Chewy chocolate cookies stuffed with crunchy, salty peanuts and a puddle of chewy caramel in the center. These come together quick, need some chill time and some shaping but result in a most pleasurable stuffed cookie. And they taste like a snickers bar!
So if you google snickers cookies you’ll get a brown sugar cookie dough with bits of snickers. No shade to that but it’s basically a chocolate chip cookie, swap the chocolate for bits of a candy bar. You don’t need a recipe for that!
But how about a recipe for a cookie that’s reminiscent of snickers in a cookie way? I reimagined a snickers cookie as one that had all the components we love in a snickers bar without the overly sugary bar itself. So: chocolate (the cookie dough has dutch cocoa, and you can add chocolate chips too), peanuts (got those!) and caramel (stuff it into the center). I skip the nougat because well, it’s not readily available and I don’t want to make it (or ask you to make it) for something that’s perfect without it. Let’s dig in.
Ingredients for Salted Caramel Stuffed Chocolate Cookies
Butter: Should be unsalted and softened. Unsalted is really important here as salt will be coming in from the peanuts and the caramel so control is important.
Salt: Add based on your peanuts and caramels: if they are both salted add less, if they aren’t add more.
Sugar: White granulated. Avoid brown.
Egg: Yep, a whole egg! This dough is very similar to my double chocolate chip cookies but we’ve managed to get it just right without having to separate an egg.
Cocoa: Dutch process gives us a rich, chocolate taste and a dark cookie. Avoid natural cocoa.
Flour: High protein, KAF AP is what I use for these. If I use Gold Medal (protein content about 10% mine spread more). If you only have a lower protein swap in some bread flour.
Peanuts: Make sure they are nice and crunchy before they go into the dough. We don’t want gummy nuts in the cookies.
Caramels: I would love to tell you you can use homemade caramels here but alas, they will melt like crazy and make the cookie explode. I use Trader Joe’s salted chewy caramels in mine.
Chocolate chips: optional, just do add a bit more to the cookie.
How to make Salted Caramel Stuffed Chocolate Cookies
- Make the cookie dough ahead of time.
- Chill the dough.
- Portion the dough and press in chewy caramels.
Troubleshooting Salted Caramel Stuffed Chocolate Cookies
The cookies spread too much.
Either you used too little flour or too much butter or you’ve used the wrong kind of flour. These are prone to spreading so a higher protein flour is best. And use a scale!
The cookies didn’t spread.
I’d be surprised if this happened as there is a lot going on in these cookies to cause them to spread. Possibly you over-measured the flour or under-measured the butter.
The caramel busted out and caused the cookies to over-spread.
Shaping these must be done with care. You want the caramel slightly exposed on top (a little preview for future eaters but also to keep it away from the pan) but you also want to make sure you’ve got enough dough surrounding it so that when it melts in the oven it doesn’t spill out.
They are too salty/not salty enough.
Add salt based on your caramels and peanuts. If both are salted and you added salt then these will be overly salty. Find a balance based on the ingredients you are using.
Tips for Perfect Salted Caramel Stuffed Chocolate Cookies
- Make the dough a day early.
- Use a high protein all purpose flour.
- Toast the peanuts if they aren’t crunchy.
- Use store-bought good quality chewy caramels.
- Wrap the cookie dough around the caramel carefully.
Caramel Chocolate Peanut Cookies
Brownie like cookies dotted with crunchy peanuts and with a big puddle of salted caramel in the center
- ½ cup butter, unsalted and softened (113g)
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200g)
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup cocoa
- ¾ cups flour plus 2 tablespoons (115g) (use an all purpose flour of about 11% protein content)
- ½ cup peanuts, roasted
- Chewy caramels, store-bought
- (flaked sea salt, if your caramels are not salted and you like salt)
- Step 1 The dough needs to chill overnight in the fridge so you’ll make it the day before you intend to bake them. They last a few days and can be made ahead of time.
- Step 2 Beat the butter with the sugar, salt, vanilla and baking soda for about 3-4 minutes, until very light and fluffy. Add the egg and beat for another couple of minutes until it’s well combined.
- Step 3 Add the cocoa and flour, and beat to just combine. Fold in the peanuts. Set the dough in an airtight container in the fridge overnight.
- Step 4 The next day, transfer it to the counter to soften a bit before you start shaping (at least 30 minutes).
- Step 5 Scoop the dough into 2 tablespoons of dough onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Step 6 Press the dough balls with your thumb to create a little ‘bowl’ shape. Set the caramel in the center and form the dough back into a ball, leaving a bit of the caramel exposed (see photos). Repeat with all the dough. Set the baking tray in the freezer.
- Step 7 Preheat the oven to 350. Ensure there’s about 2 inches between each cookie, giving them room to spread. Sprinkle with flaked sea salt if desired. Bake for 12 minutes.