Chip City Cookies is a rising name in the cookie category, having grown to eighteen locations in the New York/New Jersey area. The bakery now has stores in Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, New Jersey and Long Island, and is rapidly expanding.

Led by pastry chef Andrea Prunella, the New York City-based award-winning cookie shop bakes up extravagant cookies that are shipped all across the country. With cookies being such a popular handheld treat and lending themselves to eye-catching images, Chip City Cookies has grown its Instagram following to over 226,000 users.

There are currently eighteen classic cookie flavors that rotate every week. Among the more decadent options are S’mores, Nutella Sea Salt, Oatmeal Apple Pie, Peanut Butter & Jelly and Blueberry Cheesecake. While loaded with flavor, it is a delicate art to balancing flavors in cookies, says Prunella.

“The first thing to understand and identify are the flavor profiles you plan on using,” she says. “If we have a strong flavor profile in the base, such as dark chocolate, I’ll ensure we do not match it with a light or delicate flavor profile to ensure nothing is lost or overpowered. With a strong flavor profile, I’ll match it with an equally as strong profile. In the instance of dark chocolate cookies, I would match that with a filling that’s sweet, tart and powerful. Whereas if I have a delicate flavor base, such as a sugar cookie, I would match it with a light and equally delicate filling to ensure we have a balance, sweet and flavorful product.”

The most popular ingredient, according to Prunella, is Nutella. That’s followed closely by the bakery’s cream cheese frosting, which pairs well with light and delicate cookies.

The warmer seasons offer enhanced opportunities to create tasty product variations. In order to stand out this spring, in terms of flavor, texture and appearance, Prunella states that it’s important to keep track of the trends.

“Every year there are new flavor profiles that consumers get excited about,” she says. “You should always be monitoring the texture that you incorporate to ensure cookies aren’t too crunchy or mushy. Getting creative and unique will always keep you ahead of the game.”

Prunella has her favorites when it comes to cookie ingredients.

“Recently, I’ve been experimenting with dried fruits in the cookies because they bring complex flavors without adding too much moisture,” she says. “I also love using nuts because it adds texture and deep flavor. Of course, chocolate chips are always a must. They add the perfect amount of sweetness and make it gooey.”