Brown Butter Caramel Snickerdoodles Recipe

Brown Butter Caramel Snickerdoodles Recipe – Soft, thick and chewy snickerdoodles, bursting with flavor from the addition of browned butter and an irresistible gooey homemade caramel center!

Servings: 16


2¼ cups plus 2 tablespoons (10⅝oz/ 300g) all purpose flour (preferably weighed for accurate results)*
3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar (*see note below for substitution)
½ teaspoon baking soda (omit if using cream of tartar substitution)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons (7oz/ 198g) unsalted butter
1 cup (7oz/ 200g) packed soft brown sugar, light or dark
1/4 cup (1 3/4oz/ 50g) granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk (discard white or freeze for later use)
1 teaspoons vanilla extract or 2 teaspoons imitation vanilla flavoring
1 tablespoon (1oz/ 14g) sour cream

1/4 batch homemade Microwave Soft Caramels

3 tablespoons (1 1/3oz/ 38g) granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon



If using homemade Microwave Soft Caramels, make and cool the caramels according to this recipe. You could also use your favorite recipe for homemade soft caramels instead or take a shortcut and use the softest store-bought caramels you could find.

Prepare them for stuffing by cutting 8 rectangles of caramel in half. You’ll need 16 pieces for the cookies. Using your fingers, squish and shape each piece of caramel into a rounded 1-inch square. You could make them slightly bigger, if more caramel-y centers are desired, by using up 3/4 of a caramel rectangle for each cookie, but not more than that. Store in the freezer until ready to use. Freezing is not necessary, but makes stuffing the cookies a lot less messy.


Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silicon mat.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, baking powder, cornstarch, salt and cinnamon to combine; set aside.

In a light-colored skillet, heat the butter over medium-high heat until melted, about 2 minutes. Continue cooking, stirring and scraping the pan constantly with a heatproof rubber spatula until the butter turns dark golden brown and has a nutty, caramel-y aroma, 1 to 3 minutes. Be careful not to burn it.

Remove the skillet from the heat and transfer the browned butter to a large heatproof bowl, scraping down all the brown bits with a rubber spatula.

To the bowl with the butter, add in both sugars and whisk to combine.

Add in the egg, egg yolk and vanilla and whisk until mixture is smooth and emulsified with no sugar lumps remaining, about 30 seconds. Stir in the sour cream until well combined.

Using a rubber spatula, stir in the flour mixture until just combined and no flour streaks remain. Do not overmix.

Using a 3 tablespoon-measure ice cream scoop with a release mechanism, scoop out the dough onto the lined baking sheet, forming 16 equal dough balls. If the dough feels too soft or warm to scoop, cover and refrigerate for about ½ an hour until scoopable.

Using the back of a wooden spoon handle or your thumb, make a deep indentation into each dough ball.

Take the caramel candies out of the freezer and place one inside each indentation of every dough ball. Gather the dough up over the caramels to completely cover them. Roll the dough into smooth balls, making sure the caramels are completely wrapped inside and nothing is peaking out.

Combine topping ingredients (the granulated sugar and cinnamon) in a small bowl. Roll the cookie dough balls into the cinnamon-sugar topping and place on the prepared baking sheet.

You could bake the cookies immediately with great results, but they’ll spread less and turn out even thicker, if you chill them. To chill, loosely cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 4 days, then either bake right away or transfer to a large zipper lock bag and freeze for up to 1 month.*

Fifteen minutes before you’re ready to bake, heat the oven to 350F/180C and adjust oven rack to middle position.

Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicon mat. Place 8 cookie balls per sheet, spacing them at least 2 inches apart.

Bake until the cookies flatten with a slight dome, no longer have a hump in the middle, and the outer edges start to set yet centers are soft and puffy, 9 to 11 minutes. The centers will feel undone, but they shouldn’t be shiny or sticky. DO NOT OVERBAKE or you’ll get hard cookies. The cookies will continue to bake after they come out of the oven from the residual heat of the baking sheet.

Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for at least 15 minutes before serving. Or cool completely then store in an airtight container.


Weighing ingredients is highly recommended, but if you don’t have a kitchen scale to weigh the flour, use the Spoon & Sweep method: Use a spoon to lightly fill measuring cup with flour until required amount is obtained, then sweep access with the back of a knife.

If you can’t find cream of tartar, omit it. To substitute, omit the baking soda as well, and bump up the baking powder by 1 teaspoon, that is a total of 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder altogether. The cookies will turn out puffier than when using cream of tartar/baking soda combo, will have no cracks, will lose a tiny bit of tanginess, will be even so slightly cakier in texture, but still every bit as delicious. In fact, some of my taste testers, preferred cookies made with all baking powder more than those made with cream of tartar/baking soda combo. I personally can’t decide which I love more!

Use the soft kind of brown sugar that feels and looks like damp sand like Dominos brand. Avoid the coarse, granular type of brown sugar like demerara. Use fresh, moist brown sugar instead of hardened brown sugar, which will make the cookies dry. This recipe works well with both light and dark brown sugar. Dark brown sugar will make the cookies more caramel-y in taste, so it’s up to you. Again, I can’t decide which one I like best. I love both!

Use a light colored skillet to brown the butter. Avoid using a nonstick skillet because the dark color of the nonstick coating makes it difficult to see when the butter is browned.

Cookie dough balls could be chilled in the fridge for up to 4 days or frozen for up to one month in a zipper lock bag. Bake straight from frozen. You might need to add an extra 2 minutes to the baking time.


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