SF's 8 Most Irresistible Cookies

By Tamara Palmer  |  March 26, 2014
Credit: Tamara Palmer

Life is short; you need to know where the best cookies are right now. Peruse our picks for irresistible treats around town that range from the classics to the improbably decadent.

  • Oatmeal cream pie sandwich at Arlequin Cafe

    Little Debbie may have been the inspiration for this treat, but the snack queen's version was never this fresh. Whole oats are added to the mixture just before baking. The soft and subtly spiced cookies are joined together by a rich butter and cream cheese filling.

    384 Hayes St.; 415-626-1211

  • Credit: Tamara Palmer

    Mudslide at Tout Sweet Patisserie

    This soft drop cookie is almost brownielike, made with Valrhona dark chocolate and cocoa nibs. Inside, plump sour cherries give it a hint of tartness and little juiciness, even though they're dried. The nibs add crucial crunch to the top.

    170 O'Farrell St.; 415-385-1679

  • Credit: Tamara Palmer

    Peanut butter cookie at Craftsman and Wolves

    Not only does the peanut butter cookie at Craftsman and Wolves sport a whole peanut on top and housemade peanut butter in the batter, there are generous peanut shards inside. It achieves that just-barely-baked interior texture that's surely got to be hard to master. The decorative fork marks offer the appearance of a small batch of grandma's cookies.

    746 Valencia St.; 415-913-7713

  • Credit: Tamara Palmer

    The King at Market & Rye

    A smart appropriation of the indulgent sandwich that Elvis called his favorite: peanut butter, banana and bacon. It's got chewy shards of bacon, crunchy chopped peanuts, banana chips and a sprinkle of flat sea-salt flakes. It's a big, sloppy thing with crispy edges and a soft middle.

    300 De Haro St.; 415-252-7455, 68 W. Portal Ave.; 415-564-5950

  • Credit: Tamara Palmer

    Dark chocolate chip cookie at Merigan Sub Shop

    The chocolate chips are more like chunks in this cookie that's larger than your fist. The dough itself bakes up into craggy segments that fall apart in convenient bite-size pieces. Shards of sea salt bring this dessert into sophisticated adult territory. It is hard to save room for dessert after eating a large Italian sub at this SoMa newcomer, but you will not regret doing it.

    636 Second St.; 415-536-2991

  • Spicy ginger cookie at E&O Asian Kitchen

    A silver bucket of five of these addictively buzzy cookies is the perfect gluttonous end to a meal here - or you can get some to go for later. They're soft and chewy, with a hint of deep molasses flavor and coveted crispy edges.

    314 Sutter St.; 415-693-0303

  • Credit: Tamara Palmer

    Chocolate salted rye cookie at Tartine Bakery

    Rye and chocolate pair together amazingly well and with subtle ease in this soft cookie. Crackly lumps and a few flecks of salt make it even more memorable.

    600 Guerrero St.; 415-487-2600

  • French macarons at Fillmore Bakeshop

    These are larger and heftier than their counterparts around town. A generous amount of flavored buttercream holds together the almond cookies, which seem to separate into chewy and crunchy layers more than the usual ones do. French favorites like rose and violet are a part of the flavor collection here, as are locally inspired takes such as green tea and mango. 

    1890 Fillmore St.; 415-923-0711