These Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip cookies are the perfect treat for any sweet & salty fix. Caramel flavored cookie dough with sweet chocolate chips, melted caramel pieces and a sprinkle of sea salt make for one outrageous cookie.
I don’t know about you but there’s something about salted caramel that reminds me of fall. I don’t even know what it is that makes me feel this way but I associate salted caramel with fall. Weird? Maybe…
Before we get to these cookies I wanted to get off topic and discuss a few things that are going on with this blog. What do you guys think of the new look? Do you like it? A few months ago I decided Just Add Sprinkles needed a makeover/update. I’ve had this blog for over 2 years and my last look was definitely a “baby blog” kind of look. It was fun, colorful and definitely what I wanted when I first started this blog but this year I decided I really want to go full throttle and put as much time and effort as I realistically could (I work full time and go to school part time) into growing this blog into something more. Anyone who owns a blog I’m sure has the same fire I do. You become obsessed with the idea of growing your blog into something bigger and better. So I decided a fresh look was part of the grand plan. Something a little cleaner, more professional but still fun and slightly whimsical. If your looking to start a blog and need a designer or want to refresh and update your design I highly recommend contacting my friend Tiffany at Beautiful Dawn Designs. Tiffany helped me created my first blog design back in 2013, has helped me with smaller projects since then and helped me totally re-design my blog this time around. She’s super professional, friendly & knowledgeable.
Now back to these cookies…
I actually already have this recipe up on this blog. It was one of the very first blog recipes I put up and I’ve received many compliments on them. You can see the old post here. These cookies are one of my favorites. Just like my blog design, I thought this recipe could use a face lift too. New pictures and some new content to do this recipe some justice. Plus, I love making these cookies this time of year.
Even though this post is new, the recipe is just the same. What makes these cookies unbelievable is the caramel extract that goes into the cookie dough. I didn’t want to just rely on the soft caramels for caramel flavor, I wanted these cookies to be without a doubt, salted caramel chocolate chips cookies, or maybe, salted caramel cookies with chocolate chips?! Either way, the caramel extract makes this cookie dough taste AMAZING (all caps necessary), please, please don’t leave out this unique little ingredient.
Just like with my chocolate chip cookie recipe, it calls for a lot of sugar. ½ cup of regular white granulated sugar plus ½ cup light brown sugar and ½ cup dark brown sugar. Why two different types of brown sugar? I really like the flavor combo. When I was experimenting with chocolate chip cookies a few years ago I was looking to put my own spin on a made-from-scratch chocolate chip cookie recipe. One thing about chocolate chip cookies is the tasty cookie dough, in which a lot of the flavor comes from brown sugar. I tried using all light brown sugar, all dark brown sugar and then I tried the half light brown half dark brown sugar mixture and loved it. It’s stuck with me ever since. Can you make these cookies with just light brown or dark brown sugar and not both? Absolutely. The flavor and color of the cookie dough just make vary.
As for the soft caramels, these little candies melt just perfectly in the dough. The melt enough to become slight gooey, but don’t make a huge mess or run all over the cookie. Before I start making the cookie dough I unwrap about 15 to 20 pieces of soft caramels and cut each piece into fours. This way the smaller chunks of caramel are easier to stick into the dough and you don’t have to worry about weighing the dough down too much while it bakes.
Once you have the cookie dough done, I like the place a sheet of wax paper or parchment paper on top of a plate and drop the cookie dough balls right on top of the paper. I use a medium sized cookie dough scoop which uses about 1.5 tablespoons of dough for each ball. I stick a few more chocolate chips on each ball with one or two pieces of soft caramel and then sprinkle with a dash of coarse sea salt. Once I’ve done this to all the cookie dough balls I freeze them for at least 2 hours. You can also freeze them over night, just cover them with plastic wrap if you do that.
One of the tricks to soft, tender cookies is to slightly under bake them or at least not over bake them. These cookies take only 10 minutes to bake. They make seem a little soft at first but let them cool completely and they will have the best texture ever. Firm enough to pick up and eat but have soft, chewy centers. When I first take them out of the oven I like to sprinkle just a little extra sea salt over each cookie so it sets while they cool, I just can’t resist that sweet, salty flavor.
- 2 and 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour
- 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter - softened at room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar (packed)
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar (packed)
- 1 large egg (room temperature)
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon caramel extract
- 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips (plus more for tops of cookie dough balls)
- 20 pieces of soft caramel candy (cut into fours; I used Kraft caramels)
- Coarse Sea Salt
- In a medium sized bowl combine flour, baking and salt. Whisk dry ingredients together just to combine them. Set aside. Unwrap soft caramel candy and cut each piece into four smaller pieces and set those aside too.
- In a large mixing bowl combine butter and all 3 sugars and cream together using a stand mixer or electric handheld mixer on medium speed. Stop mixing and scrap dough down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Continue mixing and add in egg, vanilla extract and caramel extract. Once egg and both extracts are combined into the dough slowly add in dry ingredients, and mix until thoroughly combined and dough is thick. Turn off mixer and fold in chocolate chips.
- Line a plate with wax paper or parchment paper. Scoop dough into balls about 1.5 tablespoons in size and place them on the plate. Take a few extra chocolate chips and insert them on top of each cookie dough ball along with one of two pieces of caramel. Sprinkles each cookie dough ball with sea salt and place the plate in the freeze for at least 2 hours or as long as over night. If freezing them overnight cover the plate with plastic wrap.
- When ready to bake, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with cooking spray. Place cookie dough balls on cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes. When you remove cookies from oven sprinkles them with a little extra sea salt and allow them to cool completely before serving, about 15 to 20 minutes. Store any leftovers in an airtight container.
- 2 hours indicated in prep time and total time above includes freezing time.