Browned Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie
This recipe started as a request from my goddaughter Piper and her sister Alden. They noticed I didn’t have a chocolate chip cookie recipe on the site and called me to suggest, with as much insistence as nine year old and eleven year old girls can muster (which is substantial by the way) that I come up with one.
Well girls, this cookie is for you.
Though, it’s probably not what you expected.
Frankly, I don’t find regular chocolate chip cookies that exciting. I want cookies to have substance, something more than plain cookie dough speckled with chocolate chips. So my dears, this cookie is an oatmeal cookie, a chewy oatmeal cookie, with dark chocolate chips (better chocolate flavor than semi-sweet), pecans, because they go so well with chocolate, and browned butter, because of all that wonderful nutty flavor from the browned bits of the butter.
Now, dear Alden and Piper, I know in the past you have hand picked out and discarded every morsel of walnut or pecan in any baked good your mother made for you. If you are still practicing this lunacy, you may leave out the pecans. Your loss, they taste great in this cookie.
Browning the butter is easy. It takes about ten minutes, and is so worth it. You will taste the difference. You just have to watch it so the butter doesn’t burn, or then you’ll have blackened butter, not browned butter, and you’ll have to throw it out and your mother will get angry at me for inspiring you to do something that resulted in wasting 2 sticks of butter.
The real variable in this recipe is the shredded coconut. It’s just there for texture. If you add a cup of sweetened shredded coconut to the mix, the cookies will be chewier. You can easily leave it out. Or try some with it, and some without to see which cookie you like better.
Hope you like it! (And please let me know which version you ended up with – with or without pecans or coconut.)
Brown the butter first, as the butter is cooling, prep the other ingredients.
- 1 cup (2 sticks, 8 oz, 225 g) unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 cup white granulated sugar
- 2 eggs (large), lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 Tbsp water
- 1 1/2 cups bitter-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup chopped pecans (optional)
- 1 cup sweetened, shredded coconut (optional)
- 3 cups Old Fashioned rolled oats (Quick oats are okay, but not steel cut, not instant)
1 Brown the butter. Place sticks of butter in a thick-bottomed medium sized stainless-steel saucepan. (It's important to use a saucepan that has a light, reflective interior like stainless steel, otherwise you won't be able to see the butter browning.) Heat on medium. Melt the butter, whisking so that the butter melts evenly. Continue to cook the butter. As it cooks, the butter will foam up, and then the foam will subside. Whisk frequently to check underneath the bubbly surface. At some point, browned bits will form at the bottom of the pan and the butter will begin to smell nutty. Watch carefully, it's easy for the butter to go from browned to burnt. When the browned bits begin to form, remove the pan from the heat. Pour the melted butter, with the browned bits, into a glass or metal bowl. Allow to cool a bit while you prepare the other ingredients.
2 Vigorously whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda, nutmeg, and cinnamon together in a large bowl.
3 Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Place the browned butter (along with the browned bits) in a mixer bowl. Add the brown and white sugar. Beat on medium high speed for about 3 minutes, until smooth. Add the eggs and vanilla. Beat for three more minutes on medium speed until smooth and light.
4 Using a wooden spoon, stir the flour mixture into the butter sugar egg mixture. Stir in 2 Tbsp water (note that if you are using jumbo eggs, and not large eggs as the recipe calls for, you will probably not need this much extra liquid.)
5 Stir in the chocolate chips, and the pecans and shredded coconut (if using). Stir in the oatmeal. Up to this point you can make the dough up to a day and a half ahead and store in the refrigerator.
4 Butter two large cookie sheets, or line them with Silpat mats or parchment paper. Spoon out heaping tablespoon-fuls of cookie dough and lay them on the cookie sheet. Make sure you have about 2" of space between each cookie, as they will flatten a little and spread on the cookie sheet. Bake at 350°F (175°C) for 10 minutes, or until they are just brown around the edges, but still soft in the center. They will firm up as they cool. (If you want them crispier, you can bake them from 12-14 minutes. 10 minutes will help yield a more chewy cookie.)
5 Take the cookies out of the oven and let them cool for two or three minutes on the hot baking sheet. Then, using a metal spatula, carefully transfer the still-hot cookies to a wire rack to cool. They will continue to be soft until completely cooled. Once completely cooled, store in an airtight container.