Brown Butter Date and Almond Cookies
I absolutely refuse to make these Brown Butter Date and Almond Cookies ever again…
Why? Because they’re so perfectly delicious in flavor and texture that I end up eating MULTIPLE cookies in a sitting. Then they’re gone before I know it, and I have to explain how the batch of cookies I JUST made disappeared in a few days.
But if you have more self-control than I do, or you’re heading to a cookie party or holiday gathering, I highly recommend making these gorgeous Brown Butter Date and Almond Cookies. They will fly off the plates, and everyone will be asking you for the recipe. Promise.
(For another yummy holiday cookie try these Raspberry Pistachio Pie Crust Cookies!)
Let’s Talk Brown Butter Cookies…
First of all, if you haven’t tried making your cookies with “browned butter” before, you are in for a TREAT. It’s an extra preparation step that takes just a few more minutes, but boy oh boy will you be glad you followed through.
Browning butter may sound fancy and complicated, but never fear. I’m here to guide and encourage you.
What is brown butter?
Brown butter is simply melted butter that is then heated/cooked to the point where the milk solids in the butter become, well, browned. The flavor becomes more complex and nutty and WONDERFUL. Many times you see browned butter as a simple sauce for pasta (i.e. butternut squash ravioli with brown butter and sage), but it works beautifully in baked goods, too. It gives them a deep and unique flavor that people will definitely notice.
How to make brown butter:
All you have to do is melt your unsalted butter in a small sauté pan over medium-high heat until it becomes fragrant and deep golden in color. You’ll want to keep an eye on it as it melts so it doesn’t become too burnt. Once you start noticing little granules (those are the milk solids) beginning to appear and turn brown in the pan, you’re good to go. Take it off the heat and transfer to a bowl to cool.
The wonderful aroma you are enjoying is the magnificent flavor that will now enrich your cookie dough. Once you mix it in with the sugar, you’ll know exactly what heaven smells like. Swoon to the max.
Soft and Chewy Sugar Cookies
This recipe was inspired by Pinch of Yum’s Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe. I make those cookies all the time and love how simple they are. I also adore their texture.
So, I thought I would make a few tweaks to create something unique but with a similar texture.
Enter: Brown butter, dates, and almonds for flavor, chewy caramel-iness, and just a little crunch.
Guys, these taste as good as they look, and they look as good as they taste.
Why Put Cornstarch in Cookies?
If you scroll down to the recipe, you’ll find that this recipe calls for some cornstarch. As I’ve gathered research for how to make cookies that rank high on the perfection scale, I’ve gained new insight.
Cookies made with melted butter and a short baking time come out extremely soft and chewy, which is great.
But, I found they can also be a little too soft with an almost underdone like texture.
The cornstarch just helps give the cookie dough a little more structure and stability. They’re still chewy and buttery, but they’re also sturdier and slightly taller.
How to Make Brown Butter Cookies:
Melt and brown the butter first. Then, move the browned butter to a bowl to cool while you prepare the rest of your ingredients. If you pour super hot, melted butter over the sugar it might dissolve everything! As long as you let it cool for at least 5 minutes, you should be fine.
Once you have the other elements ready to go, mix the cooled butter and sugar with an electric or stand mixer until well incorporated. About 30-45 seconds will do the trick.
Then, add the egg, vanilla, almond extract, and mix until JUST incorporated (10-15 seconds max!) so the cookies don’t get tough. (This was a very helpful tip from the POY recipe.)
Finally, add the dry ingredients (minus the dates and almonds) to the wet ingredient mixture, and mix by hand until it all comes together. Lastly, toss in the chopped dates and almonds and give it a final few stirs.
Scoop the dough into 1-1 ½ inch balls, and set them on your lined baking sheet about two inches apart. I always get 13 cookies (a Baker’s Dozen) from this recipe.
Bake for 9-11 minutes, and allow to cool for at least fifteen minutes to settle.
They should be slightly crinkly and wonderfully soft after they rest.
Also, here’s something I learned the hard way. If you want to make these cookies, go to ALDI to purchase your ingredients. You can get everything there, and a bag of pitted dates costs less than TWO DOLLARS. They were several dollars more at my neighborhood grocery store which was massively annoying. As always, ALDI for the win. (Not a sponsor, I just love them.)
So, my dilemma now is that I don’t want to make these Brown Butter Date and Almond Cookies again because I just eat them all, but I don’t want to make them for friends because then I won’t get to eat them all.
What’s a girl to do?
Did you make this?? Please let me know in the comments below or tag me on social media #howtolovecooking! I’d love to know how it went for you!
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Brown Butter Date Almond Cookies
I hope these Brown Butter Date and Almond Cookies become your new favorite treat! When everyone starts raving about them you can tell them the secret ingredient is the heavenly brown butter!
(Inspired by Pinch of Yum's Soft Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe) Recipe Has Been Updated 12/2018
- 1 Stick of butter, (8 TBS.)
- 1 ½ C. Flour
- 1 tsp. Cornstarch
- 1 Heaping tsp. Baking soda
- Scant 1/2 tsp. Sea salt
- 1/4 C. Light brown sugar Lightly packed
- ½ C. Granulated sugar
- 1 Egg
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- 1/4 tsp Almond extract
- ¼ C. Sliced almonds
- 10-12 Dates Chopped into small pieces
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
Line a baking sheet or two with foil, parchment, or a silicone mat and set aside.
In a sauté pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Once it has melted, keep cooking it over medium high heat until it becomes golden in color and fragrant. Once you notice little brown granules forming in the pan, turn off the heat, and transfer to a bowl to cool (for at least 5 minutes) while you prepare your other ingredients.
In a mixing bowl, sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, salt, and set aside.
In another bowl, add the brown and granulated sugar. Add the cooled brown butter to the sugar mixture. Using an electric or stand mixer, mix the butter and sugar until well incorporated (about 45 seconds).
Next, add the egg, vanilla, and almond extract to the sugar and butter. Mix until the egg is just blended into the mixture. 10-15 seconds should do the trick. If you mix it too much at this stage, the cookies could become tough. (This was Pinch of Yum’s helpful tip!)
Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture, and stir with a spatula to bring everything together. Have patience, and make sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to get every bit of flour.
Once the mixture comes together, stir in the almonds and chopped dates until they are evenly distributed throughout the dough.
Scoop the dough into balls (using a 1 ¼ inch scoop or a tablespoon) to make 12-13 cookies. Place on the lined cookie sheet(s) about 2 inches apart and bake for 9-11 minutes.
Allow the cookies to cool on the pan for at least 15 minutes so that they can settle and become crinkly and delicious.
Enjoy with your favorite milk, or freeze for later!
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