It’s the perfect time of year for cookies – buying them, making them, eating them, giving them – or all of the above. For a friend’s recent birthday, I wanted a cookie recipe I knew he’d love, but also something that could be a great fall/winter staple for years to come. And to me, nothing quite says “warmth” of the holiday season like some nutty brown butter and, of course, bourbon.
Brown Butter Bourbon Cookies
- 8 TBSP unsalted butter
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 5 TBSP bourbon (I used Bulleit Bourbon)
- 1 cup pecans, chopped
First, make your brown butter. Melt in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir constantly until the butter begins to foam and turn golden brown (the butter will start to smell nutty) – about 5 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let the butter turn into a rich brown color (about 15 – 30 more seconds). Carefully pour butter into a small bowl and refrigerate for about 20 minutes to cool completely. (Note: if you burn the butter – start over! Burnt butter will make your cookies taste burnt.)
While the butter cools, in a medium bowl mix together flour, baking soda, and salt. In a separate large bowl, mix together sugar, dark brown sugar, and egg. Add in the cooled butter and vanilla to your wet ingredient. Add in flour mixture and stir to incorporate. Add the bourbon and then stir in the pecans.
Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate. The longer you can let the dough refrigerate (up to 24 hours) the better as it will help all of the flavors meld together. At minimum, try to let it sit for at least an hour before baking.
When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Use a tablespoon to form small balls of dough and drop dough onto prepared cookie sheets. This should make about 35 cookies. Bake for about 15 minutes until golden brown, flipping the cookie sheets halfway through to ensure even baking.
These cookies are a wonderful mix of crumbly outside and soft inside. The bourbon shines through without being overpowering, with the brown butter adding a nice nutty, toasted flavor that is the perfect complement to the pecans and whiskey. For all your bourbon loving friends, these will be quite a hit.