How to Clear Cookies and Cache in Chrome

Remove all cookies from all sites, or just cookies from a single site

Google Chrome stores small files called web cookies on your computer for a variety of reasons, such as keeping you logged in to your favorite websites. The browser also stores images and other files in the cache to make pages load faster when you revisit those sites. If you want to restore Chrome to the default settings, you should know how to delete cookies in Chrome and clear the browser cache.

Instructions in this article apply to the desktop version of Google Chrome for all operating systems.

How to Clear Cookies in Chrome

The process is similar to clearing the cookies in most browsers. Follow these steps to delete cookies in Chrome and clear the browser cache:

  1. Select the three dots in the upper-right corner of Chrome, then select Settings from the drop-down menu.

    Chrome with the Settings command highlighted
  2. Under Privacy and security, select Clear browsing data.

    You can also access the Clear browser settings screen anytime using the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Shift+Del (on Windows) or Command+Shift+Del (on macOS).

    Chrome Advanced settings with the Clear Browsing Data command highlighted
  3. Choose a Time range.

    The Clear Browsing Data window in Chrome with the Basic tab highlighted
  4. Select which data you want to delete, then select Clear data.

    Don't remove anything you might want to keep. For example, deleting autofill data erases everything saved in forms, such as your name, email address, phone number, and payment information.

    The Chrome Clear Browsing Data window with the Clear Data button highlighted

How to Clear Cookies From Individual Sites in Chrome

If you don't want to remove all your data, you can delete cookies for specific websites in Chrome:

  1. Select the three dots in the upper-right corner of Chrome, then select Settings from the drop-down menu.

    Chrome with the Settings command highlighted
  2. In the Privacy and security section, select Site Settings.

    The Chrome settings with the Site Settings option highlighted
  3. Scroll down and select Cookies and site data.

    Cookies and Site Data
  4. Scroll down and select See all cookies and site data.

    If you want Chrome to delete cookies automatically each time you exit the browser, select the toggle switch next to Clear cookies and site data when you quit Chrome to enable it.

    Chrome Cookies settings with the "See all cookies and site data" option highlighted
  5. A list of every website storing cookies through Chrome is listed. Search through the list and select the website you want. 

    A list of every website storing cookies through Chrome is listed.
  6. Select Remove All, or select the X next to individual files to delete them. For more information about each file, select the down arrow next to it.

    The Chrome cookies page with the Remove All button highlighted

Why Websites Use Cookies

Websites commonly use cookies to track your browsing habits and target ads to you. This is usually a harmless process. However, in some situations, cookies can provide a way for hackers to get into your online accounts. Clearing the cookies in Chrome permanently removes them from your computer so that the cookies can't be used in that way.

The cached files used by Chrome are helpful in ways similar to cookies. However, the Chrome cache can become corrupted and cause page loading issues. Cache files take up space on a hard drive, which can affect your device's performance.

When you erase cookies, cached files, history, and other components saved in Chrome, Chrome won't work exactly the same afterward. For example, you will be logged out of websites that rely on that data. The history suggestions that come up when you type in the Chrome navigation bar are also cleared. Before you delete any cookies, be certain you do not use them regularly.

Deleting Chrome cookies from specific sites is a good idea if you want to retain data from sites you use regularly.