Brown Butter Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies

These sweet and salty brown butter toffee chocolate chip cookies are soft and chewy in the centers with deliciously crisp edges. Brown butter is melted butter with a nutty caramelized flavor brought on by gently cooking it on the stove. And it tastes absolutely phenomenal in cookies, especially when you add toffee and sea salt. Because of these flavorful additions, these fancied-up chocolate chip cookies will fly off the serving tray!

brown butter toffee chocolate chip cookies on cooling rack

Can you make a perfect thing even better? Sometimes you just don’t mess with classic chocolate chip cookies, but in case you feel fancy and want to experiment, these brown butter toffee chocolate chip cookies are consistent crowd-pleasers. (I’m writing this nearly a decade after this recipe was originally published so yes, I say from experience that these cookies are always a hit!) They’re a spin on my popular chewy chocolate chip cookies with the addition of brown butter, toffee chips, and sea salt.


These Brown Butter Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies Are:

  • Loaded with a buttery caramelized flavor
  • Extra soft and chewy in the centers
  • Crisp on the edges
  • Chock-full of sweet and salty toffee chips*
  • Packed with chocolate chips

*I just use Heath bar “Bits O’ Brickle” English toffee bits found near the chocolate chips in the baking aisle.

showing the center of brown butter toffee chocolate chip cookies

Brown Butter

If you’ve never browned butter before, take a minute to review my How to Brown Butter guide. It’s a very quick and easy process. After you brown it, let it cool for a few minutes before working on the rest of the wet ingredients.

Unlike in my regular brown butter chocolate chip cookies, we do not have to chill the browned butter to solidify it before working on the cookie dough. That step takes extra time especially since we have to chill that cookie dough too– but it does promise thicker cookies since the butter has been chilled. However, I appreciate that this recipe is quicker and that it produces thinner, crispier cookies. We use the same cookie dough when making dark chocolate pecan cookies, too.

brown butter in a pan with a silver spoon


Brown Butter Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies Success Tips

  1. Expect a crumbly dough: This cookie dough is very crumbly as you try to combine the wet ingredients, dry ingredients, and add-ins. It’s not nearly as crumbly if you leave out the toffee chips. They’re so small that it makes the dough break apart easily. Continue mixing until it all comes together– it will, I promise!
  2. Use a cookie scoop: Scoop and roll the cookie dough into balls after it comes together. This medium size cookie scoop is perfect because each dough ball should be around 1.5 Tablespoons of dough.
  3. Chill the cookie dough balls: Cover and chill the cookie dough balls in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before baking. Remember that chilling cookie dough helps guarantee that your cookies won’t overspread. Because of the melted (browned) butter in this cookie dough, the dough will spread into greasy puddles if you do not chill the dough balls prior to baking. Chilling cookie dough also enhances its flavor– the nutty brown butter flavor seeps into every last morsel of dough.

toffee and chocolate chip cookie dough

chocolate chip cookie dough balls

cookie dough balls arranged on baking sheet

Toffee pairs wonderfully with the caramel and butterscotch undertones in the brown butter. I added it all to the cookie dough and the result is an amazingly chewy, caramel-y, chocolate-y, buttery cookie with an incredible toffee crunch. A regular chocolate chip cookie, but elevated. You’ll love that!

brown butter toffee chocolate chip cookies

Bake a double batch because these always go quickly!

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brown butter toffee chocolate chip cookies

Brown Butter Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours
  • Yield: 36 cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These sweet and salty brown butter toffee chocolate chip cookies are soft and chewy in the centers with deliciously crisp edges. Brown butter is the secret to their unbeatable flavor.


Ingredients

  • 1 cup (230g; 16 Tbspunsalted butter
  • 1 cup (200g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 and 1/2 cups (313gall-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/4 cups (225g) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup (150g) Heath Bar Bits O’ Brickle English Toffee
  • optional: coarse sea salt

Instructions

  1. Brown the butter: Set out a medium heat-proof bowl because you’ll need it at the end of this step. Slice the butter into Tablespoon-size pieces and place in a light-colored skillet or large pot. Light colored helps you determine when the butter begins browning. (See note if using a dark skillet or pot.) Melt the butter over medium heat and stir or whisk constantly. Once melted, the butter will begin to foam. Keep stirring/whisking. After 5-7 minutes, the butter will begin browning and you’ll notice lightly browned specks begin to form at the bottom of the pan. It will have a nutty aroma. Once browned, remove from heat immediately and pour into the bowl, including any solids that have formed on the bottom of the pan. (You want those solids for flavor.) Cool brown butter for 5 minutes. Don’t cool longer than that because the butter will begin to thicken and, as a result, the cookie dough will be difficult to mix and its texture will be too crumbly.
  2. Whisk the brown sugar and granulated sugar into the brown butter and then whisk in the eggs and vanilla extract. Set aside. In a large bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, add the chocolate chips and toffee, then stir together with a large spoon or rubber spatula. The dough will seem too dry at first, but keeping stirring until it comes together. Dough will be greasy, thick, and a bit crumbly.
  3. Scoop dough into balls, about 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons of dough each, and place on a large plate or baking sheet. I like to roll each cookie dough ball between my hands to smooth them out since they can be a little crumbly. Cover and chill the cookie dough balls in the refrigerator for 2 hours and up to 3 days before baking. (You can also freeze the dough balls, see Freezing Instructions below.)
  4. Towards the end of chill time, preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.
  5. Arrange cookie dough balls 3 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. If desired, lightly sprinkle coarse sea salt on top of each. Press the salt down into the cookie dough balls if it’s not sticking.
  6. Bake for 12-13 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned. Remove from the oven and allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. While the cookies are still warm, I like to press a few more chocolate chips or toffee pieces into the tops– this is only for looks! Cookies are extra soft out of the oven, but become chewier as they cool.
  7. Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the refrigerator for 1 week.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Baked cookies freeze well up to three months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well up to three months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw. Here’s how to freeze cookie dough.
  2. Darker skillet/pot when browning butter: I recommend using a light-colored skillet or large pot when browning butter so you can see when the butter is done. (It’s only a quick few seconds between browned butter and burnt butter.) Towards the end of 5-7 minutes, check for doneness by spooning some butter into a glass bowl to determine if it has browned.
  3. Be sure to check out my top 5 cookie baking tips AND these are my 10 must-have cookie baking tools.

Keywords: brown butter toffee chocolate chip cookies

45 Comments

  1. Emma Perkinson says:

    These look amazing, and I cannot wait to try them! I do have a quick question. If I were to freeze the dough, how long do they have to sit out before I can put them in the oven? I am assuming they cannot go in the oven while they are frozen, but I did not know how cold they could be and still bake properly.

    1. Hi Emma! You can actually bake them from frozen– see my freezing instructions or the details in my How to Freeze Cookie Dough post. Or feel free to let them partially thaw for about 30 minutes before starting. It’s likely they will still need an extra minute or 2 that way as well.

      1. Emma Perkinson says:

        Oh my, I did not read through that link- I am sorry about that. I appreciate you taking the time to answer, that makes sense! Thank you!

  2. Hi Sally!
    I would love to bake these cookies bit cannot handle all the salt! Is it possible to bake these with the salt cut down?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Definitely!

  3. What are Heath Bar Bits O Brickle? Is that like little chocolate covered toffee chips? We don’t have Heath bars here but we have Skor bars and we can buy those “bits”. If the Heath bits are chocolate covered, I am sure the Skor bits will be a good sub. Thanks!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Ella, yes! Heath bars are chocolate covered toffee, those Score bits sound like they would be a great substitute. Enjoy!

  4. You mention using light or dark brown sugar. Which do you use? Love your recipes!!!!!

    1. Thanks Kris! You can use either, but for the pictured cookies I used light brown. That’s what I typically use unless otherwise noted.

  5. Thank you for sending this out yesterday! We happened to have those Heath toffee pieces so we made them last night and you’re right about their taste. We can’t stop eating them!! Cookies were easy to make. Didn’t do the sea salt but will try that next time. Thanks Sally!

  6. May i ask if theres a substitute for baking soda as i dont like my baked goods to have baking soda and it taste metallic

    1. I know I’m not Sally, but here’s a trick my mother taught me that ensures that the baking soda is fully mixed in and leaves no metallic taste: put the required amount of baking soda in a small (preferably tiny) bowl or container, and add just enough milk to dissolve it. Now add the baking-soda-milk mixture into the wet ingredients, and voila! No baking soda taste. And the tiny amount of milk you added will not change the texture of the baked good.

  7. Hi Sally! I love all your recipes. If I skip the heath bars and make these as regular chocolate chip cookies, would it work? I like the looks on these better than the brown butter chocolate chip cookie recipe, these look richer

    1. Hi Val, you can definitely skip the toffee chips if desired!

      1. Tried this today after your reply, BEST RECIPE EVER! They turned out exactly how I wanted them. Thank you so much! You’re a star!

  8. What delicious cookies! I had just enough of the toffee bites and decided to give them a try. So glad I did! Everyone loved them. Thank you for another wonderful chocolate chip cookie recipe!

  9. I’m making these right now. I followed the recipe to the “T” measuring all ingredients. However, my “dough” is creamy and liquid-y. I don’t know whether to add more flour or take a leap of faith and just continue. Any suggestions?

    1. Hi Sharon, if the dough seems too loose to scoop and roll into balls, chill it for 1 hour then scoop/shape, then chill for 1 more hour before baking.

      1. Thank-you. I eventually added a little more flour (aprox. 4 Tlbs.). The cookies were delicious! They did cool flatter then yours that are pictured. Maybe this was a result of not cooling the dough enough? (cooled almost 2 hours). Nonetheless, it didn’t bother 5 neighborhood kids and their parents. All cookies got gobbled up!!! Great recipe.

  10. I have a question regarding the browned butter. You have mentioned moisture loss after Browning and suggest using more butter. Should I add a bit more butter before browning, measure then cool? How much extra would you suggest?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Mary! Great question. Since this recipe calls for brown butter, we’ve already accounted for the loss of moisture in the measurements provided. So no need to add any more butter. In recipes where brown butter is not called for but you’d like to use instead, the general rule of thumb is an extra 1/2 – 1 tablespoon of butter or two tablespoons of milk to account for the lost moisture. Hope this helps!

  11. Karen Cutler says:

    Sally, I made the dough and it is not crumbly at all – it is very soft and will not hold it’s shape. I am refrigerating it before scooping. I hope it’s okay – I double and triple checked my measurements and weighed all ingredients, so I am hoping it’s right. I’ll let you know how they turn out.

    1. Karen Cutler says:

      After chilling the dough for 30 minutes, I scooped and chilled overnight. They turned out perfect – just like the picture. Thanks!

  12. Jamie Hutchings says:

    These cookies were amazing!! Seems parchment paper brings out the brown butter flavor more than the silicone mat. Sally, you are the Julia Child of baking… thank you!!

  13. Sally! These and other cookie recipes are AMAZING. For equal measurement of dough balls I divide the batter weight by number of servings and find the gram weight of each. Easy-peasy to get perfectly sized cookies. (I find cookie scoops don’t easily release dough.)
    BTW your make-ahead tips have SAVED MY LIFE! Thank you.

  14. I am a Grandma that often bakes for pleasure and her grown children and their families. They all loved these cookies! So if anyone is wondering about the flavor or browned butter, try them, the flavor is magnificent. Being a long time baker and having improved other peoples recipes, this lady has it down to the science. Excellent recipes Sally.

  15. Question: Since saying that this revision results in thinner, crispier cookies (and I prefer thicker & chewier), I’d like to refrigerate the browned butter until it solidifies. Can I still whisk the ingredients together, or would I now need to use a hand or stand mixer? Thank you.

    1. Since the browned butter will be solid, you’ll definitely need a mixer. Let it sit at room temperature for a bit to soften so it’s easier to cream. I actually do this for my regular brown butter chocolate chip cookies. Thicker, fluffier cookies indeed!

      1. Thank you so much for taking the time to answer my question and to do so very quickly. I love your recipes and am eager to try this one.

  16. Can I use store bought brown butter ?

  17. can these be made as bars?

    1. Hi Lee, I’m sure the recipe could be turned into cookie bars. I’m unsure of the best bake time.

  18. Karen L Templin says:

    I have dark colored cookware. How can I tell when my butter is at the right browning stage?

    1. Hi Karen, spoon some of the cooking butter out of the pan and check its color to determine doneness.

  19. Should the egg come directly out of the refrigerator just before using? I’m used to seeing room temperature for eggs when baking.

    1. Hi Kate, yes it’s best to bring them to room temperature before using. Thank you for clarifying.

  20. Hi Sally,

    I’m afraid this cookie didn’t turn out right for me at all. The dough was very, very crumbly. After refrigerating and baking, they pretty much kept their round shape and look more like a chocolate ball cookie. Flavor is good, but texture is very dry. Could I have over browned the butter? Help please!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Joy, When cookies are dry and don’t spread it’s usually because there was too much flour. Be sure to use the “spoon & level” method. Do not scoop the flour out of the container/bag with your measuring cup because you could end up with 50% more than you need. Rather, using a spoon, scoop the flour into the measuring cup. Do not pack the flour down and do not tap the measuring cup as both cause the flour to settle in the cup. After you’ve spooned the flour into the measuring cup, use the back of a knife to level off the top of the measuring cup.

      1. Thank you so much Sally. I did scoop my measuring cup into the flour container. I’ll give these another try and lightly spoon the flour to measure. Your recipes are always my favorites so I knew I messed up somewhere.

  21. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

    Hi Sally, we use the Heath Bar Bits O’ Brickle English Toffee, but the chocolate covered toffee bits would work here as well.

  22. Hi Sally, as usual this recipe showed up just at the right time. My husband has fallen in love with toffee cookies but he suddenly can’t find them where he used to get them. My question is this: since he doesn’t like chocolate chips can I just substitute toffee for the chocolate chips or is there an adjustment that needs to be made? Thank you in advance. Like everyone else I have learned more from your site than any other!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      That should work just fine, Barbara! Hope he loves them.

  23. Delicious!!! And thank you for including weight measurements, makes mixing everything together so much faster.

  24. would adding an extra egg ( 3 instead of 2) change the cookies, I use 2 – 2/3 C flour

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi RL! Yes, it would change the texture and spread of these cookies. We recommend sticking to the recipe for best results.

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