Learn how to make delicious Chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar. Are you out of brown sugar or prefer not to use it? Don't worry about the texture of your cookies, as you can still achieve gooey chewy cookies with no brown sugar added!
- 📖 Can you make chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar?
- 📖 What can I use if I don't have brown sugar for chocolate chip cookies?
- 🌟 Why this is the best recipe
- 📝 Ingredient notes
- 👩🍳 How to make this recipe
- 🥣 Equipment Notes
- 🎓 Expert tips
- ❓Recipe FAQs
- 🍪 More Cookie Recipes
- Chocolate Chip Cookies without Brown Sugar (VIDEO)
📖 Can you make chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar?
Absolutely, yes! In chocolate chip cookies, brown sugar not only responsible for the taste but it makes the cookies moist and chewy. Having said that, it is totally possible to either substitute the brown sugar (eg. either by granulated sugar or granulated white sugar + molasses) or entirely leave it out and bake Chocolate chip cookies no brown sugar.
📖 What can I use if I don't have brown sugar for chocolate chip cookies?
There are various brown sugar substitutes for chocolate chip cookies that you can try.
You should expect a slight change in texture and flavor, but the cookies will still look gorgeous and taste amazing and it is totally possible to make them chewy as well!
- White sugar + molasses. Basically, brown sugar is just white sugar + molasses. So, yes, you can make a DIY brown sugar at home. Dark brown sugar contains more molasses than light brown sugar. Molasses is responsible for that caramelly flavor in brown sugar. You can easily mix those two in a small bowl and voila, you have homemade brown sugar for your baking project!
- White sugar + maple syrup. Maple syrup tastes slightly different from molasses but it can be a great substitute for brown sugar. If you can't find molasses, you can try mixing the granulated white sugar with maple syrup to replace brown sugar in your cookies.
- White sugar only. Can you make chocolate chip cookies with only white sugar? Yes, of course! The main ingredient of brown sugar is white sugar so granulated sugar will totally do the job. Keep reading this recipe and I will teach you how to make the most delicious Chocolate chip cookies with granulated sugar!
- Palm sugar. It looks and tastes similar to brown sugar. However, palm sugar can get your cookies' color slightly darker.
- Turbinado. It's a kind of raw sugar. Its sweetness has a hint of caramel flavor and it looks similar to brown sugar. You can easily replace brown sugar with this sugar and still get the chewy texture.
- Honey or maple syrup. If all else is not available in your pantry, maybe you can try either honey or maple syrup to replace brown sugar. However, as they're liquid, it's a bit hard to adjust the total liquid in the chip cookie dough. So, be careful when using it.
🌟 Why this is the best recipe
- It's quick and easy- Are you baking for the first time? I've got your back! You can make this easy chocolate chip cookie without brown sugar by following this step-by-step guide!
- Irresistibly gooey and fudge center - Yes, you can bake homemade chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar and still get an amazing texture! The technique is important. So, be sure to follow this guide carefully!
- Wonderful flavor - This recipe of chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar result in a delicious treat with wonderful flavors!
- No special baking equipment required - With only regular baking equipment, you can easily make this recipe at home!
- It's a detailed tutorial! - It might seem long. However, all of the tips written in this guide are provided to help you achieve the best result! So, don't skip them!
📝 Ingredient notes
- Butter - In baking, it's recommended to use the unsalted version of butter. The reason for this is that salted butter already contains a certain amount of salt so it's difficult to control the saltiness once it's added to the dough. You can use any brand as long as it's high in fat. I like using one with 82% fat content. Remember, the butter needs to be soft at room temperature.
- Sugar - Instead of brown sugar, we're using the simple, easy-to-find, regular white granulated sugar! The cookies will still taste super delicious! If you want to learn more about different kinds of sugar, please check out my sugar guide.
- Vanilla - Without brown sugar, the vanilla flavor will really shine through in your cookies. Use pure vanilla instead of artificial vanilla extract.
- Egg - Only 1 egg is needed to make this easy recipe!
- Flour - You can use regular all-purpose flour (a.k.a. plain flour). Pastry flour works great too, as they contain lower protein content. If you want to learn more about flour, do check out my flour guide.
- Salt - A little amount of salt will be required to balance the overall taste.
- Baking soda - It's a leavening agent that is responsible to make the cookies rise.
- Chocolate chips - What are chocolate chip cookies without chocolate chips?! This ingredient is 100% required for this recipe! I like using semi sweet chocolate chips for this recipe. If possible, only use high-quality chocolate chips as they can greatly affect the flavor, I am using Callebaut
🛒 You’ll find detailed measurements for all ingredients in the printable version of the Recipe Card at the bottom of this post
👩🍳 How to make this recipe
1. Step-by-step process
It's an easy Chocolate chip cookie without brown sugar recipe and you can prepare the dough super quickly!
- Cream the butter and sugar together using an electric hand mixer. It will take about 2-3 minutes.
- Mix in the egg until it's combined.
- Add the vanilla
- In another bowl, sift together the remaining dry ingredients: flour, salt, and baking soda.
- Using a rubber spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the dough.
- Before the dough becomes fully combined, mix in the chocolate chips and fold the dough one final time.
- Using a digital kitchen scale, divide the dough into 8 equal balls
- Arrange those balls on 2 parchment papers or baking sheets to be sure to give each of them some space to spread.
- Chill the cookie dough in the fridge for 1 hour.
💡 Top Tip: Do not soften the cookie dough balls after shaping. In fact, make them as rough as possible so the cookies will have some appetizing, crackly surface after baking.
2. Why chill the cookie batter
Making chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar is super simple. However, just like preparing regular cookie recipes, there is one significant step that you should not miss; chilling the cookie dough.
The main reason to chill the cookie dough in the fridge is to avoid the dough over-spreading during the baking process.
Baking is exposing the cookie dough to really high temperatures. Without chilling, the cookies might spread too quickly and too widely, resulting in sad-looking, flat cookies.
💡 Top Tip: Is waiting for 1 hour too long for you? You can try to chill the cookie dough in the freezer for only 15 minutes instead.
3. How to bake
Always remember to preheat your oven for at least 15 minutes before baking this Chocolate chip cookie recipe without brown sugar. Also, remember to inspect the oven's internal temperature using a digital oven thermometer.
After that, take out the cookie dough from the fridge and follow these steps:
- Bake the cookies at 170 C/ 338 F (no fan) for 8 minutes
- After 8 minutes, take out the baking pan, and sprinkle extra chocolate chips on top of every cookie.
- Then, using a cookie cutter, apply some circular movement around the cookies to achieve perfectly round cookies. See details below "How to bake perfectly round cookies"
- Bake the cookies for further 4 minutes
- After the baking time ends, leave the cookies in the baking tray for a few minutes, then move them onto a cooling rack
- Enjoy the cookies straight after baking or you can store them at room temperature for 2-3 days!
If, for some reason, you forgot your cookies in the oven, check my how to fix burnt cookies guide. Did your cookies spread too much? Check out my guide on why cookies came out flat and how to fix them.
💡 Top Tip: Don't overbake these cookies! After 12 minutes, they might look underbaked but don't worry, they will set as they cool down. Overbaking the cookies will result in dry texture as opposed to gooey.
4. How to achieve gooey chocolate chip cookies with no brown sugar
Can you achieve gooey chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar? Yes, you can! There are several things to consider:
- For the cookie dough, the fat amount should be high enough, just like the dough in this recipe!
- All ingredients must be measured accurately so make sure to use a digital kitchen scale. A little bit too much flour can easily cause dry cookies
- Do not overbake the cookies. In fact, it's better to under bake them as over baked cookies will turn out to be dry. The exact baking time can vary depending on your oven. So, you might need to experiment.
💡 Top Tip: To avoid overbaking, don't focus on the timer because every oven is different. You can experiment with your own oven or you can simply watch the surface of the cookies and take them out once they look slightly gooey in the center, but baked at the edge.
5. How to bake perfectly round cookies
After the baking process, not every cookie comes out round, some of them might look slightly oval or irregular shapes. So, how can you achieve perfectly round cookies?
You can easily do this using a round cookie cutter! So, after the first 8 minutes, grab your cookie cutter and make sure it's larger than the cookies.
Hold the cookie cutter around a cookie and make consistent circular movements. Make sure that every movement touches the cookies so it will "reshape" the cookies into a circle. Repeat this process for all the remaining cookies.
💡 Top Tip: You can repeat this cookie-cutter trick after the full baking process (before the cookie chill down), if necessary.
🥣 Equipment Notes
Making soft chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar only needs basic baking equipment!
First, you will need a digital kitchen scale to measure the ingredients accurately. If using measuring cups, you might want to check out my tablespoons to cup conversion article.
Then, you will need an electric hand mixer and a rubber spatula to prepare the cookie dough properly.
Before the actual baking process, remember to check the oven temperature using a digital oven thermometer. After the baking process, be sure to let the cookies cool down on a cooling rack.
🎓 Expert tips
- Avoid modifying the recipe. This no-brown sugar chocolate chip cookie recipe is already a modified version of the classic chocolate chip cookies. Modifying 1 ingredient of a recipe will require you to modify some other ingredients too
- Don't forget to add a little amount of salt to the dough. It will balance the overall taste of these no brown sugar cookies and prevent the cookies from becoming too sweet.
- The quality of your chocolate chips and vanilla extract will greatly affect the flavor. Try your best to find high-quality semi-sweet chocolate chips that melt well and have a deep cocoa flavor. In regards to the vanilla, use pure vanilla extract, not the fake ones
- It's mandatory to let the cookie dough rest either for 1 hour in the fridge or 15 minutes in the freezer before baking. This step is crucial to avoid the cookies over-spreading.
- Avoid overbaking the cookies as it will result in dry cookies.
Nope, it's not! Although brown sugar can help with a moist, chewy texture, you can still bake wonderful chocolate chip cookies without brown sugar.
Besides adding that special sweet and caramelly flavor, brown sugar helps retain moisture. Better moisture in cookies means a denser, chewier texture. Besides, since brown sugar is slightly acidic, it helps the alkaline baking soda to activate and make the cookies puffier.
Brown sugar contains white sugar and molasses. If you skip the brown sugar and not replacing it with any other sugar, of course, your cookies will taste bland. It may also get very dry and crumbly. Replacing brown sugar with something else, such as granulated sugar, however, can still give you tasty cookies although the flavor will be different, of course.
You have a variety of choices;
1. White sugar + molasses.
2. White sugar + maple syrup
3. White sugar only, like this recipe
4. Palm sugar
6. Honey or maple syrup
Yes, but you will need to modify the amount of another ingredient (e.g. adding more flour) so the dough will stay firm.
Yes, but you need to be careful because it's a liquid sweetener. Adding too much of it can change the consistency of the dough.
Simply keep these cookies in a closed container at room temperature for 2-3 days.
After the cookies are completely cool, put them in an airtight container lined with parchment paper. Then keep it in the freezer for up to 2 months. You can also freeze the dough before baking. The frozen cookie dough can be kept in an airtight container up to 2 months.
🍪 More Cookie Recipes
Chocolate Chip Cookies without Brown Sugar (VIDEO)
- 140 g (⅔ cups) Unsalted butter 82% fat, room temperature
- 140 g (⅔ cups) Granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoon Vanilla extract
- 1 Egg
- 200 g (1½ cups) All purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Baking soda
- 150 g (¾ cups) Chocolate Chips semi-sweet high quality chocolate
US customary cup measurement is an indicative figure only. Measure the ingredients with a digital scale by weight (gram). Baking is art but also science which requires precision and accuracy.
- With an Electric hand mixer cream butter and sugar together for 2-3 minutes
- Mix in the egg just until combined, then add vanilla
- Sift flour, salt, and baking soda together then fold the flour mixture into the dough with Rubber spatula
- Before the flour mixture fully combined into the dough add in chocolate chips
- Divide the dough into 8 equal balls (using a Digital scale is handy) and place them 2 baking sheets leaving enough space between them to spread. Do not soften the surface of the ball, in fact, try to keep it as rough as possible for a nice, crackly surface. Let them rest in the fridge for an hour
- Pre-heat oven to 170 C / 338 F (no fan)
- Bake the cookies in the following way: Bake for 8 minutes, then place more chocolate chips on top, then bake for a further 4 minutes. The cookies might look under baked at this point, however they will set as they cool
- At the 8 minutes mark, grab a. cookie cutter and apply circular movement around the cookies to make them perfectly round
- Store at room temperature (in an air-tight jar) for 2-3 days
- Measure your ingredients with a Digital scale for accuracy
- Use 82% European-style butter, pure vanilla extract and high-quality chocolate for the best taste
- Make sure you read my Expert tips section above to maximize your success. A short recipe alone is not able to cover all the necessary details, and science behind baking.
- Use the wet ingredients (butter, egg) at room temperature
- Respect the chilling time in the recipe, do not skip it or the cookies might end up very flat
- Try not to overbake your cookies if you prefer them fudge and gooey
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