February 03, 2023
Taylor Chip Cookies, a Lancaster-based company that ships its signature sweets nationwide, is planning an expansion into Philadelphia later this year.
The expansion is currently in the planning stages, as owners Sara and Dougie Taylor are still working to secure retail space for their next two cookie shops, both slated to open by the end of the year. Though Taylor Chip's three existing locations are at least an hour-long car ride away from the city, Dougie Taylor says that Philly is already one of its biggest markets.
"We already have a ton of Philly customers, many of whom drive all the way out to see us in Lancaster," Dougie Taylor said. "We see that we have a lot of supporters there who order our cookies online, and we want to bring our shops directly to them. We really love the area and it's definitely the first on our list to expand."
Sara and Dougie originally met at a bonfire in 2015, and began dating about a year later. The couple starting making cookies together as a date-night activity, especially since Dougie is a big fan of cookies made with Crisco, while Sara believes in all-natural ingredients. The two set out to perfect a recipe that combines the two, eventually landing on the first recipe for Taylor Chip.
Shortly after getting married in 2017, the couple started selling cookies and gaining traction; soon, they were approached about joining a vendor market in Lancaster. The Taylors quit their day jobs and started working at the market daily before it closed, forcing them to look for other spaces to expand.
The couple needed a large enough space to bake, distribute and ship out cookies for local and nationwide orders. Since they were unable to afford a spot that large in Lancaster, they settled on a space in Intercourse, Lancaster County, in mid-2021.
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Still, they didn't want to leave Lancaster entirely, so they opened a smaller space in the area around the same time. By the beginning of 2022, the third Taylor Chip location opened in Hershey.
Now, after settling in to their three locations, the Taylors have much bigger plans for the future of the company. In addition to the planned locations in Philadelphia, Taylor Chip Cookies is looking to add at least four more shops in York County, Harrisburg and West Chester by the end of the year.
"We're always looking to put a smile on somebody's face," Sara Taylor said. "Our team members and managers always want to create a good culture that's welcoming to every cookie friend who comes into our shop or picks up a box outside of their home."
As Taylor Chip Cookies continues to expand its shops in Pennsylvania, its reach across social media has grown as well. The brand's TikTok account, which has more than 179,000 followers, does frequent man-on-the-street taste tests, asking strangers to try out the company's newest flavors.
"It started out with knocking on people's doors," said Sara Taylor. "We used to just walk up to people's houses and ask them to try the cookies. Some would say no, but others would give them to their kids or get really excited to try. The response from audiences has been so crazy so far."
Taylor Chip Cookies has more than 30 flavors, including vegan and gluten-free options. Some of the most popular options include Lava Cake, Cinnamon Bun, Maple Pecan, Peanut Butter Explosion, Salted Caramel Pretzel, Oreos and Cream and, of course, the 8classic chocolate chip. The company's in-store locations also serve specialty coffee drinks, which team members typically post to Instagram.
Taylor Chip's signature cookies are available in-store at 1573 Manheim Pike in Lancaster, 23 Center St. in Gordonville and 121 Towne Square Drive in Hershey. Those outside Lancaster or Dauphin counties can order nationwide delivery through the company's website, or click here to see if Taylor Chip Cookies are in stock at a nearby Whole Foods Market.