If you’re looking for a way to use up your sourdough starter discard, might I suggest these chewy sourdough chocolate chip cookies? Made with brown butter and sourdough discard, they are a great way to prevent food waste. You’re going to love this delicious cookie!
When I first started making sourdough, I quickly realized that I needed to devise a game plan to use my sourdough starter and not be so wasteful. The thought of throwing out precious food made me feel uncomfortable.
So I committed to getting creative and finding new ways to use my sourdough discard to bake more delicious food beyond just sourdough bread. I have so many ideas for muffins, cookies, and cakes, so buckle up, because this is just the beginning!
These may be one of my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipes. I love the tanginess the sourdough adds to these cookies. It’s such a unique flavor!
If you’re looking for more chocolate chip recipes (that don’t require you to have your own sourdough starter) check out these tahini pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, caramel chocolate chip bars, chocolate peanut butter krispie treats, or these Oreo chocolate chip cookies!
Why You’ll Love These Chocolate Chip Sourdough Discard Cookies
- Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies – These are perfectly chewy cookies with golden brown crispy edges.
- Simple to Make – I do love keeping things simple. The one caveat to that is you will need to chill the cookie dough if you want the best results. You don’t *have* to chill these cookies, but I highly recommend chilling them for 2-24 hours ahead of time.
- Brown Butter Makes These the Ideal Cookies – Browning the butter before adding it to the dough removes excess liquid. This results in a chewier cookie instead of a cake-like cookie.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Brown Butter – You’ll need to brown the butter. I use salted butter, but unsalted butter works too. Just add an extra 1/2 teaspoon of salt to the dough.
- Granulated Sugar – I use a mix of white sugar and brown sugar in this recipe (similar to these caramel chocolate chip cookies
- Brown Sugar – I use light-brown sugar, but dark brown sugar works great as well!
- All-Purpose Flour – I use all-purpose flour for these cookies, but bread flour would also be a great option!
- Eggs – Room-temperature eggs work best here. Take them out an hour or two before baking. If you forget, you can also set the eggs in a bowl of hot water for 5 minutes beforehand. For an (even more) chewy texture, you could use 1 egg and 1 egg yolk.
- Sourdough Discard – Make sure the discard is at room temperature. You could also use an active sourdough starter if you have a lot to use up. An active starter would give a more fermented flavor.
- Vanilla Extract
- Baking Soda and Salt – Baking soda is a leavening agent that gives rise to these cookies. The salt adds a depth of flavor and helps offset the sweetness of the cookies.
- Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips – You could also use dark chocolate chips, milk chocolate chips, or chocolate chunks.
See recipe card for quantities.
Step 1: First, you need to brown the butter. Cube the butter and add it to a saucepan on the stove over medium heat. With a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, mix continuously as the butter begins to melt and boil.
Step 2: Keep mixing until a foam appears on the top and the butter underneath it is brown! Remove from heat and set aside–allowing it to cool slightly before making the dough.
Step 3: Use an electric mixer or the paddle attachment on a stand mixer to cream together the brown butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar. Gradually add the eggs one at a time.
Step 4: Add the vanilla extract and sourdough discard.
Step 5: In a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking soda, and salt. Then add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl to incorporate all the ingredients thoroughly.
Step 6: Fold in the chocolate chips. Next, it’s time to chill the dough. You can keep the dough in the bowl and cover it with plastic wrap, or use a cookie scoop (or your hand) to scoop it into dough balls (about 2 teaspoon-sized) and place on a baking tray. Then cover with plastic wrap and allow the cookies to chill for at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours if you’re looking for more of a sourdough flavor. When it’s time to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the cookie balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet, spacing them about 2 inches apart from each other. Bake for 11-13 minutes. Allow to cool slightly on the cookie sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool further.
You’ll know the cookies are ready to be taken out of the oven when the outside edges are crispy and golden brown, but the middle is still a bit under-baked. They will bake further on the baking sheet.
- Hand Mixer or Stand Mixer – either work to make these cookies!
- Mixing Bowl
- Baking Sheet
- Parchment Paper – I like to line my cookie sheets with parchment paper to easily remove them once baked.
- Rubber Spatula – I use this to help scape the ingredients from the bowl to make sure I am incorporating all of them evenly.
- Wooden Spoon – to mix the butter as it browns.
- Medium Saucepan – to brown the butter on the stove.
- Cookie Scoop – Not necessary, but helps keep the cookies all similarly sized.
Store Already-Baked Cookies – Store these baked sourdough cookies at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 5 days. You can also freeze them by storing in a freezer-safe bag or container for up to 3 months.
Freeze Cookie Dough – If you want to freeze the cookie dough, store it in a freezer-safe container for up to 2 months. If you want to easily bake the cookies straight from the freezer, chill the cookie dough balls first and then transfer the dough balls to a plastic bag and store in the freezer.
Bake Frozen Cookie Dough Balls – When it’s time to bake the frozen cookie dough balls, simply bake straight from the freezer. Add an extra minute or two to bake time.
Top Tips for Baking the Best Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Use room temperature ingredients. Let your eggs, butter, and sourdough discard sit at room temperature before making the cookie dough.
- Bread flour or all-purpose flour would be great options for these cookies. You could also use half-bread flour and half-all-purpose flour. For ease and accessibility, my recipe uses all-purpose flour.
- Chill the dough. I know it can be a pain, but if you make these in advance, it’s well worth it to give the dough time to chill. It helps keep the cookies from spreading too thin and getting crispy. The longer the cookie dough chills, the more tangy the cookies will taste due to the sourdough.
- Feel free to add nuts or different flavored chocolate chips or chunks, such as white chocolate, dark chocolate, or milk chocolate.
Did You Make These Cookies and Love Them?
If so, please leave a review and/or comment below. Your review truly makes a difference!
Brown butter adds a rich, nutty flavor to these cookies. It also adds complex flavor and results in chewier cookies. More importantly, browning the butter gets rid of excess liquid which is necessary when baking cookies with sourdough discard!
You need to make sure that all the ingredients are mixed evenly. Also, chill time is very important and will prevent these cookies from getting flat or thin.
More Baked Goodness
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
Sourdough Discard Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 1 cup brown butter salted butter, 2 sticks cubed
- 1 cup brown sugar light or dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup sourdough discard room temperature
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour or bread flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- To begin, brown the butter. Cube the 2 sticks of butter and add it to a saucepan on the stove over medium heat. Mix with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula continuously as the butter melts, begins to boil, and eventually starts to get foamy (about 5-7 minutes). Once the butter is brown underneath the foam, remove from heat and set aside to let it cool.
- Once the browned butter has cooled slightly, pour it in a large mixing bowl. Add the brown sugar and granulated sugar. With an electric mixer, cream the sugars and brown butter together for about 2 minutes.
- Next, mix in the eggs one at a time. Add the vanilla extract. Finally, mix in the sourdough discard until just combined. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the bowl of wet ingredients, mixing until just combined. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl to incorporate all the ingredients.
- Finally, fold in the chocolate chips. Chill the dough for at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours before baking. You can keep the dough in the mixing bowl and cover with plastic wrap then place in the fridge, or scoop the cookie dough balls ahead of time and place them on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and place in the fridge to chill.
- When it's time to bake, preheat the oven to 350℉. Place the cookie dough balls 2 inches from each other on the baking sheet and bake for 10-13 minutes. The cookies will be done when the outside edges are golden brown and the middle of the cookies are still slightly underbaked. Let rest on the baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy!