Salted Caramel Mocha Cookies is a rift on our favorite seasonal drink from Starbucks. When everybody else is craving Pumpkin Spice lattes (bleh! I am a pumpkin hater), we want the Salted Caramel Mocha! Think espresso laced with hot chocolate, topped with whip cream, drizzle of caramel and a salt sugar topping. Heaven in a cup! Unfortunately you can only get this drink for a limited time because they only carry the topping for a few months. Because of that we decided to figure out how to make this glorious drink at home. Then my husband,being the intelligent man that he is, said “Why don’t we turn this drink into cookies?” Sold!
So that is what we did. Took our favorite Starbucks drink and made it into cookies. I have mentioned a million times before that I am a texture person. These cookie are chewy, but crispy, chocolaty, buttery from the caramel , and have a nice, sweet, salty crunch because of the topping. If you are looking for something different to bring to your cookie exchange, these are it. You will receive,”Oooohhhs” and “Aaaahhhs!” They are just that special.
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter, cubed, at room temperature
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 pound semisweet chocolate chips
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter
- 4 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup cane sugar or light brown sugar
- 1 tbsp espresso powder
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ cup all-purpose flour, sifted
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ½ cup of husked hazelnuts, chopped (optional)
- 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp turbinado sugar (sugar in the raw)
- 2 tsp flaked sea salt
- ¾ cup caramel sauce
- Spread the sugar in a large skillet or wide saucepan and pour the water over it. Heat the sugar over medium heat, swirling the pan very gently, just enough to moisten the sugar evenly with the water
- Once the sugar is moistened and starting to cook, swirl the pan only if there are dry spots of sugar that aren't melting. Continue to cook the sugar until it begins to darken. Watch carefully, gently swirl the pan only if necessary, so it cooks evenly. It will look like a bubbly clear syrup. With a wooden spoon, stir only if you see very dark spots appearing. I noticed one side of the eye on our stove tends to get hotter than the other, so every so often I move the pot handle 180°, This help it to also cook more evenly.
- Once the caramel starts to turn an even brown and begins to smoke, remove the pan from the heat. Be vigilant because it goes from clear to brown very quickly. The process from sugar water to brown syrup probably takes about 10 minutes or more. Drop in the cubes of butter. Stir the butter in with a whisk until it's completely melted, then slowly whisk in the cream, stirring until the sauce is smooth. Grab the wooden spoon and stir along the sides of the pot to loosen any bits of caramel that may be stuck to the pan. The sauce will keep up to two weeks in the fridge. If cooled and re-warmed it may need to be thinned with a bit of cream or milk.
- In a large glass or metal bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, melt the chocolate with the butter, stirring a few times, until smooth, about 5-7 minutes. Be careful to make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the simmering water.
- In another large bowl, using a handheld electric mixer, beat the eggs with the sugar at medium speed until thick and pale, about 5 minutes. Beat in the vanilla, espresso powder and salt. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the melted chocolate, then fold in the flour and baking powder. If using, stir in the hazelnuts. Scrape the batter into a shallow baking dish, cover and freeze until well chilled and firm, about 1 hour. Or chill overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 350° and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Working in batches, scoop about 1 heaping tablespoon of dough onto the prepared baking sheets, about 2 inches apart. Bake for about 12-14 minutes, until the cookies are dry around the edges and cracked on top. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 10 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.
- If the caramel sauce is cold, warm it in some hot water until it's a consistency that can be used to drizzle. In a small bowl or ramekin, mix together the turbinado sugar and sea salt. Drizzle the caramel sauce on the cookies and then sprinkle with the sugar salt mixture.
More sweets here!