I’m calling these my “ultimate” chocolate chip cookies because… well… they’ve got it all: brown butter, pecans, chocolate, and flake salt. If you’re looking for an afternoon pick-me-up, these cookies are sure to do the trick. You can also make them in advance and keep them in your freezer for next time a craving strikes! But fair warning: you can’t eat just one.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can I make these in advance?
A: Absolutely! Make the dough and scoop it into balls. Then flash-freeze them for one hour. Transfer them to an airtight container and store for up to three months. Bake them directly from frozen (don’t forget to flatten them and sprinkle with flake salt).
Q: Can I make these without buttermilk?
A: Sure! You can substitute the buttermilk for sour cream or greek yogurt. Or you can make homemade buttermilk by combining 1 cup of milk with 1 tbsp white vinegar or lemon juice.
Let’s Talk Ingredients
Brown Butter: Brown butter has a wonderful richness and nutiness and it adds so much depth of flavor to traditional chocolate chip cookies. (psa: if you try using all brown butter instead of half brown/half regular, your cookies will spread like crazy. sad.)
Baking Powder & Baking Soda: Leavening agents are the key to light and chewy cookies! I use both baking powder and soda to make sure the cookies stay soft and don’t flatten too much.
Buttermilk: Buttermilk is used to activate the baking soda and ensure that the cookies don’t dry out. If you don’t have any buttermilk, you can also use sour cream or greek yogurt.
Pecans: I used pecans in this recipe because they’re my favorite nut– but feel free to substitute your favorite nut if you don’t want to use pecans.
Semi-sweet Chocolate: I like using semi-sweet in this recipe because they don’t overpower the cookie. Feel free to use whatever you have on hand: milk, dark, bittersweet– even white chocolate chips!
The Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies
- ½ cup butter at room temperature (1 stick)
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp buttermilk *(see notes)*
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup chopped pecans
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Flake salt
Make the Brown Butter
- In a small saute pan, heat 4 tbsp (½ stick) of butter over high heat, whisking constantly until the butter turns golden brown. It should take 5-7 minutes. The butter will melt, foam, and then turn golden brown. As soon as the butter has browned, pour it into a heatproof bowl and transfer it to the fridge to cool.
Make the Cookies
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the cooled brown butter, softened butter, and brown sugar until it becomes light and airy.
- Add the egg, vanilla, and buttermilk. Stir to combine.
- Add the flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Mix until the flour is just incorporated.
- Add the pecans and chocolate chips and fold to incorporate.
- Using a 1.5 tbsp cookie scoop (or a large spoon), scoop the cookies onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Place them in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 375F. When you’re ready to bake the cookies, pull them directly out of the freezer and flatten them slightly with the bottom of a cup. Top with a pinch of flake salt.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly browned and set in the middle.