Brown Butter Makes Everything Better

Part of Andy’s Christmas present was the right to ask for homemade cookies at any time.  That was really half a present for me because it means I have an excuse to make cookies.

This morning at Costco when Andy wanted to buy cookies I convinced him to ask for some homemade ones instead, his choice.

I went on tastespotting and picked out all the most delicious looking cookie recipes:  Samoas, Brown Butter Shortbread, Turtle Cookies.  I tried to convince him that oatmeal cookies sounded delicious because that’s what I was in the mood for.  I suggested peanut butter chocolate chip, peanut butter m&m, chocolate peanut butter no-bakes.  And what did he want?  Plain old chocolate chip.

Now don’t get me wrong, I love chocolate chip cookies.  Most days they’re probably my favorite cookies.  I was just in the mood for something different.

Anyway, chocolate chip cookies had been chosen, so I found a great recipe here and, because I’m incapable of simply following the instructions for anything, made a couple changes.

First, I decided to brown the butter.  I’ve done this before when making chocolate chip cookies and it gives the cookie part a slight toffee flavor I love.  Plus, it was a sneaky way of making plain old chocolate chip cookies a little more exciting.

Second, this wasn’t a change so much as a mistake, but in typing up the recipe, I notice I forgot the white sugar.  I’m glad now that I did because I always think brown butter and brown sugar go very nicely together.  The cookies still had a soft chewy texture and were plenty sweet enough.  In fact, I don’t think I would have wanted them any sweeter.  So next time I’ll stick with just the brown sugar.

Finally, I wish I would have used fewer chocolate chips.  I know I’m probably in the minority on this one and I can’t believe I’m even saying it (less chocolate?) but I actually prefer these cookies (and generally all chocolate chip cookies) with fewer chocolate chips.  The cookie part is really my favorite and I like to be able to taste it.  Especially when there’s brown butter in it.  The bottom of the bowl cookies with no chips were my favorites.  So next time I’ll probably only use half as much chocolate.

So here’s the recipe, as I made it:


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 12 oz bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

First brown the butter.  Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium low heat.  Swirl it occasionally and watch it carefully.  Keep cooking it until it turns a golden brown color and smells like toffee.

Pour the butter into a large heat safe bowl and let it cool.

Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda in a small bowl.

While the butter is still slightly warm, dissolve the sugar.  Then mix in the eggs and vanilla.  (Make sure the butter isn’t hot enough to scramble your egg.)  When the mixture is completely combined, mix in the flour in three batches, allowing the liquid ingredients to absorb the dry ingredients between additions.

Stir in the chocolate chips.

Form cookies of desired size.  (I used my handy cookie scoop to make sure they all came out the same size.)

Bake for 10-12 minutes.  Makes 40 2-inch cookies.

This entry was posted in Cookies, Vegetarian. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Brown Butter Makes Everything Better

  1. Jo says:

    They do look tasty! What about adding toffee bits too, or instead?

  2. Melissa says:

    Happy to hear the recipe worked out for you! Sometimes I am out of white sugar and I use only brown. Still worked great. You are the second person that has recommended browning the butter first. I am definitely trying that next time around. Thanks again!

  3. katherine says:

    I also like fewer chocolate chips!!

    Also, remember M&M cookies?? I miss Grab N Go. (Sort of.)

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