Brown Butter Sugar Cookies

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Brown Butter Sugar Cookies are soft and chewy in the centers with crispy edges. These are made with brown butter creating a nutty flavor for a true gourmet experience.

Try my Classic Sugar Cookies next time.

Closeup on some stacked sugar cookies on a cookie rack.

Brown Butter Cookies

There is a reason why this is one of our favorite cookie recipes. It’s definitely due to the nutty brown butter which is key to the flavor of this cookie. Try adding a simple powdered sugar icing to these or leave them plain. Either way is delicious!

Why We Love This Recipe

  1. SIMPLE COOKIE RECIPE – This recipe includes basic ingredients that is a sure thing 100% of the time.
  2. DEPTH OF FLAVOR – The addition of brown butter to cookies is truly amazing. It’s next level and truly makes the best cookies!
  3. EASY TO DECORATE – I’m all about easy decorating which is why I skip the royal icing and use a simple frosting recipe that my mom used back in the day.

Use my Christmas Lights Sugar Cookies or Reindeer Sugar Cookies for decorating ideas!

Several sugar cookies stacked on a plate on top of a wire cooking rack.

Ingredients needed for Brown Butter Sugar Cookies:

  • Butter – You’ll need one cup of unsalted butter. See below for how I brown the butter.
  • Eggs – Two eggs, at room temperature.
  • Sugar – A combo of brown sugar and granulated sugar.
  • Vanilla Extract – I love the Watkin’s Vanilla brand.
  • Flour – You’ll need 2 1/4 cups of all-purpose flour.
  • Salt – I use kosher salt.
  • Baking Soda – The leavening agent for the best sugar cookies.
  • Cream of Tartar – Gives these cookies a tasty tang and helps to stabilize the egg whites, as well as act as a leavening agent.
Bowls of the ingredients for the cookies.

How to make brown butter:

This process is very easy. You just have to be patient while browning, and watch it very closely. You want browned butter – NOT burnt butter.

  1. Place the butter in a pan on the stove, over medium heat.
  2. Let the butter melt, and when it starts sizzling, start stirring with a spatula. 
  3. Keep the heat at medium, and stir gently with a rubber spatula, keeping the butter moving in the pan.
  4. After about 8-10 minutes, you should see some brown bits starting to form on the bottom. When you see this, stir for a few seconds longer and then remove the pan from the heat.
  5. Pour the butter immediately into a bowl. You’ll see the brown specks in the butter.
  6. Let the butter cool slightly.
  7. Now you are ready to use it in your cookies!

How to make Brown Butter Sugar Cookies:

Step 1
Brown the butter. (See above for complete instructions.)

Step 2
Combine wet ingredients. To a medium bowl, combine the slightly cooled browned butter and both sugars. Use a hand mixer to cream together. Then add the egg and vanilla and mix again.

Step 3
Add dry ingredients. Add the dry ingredients to the bowl – the flour, salt, cream of tartar, and baking soda. Mix until just combined.

Step 4
Form cookie dough balls. Use a cookie scoop to form balls and place on a parchment lined pan.

Step 5
Chill dough. Place the cookie balls in the refrigerator for at least two hours or overnight.

Step 6
Bake. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake the cookies (about 6 at a time) on large baking sheets prepared with pieces of parchment paper or silicone mats for about 12 minutes.

Step 7
Cool. Let the cookies sit on the pan for about 5 minutes after baking. Then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Storing and Freezing

  • STORE these amazing cookies in an airtight container on your countertop for up to three days.
  • FREEZE these cookies in freezer bags for two to three months.
A cooking rack with several sugar cookies.

Recipe FAQs

What does brown butter do for cookies?

Brown butter takes a regular cookie and makes it gourmet. It creates a nutty aroma and flavor profile that is like no other, especially in a cookie.

What happens when butter is browned?

When the butter melts, water evaporates out of the butter and the butterfat and milk solids separate. The solids sink to the bottom of the pan and eventually begin to brown. The butter then turns into a heavenly rich fat that will transform your cookies.

Does brown butter affect cookie texture?

Melting butter leads a to denser cookie. When browning butter, the water content of the butter evaporates so there is no extra moisture in the dough. This process yields a very dense, but richly flavored cookie.

A stack of brown butter sugar cookies on a small plate.

Kitchen Tools Used: (affiliate links)

xoxo ~Sue

Some stacked brown butter sugar cookies on a wire rack.

Brown Butter Sugar Cookies

Brown Butter Sugar Cookies are soft and chewy in the centers with crispy edges. These are made with brown butter creating a nutty flavor for a true gourmet experience.
4.80 from 5 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 37 minutes
Servings: 16 cookies
Calories: 242kcal
Author: Sue Ringsdorf

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter – browned
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Instructions

Brown the butter:

  • Place the butter in a pan on the stove, over medium heat.
  • Let the butter melt, and when it starts sizzling, start stirring with a spatula. 
  • Keep the heat at medium, and stir gently with a rubber spatula, keeping the butter moving in the pan.
  • After about 8-10 minutes, you should see some brown bits starting to form on the bottom. When you see this, stir for a few seconds longer and then remove the pan from the heat.
  • Pour the butter immediately into a bowl. You’ll see the brown specks in the butter.
  • Let the butter cool slightly.

Make the cookies:

  • Combine wet ingredients. To a medium bowl, combine the slightly cooled browned butter and both sugars. Use a hand mixer to cream together. Then add the egg and vanilla and mix again.
  • Add dry ingredients. Add the dry ingredients to the bowl – the flour, salt, cream of tartar and baking soda. Mix until just combined.
  • Form cookie dough balls. Use a cookie scoop to form balls and place on a parchment lined pan.
  • Chill dough. Place the cookie balls in the refrigerator for at least two hours or overnight.
  • Bake. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake the cookies (about 6 at a time) on large baking sheets prepared with pieces of parchment paper or silicone mats for about 12 minutes.
  • Cool. Let the cookies sit on the pan for about 5 minutes after baking. Then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes

Brown butter takes a regular cookie and makes it gourmet. It creates a nutty aroma and flavor profile that is like no other, especially in a cookie.
  • STORE these amazing cookies in an airtight container on your countertop for up to three days.
  • FREEZE these cookies in freezer bags for two to three months.

Nutrition

Calories: 242kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 223mg | Potassium: 108mg | Fiber: 0.5g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 388IU | Calcium: 18mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @Suebeehomemaker or tag #suebeehomemaker!

6 Comments

  1. Maurice Watts says:

    I made the recipe. I never owned a cookie scoop. I prefer the term frugal rather than the other word to describe why that is. Anyway I do have a tool used to make falafels. So I ended up with 24 smaller ones. Can they go into the preheated oven out of the fridge?

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      Yes, these cookies can go directly in the oven!

  2. Komal & Tom says:

    This is by far my favorite cookie! I love the nutty taste but take care to not burn the butter while browning. It can go from nutty to burnt super quick!

    1. Suebee Homemaker says:

      I’m so glad you love these cookies too! Thanks for your feedback. 🙂

  3. The freeze option is awesome. They taste great directly out of the freezer!

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