Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies

I decided to experiment with my cookies a little. I wanted a twist on traditional, a combo of salty and sweet. Then, I thought, what would happen if I added salted caramels in?

There were a few different ideas percolating in my head.

  • bits of caramel baked in like chocolate chips, so you’d hit caramel  unexpectedly.
  • caramel sauce drizzled over the top of the cookies.
  • caramel sauce baked into the cookies.

The last idea seemed like the winner. Well, the least messy of the three, really.

The cookies turned out delicious. Sweet, salty, soft, delicious. What they did not have was the extra oomph I was hoping I’d get from the caramel. However, the caramel did seem to serve as a way to keep the cookies soft without resorting to the “toss a piece of bread in the bag” trick. I made them last Saturday & on Thursday night, they were still pretty soft and tasty.

I started with this recipe from AllRecipes for the cookies and used the salted caramel recipe from Smitten Kitchen for my caramel sauce.

Let’s talk briefly about the caramel sauce.
YIP 164.365 I made caramel!It’s beautiful, right? This was my first attempt at making caramel ANYTHING. Well, this picture was actually the second attempt, but it was completed immediately after the first failure.

I burned the first batch. And I didn’t realize I’d burned the sugar until I added in the butter & cream, which was mildly disappointing.

But the second batch? PERFECT.  No, seriously, if I hadn’t overdosed on sugar this week already (2 potlucks already, another one on Sunday), I would probably have just poured it down my throat without needing anything to slather it on top of. Oh, caramel. you are perfect. The recipe makes about 1 1/3 cups, so once you make the cookies you’ll have plenty leftover to drink drizzle over ice cream. Or french toast. Or use in your caramel apple ciders. Or pretty much anything that would be better with caramel sauce.

YIP 169.365 Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip CookiesLet’s talk cookies, though. The preparation of the caramel was only Step 1. The cookies with the caramel and extra salt – YUM. They are perfect while they’re still warm, delicious at room temperature, and would probably complement a glass of milk really well.

This recipe makes about 5 dozen (if you can keep from eating the raw dough, which I KNOW is not great on account of the whole raw egg issue, but just try not to taste it. It’s nearly impossible.)

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 to 1/2 c. salted caramel sauce (I planned to use 1/3c, but  had a little less than half a cup that wouldn’t fit into my jar I stored the remainder in)
  • 1 c. butter, softened (if you can, use 1 stick salted butter & 1 stick unsalted butter.)
  • 1/2 c. white sugar
  • 1 c. packed brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp hot water
  • 2 tsp sea salt (If you’re using finely ground sea salt, increase to 2 heaping tsp).
  • 1 12 oz bag semisweet chocolate chips (I used Ghiradelli, but go for a better quality if you can find them easily.)

Preheat oven to 350.

Cream together caramel sauce, butter, and sugars until smooth. Beat in the eggs 1 at a time, then stir in vanilla. Dissolve the baking soda in hot water. Add this & the salt to the batter. Stir in flour, then add in chocolate chips.

Using small cookie scoop, place on cookie sheet. Or drop by teaspoonful onto cookie sheet. Here’s where I confess something – I always cover my cookie sheet with that non-stick aluminum foil. It just makes my life SO MUCH EASIER, especially since I really only have the one cookie sheet that fits in my current oven.

Bake for 10 minutes. They won’t look done when you pull them out of the oven, but they are. The edges should be lightly browned. Like the ones in the picture up there. Let them cool for a minute or so, then move to wire racks to cool all the way. Munch on one about 3 minutes after it comes out of the oven. (This should be the amount of time it takes you to get them onto the rack & get the next tray in the oven.)

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