Infused with the rich, nutty flavor of browned butter, loaded with semisweet chocolate, and topped off with flaky sea salt, these Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies are world-class cookies. If you’ve never browned butter before, don’t panic! I walk you through all the steps in the recipe and in my how-to video (just below the recipe).
Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
I almost want to call these my best chocolate chip cookies ever. They’re just a notch below my “worst” chocolate chip cookies (nothing can top those life ruiners), so I think calling them the best might be fair.
Anyway, what really sets these cookies apart from your standard cookie recipe is one key magical ingredient: Brown Butter. Brown butter (more formally known by its French name: Buerre Noisette… fancy!), is simply butter that’s been cooked until all of the water is cooked out and the milk solids begin to turn brown. The end result is a rich, flavorful butter with a nutty, toffee-like aroma. When used in baked goods (especially cookies) it yields a buttery, rich, flavorful end product.
If you’ve never browned butter before, the idea of cooking it on the stovetop until it’s perfectly browned (and not burnt!) might sound a little intimidating, but I’ve covered all the steps in the recipe below and in my video.
So grab a saucepan and two sticks of (unsalted) butter, and prepare yourself for the most gourmet brown butter chocolate chip cookies you’ve ever tasted.
How to Make Brown Butter Cookies
The most complicated part of making brown butter chocolate chip cookies is browning the butter. It’s not difficult and I’ll walk you through all the steps in the recipe and in my video, but if you’ve never done it before the idea might be a little daunting. Once you’ve browned the butter (and have let it cool!), it’s pretty similar to making any other cookie dough.
- To brown the butter, simply cook over low/medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until browned. The butter will sizzle and pop after melting, then once the sizzling stops you’ll notice browning beginning to occur on the bottom of the pan. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely. (More details and photos included in the recipe below).
- Stir together cooled butter, white sugar, and brown sugar.
- Stir in (room temperature) eggs and vanilla extract.
- Combine all of your dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Stir these into the wet ingredients.
- Add chocolate! I know I call these “Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies” but I honestly prefer to use chopped candy bar pieces. I do include instructions in the recipe for using regular chocolate chips, though!
- Chill the dough at least 30 minutes. This step is mandatory! Once chilled, scoop and bake your cookies.
- Sprinkle with a touch of flaky sea salt. This really adds a great flavor to the cookies!
Tips for Making Brown Butter Cookies
Cool Your Butter After Browning!
Here’s the most obnoxious thing about browning butter: You have to wait for it to cool after browning. It’s going to take about 30 minutes to an hour at room temperature for your butter to cool enough so that it’s no longer warm to the touch (it’s not necessary for the butter to re-solidify, it just should not feel warm).
If you add the sugar to your butter while the butter is still hot, you could end up melting your sugar. This is going to leave you with a greasy, runny cookie dough that will spread all over your cookie sheet if you even manage to get it to the oven. Take the time to let your butter cool!
Room Temperature Eggs
You might have noticed with a lot of my cookie recipes I call for room temperature eggs. Usually, eggs are stored cold, while the rest of your ingredients are room temperature (or in this case with our melted butter, slightly warm). You want all of your ingredients to be the same temperature so they combine properly. In this instance with our beloved browned butter, if we add cold eggs to this we could potentially shock and even curdle our butter.
Also, as this recipe can be mixed completely by hand (no need for a stand mixer, here), the eggs will be much easier to mix and evenly incorporate throughout the better if they are room temperature.
I usually set my eggs out the night before I’m going to be baking, but if you have forgotten to do this you can quickly warm them up to room temperature by placing them in a bowl of warm (not hot, you don’t want to cook the egg!) water for about 15 minutes.
Storing Cookie Dough
This browned butter chocolate chip cookie dough needs to chill for at least 30 minutes. However, it can be made up to a week in advance, just store it in your refrigerator (in an airtight container or tightly covered with plastic wrap) until ready to use. The flavors will actually develop even more as the dough sits.
Keep in mind that if your dough has chilled for longer than 30 minutes, it might be pretty firm when you go to scoop it. If it’s too difficult to scoop, just let it sit at room temperature for 10-15 minutes so it can soften a bit.
More Recipes You Might Like:
- Brown Sugar Cookies
- Ultimate Chocolate Cookies
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
- Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Be sure to check out my Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie video at the bottom of the recipe! If you enjoy watching, make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel where I’ve already uploaded over 100 recipe videos that you can watch for free!
Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter cut into Tablespoon-sized pieces (225g)
- 1 cup light or dark brown sugar¹ (200g)
- ⅔ cup white sugar (135g)
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour (340g)
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- 10 oz semisweet chocolate² chopped into pieces (285g)
- flaky sea salt for sprinkling optional but so good!
How to Brown Butter (it's easy!)³
- Before you can go any further we need to brown our butter. Place your butter pieces into a medium-sized saucepan (preferably a light colored one--this will make it easier to tell once your butter has browned) and melt the butter over low/medium-low heat.
- Once butter has melted, increase stovetop heat to just above medium heat.
- Swirl and scrape the sides of the pan constantly with a wooden spoon or heatproof spatula - the butter will bubble, pop, and sizzle. Once the bubbling/popping slows, the butter will begin to turn brown, (it should look similar this once it's finished; the butter on the bottom of the pan might not be quite as brown):
- Watch the butter very carefully at this point, and as soon as it begins to brown (and you smell that beautiful nutty aroma of browned butter), remove from heat quickly and pour into a large, heatproof bowl.
- Allow butter to cool at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or until no longer warm to the touch before proceeding with the recipe.
- Once your butter has cooled, add sugars and stir well.
- Add eggs and vanilla extract and stir well.
- In a separate, medium-sized bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda and salt (not flaky sea salt).
- Gradually add your flour mixture to butter mixture, stirring until ingredients are completely combined.
- Add chopped chocolate pieces and stir well so that chocolate is well distributed through the batter.
- Cover cookie dough bowl with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
- About 15 minutes before dough has finished chilling/before you are ready to bake, preheat oven to 350F (175C) and line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- Once dough has finished chilling scoop by about 2 Tablespoon-sized portions. Gently roll the dough between your palms so that you have a round ball, then place cookie dough at least 2" apart on prepared cookie sheet.
- Bake on 350F (175C) for 10-12 minutes or until edges are just beginning to turn golden brown (cookies should still be quite soft when you remove them from the oven, and may even appear slightly underbaked in center).
- Let cookies cool for about a minute then sprinkle lightly with flaky sea salt.
- Allow cookies to cool completely on baking sheet, then enjoy!
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered an estimate only. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods, cooking method, portion sizes, and more.
I originally published this recipe for brown butter chocolate chip cookies 05/18/2017. Recipe and photos improved and updated 05/20/2019.
This is our favorite cookie recipe! It was also the inspiration for my 4th grader’s science project. We used your recipe as our standard and then experimented with different leavenings and leavening combinations. All the cookies were edible, but, as we hypothesized, the blend of baking powder and baking soda was the best. (Of course it was, as that’s what you did!). My burgeoning baker and I leaned a lot about how leavenings work and had a lot of great cookies to eat! Thanks!
She got an A!
That is an awesome science project, Laura! I’m happy to be a part of the learning process! Tell her to keep up the good work and keep getting those A’s! 🙂
Are these “cakes” cookies or are they crisp and chewy ?
Hi Jill! These are a soft chewy cookie. They are not cakey or crisp. 🙂
Loved them, new favorite recipe!
I cannot wait to try this! I’m not sure I’ll be able to last waiting a few days, but what would be your recommended number of days to wait to allow all of the flavors to develop in the dough?
Hi Cass! Honestly the 30 minutes called for in the recipe is sufficient for the flavors to develop. I wouldn’t torture yourself by waiting days for the dough. 🙂
Hi Sam! I made this recipe today and it was simply scrumptious! The brown butter adds so much depth to the flavor of the dough. Thank you for making such a detailed video. I appreciate how you explain all the elements from browning the butter to how to incorporate the ingredients so clearly. You’re an amazing instructor! Your recipes are second to none. Tomorrow I’m making your White Chocolate Macadamia nut cookies.
Thank you so much, Susan! I am so glad you enjoyed them so much! I hope you love the white chocolate macadamia nut cookies as well. 🙂
One of my favourite chocolate chip cookie recipes!! I baked them for a few extra minutes because I like my cookies on the chewier/crispy side, but they are always so delicious. Such an easy recipe to follow too!
I am so glad you enjoyed them so much, Georgie! 🙂
Hello! This recipe is amazing, and im stuffing the cookies with nutella and lotus spread. But im facing a problem.. the cookies stuffed with lotus are spreading more than the ones with nutella (considering that the dough is from the same batch). Do you have any idea why?
Hmmm that’s interesting. I’m not really sure. I wonder if that spread just isn’t holding up well in the oven. I really wouldn’t have thought it would be a problem.
Hi Sam! I love these cookies so much. Plan to make them today and I have a question, if I omit the granulated sugar would that affect the recipe? The last time I made these they were a tad too sweet for me (I also doubled the recipe then). Also, I’m out of corn starch—will that make much of a difference?
Hi Rach! I think they would still turn out but it will obviously change the taste. I would probably recommend trying to cut it in half first.
I halved the recipe and it worked! I swear you’re like, the goddess of cookies lol. Thanks so much!!
I’m glad they turned out! 🙂
Hello! I’ve made these cookies several times now and it’s my family’s favorite!! I do have a question though. I have a batch of pre made brown butter ( I’ve become obsessed with it since making this recipe) and was wondering if I could use it or is it better just to make it fresh? If so how much would I use? I know you lose some volume when browning the butter so I don’t think a cup of browned butter is the same as browning a cup of butter. Hope my question makes sense lol. Love you and your blog. Happy baking!!
Hi Chavonne! Thank you so much for using my recipe! Pre-made would be totally fine but I would warm it in the microwave just enough so that it is melted to make everything combine properly. Your question about exactly how much to use makes sense but honestly I am not totally sure how much you would want to reduce it (I’ve never measured after browning but will have to do that!), I think if you removed one tablespoon you should be good.
Thank you for this perfect recipe 😭💕it’s soft, moist and chewy baked well and crisp at the edges 😋😍 thank you very much ❤️
I’m so glad you enjoyed them so much, Shahad! 🙂
Hello, just made these cookies, and they’re the BEST chocolate chip cookies I have ever made!!!! WOW!!! Thank you 😍
I am so glad you enjoyed them so much, Annie! 🙂
Hi Sam! I always have a problem with greasy cookies for any cookie recipe that call for browning butter I guess since it is melted I have tried several recipes several times. Do you know what might be the cause? Also what happens if you let your butter cool for too long and it begins to solidify again? Not completely but start turning for a translucent golden color to a more cloudy yellow. Thanks in advance! I can’t wait to try this recipe!
Hi Sarah! Usually you will get a greasy cookie if you add your sugars to your butter while it is still too warm. You actually want it to cool to about the cloudy yellow. Usually if it’s still clear it’s still too hot. I hope you love these cookies! 🙂
I have made these cookies at least six times in the last 2 months. This is my families favorite cookie, hands down. I have never used cornstarch in a cookie recipe. Can you tell me why it is an important component of this cookie recipe?
Hi Bridgett! I am so glad everyone enjoys them so much! The cornstarch here helps keep them from spreading too much and makes the cookies extra soft and chewy. 🙂
Hey sam i have tried your recipe and it turned out awesome! It’s just that i was using choc
Callets and the choc was not as gooey as i expected.May I knw if i can use the normal milk choc from hersheys? As thats the only brand i can find here in asia
Hi Roo! Milk chocolate will work just fine here, I hope you love the cookies! 🙂
soo good! i watched hour video and you explained it PERFECTLY!! so glad i found you video/page! thank you soso much :))
I am so glad you enjoyed them so much, Farha! 🙂
Very easy to understand, thanks so much Sam!
I am so glad you enjoyed it so much! 🙂
Awesome recipe they were sooo good that I made a second batch the next day and doubled the recipe.
That’s awesome! Thank you so much for letting me know how they turned out! 🙂