted in our mouths with their airy yet crisp texture. These are perfect for dunking, but many testers said they’d be more than happy to eat one (or two or three) sitting on our front porch wishing we were in Hawaii.
Looking for a good, packaged chocolate chip cookie? Look no further than Pepperidge Farm Nantucket cookie. These extra-large cookies were packed with dark chocolate chunks—yum! The tasting panel loved the amount of chocolate in these cookies, but they also got good scores for their dunkability (just like the Maui cookies). Sometimes you crave a nice crisp cookie with a tall glass of milk, and Nantucket isn’t a bad option to satisfy those cravings!
These chocolate-hazelnut-filled wafers sparked quite the debate during our taste test: Could you consider these cookies at all? For the sake of this test, I say yes! I also say they are a darn good store-bought cookie. Testers overall loved the crisp wafer exterior of these cookies and the Nutella-like filling (Nutella lovers, be sure to try these recipes). In addition to that satisfying snap and beautiful, rich flavor, we couldn’t deny the fabulous appearance of the Pirouette. They look absolutely elegant. Almost every tester was dreaming up ways of serving them at home, like alongside ice cream for a quick but pretty dessert or with coffee to really impress your last-minute company.
Nope, gingerbread isn’t just for Christmas! These gingerbread men cookies are in stores all year round, and with such a great flavor and crisp texture, we’re glad they are! These cookies got high marks for a fantastic yet mild ginger flavor (just enough to satisfy us without being overpowering). We also loved the sanding sugar sprinkled on top of each cookie—it added a beautiful finish and a much-appreciated crunch to these tasty cookies.
Making gingerbread men at home? Try these recipe ideas.
3. Mint Milano
To be fair, there are a lot of Milano options out there (including the new-to-me chocolate-marshmallow flavor!), but the chocolate-mint combo is probably the most iconic alternative to the original. Like the original cookie, the minty Milano offered us a great crips cookie with just the right amount of filling. What impressed my picky panel the most, though, was that the filling struck the right balance of mint and chocolate—neither flavor overpowered the other.
Wouldn’t you know it? The absolute classic ranked number one in our test! But really, how can you beat a perfectly crisp cookie paired with a layer of dark chocolate? Cookie after cookie, package after package, Pepperidge Farm delivers a nice, crunchy cookie that appeals to our love of sweet and rich all at the same time.