Caramel-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookie Cups

Very little is better in life than a big, warm, thick, chocolate chip cookie.

Except when that big, warm, thick cookie is stuffed with a plump caramel.

We’re closing in on almost one year since I posted the Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Cups and since that recipe continues to be popular with readers and on Pinterest, I decided to one-up it.

Because stuffed cookies will always one-up their unstuffed counterparts. Fact.

The beauty of this recipe is that you don’t need a mixer (cookie dough without a mixer!), it’s made in one bowl, and you don’t have to chill the dough.

If you’re prone to having your cookies spread or not bake up as thick as you wish, this recipe just answered your cookie prayers because they’re baked in a muffin pan and nearly foolproof.

From start to finish, you’re looking 30 minutes between you and warm, thick, stuffed cookie heaven.

I altered my previous recipe in a few ways. l simply melted the butter in the micro rather than browning it. Feel free to take the extra 5 minutes to brown it if you’d like.

I changed the type and quantity of flour, from 1 1/2 cups bread flour to 1 3/4 cups all-purpose. For most of 2012, I was into baking cookies with bread flour because it makes them chewier. Chewiness is great, but bread flour can also dry out the dough and make the cookies tougher.

After a couple batches of borderline dry and tough cookies, I’ve dropped bread flour in my cookies and have been back to only using all-purpose for most of this year. I usually need slightly more AP flour than bread flour and in this case, I used 1/4 cup more than before.

Finally, I added cornstarch to the dough, a trick I’ve been using for over a year. I’ve used it in at least 15 cookie recipes, including Lofthouse Soft Peanut Butter Chip Sugar CookiesLofthouse Soft Sugar Sprinkles CookiesPumpkin Spice CookiesPeanut Butter Coconut Oil CookiesM&Ms CookiesSnickers CookiesTwix Bar CookiesCaramel Corn Chocolate Chip Cookies, and Smores Cookies.

The cornstarch helps to keep this dough softbatch-style and the cookies stay lighter, without turning into little hockey pucks. And I’ve made plenty of those in my recipe tests.

To make the cookies, melt 1 stick of butter in the micro, stir in 1 egg, sugars, vanilla. Then add flour, baking soda, and cornstarch. Stir in the chocolate chips and you’re ready to start stuffing.

Using a 1/4-cup measure, form a dough ball, stuff a Werther’s Original® Baking Caramels inside.

Seal up the edges to make sure the caramel is completely covered with dough or it will bake into the side of the pan and stick horribly. It’s a real elbow grease-infused hot mess if that happens.

These Werther’s caramels are a dream to work with because they’re wrapped in paper, not cellophane, and unwrapping them takes seconds, not minutes. Anyone who’s used caramels in a recipe knows that it can take 15 minutes to unwrap 2 dozen caramels if they’re wrapped in cellophane. I have literally not made recipes that call for caramels because I loathe the unwrapping process. Problem solved with these.

Strategically place any chocolate chips that are in the bottom of your mixing bowl onto the top and sides of the dough for a nice pop of chocolate. That visual appeal stuff.

The recipe makes exactly 1 dozen cookies but if you don’t need or want all 12 at once, simply refrigerate the unused dough mounds in an airtight container for up to 5 days, or freeze for up to 4 months.

As is the case with almost all of my cookie recipes, you can make this dough in advance and then bake only what you need.

The cookies are buttery soft with squishy interiors, and a slight chewiness around the edges. The chocolate is melty and gooey, and will make you reach for the napkins.

After writing a cookbook and a dessert blog for almost 5 years, my husband is largely immune to any sweets I make, and generally not that impressed anymore. On top of that, he’s not a cookie guy (give him ice cream), but he hoarded these and said they’re some of my best cookies ever. 

The best part is finding that big buttery, rich caramel in the center.

It’s like digging for a treasure and striking gold.

Caramel-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookie Cups

If you’re prone to having your cookies spread or not bake up as thick as you wish, this foolproof recipe is what you need (courtesy of baking the cookies in a muffin pan) and you don’t even need to use a mixer. The dough is made in one bowl, you don’t have to chill it, and from start to finish, 30 minutes is all that separates you from warm, thick, stuffed cookie heaven. The cookies are buttery soft with squishy interiors, and a slight chewiness around the edges. The chocolate is melty and gooey, and will make you reach for napkins. The best part is finding a big buttery, rich caramel in the center. It’s like digging for a treasure and striking gold.

Did you make this recipe?


1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 large egg
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
pinch salt, optional and to taste
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
12 Werther’s Original® Baking Caramels, unwrapped


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a Non-Stick 12-Cup Regular Muffin Pan extremely well with cooking spray; set aside. I don’t like the cosmetic look of paper liners because of ridges they leave, and have never tested this recipe with them and unsure if they stick.
  2. To a large microwave-safe mixing bowl, add the butter and heat to melt, about 1 minute on high power. Allow the butter to cool momentarily so you don’t scramble the egg.
  3. Add the egg, sugars, vanilla, and whisk to combine.
  4. Add the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, optional salt, and stir until just combined; don’t overmix
  5. Fold in the chocolate chips.
  6. Using a 1/4-cup measure, portion out the dough, into 12 equal-sized pieces. I found that a scant 1/4 cup was an ideal size and allowed for 12 cookies. If you use a slightly slightly overfilled 1/4-cup, you may only yield 10-11 cookies. The chocolate chips may be prone to falling out, but just keep pressing them back in, and strategically place chips at the top of the dough mounds.
  7. To the center of each dough mound, insert 1 caramel. Tuck the sides up the dough up around the caramel so that it’s totally contained and sealed within dough. This is important so it doesn’t touch the sides of the pan while baking since they could turn into sticky, molten mess. Roll each stuffed mound of dough between palms to form smooth balls and place 1 ball into each of the 12 cavities of the prepared pan.
  8. Bake for about 10 to 11 minutes, or until tops are just set; making sure not to overbake because cookies will continue to cook in pan (carryover cooking) while they cool. Allow cookies to cool in pan for 15 to 20 minutes, or until firm enough to remove. I baked the cookies shown for 10 1/2 minutes and allowed them to cool in pan for 20 minutes. To dislodge cookies if you’re having any trouble, gently run the tip of  rubber spatula around the rim of the cavity. Don’t use a knife because it’ll scratch the pan. Or simply invert the pan over a your work surface and tap on the bottom and they’ll pop out. Cookies will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months. Unbaked cookie dough mounds can be stored airtight in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or frozen for up to 4 months, so consider baking only as many cookies as desired and save the remaining dough to be baked in the future when desired.

Adapted from Browned Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Cups

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Fellow caramel lovers, visit The Werther’s Caramel Shoppe for caramel recipes, tips and tricks.

Reminder to enter the Magimix Colored Vision Toaster Giveaway ($200 Value) and the Outdoor Triple Burner Stove and Artisan Pizza Oven Giveaway ($350 Value)

Have you ever made stuffed cookies? Favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe or recipe that uses caramels?