The criminal complaint brought by the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office charges the 30-year-old actress with one count each of grand theft, commercial burglary, vandalism and possession of a controlled substance, reports The Associated Press.
Prosecutors are also seeking to increase Ryder's bail from $20,000 to $30,000.
Ryder, who did not appear in court, is free for now. She is due back in court Feb. 8 for arraignment.
The star of Girl, Interrupted and Edward Scissorhands is accused of trying to lift $4,800 in clothing and accessories from the high-end department store and of carrying the painkiller Oxycodone without a prescription. Saks security noticed her on a video monitor tearing the security tags off clothes, a $1,000 Judith Leiber handbag and some hair accessories and then stuffing the items into a large bag.
Her attorney, Mark Geragos, has maintained the actress did have receipts for the items and a prescription for the medicine. Her publicist said in a statement, "We are shocked at what appear to be grossly exaggerated charges. We look forward to the opportunity to explain and resolve these allegations."
Ryder reportedly told security she was doing research for an upcoming movie. Other sources close to the star say she was simply taking a quick smoking break before continuing to shop.
Ryder has had her share of troubles in the past. She checked herself into a hospital in 1990 for treatment of depression, anxiety attacks and exhaustion.
Last August, she backed out of her lead role in the indie film Lily and the Secret Planting after she was hospitalized for a "gastroenterological disorder," according to her publicist.