Crispy Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies

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(Before I start talking about these cookies, I’ll let you know that there’s a great giveaway at the end of this post. Including FREE CHEESE!)

Ok, now that that’s out of the way…..

I’m not going to go on and on about how these are the best chocolate chip cookies in the world. I promise. Everyone thinks they’re recipe is the best and, honestly, few stand up to the one that printed on the back of the bag of chocolate chips. But sometimes you’re looking for something different. Something… crispier! Soft, gooey cookies have their place but sometimes I just want a little bit of crunch. They’re great for dunking in eggnog (I don’t like dunking soft cookies – they get too soggy) and they keep really well. They best chocolate chip cookie recipe ever? I’ll leave that up for debate. But let’s just say if I was Santa, whatever kid left me a plate of these would be written on the “nice” list in permanent marker.

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Crispy or chewy, there’s a few things that make a great chocolate chip cookie: Lots of brown sugar, but not too sweet. LOTS of chocolate. And a light sprinkle of fleur de sel over the top. What’s that? Yeah, you read right. A small sprinkle of sea salt adds a delicate crunch to these cookies and is awesome against the chocolate. Now we’re not talking enough salt to actually make these cookies salty… just enough to make the flavors come alive. Try it, and you’ll see. I wouldn’t have my chocolate cookies any other way.

One other thing – I can’t stand when cookies have big chunks of walnuts in them. Ew. Until recently, I thought I actually just didn’t like walnuts. I was wrong. I do like them – just not in big pieces! I incorporated some ground walnuts into this recipe – it adds a subtle nutty flavor without being overpowering or interfering with the texture in the way that pieces of nut does.

Like I mentioned above, these cookies are crispy. Not overcooked or hard – I made them crispy on purpose! The texture is the same throughout, and its hard to find anything appropriate to compare it to. I guess you could say they’re like chips ahoy, but much, much better and with a much more delicate crumb. It took quite a bit of research to figure out how to get my cookies to be this texture! The answer is pretty scientific, but not at all complicated: use cold butter. That’s right! No waiting for your butter to come to room temperature! If you think about it, it makes sense… cookies spread and get soft when the butter melts (because once it’s melted, the butter stays soft once the cookies cool off). Butter that’s starting at room temperature will melt much faster than butter that’s starting out cold. So cold butter means it won’t melt as much in the oven, which means the cookies will be thicker and crispier. And there’s your science lesson for the day. ;)

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Crispy Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • 1 stick butter, chilled
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, ground (pulse in your food processor until it has the texture of coarse flour)
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 8 oz. chocolate chips (I actually prefer pastilles if you can find them)
  • fleur de sel

Preheat your oven to 350.

Use eggbeaters or a stand mixer to cream together the butter and sugars. Mix for about 5 minutes, or until mixture begins to look smooth and incorporated. Mix in the egg and vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Mix the flour together with the baking soda and salt. Add half the flour. Mix to combine, scraping down the bowl as needed. Mix in the remaining flour and the ground walnuts. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Drop by the tablespoon-full onto a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment or a silpat. Sprinkle very lightly with fleur de sel. Bake for 13 minutes – cookies will look a little bit light, but should be cooked in the middle. They will darken a touch after they sit.

Yields about 3 dozen cookies.
Approx. 98 calories, 4.7 grams fat, 0.5 grams fiber, 1.3 grams protein

*******

I’m sending this recipe to Jennie for her 12 Days of Sharing virtual cookie swap. The swap is being done to raise money for Share our Strength, a great organization that seeks to make sure no child goes hungry. They do some great work by going into lower-income communities and teaching people ho to cook cheap, nutritious meals. If you make a monetary donation through the swap, you’ll be entered to win some great prizes too.

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*******Giveaway time!


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The people over at President Brie saw my baked brie with cranberry and pear and generously offered to send one of you their Brie Home Entertaining Kit! They sent me one too, and I’m so excited for this because it’s awesome! You’ll get:

  • a beautiful cheese board that had a little hidden drawer with a fork, knife, and spreader
  • some place cards and place card holders
  • a sharpie pen
  • and THREE brie logs (packed inside a little lunchbox!)

Now that’s a giveaway! It comes wrapped up all pretty and it’s totally like Christmas came early.

Want one? All you have to do is leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite holiday cookie or appetizer. For an extra entry, you can tweet about this contest (reference @healthydelish in the tweet so I see it!).

I’ll enter all of the entries into excel and will use random.org to pick one winner at 9pm next Wednesday, December 16.

THIS GIVEAWAY IS LIMITED TO READERS IN THE US AND CANADA ONLY. (To those of you who live elsewhere, I apologize, but they’re doing the shipping so they make the rules on that one!)

Comments

  1. Natasha - 5 Star Foodie says:

    Those cookies look amazing, I would love them crispy! Definitely will be making them and I think they’ll be my new favorite cookies. Our fav appetizers are baguette rounds with butter & caviar. Awesome giveaway!

  2. What an amazing giveaway! My favorite appetizer is medjool dates stuffed with goat cheese, drizzled with honey, and then baked in the overn until they’re melty and delicious.

  3. My favorite cookies are the peanut butter blossoms with the Hershey Kisses in the middle :)

  4. DIBS! I could use that gift set! And I am CHEESE FREAK!!!!

    nom!

  5. mmmmm…cookies…and salt!

    My favorite holiday appetizer is blintzs. so it’s more of a dessert, but my family counts it as an appetizer!

  6. as usual those look fantastic!!

    best appitizer was one I had at a birthday party last week – not sure how they were made, but they were basically artichoke pinwheels in puff pastry. But I love anything artichoke.

  7. My favorite appetizer is similar to the brie thing actually (which I’m totally trying this Christmas). We just take a hunk of cream cheese and put a spicy-sweet jelly all over it. Spread on thin water crackers – it’s delicious.

  8. BRIE FOR THE WIN!

    Okay, sorry. You know how I get around brie…

    I’m okay with choc chips – a nice contrast of flavors. I’m definitely in the gooey and soft camp though. My favorite cookies are butterscotchy, white chocolatey, gutbombs of fat. So good. My neighbor made a bar out of those ingredients – holy frijoles it was intensely rich and satisfying! I could only nibble on them!

  9. My favourite appetizer is spinach artichoke dip in those pumperknickel bread bowls. Totally 80s and totally delicious!

  10. Lauren – I think you should just do away with the giveaway and send it directly to me!!

    I love the cookie recipe – Neil claims to make the best CC cookies ever but I think this just might rival them… LOVE the fleur de sel!

    My fave appetiser is, coincidentally, brie and cranberries in puff pastry – YUM!

  11. I like chewy cookies but only seem to make crispy ones but my favorite would have to be chocolate truffles!

  12. Wow, what a cool cheese board! If I don’t win I might have to buy one of those.

    My favorite appetizer is either cream cheese with spicy pepper jam, served with crackers, or apple-squash-sage puffs. Which reminds me that I need to make those again…

  13. I love snickerdoodles, I make them every year. I have friends’ husbands who get mad if I don’t make them! I also like anything cheesy and gooey! Gingerbread lattes are always good too, especially when my husband makes them for me!

  14. Fantastic all around. The cookies sound delicious…salty and sweet is the flavor profile that simply can’t be beat for me. I love it. It even extends to my favorite holiday (read: anytime) appetizer and probably among the most popular things I make. Brie Cups. I’ve posted the recipe before but they are easy from start to finish and so. so. good. All you need are filo shells (freezer aisle), brie, honey, butter, garlic, walnuts and flat leaf parsley. Melon ball the brie into the cups and set aside on a jelly roll pan. Melt 1 stk butter and 1/3 cup honey together and lightly simmer with TB minced garlic. Add chopped parsley and walnuts then spoon by teaspoon onto the brie in cups. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes. Divine.

  15. My favorite cookies are chocolate oatmeal cookies…i make them fluffy and chewy!

  16. Those cookies look amazing! :) I might have to actually attempt to bake. My favorite appetizers are the Italian calzones that my aunts usually make. They’re so good. That or stuffed mushrooms. I don’t really like mushrooms, but for some reason these are different. :)

  17. These look and sound delicious. I’m a big fan of sweet and salty and these cookies really fill that bill.

  18. Mmmm these cookies look amazing!

    My favorite holiday appetizer is probably the red pepper jelly/cream cheese dip my aunt makes. It’s great on so many things! (Believe me, I’ve tried it on a lot, you can’t lose with that one!)

  19. yum! my favorite holiday dessert is homemade turtle candy.

  20. My favorite holiday cookies are forget-me-nots. My mom makes them every year and my sister and I eat them so quickly, there are barely enough for everyone else!!

  21. I love a warm spinach artichoke dip for an appetizer.

  22. I’m a sucker for a good peanut butter cookie – love cookies with that addictive sweet and salty balance! I’ll tweet your giveaway right now!

  23. I love how thick these are! They sound so yummy with the sprinkle of salt on top! My favorite cookie is Pecan Sandies. But I’m not entering the giveaway – I just won a cheese party package.

  24. My favorite holiday cookies are mexican wedding cakes.

  25. First the chocolate chip cookies sound great. The the little bit of saltiness is right up my alley.

    Now for the giveaway. It’s awesome! That cheese board sounds so cute! My favorite Christmas cookie is hands down a buckeye. Which is technically not really cookie but still my favorite Christmas sweet treat :)

  26. I love soft apple oatmeal cookies….Yum!!

  27. Just the idea of using cold butter sold me on your cookies. My favorite holiday cookie is chocolate ginger chews.

  28. My favorite holiday cookie is a peanut butter ball. They are so addicting :)

    Great giveaway LK!

  29. Sandy Kosinski says:

    These cookies sound great! My favorites are oatmeal. I created my own recipe because I’m picky. I also like my walnuts ground and never omit or skimp on the salt and always use butter ( not margerine or crisco)but, I like my oatmeal cookies crisp on the outside and slightly chewy on the inside.I found that if I add coconut and sometimes when I want a sweeter cookie I also add a few butterscotch chips. yummy!

  30. OMG! I am going to have to try those cookies! My favorite holiday appetizer is one my mom made up YEARS ago. Wonton wrappers baked to form a cup with a filling of meat, cheese, spinach. SO GOOD!

  31. Salted chocolate chips? I love it. It’s a great thing that salty and sweet go really great together.

    My favorite holiday cookie is the sugar cookie because you can dress it up into any shape and put as much frosting on it as you want. But recently I’ve become more like to the red velvet balls.

  32. My favorite appetizer would have to be dates stuffed with chorizo wrapped in bacon

  33. Girl, here’s a tip: Do NOT include the words “FREE CHEESE” until the very, very end….because once you mentioned it, that was ALL I could think about! hahaha! My favorite appetizer? Well, since this giveaway is brie, I’ll kiss ass and say baked brie…with grilled figs…and prosciutto…ooh la la…

    By the way, don’t think I didn’t enjoy your salted chocolate chip cookies. They look lovely. I adore the idea of saltyness in a sweet cookie. But I did get distracted by the mention of “FREE CHEESE” for a minute. ;-)

  34. My favorite holiday cookie is this iced, soft, thick kind that I make with apple bits and lots of holiday spices. So yummy! I could definitely go for some dried figs with brie, too. One of my favorite snacks–usually I have to settle for Laughing Cow though!

  35. Ohhh what a lovely package! :)

    My favorite holiday appetizer is from my great-grandmother. Stuffed celery. You take cream cheese, green olives, and any nut and mix it together and shmear it in the groove of stalks of celery. Mmm and it doesn’t get you too filled up for the main course!

  36. Love the cookies–the salt and that you ground up the walnuts–very smart! What a great cheese set. My favorite cookie are the toffee shortbreads my sister makes–they are all chocolate and butter–what more do you need? ;-)

  37. It’s not Xmas at my house without spritz cookies!

  38. Yeah I agree – love to have some crispy chocolate chip cookies rather than those really gooey ones. Thanks for the recipe!! so I’ll just pass by those choco chip cookies in the party :-D

  39. These cookies look delicious! I love the addition of a little sprinkle of salt. I’ve tried a few “salted” desserts lately and it really does just bring out all the other flavors. I’ll definitely be giving this recipe a try!

    As for a favorite holiday cookie, mine has to be the good ol’ sugar cookie. I remember making them with my mom as a kid, and Christmas seems about the only time I get to eat them – so they’re just extra special to me!

  40. WOW- those cookies look thick and delicious. Nice work. I also hate big chunks of nuts in cookies- totally ruins them. Great giveaway. Cheese? I’m in. My favorite holiday cookie is my oatmeal chocolate chip. For desserts- I love the crustless pumpkin pie I just made

  41. I’m currently baking pumpkin cookies… they’re my fave even though I HATE pumpkin pie :)

  42. Your chocolate chip cookies sound delicious!

    My favorite cookies are peanut butter chocolate chips cookies. :)

  43. My son and I were just discussing our favorite holiday appetizer. It’s definitely baked brie topped with caramelized onion. Spread it on a cracker and there’s nothing better. Great giveaway…

  44. My favorite holiday appetizer is a phyllo cup, sauteed mushroom, rosemary and brie concoction that I make! Simple, delish, and always a hit!

  45. My favorite holiday cookies are the candy cane ones that my mom used to make. I’ve tried to replicate them, but my candy canes never turn out right. :(

  46. my favorite thing to eat and to share over the holidays is a little brie in croute that has dungeness crab meat and fresh dill on top of the brie.

  47. My favorite appetizer is spinach artichoke dip!!! Yum :)

  48. Peanut butter blossoms…the holiday kisses in the red and green foil just MAKES Christmas!!

  49. Those cookies look great! I will be trying these after the holidays. My favorite cookies are my greatgrandmother’s butter cookies. So light and crispy.

  50. My favorite holiday cookies are clothes-pin cookies made by my grandmother. On Christmas Eve, I’m pretty sure I nearly eat a dozen.

  51. i agree that crispy cookies are better for dunking and yours look scrumptious! my favorite holiday cookie is to take my favorite classic chewy oatmeal cookie recipe and add dark chocolate and dried cranberries. those two ingredients just scream the holidays to me.

  52. i tweeted about this awesome giveaway! thank you!

    http://twitter.com/BLeGrandFromage

  53. I love my chocolate chip cookies crispy, but I feel like everyone else loves the fat soft chewy kind. I love the idea of grounding walnut into the cookie! My favorite holiday cookie is definitely the classic sugared molasses. It has such a spicy warm holiday taste!

  54. My favorite cookies are either gingerbread cookies or nutmeg logs. Yum! Or maybe any cookie at this time of year :D

  55. I haven’t tried this Kahlua-Pecan-Brown Sugar Baked Brie yet but I think this will be my new favorite Christmas appetizer http://noblepig.com/2009/12/13/kahluapecanbrown-sugar-baked-brie.aspx

  56. Unplanned Cooking says:

    Chocolate chip cookies with a crunch! Love it. I’m not one for softness. My favorite holiday dessert… definitely frosted sugar cookies. With sprinkles.

  57. Hmmmm my favorite? That’s so hard! I do love these cookies my mom makes with graham crackers, coconut, and pecans. Mmmmmm!

  58. I am all about these cookies, they sound delicious! My favorite holiday cookie though are these almond tyrolean cookies – almond sandwich cookies with raspberry jam, dusted with powdered sugar – yum!

  59. Favorite cookie would have to be pumpkin, chololate chip. Although lately I’ve been using kabocha. :)

  60. Alexia Parada says:

    My Favorite! Shrimp Coconut with sweet and sour sauce!! Great for cocktail party :)

  61. My favourite cookie is this Canadian cookie bar…the Nanaimo bar (http://www.nanaimo.ca/EN/main/visitors/NanaimoBars.html). I love the classic ones, but I also love lots of different flavours with the filling. Mint, peanut butter, coffee, cherry…they’re ALL good. :)

  62. THESE COOKIES LOOK SOOOOOOOO GOOD. I AM ALWAYS SEARCHING FOR THE PERFECT CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE, I’VE FOUND A COUPLE THAT HAVE COME CLOSE, SO ALL IN ALL, I WILL TRY THIS ONE ALSO. NOW FOR THE RESPONSE TO THE BEST CHRISTMAS COOKIE— WOULD HAVE TO BE THE SUGAR COOKIE. TO ME, WHEN YOU SEE THE SUGAR COOKIE, YOU KNOW ITS TIME FOR THE HOLIDAYS, I DON’T SEEM TO WANT THEM ANY OTHER TIME.

  63. These cookies look great and I plan to try out the recipe after the Christmas rush. What I will be baking tonight are my new favs which are chocolate hazelnut biscotti cookies.

  64. My favorite holiday treat are iced sugar cookies!

  65. Favorite holiday appetizers are goat cheese tartlets, so easy and you can make them different EVERY time so they never get boring!!

  66. CJ Smargie says:

    Polish Nut Rolls made by my grandma those are what christmas desserts are about in my house

  67. Snickerdoodles — my family always makes them for the holidays.

  68. What a nice suprise to receive a gift to you and offer one to one of your readers! Congrats! Your cookies are very tempting! I like the salt added!

  69. MMMMMMMM,…these cookies look delightful!! Yummie!

    How lovely for you that you recieved such a great gift!

  70. silpada jewelry,catalog says:

    nice posting and thanks for very useful information.

  71. Chocolate Crinkles are fav holiday cookie! these look great as well

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