Salty Chocolate Chunk Toffee Shortbread Cookies are buttery shortbread cookies, loaded with chunks of dark chocolate, toffee bits, hazelnuts and topped with flaky sea salt. So much flavor in every bite!
Did you bake something this weekend? I had a craving for shortbread. You know, buttery, melt-your-mouth shortbread. But I also wanted chocolate. So what’s a girl to do? Mix them together of course! So here is what came of my cravings. Rich, shortbread dough that’s not too sweet and packed to the brim with dark chocolate, little nuggets of Heath toffee and toasty hazelnuts. And just to be sure they aren’t too sweet…we give them a sprinkling of flaky sea salt. Can you say “YUM”?
Let’s start by saying that traditional chocolate chip/chunk cookies are the BEST! Yes, I really don’t think that in the cookie category, you can get much better than a thick and chewy, chocolate loaded cookie, warm from the oven. But SOMETIMES (though not very often) they just seem too sweet for the occasion. Sometimes, maybe you are looking for a cookie that seems a little more sophisticated. That’s when you need these Salty Chocolate Chunk Toffee Shortbread Cookies. (Say THAT three times fast!).
So what exactly is shortbread? Traditional shortbread is a combination of sugar, butter and flour. The proportions are usually 1 part sugar, 2 parts butter and 3 parts flour. This creates a dough that’s not overly sweet, but has a rich butter flavor and a slightly crumbly, melt-in-your-mouth texture. Since the dough has considerably less sugar in it than regular chocolate chip cookie dough, they aren’t nearly as sweet. (If you are wanting something a little sweeter, you can certainly substitute the dark chocolate with semisweet sweet). With this recipe, you will get some additional sweetness from the toffee bits too, so all together it creates a flavor that’s AH-MAZING!
And if chocolate and toffee isn’t enough to get you going, we’ve added toasted hazelnuts to send it over the top! Take the extra 5 minutes it takes to toast the nuts. You will be glad you did…it really makes a difference in the flavor. No hazelnuts at your local supermarket? No problem! Chopped pecans are just as tasty! These cookies are stuffed with so much goodness that every single bite you take is going to send you to the moon and back. (OK, maybe I am over exaggerating just a bit, but I am really excited for you to try these!).
The dough in these cookies is a little stiffer and should be able to be rolled into balls with your hands. If the dough seems sticky, chill it for 15 minutes or so to make it easier to roll. You shouldn’t have dough all over your palms when rolling. Be sure you flatten the dough balls with your fingers. Press each cookie until it is about 1/4-inch thick. These cookies hold their shape pretty well when baking, so make them nice and round and uniform.
One thing to note…you will be baking at a lower temperature, so the baking time is going to be a bit longer than most cookies. The cookies should be set and the edges will be just starting to turn a light golden color. That’s it! Give them a little sprinkle of salt, let them cool and you are all set! Salty Chocolate Chunk Toffee Shortbread Cookies are sure to be a regular rotation in your chocolate chip cookie baking routine! Happy Baking!
Tips and Tricks for Your Best Baking:
- Be sure butter is at room temperature, not melty.
- Use salted butter; if using unsalted butter, add 1/4 teaspoon salt to the dough when mixing butter and sugars.
- Beat butter and sugars together for the full 3 minutes to be sure sugars dissolve into butter.
- Watch nuts carefully while toasting, as they can quickly go from golden brown to burned.
- Use a cookie scoop to measure dough for uniform sized cookies.
- Use high quality ingredients, especially dark chocolate.
- Coarse sea salt can be substituted for the sea salt flakes.
- Let cookies cool for the full 5 minutes on pan before transferring to cooling rack. Warm cookies are fragile and will break if moved too soon.
Yields 24 cookies
- 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts or pecans
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 3/4 cup flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
- 1/3 cup toffee bits
- 1 (4-oz.) bar dark chocolate, chopped
- -sea salt flakes or coarse sea salt
- Line baking pans with parchment paper; set aside.
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Place nuts in single layer on metal baking pan. Bake for 5-8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Remove from oven and set aside to cool completely.
- REDUCE OVEN TEMPERATURE TO 300 DEGREES F.
- In medium bowl, combine butter, sugar and brown sugar; beat on medium speed 3 minutes, scraping bowl often. Stir in vanilla.
- Add flour and baking powder to butter mixture; blend until well combined.
- Stir in chocolate chips, toffee bits, chopped dark chocolate and nuts.
- Using a cookie scoop or level tablespoon, portion dough and roll into balls.
- Place cookie dough balls 2-inches apart on prepared baking pan. Press dough lightly to 1/4-inch thickness.
- Bake at 300 degrees F. for 15-17 minutes, until cookies are set and edges are just beginning to brown. Cool 5 minutes on pan. Sprinkle with sea salt.
- Remove cookies from pan and cool completely. Store in airtight container. Makes 24 cookies.