Easy-to-make buttery brown sugar chocolate chip cookies
There are a million ways to make chocolate chip cookies. And this is only one of them. It happens to my current favorite. There’s something about the cozy-caramel flavor of brown sugar in these chocolate chip cookies that is speaking to me right now.
If you’ve followed my recipes for a bit, you know I love brown sugar desserts. (And if you’re new here, welcome.) From my brown sugar peanut butter cookies to brown sugar banana bread, I find myself reaching for brown sugar often.
Chocolate chip cookies are usually made with a combination of brown sugar and granulated (white) sugar. This recipe uses all brown sugar, giving the cookies a lovely buttery caramel flavor.
As if “buttery caramel” wasn’t enough to love, there’s another reason I adore this recipe. It makes a small batch of cookies. This means I can spend some time in the kitchen, not focusing on the world, eat some cookies and then, a few days later, repeat the whole thing.
How to Make Brown Sugar Chocolate Chip Cookies: Keys to Success
Start with soft brown sugar. You can use either dark or light brown sugar in this recipe. It really doesn’t matter. Dark brown sugar gives the cookies a bit more molasses flavor; while light brown sugar takes us into caramel territory. As long as your brown sugar is soft, you’re good to go. (See FAQs below for how to soften brown sugar.)
Add melted butter. No need to soften butter for this recipe. Simply melt it. You can do this on low power in a microwave or melt it gently in a pot on the stove. If it browns while melting it on the stove, great! Brown butter tastes amazing. However, you melt it, allow it to cool a bit before adding it to the sugar.
Mix by hand (or not). No need to pull out your electric mixer for this recipe. A wooden spoon or whisk does the job just fine. However, if it’s easier for you to use an electric mixer, go for it.
Chill before baking. There’s only one downer about this recipe. It needs to chill for at least 30 minutes. I know! Not great but…you could always mix up the dough before dinner, let it chill while you eat, and then enjoy warm cookies for dessert. Or you could mix up the dough, scroll on your phone for 30 minutes and then bake. Whatever works for you, friend!
FAQs: Brown Sugar Chocolate Chip Cookies
How do I soften brown sugar?
There are two easy ways to soften brown sugar.
Overnight: Place the brown sugar in a container and put a piece of bread on top. Cover with a lid and store for 24 hours. The sugar pulls moisture from the bread and, surprisingly, the bread often absorbs some of the molasses and turns brown. After 24 hours, remove the bread and discard. Use the sugar as directed.
Quick method: Soak a paper towel with warm water. Wring out a paper towel to remove excess water. Place sugar in a microwave-safe bowl. Put the wet paper towel on top of the bowl. Cover with a microwave-safe lid. Microwave on low heat for 10 seconds. Repeat, stirring sugar between each 10-second interval.
Can I freeze chocolate chip cookie dough?
Yes. Scoop the dough into balls. Place on a baking sheet and freeze for one hour. Remove the dough from the pan and place it in a freezer bag or container. Bake as directed. The dough can be baked frozen, it will take a little extra time to bake.
Can I add nuts to the recipe?
Yes. Add up to one cup of chopped nuts.
Brown Sugar Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 1 cup brown sugar, light or dark, see note (5 1/2 ounces; 148 grams)
- 1/2 cup melted butter (1 stick; 4 ounces; 112 ounces)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg (about 2 ounces; 56 grams, out of shell)
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (5 1/2 ounces; 112 grams)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup chocolate chunks or chips see note
- Kosher salt optional
Make the Dough. Whisk together brown sugar, melted butter, and vanilla extract until smooth. Add the egg. Mix until thick and smooth. Add the flour, salt, and baking soda. Stir together until a soft dough forms. Add the chocolate chips. Stir. Cover the bowl and chill for 30 minutes. (Dough may be chilled overnight. See note.)
Bake Cookies. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Drop dough, about 2 tablespoons each onto the prepared baking sheet. Space cookies about two inches apart as cookies spread as they bake. (Optional: Sprinkle the tops of the cookies with a little kosher salt before baking.)
Bake until edges are set and cookies are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Allow cookies to cool on the pan for about three minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. (Or eat a few warm.) Repeat with remaining dough.,
Store. Cookies keep on the counter for up to four days.
Brown Sugar: Use either light or dark brown sugar in this recipe. Light brown sugar makes cookies with a caramel/toffee-like flavor while dark brown sugar makes softer cookies with a more pronounced molasses flavor.
Chocolate Chips: Think of the one cup of chocolate chunks or chips as a suggestion. If you like chocolate chip cookies loaded with chocolate chips, add more. If you prefer chocolate chip cookies with only a sprinkle of chocolate chips or chunks, use less chocolate chips. (Cookies shown in the photos contain 1/2 cup chocolate chunks.)
Chilling the Dough: This dough needs to chill for 30 minutes before baking. However, it may be chilled for longer. The longer the dough chills, the less the cookies spread during baking and the more toffee-like the flavor becomes.
: Love a salty-sweet flavor? Give the cookies a sprinkle of kosher salt before baking.
Felicia D. says
This is a great recipe! I came across your page via Internet search when I realized I didn’t have any white sugar left for baking chocolate chip cookies. These cookies came out flatter than is typical but they were uniform and had a rich light brown color. I didn’t have kosher salt so I used sea salt. The flavor combo of chocolate, caramel, and salt works for grown-ups and kids alike! I will definitely make them again- they’re a sophisticated spin on the chocolate chip cookie! Congrats on a great recipe and thanks for sharing it!
Felicia D. says
I give this 5 stars for its easy-to-make spin on typical chocolate chips.
So simple to make and so yummy! I didn’t have any white sugar or baking powder so this was perfect!
I used a half a cup of chopped walnuts and 3/4 cups of dark chocolate chips and this recipe was wonderful. I put 6 cookies on each cookie sheet and baked some with the salt sprinkle and some without. They spread quiet a bit so I’m glad I spaced them like that. I also had no problem getting them off of my oiled cookie sheets! This recipe is a keeper!?
Yes! These do spread. Glad you liked them.