Hi everyone! This is Sierra, and today I have a legendary salted caramel chocolate chip cookie recipe for you!
To get this recipe perfect, I spent weeks testing various recipes and researching how different ingredients would affect the taste, texture, and appearance of the cookie. My goal was to create a chocolate chip cookie with a more developed flavor profile than the ones that you can buy in your local grocery store, and I wanted it to be incredibly chewy, not too flat, and have crispy edges. The hundreds of cookies I baked paid off and resulted in this amazing cookie that is as good as I could’ve dreamed.
To put it eloquently, let me quote Kevin (referencing HIMYM referencing Amadeus):
Each bite starts with a hint of crispness, followed immediately by the warm embrace of the soft, chewy center. You’re caught in a dance of cookie dough and glorious pockets of gooey, melted chocolate. The nutty and sweet flavors mingling in a seductive pas-de-deux. That’s when you notice, a trace of caramel…the most playful little taste. These textures pulling apart and coming back together in a fugue of sweet and nutty…so delightful. This is no mere chocolate chip cookie, made with flour and chocolate chips…this is God, speaking to us through food.Kevin
How I Met This Cookie
This recipe was inspired by the Sumbitch cookies from How I Met Your Mother! In the TV show, Sumbitches are peanut butter, caramel, and chocolate chip cookies that the mother gives Lily the first time they meet. For this salted caramel chocolate chip cookie recipe, I omitted peanut butter because some of us are allergic to nuts.
Kevin and I binged this show because it’s one of Kevin’s all-time favorite TV shows, and it quickly became my favorite show as well. Since this is a recipe blog, not a TV show blog, I won’t go into it more, but I’ll just say that I would highly recommend checking it out if you’ve never watched it!
Tell Me About Your Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies
We all have our own favorite version of chocolate chip cookies—soft, thin, crisp, chewy, melty, runny, and the list goes on. As I mentioned above, my dream cookie is one that has a richer flavor than your typical chocolate chip cookie, with crispy edges and a chewy center.
To achieve the more complex flavors I wanted in my cookie, I used browned butter and salted caramel. Just adding these two ingredients enhances the flavor profile and brings the taste to a whole new level. However, if you want a more traditional chocolate chip cookie, feel free to skip the caramel and browning the butter—you’ll still end up with an amazing cookie!
Lessons I Learned Along the Way
Cookies can be one of the easiest things to bake, being that they are some people’s first foray into baking. However, to achieve my dream salted caramel chocolate chip cookie, I had to do some research and add some extra steps into the process.
If you do dig into each ingredient in a cookie recipe, you will be amazed at how many different kinds of cookies you can end up with. I made cookies at least once a day for 2 weeks to come up with this recipe, and rarely did two trials produce identical cookies…until I got this recipe down.
Here are some helpful tips that I learned:
- Use browned butter. This will create a deep, caramel-nutty flavor that is so much richer than what you can get with room-temperature/melted butter.
- Use dark brown sugar and white sugar. Dark brown sugar creates a chewy texture and more caramelized taste, but using too little white sugar will make the cookie not expand, meaning you will have a tall cookie with cakey texture.
- Don’t overlook whisking egg and sugar! Make sure to whisk until the mixture has tripled in volume and is pale yellow. When you lift your whisk up with the mixture on it, it should fall down in ribbons. The resulting ribbons should remain visible on the surface for a second before re-integrating.
- Use baking soda rather than baking powder for denser, chewier cookies. Baking soda creates a chewy texture while baking powder makes it cakeier.
- Use chocolate chunks (or cut up chocolate bars) along with chocolate chips. This will create a variety of chocolate flavor and texture. I like using relatively large chunks so that you end up with larger pockets of melted chocolatey goodness. I used semi-sweet chocolate chips and a 70% dark chocolate bar. Using 60% chocolate bar also works!
- The salted caramel sauce brings the cookie to a whole new level. For the purpose of making these cookies, I wanted to caramel to be solid after freezing them so they would melt slower in the oven. To do this, I let the caramel cook a bit longer on the stove before removing it. Alternatively, you can add 50% more butter than stated in the recipe, which should also help your caramel become solidified.
- Put the caramel sauce on top of the cookie instead of inside if you want a more structured cookie. I tried putting the caramel on the inside of the cookie thinking it would create a gooey center, but while it was gooey, it also collapsed the entire cookie, making it too flat for my liking.
Feel free to experiment on your own with the ingredients to create your own unique cookie if you’re feeling adventurous! Nothing is more exciting than playing around with a recipe and making it your own!
Let’s get started on these scrumptious salted caramel chocolate chip cookies!
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