These chewy chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar are just the best. Soft and chewy, full of chocolate chips.
No brown sugar? No problem! You won't miss it in these white sugar chocolate chip cookies. They are so good. A chewy soft texture, and with slightly crispy edges, perfect to curb your cookie craving.
There are notes of caramel and butterscotch in the cookies which come from the browned butter. Brown butter makes the classic chocolate chip cookie recipe just so much better.
This easy recipe is based on this brown butter chocolate chip cookie recipe, but with a few tweaks to make up for no brown sugar. This is a fast cookie dough so you can make them in less than an hour with no need to chill the chocolate chip cookie dough!
You only need basic ingredients for these delicious cookies. The amounts are in the recipe card below but here is a rundown on the ingredients you need.
- Butter - You can use unsalted butter or salted butter, and just tweak the salt content in the recipe depending on what you're using. The butter will be browned first which brings the most delicious toffee notes to the cookie dough.
- Sugar - Just granulated white sugar in this cookie.
- Eggs - A whole egg AND an extra egg yolk. The extra egg yolk is going to help soften the cookie and create more chewy cookies.
- Vanilla - Use a good quality vanilla extract or paste.
- Baking soda and baking powder - only a little of each to give the cookies some lift, but not so much so it still ensures they stay thick and chewy.
- All-purpose flour - the base.
- Chocolate chips - Semi-sweet chocolate chips, white chocolate, or milk chocolate. Use whatever you prefer.
The brown butter
Brown butter is what makes this easy cookie recipe so special. It is a key step in getting the best flavor in these chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar. Usually, the brown sugar brings notes of caramel to the cookie so, without it, the flavor needs some lifting.
This is where browned butter comes in. Brown butter, also known as beurre noisette is simply butter that has melted, and then cooked a step further so that the milk solids in the butter caramelize. This gives a wonderful caramel flavor to the butter. It also helps to bring moisture to the cookie and enhances the chewy texture.
The depth of flavor in the butter depends on how much it is left to caramelize. Too little and the flavor will be too mild and will only make a slight difference in the cookie dough. Too much and you run the risk of burning the milk solids and cooking off too much liquid which can ruin the dough structure.
How to brown butter
Over medium heat, let the butter melt down. Avoid using a dark pan as you will struggle to see the caramelization of the butter and run the risk of burning it.
Once you have melted butter, let it cook further for around 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally until the milk solids in the butter have caramelized into a golden amber color and the butter smells nutty.
The butter will be bubbly during the process, then all of a sudden it will go foamy. Keep stirring as it does this and take it off the heat to check the browning. Usually, this is a good indication that the browning process is finished. The first time you melt butter will be the trickiest as you learn to gauge the caramelization, but once you'll see how delicious it is and you won't look back!
Pour the hot butter into a large bowl, including all the caramelized solids at the bottom of the pan, and allow it to cool down for 10 minutes before continuing with the recipe.
Step by step instructions
Let the butter melt in a medium saucepan, then let it cook further for around 3-4 minutes until the milk solids have caramelized and the butter smells nutty. Pour it into a bowl and allow it to cool down for 10 minutes.
To the butter add the granulated sugar, egg, egg yolk, and vanilla and beat it together until well combined.
In a separate bowl, mix together the dry ingredients - flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Check that the dough isn't too warm and then add the chocolate chips.
If the cookie dough is still very warm due to the butter, let it cool a bit more before adding the chocolate chips so they don't melt into the dough.
Roll the cookie dough into balls using a tablespoon, cookie scoop, or ice cream scoop. Use around 2 tablespoons of dough for each cookie.
Space them out generously on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet. You will need more than one sheet, or bake them in batches. The cookies will spread in the oven, so give them space to do so.
Bake the cookies for around 9-10 minutes until they have puffed and the edges are golden brown. The cookies will seem very soft, will continue cooking a bit on the hot oven tray once out of the oven, and will firm up as they cool down.
Granulated sugar can make a cookie more crispy than brown sugar, so ensure you don't over-bake them if you want a soft cookie.
While the cookies are still hot from the oven, press on a few extra chocolate chips and sprinkle them with a pinch of flaky salt. The salt is optional but it pairs beautifully with the sweetness of the cookie.
Let the cookies cool down on a wire rack.
The cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks, or frozen for up to three months.
Baked cookies can be wrapped tightly or placed in an airtight container or freezer bag and frozen for up to 3 months. Cookie dough balls can also be frozen for up to 3 months and baked from frozen. They don't need to be thawed, but baking time can be increased by a couple of minutes.
This recipe makes approximately 16 cookies but you can also roll them smaller for mini chocolate chip cookies. If you do this, the baking time will need to decrease.
Additions and substitutions
You can make your own brown sugar by adding un-sulfured or dark molasses to granulated white sugar. Use around 1-2 tablespoons of molasses to 1 cup (200g) of granulated sugar to make light brown sugar.
To make dark brown sugar you can increase the molasses. If making your own brown sugar, you can follow this classic chocolate chip cookies recipe here. It still uses brown butter as well, so the flavor is amazing.
Add a little extra texture or switch up the flavor in the cookies with -
- chopped pecans or walnuts
- Freeze-dried raspberries
- swap the dark chocolate for white chocolate or milk chocolate chips
- shredded coconut
Have you made these? Tag me and let me know!
Other cookie recipes to try!
- Orange chocolate brownie cookies
- Chewy double ginger cookies
- White chocolate chip and pumpkin seed cookies
This recipe is written using grams as the main measurement.
If you don't have a scale US* cup equivalents are also included, however, using a kitchen scale to measure grams will give the best and most consistent results.*US cup sizes are smaller than metric cup sizes.
- 180g (1 ½ sticks + 1 Tablespoon) butter
- 200g (1 cup) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg + 1 egg yolk
- 2 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
- 225g (1 ¾ cups + 1 Tablespoon) all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt (use ¼ teaspoon if using unsalted butter)
- 170g (1 cup) semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Flaky salt to serve
- Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C) regular oven, or 320°F (160°C) fan-bake. Line cookie dough sheets with parchment paper
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, then let it cook further for around 3-4 minutes, stirring fairly regularly until the milk solids have caramelized and the butter smells nutty. Pour it into a bowl and allow it to cool down for 10 minutes.
- To the butter add the granulated sugar, egg, egg yolk, and vanilla and beat it together until well combined.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir it into the cookie dough mixture, then add the chocolate chips.
- If the cookie dough is still very warm due to the butter, let it cool a bit more before adding the chocolate chips so they don't melt into the dough.
- Roll the cookie dough into balls using around 2 tablespoons of dough for each. Space them out generously on parchment paper-lined cookie sheets. The cookies will spread in the oven, so give them space to do so.
- Bake them one tray at a time for 9-10 minutes until they have puffed and the edges have just cooked. The cookies will seem very soft, will continue cooking a bit on the hot oven tray once out of the oven, and will firm up as they cool down.
- While the cookies are still hot from the oven, sprinkle them with flaky salt.
The cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks, or the baked cookies can be frozen for up to three months.
Cookie dough balls can also be frozen for up to 3 months and baked from frozen.
The cup sizes given are for US cups. Note that these are smaller than metric cup sizes. For best results, use grams.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 241Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 48mgSodium: 172mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 1gSugar: 17gProtein: 3g