Brown Butter Caramel Spice Cookies

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Every weekend I allow myself one major “cheat dessert” outside of my usual attempts at healthy eating. Sometimes I like to go out and get a dessert from a nice restaurant, but other times I’m in the mood for something specific enough that it can’t be found anywhere. In this case I was craving dulce de leche, cinnamon, and chocolate. The idea was to craft a spice cookie with a gooey caramel center and drizzle it with chocolate. In the end I opted for a brown butter chocolate chip cookie style dough instead of my original idea of using a sugar cookie style dough. When I tried these out of the oven I knew they were good enough as is and that the chocolate drizzle wasn’t necessary… and let me tell you that if there is something that I say doesn’t benefit from the addition of chocolate, it must be amaaaaazing. These cookies are warm and chewy, nutty and buttery, sweet and salty, and many other combinations of awesome.

I made my dulce de leche from scratch using the oven method, but using a jar purchased from the grocery store would be fine. Just make these cookies!

Brown Butter Caramel Spice Cookies

Summary: Rich, chewy, spicy brown butter cookies filled with dulce de leche.


  • 2 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup chopped pecans
  • ¼ cup rolled oats
  • 1¼ teaspoons baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • ¼ ground fresh nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter
  • 1¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Ener-G egg replacer + 3 tablespoons warm water (or 1 egg + 1 egg yolk)
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon plain greek yogurt
  • 1 cup dulce de leche, chilled
  • Sea salt for sprinkling


  1. In a food processor add the rolled oats and pecans. Process until it has the texture of a coarse meal.
  2. Whisk together the flour, oat & pecan mixture, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in a bowl and set aside.
  3. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. The butter will begin to foam and eventually subside. Whisk regularly until the butter turns a rich amber color and releases a nutty aroma. Transfer to another container and allow to cool.
  4. With an electric mixer, cream together the browned butter and sugars until lighter in color. Beat in the egg replacer, vanilla, and yogurt until combined. Add the dry ingredients in thirds, beating slowly until combined.
  5. Take a slightly heaping tablespoon of cookie dough and flatten it in your palm. Add ¼-½ a teaspoon – I used a heaping quarter teaspoon – of the dulce de leche (it’s chilled so that it’s easier to work with) to the center of the dough and carefully seal the edges around it. Place the ball onto a parchment lined sheet. Repeat until all dough is exhausted and transfer the unbaked cookies to your freezer for about 20 minutes.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place dough balls on cookie sheet, 2 inches apart. Keep the remaining dough balls chilled while this batch bakes for 11-13 minutes. Let cool on the sheet for 5 minutes (they will be very soft right out of the oven) before transferring to a wire rack to let cool completely. Sprinkle with salt while still slightly warm.

Preparation time: 1 hour(s) 30 minute(s)

Cooking time: 13 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 24