Skip to content

Brown Butter Bourbon Chocolate Chip Cookies

July 25, 2012

This recipe title is pretty much all of my favorite words in one phrase. And these cookies are (almost) all of my favorite things in one cookie.

It feels a little weird to be baking chocolate chip cookies in the middle of summer, but when you need a chocolate chip cookie you just

really need

a chocolate chip cookie.

I’ve been craving chocolate chip cookies for weeks, so when my mother-in-law’s birthday came around I decided to bake her some of my favorites… and I stole a few for myself. I should be ashamed. Is it rude to gift someone birthday cookies and then eat two of them standing right there in their kitchen?

Don’t answer that.

These delightful cookies are based on the famous New York Times cookie recipe, with a few of my own twists thrown in: A puddle of nutty browned butter. A splash of bourbon. A sprinkle of cinnamon.

They’re not exactly traditional chocolate chip cookies, but they are comfort food at its best. There’s just a hint of bourbon and a little kick of cinnamon that makes you go, “Hrm… what is that?” In short, I love these cookies. They’re everything a good chocolate chip cookie should be. Crisp on the outside, chewy on the inside, loaded with melty chocolate chips and caramel flavor.

I don’t want to overhype or over-promise on these cookies, but they’re pretty much my favorite cookies to date which is really saying something.

Brown Butter Bourbon Chocolate Chip Cookies

Adapted from the New York Times
Makes about 3 dozen large cookies

The extra sprinkle of salt on each cookie is optional, but takes them to a whole other level I think. I’ve included the ingredient weights because if you have a kitchen scale, weighing the ingredients is more accurate AND makes fewer dishes to clean up. If you don’t want to eat all 3 dozen cookies at once (why not?), portion out dough and freeze on a cookie sheet until firm, then transfer to a plastic freezer bag for storage. Set frozen dough at room temp for 15-30 minutes, then bake as normal (cookies may need a few extra minutes).

Note: Dough should be mixed up at least 8-12 hours before baking for optimum flavor.


1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, browned (see directions below)
2 cups minus 2 tablespoons (8 1/2 ounces) cake flour or all-purpose flour
1 2/3 cups (8 1/2 ounces) bread flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups (10 ounces) dark brown sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (8 ounces) granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons natural vanilla extract
2 tablespoons bourbon
2 1/4 cups bittersweet chocolate chips, at least 60 percent cacao content
extra course salt, for sprinkling (optional)


In a saucepan, melt 1 stick (1/2 cup) of butter over medium heat. Continue cooking, swirling the pan occasionally, until butter turns a caramel brown and smells nutty. Keep a careful eye so it doesn’t burn! Remove from heat. Pour into the metal bowl of a stand mixer and cool to room temp.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.

Add 1 1/2 sticks of room temperature butter to mixer bowl with browned butter. Add sugars. Using a mixer with paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, incorporating completely after each addition. Add vanilla and bourbon. With mixer on low, carefully add dry ingredients. Mix just until combined. Fold in chocolate chips by hand with a spatula.

Cover dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight, or up to 36 hours.

When ready to bake, set dough out at room temperature until soft and scoopable. (This may take a couple of hours.) Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with Silpats or parchment paper.

When dough has warmed enough to be scoopable but not too soft, scoop or drop cookie dough in 3-tablespoon-sized balls (imagine a large golfball) onto prepared baking sheet, 8 at a time. Sprinkle each dough ball with a small pinch of course salt (optional). Bake one sheet at a time, 12-13 minutes or just until edges are light golden brown. (Centers may look underbaked, but will firm up as they cool.) Cool 2-3 minutes on baking sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

  1. July 25, 2012 8:02 pm

    I love a good chocolate chip cookies, can’t wait to try this recipe.

  2. July 25, 2012 8:05 pm

    You had me at bourbon and chocolate. I may just have to make these.

    And there’s nothing wrong with tasting the cookies you’ve gifted. Cookies are for sharing after all. I would have just made a double batch from the start and kept some for myself :-)

    • The Craving Chronicles permalink*
      July 26, 2012 8:02 am

      I kind of left out that I kept a dozen of them for myself too. LOL!

  3. July 25, 2012 10:47 pm

    Oh yum! Will have to try these. :D

  4. July 25, 2012 11:44 pm

    oh my god…..these are AMAZING

  5. July 26, 2012 12:19 am

    Cookies are my ULTIMATE Downfall when it comes to leading a healthy lifestyle because I cannot just eat ONE – ha!

    • The Craving Chronicles permalink*
      July 26, 2012 8:03 am

      I have that same problem because I firmly believe that cookies come in pairs!

  6. July 26, 2012 7:04 am

    Wow, these look soo yummy! :)

  7. July 26, 2012 8:41 am

    Anything with brown butter, and I’m sold! :)

  8. July 26, 2012 9:55 am

    These look delicious. I may have to make these for my husband. Have you tried the Honey Jack Daniels yet?

  9. July 26, 2012 12:30 pm

    Wow, these go above & beyond the average chocolate chip cookie. They look so good!

  10. July 26, 2012 3:38 pm

    gorgeous… they look absolutely perfect. I’ve not had a chocolate chip cookie in so long… now I’m craving them :D

  11. Meryl permalink
    July 26, 2012 7:14 pm

    These sound fantastic! I never have bread flour in the house, so I’m wondering if I could use all unbleached all-purpose flour instead, and have similar results, especially since the original NY Times recipe uses part cake flour and part bread flour.

    • The Craving Chronicles permalink*
      July 26, 2012 7:31 pm

      I’m pretty sure I’ve made the original NYT cookie recipe with only all-purpose flour before and they were still delicious. There might be a small difference in texture but I’m pretty sure they won’t be inedible. I say go for it :)

      • Meryl permalink
        July 26, 2012 7:39 pm

        Thanks! And thanks for this great recipe!

  12. July 26, 2012 9:31 pm

    oh my goodness, these look so good! Beautiful pictures and beautiful cookies :)

  13. July 26, 2012 10:03 pm

    Chocolate chip cookies are always in season! And those look just great.

  14. July 27, 2012 7:49 am

    Yes, please. (Seriously. Please make me some.)

  15. July 28, 2012 7:03 pm

    Looks sooo good!

  16. August 1, 2012 10:59 am

    These look fantastic!!!

  17. August 1, 2012 10:16 pm

    Sooo…uhh…about my gluten-free, paleo diet…these cookies (and your photographs) are insanely tempting! Like Craves Adventure said above, cookies are my downfall- I can never eat just one. I will have to bookmark this recipe to make when I have an excuse to gift cookies too!

  18. Jacqueline @How to be a Gourmand permalink
    August 3, 2012 1:55 am

    Beautiful photography! I just love the way these are cooked just so that you have managed to maintain the “gooey-ness” of the chocolate.

  19. August 6, 2012 1:06 am

    Reblogged this on alwaysadebateinc and commented:
    I’m cooking all the time, and these look wonderful. I’ll try them out. Thanks for sharing.

  20. August 6, 2012 11:28 pm

    oh my gosh! these look sooo delish! I’m making these this weekend and taking them home to my family! :)

  21. August 7, 2012 12:22 pm

    I have nominated you for the One Lovely Blog Award and One Versatile Blogger awards please check out my comments on your wonderful blog at

  22. August 7, 2012 6:23 pm

    David Lebovitz says that he gets a boatload of comments every time he writes about chocolate-something. But for me it was the ‘Bourbon’ that caught my eye.

    ‘Bourbon’ and ‘Chocolate’ in the same sentence?! Yup, I’m in.

  23. August 9, 2012 1:43 pm

    This blog is great! Check mine out:

  24. petit4chocolatier permalink
    August 10, 2012 7:30 am

    Love these! Not to mention the bourbon and chocolate!!

  25. Elena permalink
    August 14, 2012 11:54 pm

    These are in my fridge right now. Can’t wait to bake them tomorrow! The dough is delicious!

    • The Craving Chronicles permalink*
      August 15, 2012 8:05 am

      The hardest part is not eating all the dough before you bake them! :)


  26. Kelly permalink
    August 20, 2012 2:09 pm

    Question – made these and absolutely love them – i’d like to add a touch more bourbon, will that change the consistency much? I’m also considering putting a tablespoon of coffee beans in – thoughts?

    • The Craving Chronicles permalink*
      August 20, 2012 2:17 pm

      Hi Kelly! I’ve seen ground coffee in compost-type cookies, so that would probably work. Too much bourbon, though, might make the dough too soft and the cookies spread a lot when they bake. I would experiment by adding just a little bit more (1-2 tablespoons) to each batch and see what happens!

  27. Mag permalink
    September 7, 2012 8:09 pm

    They look awesome! The only problem is the amount of butter. I am on low cholesterol diet so would have to cut down on butter.
    The question is how far I can go? Any alternatives? Apple sauce?

    • The Craving Chronicles permalink*
      September 7, 2012 8:38 pm

      Hi Mag – I honestly can’t say. I’ve never tried to make chocolate chip cookies without butter! If you experiment be sure to let us know how they turn out :)

  28. Mag permalink
    September 8, 2012 8:43 am

    Thanks a lot!
    I was rather thinking of reducing the amount of butter-any advice?
    Have a great weekend!

  29. September 14, 2012 11:27 am

    Your pictures are phenomenal. My mouth is watering just looking at these beauties! Thanks so much for this post, I love the site!

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: