Brown Butter Fortune Cookies

brown butter fortune cookies
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Here’s another recipe to add to your “what to do with extra egg whites” list: brown butter fortune cookies! Making fortune cookies is both simple and fun, and the result is much tastier than what you typically get with your takeout.

The batter comes together simply with a bowl and a whisk, no mixer needed. Well you do need to brown some butter. You could use plain melted butter (skip the water if you do), but I think browning it is worth the few extra minutes for the extra flavor. This is a simple cookie, so the nuttiness really shines through!

My favorite way to make fortune cookies is in a waffle cone maker. It’s fast and produces perfectly even, crisp rounds. I have a Chef’s Choice 838 which is sadly discontinued, but try calling up your local kitchenware or restaurant supply store to see if they have one lurking around (that’s how my husband found ours). I suspect a pizzelle or krumkake iron would also work very nicely, though I don’t own those kitchen gadgets (yet…). However, you can definitely make fortune cookies successfully in a regular oven as well, so don’t let a lack of equipment deter you!

Shaping the fortune cookies takes a little practice; but after a couple goes you’ll be set. The cookies are hot, so you might want to wear gloves or use the edge of a tea towel to protect your fingers. (I don’t bother, but I have asbestos hands.) Placing the shaped cookies into an egg carton helps lock the shape in as they cool completely.

fortune cookies egg carton

Here are a couple different ways to shape the cookies; try both and see what works best for you.

Don’t worry if the shaping takes you a few tries. Even if you end up with some misshaped cookies, they’ll still taste wonderful! By the way, fortune cookie factories often sell their misshapen cookies. One place in my hometown calls them the “unfortunates”…ha!

Baker’s Notes:

  • I like to use a 1 Tbsp cookie scoop / disher to portion the thin batter.
  • If baking the cookies, I find it easiest to spread the batter on silicone mats, such as a Silpat, versus parchment paper. The mats don’t crinkle and produce smoother cookies.
  • Every oven is different so I recommend baking a single test cookie to determine the perfect timing for you. (Let the cool completely so you can accurately evaluate the crispness.) But If you find out after the cookies have cooled that the centers aren’t completely crisp, it’s ok — you can bake them in a low (250F) oven for 5-10 minutes, or until dry.
  • Once your fortune cookies have cooled completely, you can drizzle on or dunk them in some tempered chocolate for extra flair. These would make the perfect edible Valentine’s day cards!
  • Use this same batter to make ice cream cones, bowls, or curved tuiles!
fortune cookies baked and waffled
brown butter fortune cookies

Brown Butter Fortune Cookies

Yield: 15-18 cookies
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

Brown butter fortune cookies are delightfully crisp and nutty. Include personalized messages for the perfect edible gift! Fortune cookies can either be baked or cooked in a waffle cone iron.

Ingredients

  • 56g unsalted butter (yields ~45g browned butter)
  • 30g cold water
  • 100g egg whites (about 3 large), at room temperature
  • 80g granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp pure almond extract (optional)
  • 80g all purpose flour

Instructions

  1. Brown the butter: Place the cubed butter in a small, light-colored saucepan over medium-low heat. Once the butter has melted, turn the heat up to medium-high. Stir frequently with a heatproof spatula, scraping the sides and bottom of the pan as needed. The butter will crackle, foam, turn clear gold, then finally start browning. It’s done when the crackling subsides and you smell toasted nuts. This process takes about 10 minutes total, but the butter can go from browned to burnt in a flash—so keep an eye on it. Pour the butter and all the toasty bits into a heatsafe bowl and add 30g cold water. Cool to room temp.
  2. Mix the batter: In a medium bowl, whisk together egg whites, sugar, and salt until frothy (1-2 minutes). Add the extracts and cooled butter; mix until very well combined. Sift in the flour and whisk until smooth. Cover and rest at room temperature while you preheat the oven or waffle cone iron. If you’re going to include fortunes in your cookies, have them prepared before you start baking the cookies.
  3. To bake fortune cookies in the oven: Preheat the oven to 350F. Line two baking sheets with silicone mats. Using an offset spatula or back of a spoon, spread a 1 Tbsp portion of batter into a thin circle 4-5″ in diameter. Bake until golden, about 9-11 minutes. Slide an offset spatula under the entire cookie to release, then immediately shape (see step 5). Note: I recommend doing a test bake with one cookie to determine the correct baking time for your oven. After you’ve figured it out, I would stick to baking two at a time as the window to shape the fortune cookies is short, 10-15 seconds once the cookies come out of the oven. Use a cool baking sheet / silicone mat each time or the excess heat will make the batter difficult to spread.
  4. To make fortune cookies in a waffle cone iron: Cook 1 Tbsp portions according to manufacturer’s instructions (mine took 85-90 seconds), then immediately shape (see step 5).
  5. To shape fortune cookies: Place the fortune, if using, in the center of the cookie. Fold the cookie in half to create a half-moon. Hold the cookie rounded side down. Pull the corners up so they meet while pushing the middle down, creating the classic fortune cookie shape. Alternatively, you can fold the cookie, rounded side up, over the edge of a loaf pan or glass. Try both methods and see which works best for you. Refer to the videos above for more visual guidance. Hold the cookie in place until it sets, 5 to 10 seconds. Place shaped cookie into the space of an empty egg carton, tips facing down down. Let cool completely.
  6. Storage: Store fortune cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.

Notes

Recipe adapted from Red House Spice.

fortune cookies square

Brown Butter Rice Krispie Treats

rice krispie treat stack

Here’s the thing: I don’t mind complicated recipes. Since I break a lot of my baking into multiple days, a long list of directions doesn’t usually put me off. Plus, there’s something really satisfying about seeing larger projects come to life!

But sometimes you just need simple, 30-minutes-no-oven-required back pocket recipes; and this is one of those gems. These are not your back-of-the-box Rice Krispie treats. These are BROWN BUTTER RICE KRISPIE TREATS. But good news, they’re practically just as easy as the original recipe. What makes them special?

  • Brown butter. If you’re going to melt the butter anyways, why not take a few extra minutes and brown it for that extra delicious nutty edge? Oh yeah, this also calls for double the butter compared to the original recipe, because you only live once (don’t worry, it’s not so much that they’re greasy).
  • More marshmallows. WAY more marshmallows. And some are left unmelted for an extra surprise. Nothing is worse than a dry Rice Krispie Treat.
  • Thick, bakery-style pieces. I like my treats tall, so I make them in an 8×8 pan (I do the same thing with brownies). Double the recipe if you’re making this in a 9×13 pan; no thin and wimpy Rice Krispie treats here!
  • Salt. One of my pet peeves is under-salted baked goods. Especially when you’ve got all the sweetness from the marshmallows in there — you need a little bit of salt to round out the flavor. You might as well throw a dash of vanilla in there while you’re at it.

OK, enough talking. Here we go!

rice krispie treats close up

Brown Butter Rice Krispie Treats

Makes 9 – 16 treats, depending on how big you like them

Ingredients

  • 113g / 8 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 425g / 10 cups mini marshmallows, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher or sea salt
  • Dash of pure vanilla extract
  • 160g / 6 cups crispy rice cereal, such as Rice Krispies (about half a 12-ounce box)

Method

  1. Line an 8×8 pan with foil. Lightly butter or oil the foil for easy removal. Measure out all your ingredients — this is a quick and simple recipe, but once you start, you do need to move quickly!
  2. In a large pot over medium-low heat, brown the butter. It will melt, foam, turn clear gold, then finally start browning (and smelling nutty). Stir frequently with a silicon spatula or wooden spoon, scraping the sides and bottom of the pan as needed.
  3. When the butter has browned, take the pan off the heat and add the salt, vanilla, and 8 cups of marshmallows. Stir constantly until the marshmallows are melted and you have a smooth mixture. If the residual heat from the butter isn’t enough to melt the mallows completely, turn the heat back to low.
  4. Add the cereal and stir until evenly coated with the marshmallow mixture. Stir in the remaining two cups of mini marshmallows.
  5. Immediately scrape the mixture into the prepared pan and, using a greased silicon spatula or a piece of greased parchment/wax paper, press it firmly into an even layer. Let cool completely at room temperature before cutting into squares.
  6. Store in an airtight container and eat within 3 days.

rice krispie treats in hand

rice krispie treats marshmallows