Grandpa’s Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies
If you’re having a bad day, it’ll turn around if you make these cookies. If you’re having a good day, it’ll get even better if you make these cookies. Just trust me – you need to make these cookies. For years, I have been searching for the perfect chocolate chip cookie recipe. I found one that was pretty darn good from Stuck on Sweet, and I used it as a starting point for a year and a half of adjusting a smidge of that and adding a dash of this. Finally, I achieved what my boyfriend declared were, “the best cookies you have ever made.” For reference, we’ve been together over 5 years, and I’ve made at least a couple hundred dozen cookies in that time. Thus, (The Wannabe) Grandpa’s Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies were born.
The first (not so) secret ingredient is brown butter. If you’ve never made brown butter before, don’t worry! I have a few tips and tricks to help you along the way. First, cut the butter into cubes, and put them into a small saucepan with a light-colored bottom. This will allow you to more easily see the brown bits and be sure they are brown and not burnt.
Turn your burner on low. Butter goes from brown and delicious to burnt and ruined rather quickly, so low and slow will help ensure you don’t cross that line. Stir the butter with a wooden spoon until it melts and begins to bubble.
Continue cooking over low heat while occasionally swirling the pot around. After about 10 or so minutes, you should notice that the butter begins to turn an amber color with brown bits on the bottom of the pan.
Once you smell a nutty aroma, remove the butter from the heat and pour it into a glass dish. Make sure you grab all those delicious little brown bits with a spatula.
Allow the butter to cool down for a few minutes and then place in the refrigerator until the butter is about as firm as softened butter that you would use for many cookie recipes. For me, this was about 2 hours, but it will depend on the size and shape of your dish, the temperature of your refrigerator, etc. If you refrigerate it for too long, don’t worry! You can allow it to soften at room temperature.
The other (not so) secret ingredients in these cookies are toffee chips and sea salt. I used the Heath Bits O’Brickle Toffee Bits that you can find in most grocery store baking aisles and McCormick’s Sicilian Sea Salt. The sea salt measurements in the recipe below are based on this brand, so if you use a different kind of sea salt, it may be best to add it in a half teaspoon at at time and taste to achieve the perfect level of saltiness. I also LOVE Guittard chocolate chips. They don’t sponsor me or anything (yet?!), but I sleep a little better at night when I am able to support brands that guarantee their workers a living wage. End of sermon.
Be sure you have a nice big glass of milk on hand when you’re ready to enjoy these cookies! They would also make a ridiculously good medium for an ice cream sandwich. Share your favorite way to devour them with me on Instagram by tagging @thewannabegrandma or using #thewannabegrandma.
Grandpa's Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp baking powder
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tbsp milk
- 1-1½ tsp sea salt, plus more for topping
- 8 oz toffee chips
- 1½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Cut butter into chunks and place in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir butter with a wooden spoon until it is melted.
- Once the butter is melted, continue to cook over low heat, swirling the pan occasionally, until small brown specks appear and the butter emits a nutty aroma. Immediately pour butter into a glass dish, making sure to scrape all the brown specks from the pan into the dish.
- Allow the butter to cool slightly, and then place the glass bowl into the refrigerator for approximately 2 hours or until the butter is solid but still a bit soft.
- In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.
- Cream together brown butter, granulated sugar, and light brown sugar using a stand or handheld mixer.
- Add in eggs, vanilla, milk, and salt, and continue mixing to combine.
- With your mixer on low speed, slowly add in the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Finally, add the chocolate chips and toffee chips and mix until well distributed.
- Remove the dough from the bowl and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 375°F, and line baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Remove dough from the refrigerator, and form balls of 4 tablespoons of dough. Press each ball down slightly, and arrange them about 3 inches apart on baking sheet.
- Bake for 9-12 minutes until edges are golden brown. Sprinkle them with sea salt. Let the cookies cool for 10-15 minutes on the baking sheet and then transfer them to a wire cooling rack. Enjoy!