Salted Toffee and Brown Butter Blondies

updated Jan 28, 2021
Salted Toffee & Brown Butter Blondies

Chewy blondies made with brown butter and crunchy pieces of chocolate-coated toffee.

Makes16 bars

Prep10 minutes

Cook18 minutes to 23 minutes

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Salted toffee and brown butter blondies stacked.
Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman | Food Stylist: Jesse Szewczyk

Blondies go from mixing bowl to oven in minutes, making them one of the easiest cookies I know (yes, blondies are cookies!). But as simple as they are to whip up, blondies can be a bit boring, often tasting just of brown sugar and not much else.

In an attempt to inject blondies with bold, exciting flavor, I reimagined the classic recipe, adding nutty brown butter, a generous pinch of salt, and a handful of chocolate-coated toffee pieces. The result is perfectly chewy blondies with a pop of texture and rich, caramel flavor. Here, I’ll show you how to make them in four simple steps.

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman | Food Stylist: Jesse Szewczyk

1. Brown your butter for an extra boost of nutty flavor.

Browning the butter gives these blondies an added layer of flavor that brings out their rich caramel notes — and it couldn’t be easier to do. Just cook your butter over medium heat, stirring often to prevent the bottom from burning, until the butter turns golden-brown and smells nutty. It’s a simple upgrade that makes a huge difference, and it doesn’t even require additional ingredients. After the butter is browned, let it cool for at least 15 minutes before making the batter. The butter will be very hot at this point, so be careful.

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman | Food Stylist: Jesse Szewczyk

2. Mix everything together by hand for the chewiest texture.

The great thing about these blondies is that they come together in just one bowl without having to bust out an electric mixer. After your butter has cooled you just add brown sugar, water (to compensate for the water lost during browning), eggs, vanilla extract, salt, baking powder, and flour directly to the bowl and mix it together by hand. By not creaming the butter and sugar, you avoid adding excessive air to the blondies that would otherwise make them cakey. We want these blondies to be dense and decadent, so skip the mixer and do it by hand. It’s easier and tastier — a true win-win.

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman | Food Stylist: Jesse Szewczyk

3. Add chopped chocolate-coated toffee to give them a pop of texture and rich, caramel flavor.

The star of these blondies is definitely the chopped toffee bars. In addition to the welcomed crunch, the toffee melts slightly and combines with the batter to lend it a bold caramel flavor that makes these blondies sing.

My favorite brand of chocolate-coated toffee is Heath bars, which can be found in most grocery stores (often near the checkout) or at pharmacies such as CVS. Skor brand toffee bars are also a great option, although a bit harder to find in my experience. Two standard 1.4-ounce bars of either brand yields the perfect amount of chopped toffee for these blondies (Pro tip: Save about two tablespoons of the chopped toffee to sprinkle on top of the batter to make them photo-worthy.)

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman | Food Stylist: Jesse Szewczyk

4. Finish with a sprinkling of sugar and flaky salt.

Right before you pop your blondies in the oven, sprinkle the top with a tablespoon of granulated sugar. This gives the blondies a crunchy texture that contrasts wonderfully against the soft and chewy interior. It also makes the blondies sparkle — which is always a plus.

If you have flaky sea salt on hand, sprinkle it on after you bake the blondies. I find that sprinkling the salt on before baking tends to make it melt and lose its crunchy texture, so it’s best to hold off until the last minute. My favorite brand is Maldon, but any large, flaky salt will work wonderfully. After that, they are done!

Read more: The Flaky Sea Salt with Thousands of Near-Perfect Amazon Reviews

Ready to bake these cookies? Tag your photos #Jessescookieclub to join in the fun!

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman | Food Stylist: Jesse Szewczyk

Welcome to Jesse’s Cookie Club, where Studio Food Editor (and resident cookie expert) Jesse Szewczyk shares a brand-new monthly recipe that transforms a classic cookie into something new, bold, and exciting. From nutty brown butter blondies to chewy sweet potato snickerdoodles, these treats are anything but boring — and every recipe includes step-by-step photos so any level of baker can make them. Follow along and share your cookie creations using #Jessescookieclub.

Salted Toffee & Brown Butter Blondies

Chewy blondies made with brown butter and crunchy pieces of chocolate-coated toffee.

Prep time 10 minutes

Cook time 18 minutes to 23 minutes

Makes 16 bars

Nutritional Info


  • 8 tablespoons

    (1 stick) unsalted butter

  • 2

    (1.4-ounce) chocolate-coated toffee bars, such as Heath or Skor

  • 1 cup

    packed light or dark brown sugar

  • 1

    large egg

  • 2 tablespoons


  • 1 tablespoon

    vanilla extract

  • 1 1/4 cups

    all-purpose flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1 tablespoon

    granulated sugar (optional)

  • Flaky salt, for sprinkling


  1. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8x8-inch baking dish with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two opposite sides like a sling.

  2. Cut 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter into 1/2-inch cubes and melt in a small saucepan over medium heat. Continue cooking, stirring constantly while scraping the bottom of the pot with a rubber spatula to release any browned bits, until the butter is light brown, smells nutty, and no longer foamy, 3 to 4 minutes. Immediately scrape into a large heatproof bowl and let cool for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, coarsely chop 2 (1.4-ounce) chocolate-coated toffee bars into 1/2-inch pieces (about 3/4 cup).

  3. Add 1 cup packed brown sugar, 1 large egg, 2 tablespoons water, and 1 tablespoon vanilla extract to the browned butter and whisk until smooth and glossy. Add 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Stir with a rubber spatula until a thick batter forms. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the chopped toffee for the top, then fold the remaining into the batter.

  4. Transfer the batter into the prepared baking pan and smooth into an even layer. Scatter the reserved toffee over the top, then with sprinkle 1 tablespoon granulated sugar if desired.

  5. Bake until the edges are browned and pulling away from the pan, and a tester inserted in the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs, 18 to 23 minutes. Sprinkle with flaky salt and let cool in the pan at least 20 minutes. Cut into 16 squares.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Leftover blondies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Credit: Kitchn