caramel cracker cookies (make your own candy, put it in a cookie, woohoo)
I’ve made these chocolate caramel cracker things a lot – usually around Christmas time when I decorate them all up and give them away as desserts. Then one day I day a thought… what if I put that crazy candy inside of a cookie? So I did it. And then I immediately gave away a bunch of the cookies because it was too much to have that deliciousness just sitting in my house. If you need some deliciousness in your house though, might I suggest making these? You might want to give some away, too. Or hey, keep ’em for yourself. I won’t tell.
First things first! We gotta make the candy. It’s easy, I swear. Don’t be frightened of the word “candy”. We won’t even use those scary candy thermometers or anything! Promise.
Brown sugar, butter, and condensed milk is what you need for the caramel goo. The chocolate chips are for later.
Get a tray and put your fancy silpat mat on it – or just aluminum foil. You’ll want this – it’ll make it easier to remove the candy and you’ll thank your stars you did that step.
For the goo, you just melt the butter and sugar with about half a can of sweetened condensed milk. Sit around and watch this on the stove and stir it every so often. You want to cook it until it starts to bubble and thicken up. From there, you’ll want it cook it for another 2 minutes. It’ll look all frothy and lovely, like below:
Pour the goo over your saltines.
Bake your crackers and goo in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes. Then pull it out and sprinkle chocolate chips over it:
My favorite chocolate chip in the world is Guittard – but the Guittard chips don’t work very well here for some reason. Instead, I use the Ghirardelli chocolate chips for this recipe – they melt a lot better. After you sprinkle those chocolate chips on, stick it back in the oven for 1-2 minutes. This lets the chips get all melty. Then use an offhand spatula to spread the chocolate evenly over the top.
My secret weapon: sprinkling smoked sea salt on top of the crackers after the chocolate’s been put on. It adds that little bit of saltiness plus the smoky flavor is just divine.
It kind of looks like wood chips, huh? Okay, maybe really small wood chips…
So anyway… Let the candy cool until the chocolate sets then remove from pan and chop.
In retrospect I would have liked bigger pieces than this – but chop (or don’t chop) to your heart’s desire!
I didn’t do the step by step thing for actually making cookies. I think I got lazy.
[imagine step by step cookie making here]
Phew! That was a lot of work, eh?
These cookies have a bit of a toffee note to them.
Also: I added more chocolate chips. Geez, why not?
So make these cookies! Or just the candy! Or make cookies and candy!
Chocolate Caramel Crackers
1 sleeve of saltine crackers
2 sticks of butter
1 cup of brown sugar
1/2 can (14oz) sweetened condensed milk (or 1 cup)
Chocolate Chips (I use Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips for this recipe)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil or use a baking mat. Place saltines in rows until the whole sleeve (or the whole tray) is used.
Melt butter, brown sugar and sweetened condensed milk together on a stove top. After the mixture boils, let it boil for 2-3 minutes. Be sure not to boil it for too long – I’ve had problems with overcooking it at this stage and getting a burnt taste later – not so good! The mixture will thicken as it boils.
Immediately pour the caramel mixture over the crackers – work quickly to not let it set. Even out the caramel with a spatula and place in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes.
Take the crackers out of the oven and sprinkle a good amount of chocolate chips over the top (about a cup or more – to your liking). Pop this back into the oven for 1-2 minutes to let the chocolate melt. Take the tray back out of the oven and use an offset spatula to spread the chocolate evenly over the crackers. While the chocolate it still warm, sprinkle with smoked sea salt. Let set and cool. Cut into pieces and ready your cookie dough.
Caramel Cracker Cookies
Adapted from Savory Sweet Life
1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp. coarse sea salt (for just regular table salt, use 1/2 tsp)
1 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 cup milk chocolate chips
Caramel Cracker Candy
Prevent oven to 350 degrees. Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes). Add eggs one at a time, beat to combine. Add vanilla and beat for another minute.
Mix together all of your dry stuffs and add to your wet mixture in thirds, until fully blended in. Add chocolate chips (if desired) and your caramel cracker candy bits. Mix until incorporated.
Drop by spoonfuls onto your baking sheet (I like using one of those medium size ice cream scoops for even sized cookies). Bake for about 12 minutes or until the edges of the cookies are a nice golden brown. Remove from the oven – you may need to let the cookies set on the tray for a couple of minutes until removing them to a cooling rack.