Salted Caramel Chip Chocolate Cookies
These Salted Caramel Chip Chocolate Cookies combine a soft and fudgy cookie with salted caramel chips and a sprinkling of flaky sea salt on top. They’re a perfect balance of sweet and salty.
Remarkably, these chocolate drop cookies are easy to make, with just a touch of chilling time to make them scoopable. So dust off your measuring spoons, put on your apron, and get ready to bite into an irresistable chocolate cookie that will have you saying, “mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.”
- Good bar chocolate like Ghirardelli or Scharffen Berger plus cocoa gives you an amazingly rich double chocolate cookie. If you’re a chocolate lover like me, try this triple layer chocolate cake recipe next!
- Salted caramel chips counterbalance the chocolate. I have used both King Arthur and Hershey’s salted caramel baking chips for these cookies.
Flaky sea salt
Just like it sounds, flaky sea salt is made of flakes of salt that have irregular shapes and a fine crystal structure. I use flaky sea salt as a finishing salt in this caramel chip cookie recipe and on my salted caramel pudding.
Flaky sea salt is much more expensive than your everyday cooking salt. Reach for it when you want to taste the fine, lacy bit of large crystal salt on your tongue.
Tip from the wise quacker: table salt has the smallest salt crystals, then coarse or kosher salt, and then sea salt. That means that there’s more salt in a teaspoon of table salt than a teaspoon of coarse salt. If your salt will dissolve (like in soups or sauces), it doesn’t matter which you use, but you might need to adjust the amount.
Variations and substitutions
- Substitute other chips in place of the salted caramel chips. Or make them with mint chips and sub mint extract for the vanilla for a mint chocolate cookie.
- These cookies will work with semisweet chocolate, but they may be too sweet for some tastes.
- Dip them into powdered sugar before baking to make brownie crinkle cookies.
Recipe tips and tricks
The recipe was just slightly adapted from a Tom Douglas recipe for ice cream sandwich cookies.cookies. The adaptation replaces the chocolate chips in his chocolate cookies with salted caramel chips and flaky sea salt for a more balanced flavor.
Making the chocolate cookie batter
There are no unusual ingredients or challenging steps in making these cookies. The recipe starts with creaming butter and sugar, adding the eggs and vanilla extract, the melted bittersweet chocolate, then the dry ingredients, and then the salted caramel chips.
Step 1: cream together butter and sugar (Panel #1, below). It won’t get light and fluffy like when you’re making cake.
Step 2: add the three eggs and vanilla one at a time (Panel #2).
Step 3: add the melted chocolate. You’ll want to let the melted chocolate cool just a bit before adding it so it doesn’t cook the eggs.
Step 4: Panel #4 above shows the chocolate cookie dough after stirring in the dry ingredients. Don’t over-mix at this point.
Step 5: Once you have added the caramel chips, chill the cookie batter in the refrigerator for just about 10 to 15 minutes. This makes it easier to scoop. But don’t leave the batter for too long, or it will be hard to scoop.
Baking or freezing the cookie dough
Step 6: bake these caramel chip chocolate cookies at this point or put the cookie balls on a baking sheet for freezing. If you want to bake right away, space the cookies one to two inches apart. They’ll spread a bit more if you bake them from here.
If you want to freeze the caramel chip cookies for later, you can crowd the scoops on the cookie sheet, but don’t let them touch. Leave the chocolate cookie balls on the cookie sheet in the freezer overnight, then transfer the cookies to a freezer bag for three to six months. They’ll just take a minute or two longer to bake.
Step 7: bake for about 12 minutes. The tops of your chocolate cookies will be cracked, and they should still be slightly soft.
Step 8: sprinkle on the flaky sea salt while the cookies are still warm. Store your salted caramel chip chocolate cookies at room temperature in an air-tight container or freeze for three to six months.
No, you don’t have to do anything, but you will always get more consistent results if you weigh your ingredients, especially when you’re baking.
All drop cookies freeze well. Just scoop the cookie dough onto a lined cookie sheet and freeze the dough balls for a few hours or overnight. Place them into a freezer bag and squeeze the air out. They can be baked straight out of the freezer at the same temperature for just an extra minute or two.
I think both my caramel chip chocolate cookie and the original Tom Douglas recipe make cookies that are too soft. Instead, I would recommend using the oreo cookies from the Flour Bakery Cookbook.
Substitute your salted caramel chips in any recipe with chocolate chips. They’d go great in these blueberry chocolate chip muffins or my one bowl chocolate chip banana bread.
Related drop cookie recipes
If you love these salted caramel chip chocolate cookies, check out some other Ugly Duckling Bakery drop cookies like:
Love this recipe? Please leave a 5-heart 💜💜💜💜💜 rating in the recipe card below. Let me know how much you loved it, or any problems you had, in the comments section further down.
Chocolate Caramel Cookies
- Stand mixer or hand mixer
- 10 ounces (283 grams) bittersweet chocolate
- ½ cup (63 grams) bleached all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup (24 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 5 tablespoons (71 grams) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup salted caramel chips
- flaky sea salt for topping cookies optional
- Heat your oven to 350°F/175°C and line two baking sheets with parchment or silicone mats.
- Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or whatever way you are most used to and let it cool slightly as you make the cookies.10 ounces (283 grams) bittersweet chocolate
- Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt into a small bowl.½ cup (63 grams) bleached all-purpose flour, ¼ cup (24 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder, ½ teaspoon baking powder, ½ teaspoon salt
- In the bowl of your stand mixer or medium-sized bowl if you are using a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar together on medium speed for about three minutes until mixed well.5 tablespoons (71 grams) unsalted butter, softened, 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
- Add the eggs one at a time, beating on medium speed for about one minute between each addition. Scrape down the bowl as necessary.3 large eggs
- Add the vanilla extract and beat on medium speed for one minute.1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Add in the melted chocolate and beat until mixed.
- Add the dry ingredients and mix on low or by hand just until the dry ingredients have been combined.
- Stir in the salted caramel chips by hand.1 cup salted caramel chips
- Put the bowl in the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes to make the batter easier to scoop. Do not chill for much longer than 30 minutes or the cookie dough will be challenging to scoop.
- Using a medium-sized cookie scoop or two spoons, scoop out cookies onto the baking sheet, leaving 1 to 2 inches between cookie balls.
- Bake for about 12 minutes. The tops will be cracked, and the cookies should still be slightly soft.
- If using, lightly sprinkle on the flaky sea salt while the cookies are still warm.flaky sea salt for topping cookies
- Let the cookies cool for about 10 minutes on the cookie sheet, and then transfer them to a baking rack to cool fully.
These salted caramel chip chocolate cookies were first baked for the Reddit 52 week baking challenge (Week 37: Sweet and salty) and posted September 17, 2021. The recipe was last updated May 31, 2023.
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Week 1: New Year new recipe – blueberry galette
Week 2: seasonal – Smitten Kitchen’s grapefruit pound cake
Week 3: Great British Bake Off – Kate’s sticky toffee apple caramel cake
Week 4: Australia – sausage rolls
Week 5: bite sized – bite-sized cookies
Week 6: Chinese New Year – mushroom bao
Week 7: new tool – baguette baker
Week 8: chocolate – chocolate peanut butter bonbons
Week 9: timed bake – under 1 hour! chocolate chip scones
Week 10: allergy/diet restriction – macarons
Week 11: quick breads – kale bread
Week 12: signature bake – purple cow bread
Week 13: enriched breads (kale and cheese babka fail)
Week 14: childhood favorite –fudgy triple layer chocolate cake with chocolate ganache frosting
Week 15: decorating challenge – purple velvet cake
Week 16: crispy crunchy – bacon cheddar popcorn
Week 17: p52 of a favorite cookbook, or your favorite blog – chocolate peanut butter drip cake
Week 18: pâte à choux – bacon cheese puffs
Week 19: veggies turned sweet – red velvet beet waffles
Week 20: plating – mini chocolate chip cookies
Week 21: Birthday Party! – chocolate orange cake
Weed 22: Scandinavian – Swedish apple cake v sourdough apple cake
Week 23: Layers – Pecan apple oat bars (post is pending)
Week 24: Tarts – rainbow fruit tart
Week 25: Bagels and donuts – maple donut cake
Week 26: Surprise inside – surprise heart yeast bread (pending)
Week 27: Local favorite – Rainier cherry crisp
Week 28: Seasonal ingredients – blackberry lemon bread
Week 29: French dessert – peanut butter banana clafoutis (a classic with non-classic flavors!)
Week 30: Savory baking – Ooni pizza dough recipe
Week 31: Unusual ingredient – juniper lime drizzle cake
Week 32: Gelatin (homemade marshmallows) and 33: Picnic – peanut butter Rice Krispie treats
Week 34: Brunch – spinach and feta muffins
Week 35: Laminated dough – puff pastry cinnamon twists
Week 36: Friendship challenge – chocolate chip marshmallow cookie bars
Next week: Decoration Challenge: Royal Icing or Fancy Glaze
I would like to try to use a kitchen scale.
Hi Linda! I’m so glad you’re willing to try something new. I’ve sent you an email.
Hi, I am anxious to make the salted caramel chocolate cookies. Where can I buy the King Arthur chips? I looked on their website and they are not there! Is it a new product? would Whole Foods have them?thanks! Claire
Hi Claire. King Arthur no longer has a salted caramel chip, but they do now sell a caramel chip I haven’t tried. I have also made these cookies with the Hershey’s sea salt caramel baking chips, and they turned out just as delicious.