Browned-Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Updated: May 22, 2020
These are the ultimate chocolate-chip cookies. The browned butter lends a uniquely delicious toffee–caramel flavor. The flaky salt (I used Maldon) gives the cookies a delicious balance of flavor.
A few years ago, my friend Kaela had been keeping this gem of a recipe among her closest family and friends. If you were especially lucky, Kaela might have made them for your birthday. They are her family's specialty. On one fateful day, she gave the recipe to my friend Maia. Kaela said that Maia could make them with me, but Maia was on on strict orders to "NOT GIVE THE RECIPE TO JEREMY". Well after I made them with Maia, and realized that the perfect cookie was not even that hard to make, I had no choice but to find the recipe. Fortunately after a not–so–difficult search on the internet I found the cookies hailed from a food blog called Ambitious Kitchen. Since I found out that these cookies were in the public domain, I couldn't not make them even if they were Kaela's thing. This caused a lot of drama for freshmen Jeremy, Maia, and Kaela. It was Kaela's specialty and Maia probably shouldn't have made it so easy for me to find, but these are like the best cookies and I wanted to make them. Finally, Kaela agreed it would be fine if I made them, because after all, the recipe was online. Even after that ordeal, the three of us shared the coveted recipe with few. Fast forward to now, we are older and (a little) more mature. We aren't fighting about cookie recipes. I'm excited to share a highly requested recipe that my friends and family love.
For a long time, I could not figure out how to make them as good as Kaela's family. Mine were good but more recently, I started browning the butter more than I had been, and I increased the amount of flour in weight measurement (they don't weigh their flour, but I do.) Theirs are still better but mine come close :)
To match this without a scale, even though the correct way to measure flour by volume is to fluff it up with a spoon and spoon the flour into the measuring cup before leveling, for this recipe, just scoop the measuring cup directly into the bag of flour and level.
Original recipe from Ambitious Kitchen. **My version is a little more caramely and gooey while hers are more cakey. If you measure with measuring cups, yours will probably come out more like Ambitious Kitchen **
Yield: 2–3/4 Dozen (scooped with a 1.5 tbsp cookie scooper)
2 1/4 cups (315g) all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt + flaky salt for sprinkling
1 cup/2 sticks (226g) unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups (300g) dark brown sugar, firmly packed. Regular brown sugar is fine too, but don’t use light.
1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
1 whole egg
1 egg yolk
2 tsps vanilla extract
1 tablespoon plain greek yogurt (full fat)
1 bag (12 oz) chocolate chips I like semi sweet or a mixture of bittersweet and milk
Preheat the oven to 350° degrees F (For my oven, 325° F on convection works better)
Set the butter to brown in a medium skillet set over low heat. While the butter begins to melt, measure out other ingredients to be efficient with time (instructions follow). If the butter completely melts before you're done measuring, stop measuring and resume later. After the butter melts, continue cooking on medium heat and tend to it by mixing gently with a wooden spoon or silicon whisk. The butter will foam, then the foam may subside as you continue to cook. After a few minutes, the butter will give off a nutty, toffee–like aroma. At this point, the butter is almost ready, cook on medium-low until the milk solids of the butter turn golden-brown. Transfer the browned-butter to a separate bowl until needed so that it doesn't burn in the pan.
Measure the brown sugar and granulated sugar into a large mixing bowl.
Pour the hot butter over the sugar mixture, and whisk to combine. Set aside to let cool for 5 minutes.
In the meantime, in a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, and kosher salt. Also, whisk together the eggs, vanilla, and greek yogurt in another small bowl.
After the butter and sugar have cooled, pour in the egg mixture in small additions, whisking to combine. Add all the egg mixture, and whisk until most of the sugar granules dissolve.
Gently mix in the flour mixture.
Fold in the chocolate chips. Reserve some chocolate chips to add on top of the individual cookie balls. This will make them more "picture perfect".
Refrigerate the dough for 2 hours then scoop the dough into small balls onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or a silat. For quicker turn around, freeze the dough for 5 minutes, then scoop it into balls and freeze for 30 minutes once scooped.
Before baking, sprinkle each ball of dough with flaky salt and reserved chocolate chips.
Bake for 10 minutes until puffed and lightly browned around the edges. The cookies will not be set in the center. For best results, bake one tray at a time.
Let cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
A note on storage: The cookies can be stored for a few days in an airtight container. To help them retain their chewy-ness, store the cookies with a slice of bread. You can also keep the balls of dough frozen for a few months.