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scattered slices of chocolate chip cookie bars

Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

  • Author: Jenna Barnard
  • Total Time: 50 minutes + 45 minutes cooling
  • Yield: 16 bars


These brown butter chocolate chip cookie bars are dense, soft, chewy, and loaded with melty chocolate chips! The brown butter gives them a rich toffee-like flavor and a sprinkle of sea salt on top helps bring out the chocolate even more. It’s basically the only cookie bar recipe you will ever need!


  • 1/2 cup (110g) + 1 tbsp unsalted butter*
  • 1/2 cup (100g) dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups (165g) all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup (185g) semisweet chocolate chips, plus more for sprinkling on top
  • Flaky sea salt, for sprinkling


  1. Add 1/2 cup of the unsalted butter to a saucepan over medium heat. Melt down and continue to stir until it goes from load and bubbly to quiet and frothy. Once it goes quiet, pay attention to the color as it will brown very fast.
  2. When the butter is a golden amber color and gives off a nutty aroma, remove from heat and pour into a measuring glass. Drop in the additional 1 tablespoon of butter to make it an even 1/2 cup. *Make sure it measures exactly 1/2 cup so it may take more or less than 1 tablespoon. Transfer the butter to the refrigerator to cool while the rest of the ingredients are prepped.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350F and grease and line a square 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper. Allow the paper to hang up and over the sides for easy removal. 
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  5. In a large mixing bowl, add the dark brown sugar, sugar, and browned butter. It’s ok if the butter is still a bit warm, but not hot. Whisk to combine.
  6. Whisk in the vanilla and egg.
  7. Switch to a rubber spatula and pour in the dry ingredients. Gently mix to combine and when there’s still a bit of flour showing, toss in the chocolate chips.
  8. Fold the dough to combine.
  9. Transfer the dough to the prepared baking pan and spread it even. Sprinkle with a couple handfuls of chocolate chips and press them into the surface.
  10. Bake for 25-30 minutes. The bars are done with the edges are a very light golden brown and the center is evenly and slightly puffed.
  11. When the bars are fresh from the oven, sprinkle with a couple pinches of sea salt. 
  12. Allow the bars to cool in the pan for about 45 minutes at room temp. You can also place the pan in the refrigerator to speed up the process. 
  13. Once cooled (but ever-so-slightly warm), lift the bars out of the pan and slice in 16 squares. Enjoy!


BUTTER – For the biggest flavor payoff, use good quality butter such as cultured or European style butter.

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: chocolate chip cookie bars, chocolate chip cookie bar recipe, brown butter chocolate chip cookie bars, cookie bars, cookie bar recipe

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