I love oatmeal cookies. I love them with raisins and without. I love oatmeal lace cookies and oatmeal cookie bars and ones with nuts in them and… well, I think you get the point! They are without a doubt in my list of top three favorite cookies, perhaps even in the number one spot.

Recently I started to think about putting an idea together for an oatmeal cookie using brown butter. I love brown butter. It does amazing things to recipes, sweet and savory alike. In a sweet recipe such as the one I am sharing today, it plays off of and enhances the flavors of the cinnamon and vanilla as well as the flavor of the walnuts.

In a savory recipe it will also add an amazing extra depth and enhancement of flavors. One of of my favorite simple savory applications is to make brown butter with fresh sage served over pasta.

If you haven’t tried it before, I highly recommend it. While it is not particularly difficult to make, it does take a little extra time and patience, but I think you’ll be happy with the end result! Now, back to the topic at hand – the cookie recipe!

Loaded Brown Butter Oatmeal Cookies

  • 2 sticks butter
  • 3/4 cups dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 2 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips

Start by making the brown butter. To do this, put the 2 sticks of butter in a medium sized sauce pan and place over a low heat. Allow the butter to fully melt slowly and then swirl it in the pan frequently – about once a minute – until it changes from a pale yellow to a deep golden brown. Don’t walk away from the pan – brown butter can turn quickly from brown to burnt! Immediately remove from heat and pour it into a glass or metal mixing bowl.

Place the bowl in the refrigerator to allow the butter to solidify to the consistency of softened butter – this could take up to an hour.

Prepared brown butter

Spread the walnuts out on a baking sheet and toast them in a 350 degree oven until they are a deep brown color, about 7 to 8 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Rehydrate the cranberries by placing them in a bowl and covering them with boiling water. Allow them to soak for 15 minutes and then drain and set aside.

In a separate bowl, add the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and oats. Stir together until well combined and set aside.

Once the brown butter has reached the proper softened consistency, add in the brown sugar and granulated sugar and mix together on low speed until combined. Once combined, switch to medium speed for 3 minutes. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl and the mixing paddle and then return to mixing at medium speed for another 3 to 5 minutes. The end result should be a very light and fluffy mixture that is even in color and the consistency of paste.

Scrape down the bowl and paddle again and then add in the vanilla and eggs. one at a time, on low until combined and then continue mixing for 1 minute on medium.

Pour all of the dry ingredients into the bowl with the wet ingredients and mix on the lowest speed until just combined and a soft dough forms, about 1 minute. Scrape down the paddle and remove bowl from the mixer. Add in the walnuts, white chocolate chips and cranberries and mix together by hand until well combined and evenly distributed throughout the dough.

Drop rounded tablespoons full of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet, at least 1 inch apart. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 9 to 11 minutes, until golden brown, and then transfer the baked cookies to a cooling rack.

Brown butter oatmeal cookies loaded with walnuts, cranberries and white chocolate chips

I know that with making brown butter, toasting the walnuts and rehydrating the cranberries I have given you a lot of extra steps, but I think the end result is worth it.

I was very happy with how this new recipe experiment turned out. The brown butter did an amazing job of enhancing all of the flavors of the cookie from the sweet bits of white chocolate, to the earthy and salty flavors of the toasted walnuts. We enjoyed a few of them and then I froze the rest. Cookies generally freeze well and it’s always nice to have a bag waiting for you in the freezer when you feel like grabbing one or two to enjoy later.

If you decide to give this recipe a try, please let me know what you think. Until next time, have a great weekend!

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