Addictive and moreish Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies. Recipe with step-by-step photos.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
My kids have reached an age where they now organise their own play dates, and hardly a day goes by when we don’t have another little visitor (or three) in our home after school. I used to stress about not having enough fruit and snacks at home for these unexpected visitors (even the adult kind!), until I discovered one day that keeping cookie dough in the freezer was perfect planning for these spontaneous play dates. Freshly baked cookies are always a treat, plus I can feel a bit smug for producing something homemade 🙂
So amongst my many frozen cookie dough in the freezer is always a roll or two of Chocolate Chip Cookies.
Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipes
I know there are thousands of recipes out there for Chocolate Chip Cookies, and everyone proclaims to have “the best recipe” or “only recipe you will ever need” for your chocolate chip cookie craving.
I happen to feel that, there is a chocolate chip cookie for different occasions. Sometimes you want a soft and chewy cookie with milk chocolate drops, other times you want a crunchy cookie with large dark chocolate chunks throughout.
My go-to recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookies is a French shortbread recipe which comes from my husband’s great-aunt: Chocolate Chip Sablé Cookies. It remains a firm favourite with my family, and especially with my kids because the recipe comes from someone they really cherish.
But for something a bit more grown-up and sophisticated, I highly recommend this recipe for Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies.
Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
This chocolate chip cookie recipe is adapted from Dining In by Alison Roman. Despite the drama with Chrissy Teigen and Marie Kondo, which initially made me retire her cookbooks to a closed cupboard, one has to acknowledge that Alison Roman is quite good at what she does, which is to create delicious no-nonsense recipes which live up to their hype.
What first drew me to this recipe was the fact that she rolled the log of cookie dough in demerera sugar to give it extra crunch. As I am always the one who eats all of the sugar-coated cookies from any tin of Danish butter cookies, I loved the idea of a sugar-coated chocolate chip cookie.
Plus, I could tell by looking at the photos that Alison Roman’s cookies were going to be similar to my Chocolate Chip Sablé Cookie in terms of texture, and which is the type of cookie my family prefers to eat.
Unsalted Butter vs Salted Butter
As a general rule, I like to use unsalted butter in my cooking and baking, so that I can better control the taste and amount of salt in a dish. As the salt content of salted butter varies greatly from brand to brand, I think it is prudent to stick to unsalted butter for most recipes. However, there are always exceptions.
Although I buy blocks of unsalted butter in ridiculous quantities every week, I always keep salted butter on hand for my toast in the morning. It’s also hard to beat a generous slather of salted butter on a piece of fresh baguette. And a habit we have picked up from French husband’s family is eating radishes with a slice of salted butter tucked inside.
My favourite salted butter is a French brand called Grand Fermage Noirmoutier Sea Salt Butter. It’s a beautiful tasting butter with large salt flakes throughout. I stock up on kilos of this butter every time we go to France, store them in the freezer, and cross my fingers that they will last until our next trip across the border.
Baking with Salted Butter
When it comes to baking, I generally recommend sticking to unsalted butter so that you can control the salt content of your baked goods. However, there are some recipes or dishes which sometimes work very well with the savouriness of salted butter.
Mimi Thorisson’s Salted Butter Chocolate Cake is one of the first recipes which I tried with salted butter, and you definitely notice how differently it tastes to a “normal” chocolate cake. The salt balances out the sugar, making the cake taste less sweet and more grown up.
Which is how I would also describe the use of salted butter in these cookies. In the same way that my kids find these cookies a touch too salty (they will demolish a plate of them regardless), I think it is the salt which makes these cookies addictive for adults because the cookies don’t taste very sweet, but more savoury and salty, in a good way.
What Type of Salted Butter to Use
There are many different brands of salted butter on the market, and the taste and salt content varies from one brand to another.
In Europe, the best salted butter is made in France with their locally produced “fleur de sel” or sea salt. Some varieties have large salt flakes or salt crystals throughout, which I think is best for eating fresh, i.e. spread on bread and sandwiches.
Other varieties have fine salt distributed throughout the butter, which I think is more ideal for cooking and baking so that the salt distribution is more even. So when looking to buy salted butter for cooking or baking, try to find one which does not advertise having large salt flakes or crystals. Although, this type of butter would be absolutely fine to use if that is all you can find.
What Type of Chocolate to Use
As chocolate plays a starring role in this recipe, I recommend using a good quality chocolate in these cookies. Also, as Chocolate Chip Cookies are a treat which I indulge in only once in a while, when I do get around to making them, I go all out and use the best quality chocolate to make them extra special.
Good quality chocolate chips are great in this recipe, or you can chop up a bar of chocolate so that you have different sized chunks of chocolate throughout each cookie.
As I bake a lot with chocolate, I keep a large stock of couverture chocolate buttons on hand. For these Chocolate Chip Cookies, I like to use one or a mix of the following:
- Lindt 37%, Swiss-made milk chocolate buttons
- Valrhona 40%, French-made milk chocolate fèves
- Felchlin 65%, Swiss-made dark chocolate buttons
- Valrhona 70%, French-made dark chocolate fèves
If you bake as much as I do, using the best quality chocolate for EVERY recipe is not very economical and might quickly bankrupt you. We are lucky to live in Switzerland where there is no such thing as bad quality chocolate, unless it is imported 😉 I once heard of a blind chocolate-tasting test where a cheap supermarket-branded chocolate was rated as the best-tasting among some more sophisticated, high-end brands.
Sometimes, if I know it will just be my kids and their friends eating these cookies, I stick to a cheaper brand of chocolate from the supermarket 😉
How to Make Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Place the butter, sugars and vanilla in the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the flat paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed for about 5 minutes until the mixture is light and fluffy.
Slowly beat in the flour, one tablespoon at a time.
Once all of the flour has been added, add the chopped chocolate. The chocolate should be roughly chopped into mostly large, but with some small, chunks.
Slowly beat the chocolate into the dough. This step should take 2-3 rotations of the stand mixer.
Place a large sheet of plastic wrap on the kitchen bench.
Using your hands or a bench scraper, place some dough in the middle of the plastic wrap. Lightly shape the dough into a long log about 4-5 cm (1.5-2 inches) wide, or however big you want your cookies to be.
Roll up the dough tightly in the plastic wrap, forming a smooth log as you do so. Squeeze and secure the ends.
Repeat the above with the remaining dough. I generally get about 4 logs of dough from this recipe.
Place the logs of dough in the fridge for at least 1 hour to firm up, or you can place them directly in the freezer to bake at a later time.
Unwrap the log of dough, but leave it on the plastic wrap. Lightly brush the dough with some egg wash.
Pour the demerera sugar onto a baking sheet or tray which is large enough to hold the log of cookie dough.
Roll the cookie dough in the demerera sugar, making sure that it is evenly coated all over.
Line a large baking tray (or two) with baking paper.
Use a sharp knife to slice the cookie dough into thick rounds, about 1 cm (1/2 inch) thick. Your knife will occasionally hit a piece of chocolate in the dough, making it a bit difficult to slice neat rounds. So don’t worry if the cookie slices fall apart – you can easily squish the pieces back together.
And don’t worry if your cookie slices are not perfectly round. See my notes below on how to make perfectly round cookies 🙂
Place the cookies on the baking tray, spacing them about 2 cm (1 inch) apart. They will expand slightly upon baking.
Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) (without fan).
Bake the cookies for about 12-15 minutes, or until the edges are golden and caramelised, and the top of the cookies are lightly golden.
Leave the cookies on the hot baking tray for about 5-10 minutes before removing them to a wire rack to cool completely.
If you want perfectly round cookies, take the cookies out of the oven about 2 minutes before they have finished baking. Use a cookie cutter which is larger than your cookies to gently mould them into shape. See below for more detailed instructions.
How to Make the Perfectly Round Cookies
If your cookies look a bit lop-sided after sitting in the fridge or freezer, or they suffered a mishap during the slicing process, never fret.
- Take the cookies out of the oven about 2 minutes before they have finished baking. The cookies need to still be soft so that you can shape them.
- Find a round cookie cutter which is slightly bigger than your cookies. I own a set of 10 round cookie cutters which are ideal in this instance.
- Very quickly, place the cookie cutter over the hot cookie and use a circular motion to gently mould the cookie into a round shape.
- Repeat quickly with the remaining cookies before they harden and cool.
- Once you have finished shaping your cookies into the perfect circles, return the cookies to the oven to finish baking.
Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Resting Time: 1 hour
- Prep Time: 30 mins
- Cook Time: 15 mins
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: Makes about 50 cookies
- Category: Cookies
- Method: Oven
Addictive and moreish Salted Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies. Recipe with step-by-step photos.
For the cookies
- 500 g (4 1/2 sticks) salted butter, softened
- 220 g (1 cup) caster sugar
- 120 g (3/4 cup) light muscovado sugar or light brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 670 g (4 1/2 cups) plain flour (all-purpose flour)
- 350 g (12 oz) good quality milk chocolate or dark chocolate, roughly chopped with large and small pieces
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 220 g (1 cup) demerera sugar, for rolling
To make the cookie dough
- Place the butter, sugars and vanilla into the bowl of a stand mixer.
- Using the flat-paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars for about 5 minutes on medium speed, or until the mixture is light and fluffy.
- On low speed, add the flour, one tablespoon at a time.
- Once the flour is almost all incorporated, add the chopped chocolate.
- Lightly beat the chocolate into the dough so that it is evenly distributed. This should take a few rotations of the stand mixer.
To shape the cookie dough
- Place a large sheet of plastic wrap on the kitchen bench.
- Using your hands or a bench scraper, scoop some dough onto the plastic wrap, and continue until you have enough for a long log which is roughly 4-5 cm (1.5-2 inches) in diameter (or however big you like your cookies).
- Lightly shape the dough into a long log, although it doesn’t need to be perfect at this stage.
- Tightly wrap the dough in the plastic wrap, forming a smooth log as you do so.
- Squeeze and secure the ends.
- Repeat the above steps with the remaining dough.
- Place the logs of dough in the fridge for at least 1 hour to firm up, or you can store them in the freezer to bake another time.
To decorate the cookies
- Line a large sheet pan with baking paper.
- Unwrap the cookie dough log and leave it to rest on the plastic wrap.
- Using a brush to lightly brush the cookie dough with egg wash.
- Place a generous amount of demerera sugar on a baking sheet or plate which is big enough to hold the cookie dough log.
- Roll the cookie dough in the sugar until it is evenly coated.
- Using a sharp knife, slice the cookies from the log, about 1 cm (1/2 inch) thick.
- Occasionally, your knife will hit a piece of chocolate, making it difficult to slice neat rounds. If your cookie slices fall apart, simply squish them back into shape.
- Place the cookies on the sheet pan, spaced about 2 cm (1 inch) apart.
To bake the cookies
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) (without fan).
- Bake the cookies for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the edges are golden and caramelised, and the cookies or lightly golden on top.
- Leave the cookies on the hot sheet pan for 5-10 minutes before removing them to a wire rack to cool completely.
HALVING THE RECIPE
To make a smaller quantity of cookies, simply halve this recipe. I have intentionally doubled this recipe as I like to bake some cookies right away, but freeze the rest for another time.
FREEZING COOKIE DOUGH
This recipe will produce about 4 logs of cookie dough. I usually use 2 logs right away and freeze the remaining 2 logs for another time. When you are ready to make the cookies, you can bake the cookies from frozen, but you will need to partially defrost the cookie dough first until it has softened enough to slice. Once the dough is ready to slice, brush it with egg wash and proceed with the rest of the recipe.
HOW TO MAKE PERFECTLY ROUND COOKIES
* Take the cookies out of the oven 2 minutes before they have finished baking.
* Find a round cookie cutter which is slightly larger than your cookies.
* Place the cookie cutter over the hot cookies, and use a circular motion to gently shape the cookies into a perfectly round shape.
* Return the cookies to the oven to finish baking.
OVEN & STOVE TEMPERATURES
All recipes on this website have been tested on an induction stove and/or with a conventional oven (i.e. an oven without fan). All recipes on this website state temperatures for a conventional oven. If you have a convection oven (i.e. an oven with a fan), please consult the manufacturer’s handbook on how to adjust the temperature and baking time accordingly.
To convert from cups to grams, and vice-versa, please see this handy Conversion Chart for Basic Ingredients.