Brown Sugar Cookies

April  1, 2010
8 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Serves 18 cookies
Author Notes

As a kid, I'd spent some time in the cupboards spooning brown sugar into my eager mouth. I preferred brown over white, mainly because the flavors are deeper (and, I believed, I got more of a sugar high!). These cookies are a throwback to my childhood, echoing of honey, molasses, and caramel, containing much more dark brown sugar than I could ever eat in a single day with my spoon. I like to make these huge, so when you pair one with a tall glass of milk, you might actually be left with more cookie than milk. —Furey and the Feast

Test Kitchen Notes

Everyone out there who eats brown sugar with a spoon will love these (though others may find them a bit cloying). The cookies are thin and chewy with a strong nutty, caramel brown sugar taste. The cookies form a great crinkly skin and crisp bottom with a center so chewy it almost sticks to your teeth. Furey and the Feast really does make them huge! I found dividing the dough into 18 balls resulted in cookies that ran into each other. The cookies are so intensely sweet that I could only eat half before I had to take a break. Next time, I'd go down in size to dough balls about 1 to 1 1/2 inches in diameter. - Stephanie —Stephanie Bourgeois

What You'll Need
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  1. Move oven racks to upper and middle third of your oven, and preheat oven to 375° F. Line two cookie sheets or jelly roll pans with parchment paper. Cream butter and both sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer (or with a hand mixer). Add egg, vegetable oil, and vanilla, and mix until incorporated.
  2. In another bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt, and mix to combine. Add flour mixture to mixing bowl and mix until all ingredients just come together (dough will be a bit wet and crumbly).
  3. Portion dough into 18 balls (we're talking a little bigger than a golf ball) and place on cookie sheets about 2 1/2 inches to 3 inches apart. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Cookies are done when they're still light in color but darker around the edges. Remove from oven, cool in pan for 10 minutes before placing on rack to cool completely. Store in airtight container or ziplock bag.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • keg72
  • Margaret
  • Karin_D
  • Table9
  • markita_denise

21 Reviews

rbenjamin November 26, 2020
These were fantastic! I added a teaspoon of golden syrup, otherwise I followed the recipe. Delicious! Sweet I will agree.
rlsalvati December 20, 2015
I've been making these at Christmas for 4 or 5 years now. Like some other commenters, I scale the size down a bit. This year at the end of the batch, with not enough dough left to fill another cookie sheet, I made myself a little gift of two full-size cookies. For a brown sugar lover, this is a dream cookie.
keg72 March 7, 2015
Very tasty, and I totally agree with the comment that they're like chocolate chip cookies minus the chips.
Margaret December 3, 2014
Is light brown sugar acceptable. I prefer light brown and don't usually buy the dark brown/
Esabrams May 18, 2011
Imagining the sugar rush the elementary school set would experience with the full-sized cookies, I scaled these down, getting 3-1/2 dozen delicious (and plenty big enough) cookies out of the recipe. Oh, and I reduced baking time to 9-10 min. to compensate. Raves reviews from the kids and their grown-ups!
Karin_D April 26, 2011
Thank you for the amazing recipe! I just made them and my apartment smells soooooo good. Even the dough was delicious - I'm really surprised any of it made it to the oven :)
Table9 February 13, 2011
I made these tonight, and they were so yummy! Thanks for sharing.
markita_denise January 14, 2011
I made these cookies and they turned out great, except a few of them severely spread, what should I do next time?
Furey A. January 15, 2011
Hi Markita! Thank you for trying these! Next time, if you don't want them to spread, you can scoop them onto the cookie sheets, then chill for about 30 to 40 minutes before putting them in the oven. That should help!

Have a lovely weekend.
RaquelG June 16, 2010
Furey; making these for an old-fashioned cake wheel at my local Moose Lodge this weekend to raise money for charity. I'm a huge brown sugar/caramel/toffee fan, and I'm thinking of adding toffee bits for some textural contrast. What do you think?
Furey A. June 17, 2010
Hello! That sounds lovely! I can see little bits of toffee in them for sure, for more crunch. I worry that those who don't have a huge sweet tooth will find them too sweet with all the sugar and then the toffee, but to heck with them! :)
softenbrownsugar June 14, 2010
I wonder if you would mind very much if we put this on our Facebook page if we gave you full credit? They look and sound wonderful, and I need to make some because our cookie jar is nearly empty! :o)
Furey A. June 14, 2010
Hello! I'd be honored! I'm perfectly fine with it, but I don't know if perhaps you should also ask Amanda or Merrill, since it's posted on this site?
softenbrownsugar June 14, 2010
Thank you! I will definitely ask them as well. I'll let you know if and when and where. ;)
LisaBrooklyn June 8, 2010
Cooks Illustrated has a brown sugar cookie recipe that's similar, but the flavor is intensified by melting and browning the butter instead of using softened butter.Amazing flavor!
mrslarkin June 7, 2010
My kids loved this cookie! Very thin, crispy edge, chewy middle. I liked the raw dough - tastes just like butterscotch. Made mine slightly smaller - got 24 cookies.Thanks for the recipe!
Furey A. April 1, 2010
Thank you guys for the kind thoughts! @mslarkin, you're right! Maybe that's why I like them so much!
TheWimpyVegetarian April 1, 2010
I love this recipe! And I confess, sometimes I STILL sneak a little spoon of brown sugar.
testkitchenette April 1, 2010
Great cookie! I loved your story too as I did the same thing (my mother essentially banned sugar except for special treat/occasions) and I took to eating brown sugar and Quik mix (when we had it) with spoons from their containers. I also sneaked butter.
mrslarkin April 1, 2010
Beautiful! It's like a choco chip cookie w/o the choco chips!
nannydeb April 1, 2010
They look scrumptious!