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Jun 9, 2021

Sourdough and Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

These sourdough whole wheat chocolate chip cookies with browned butter are just about the most amazing chocolate chip cookies on the planet. 

Sourdough Browned butter and Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies


These sourdough chocolate chip cookies, at about 4 ounces each, are huge. They're not quite pizookie size, but they are pretty big. 

While you could make these cookies smaller, you wouldn't be able to achieve the almost raw cookie dough-like centers that make these cookies so amazing.  Yes, that's right, the centers of these cookies are soft, gooey, and loaded with melty chocolate chips. 

Plus, these cookies are a wonderful way to use your sourdough starter discard! 

Browned butter in a bowl

Another ingredient that makes these cookies amazing is browned butter. I've used it before in chocolate chip cookies, as well as snickerdoodles and chocolate chip banana bread. It adds an amazing nutty flavor. 

To make browned butter, you simmer the butter in a saucepan over medium heat until it begins to turn golden brown. First it will bubble and foam, and then it will begin to change color. You definitely need to watch it closely because it can go from golden to burned very quickly. 

The minute it is golden brown, immediately pour it into a heat proof bowl to cool. 

Try not to use a nonstick pan because the dark surface will make it more difficult to watch the butter as it browns. 

Sourdough Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Making these cookies requires a little delayed gratification, not something those of us with a sweet tooth have. Still, it's totally worth it. 

First, once you mix all of the dough ingredients, you will need to chill the dough for at least 24 hours, and preferably 48 hours. 

After that, once you portion the cookie dough, you will need to freeze it for at least an hour. Again, it's totally worth it. 

Sourdough Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookie crumb

Definitely use a combination of chocolate chip sizes so that you will get chocolate in every bite. I used half mini semi-sweet chocolate chips along with half regular-sized bittersweet chocolate chips. You could also use a combination of mini chips, regular-sized chips, and chocolate chunks. 

Another option is to pour your chocolate chips into a food processor and pulse them for about 10 seconds. This is not my favorite option because chocolate chips don't always respond like you would want to the food processor. 

You could also chop up some of the chips, but chopping chocolate is pretty much my least favorite kitchen chore. 

Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies

If you're worried about devouring all of the cookies at once, you can freeze the portioned dough and just bake a few at a time. 

How to store these chocolate chip cookies:

You can store these cookies for up to four days in an airtight container. To help them stay fresh, add a slice of bread to the container. The bread slice will dry out and the cookies will stay moist. It's pretty magical. 

Sometimes I'll switch out the bread slice for a new fresh slice to help the cookies stay fresh even longer. 

Sourdough Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies in a bread tin

For the finishing touch for these cookies, lightly sprinkle them with a little flaked sea salt before baking. I used Fleur de Sel but Maldon sea salt will work too. 

This recipe was adapted from Leite's Culinaria. I can't wait to try using sourdough discard in other cookie recipes! 

Recommended kitchen tools: 

#16 cookie scoop. You will use this over and over again. It's well worth the investment

Baking sheets/half sheet pans. I have several and all of them get a great workout every single week. 

Parchment paper sheets. These are so great for keeping cookies from sticking or spreading too much. Parchment paper is essential in my kitchen. 

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Sourdough and Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Sourdough and Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Yield: 12 large cookies
Author: Karen's Kitchen Stories
These sourdough whole wheat chocolate chip cookies with browned butter are just about the most amazing chocolate chip cookies on the planet.


  • 8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 8 1/2 ounces 100 percent hydration sourdough starter discard
  • 13 1/2 ounces whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup mini semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
  • Flaked sea salt for finishing


  1. In a medium saucepan, heat the butter over medium low heat. Cook the butter until it gets foamy and the butter begins to brown. This should take 5 to 7 minutes. Once the butter turns golden immediately pour it into a heat proof bowl to cool to room temperature. 
  2. In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the sugars, cooled butter, egg yolks, vanilla, and sourdough discard until just incorporated, about 2 minutes. 
  3. Into a separate medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt through a fine mesh sieve. 
  4. Add the flour mixture to the butter and sugar mixture and mix until just incorporated. Beat in the chocolate chips. 
  5. Cover the bowl and refrigerate the dough for 24 to 48 hours. 
  6. 30 minutes before scooping the dough, remove it from the refrigerator. 
  7. Using a #16 cookie scoop or ice cream scoop, portion the dough into 4 ounce balls with flattened bottoms. Place them on a baking sheet or in a container, cover, and freeze for at least an hour. 
  8. When you are ready to bake, heat the oven to 375 degrees F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper (you can also bake just a portion of the cookies and save the rest in the freezer for later). 
  9. Place the dough balls on the parchment paper at least 2 to 3 inches apart, about 6 balls per baking sheet. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt. 
  10. Bake the cookies, one sheet at a time, on the center rack, for 13 minutes. Rotate the pan, and bake for another 3 minutes. 
  11. Cool the cookies on the pan for 2 minutes, and then remove them to a wire rack. Repeat with the other sheet of cookies. 
  12. They are delicious warm or at room temperature. 
  13. Store in an airtight container. 
cookies, chocolate chips, sourdough
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Would you like to comment?

  1. I am absolutely in love with these cookies. I HAVE to make some!

  2. this is a totally OMG kind of a recipe - my beloved saw it and almost passed out "those are some AWESOME looking cookies!" are you making them?

    he he he.... see what you did?

    1. Oh do let me know if you do! They are soooo delicious.

  3. Is 13.5 oz a typo? I feel like you need way more flour than that?

    1. No, it's correct. Keep in mind, there is another 4.25 ounces of flour in the starter. Give these a try!

  4. I just made these and holy cow - you are a genius! Amazing way to use a chunk of discard, great for freezing, and seriously taste like heaven. My husband, kids, and neighbors were all in love!

  5. I did these and they ended up burnt. Not sure what I did wrong?

  6. I have made them twice and they are the best Choc Chip cookies! Everyone that has tried them LOVES them, thank you for sharing this fantastic recipe

  7. If you like cakey cookies, these are exactly that. And a little too labor intense with all the chilling and freezing. A chocolate chip cookie doesn’t need to be so multi stepped to be delicious. These are ok, but I’m afraid not worth the extra effort.

  8. These are delicious. I’m wondering if they have the health benefits of sourdough or if it’s just another discard recipe to keep from waiting starters. Thanks! -Kayla

  9. These cookies are Delicious! Thank you!

  10. These cookies were seriously the best sourdough cookies recipe we’ve tried! They were the perfect consistency and flavor. Chewy and delicious! It took a bit more time to make than other recipes I’ve tried because of the browned butter but will definitely be making these again. We made them a little smaller too so we could get more out of the dough batch! We cooked half and froze the other half of uncooked rolled dough balls in hopes for easy fresh cookies again another week! Thanks for sharing this.

  11. Has anyone ever made these with all purpose flour rather than whole wheat?


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