Forget Chocolate And Upgrade Your Cookies With Butterscotch Chips

When it comes to cookie mix-ins, chocolate chips reign supreme. Whether it's due to their rich cocoa flavor, their creamy, melty texture, or pure childhood nostalgia, there is a lot to love when it comes to chocolate chips. That being said, they do not need to be the default option when baking a batch of cookies. In fact, there is one mix-in that can be even more effective at creating a flavorful and appealing treat. Next time you find yourself putting together a bowl of cookie dough, try swapping out the chocolate and stirring in butterscotch chips instead.

Butterscotch chips are a type of confection similar in appearance, texture, and ingredients to chocolate chips, but with butterscotch flavoring instead of cocoa. This gives the chips a sweet, toffee-like, and yes, buttery taste. Despite the name, there is no actual Scotch or alcohol present in butterscotch; it is simply a reference to Scotland, where the ingredient is said to have originated. While chocolate chips work in cookies because of their contrasting flavors, butterscotch chips are an easy way to elevate cookies by providing similar, complementary flavors to the cookie dough. By doubling down on the tasting notes of brown sugar and toasty butter, the best parts of the cookie are amplified, making for an intensely indulgent eating experience.

The best butterscotch and cookie pairings

Butterscotch chips work well in a wide variety of cookies. For example, these sweet and simple banana cookies will become studded with pops of decadent caramel flavor that add complexity and texture. Buttery cookies like shortbread will become even more rich when butterscotch chips are incorporated. Finally, these chips shine bright when given the opportunity to play against the flavors in a saltier cookie, such as this classic peanut butter cookie, as the sweet and salty combination is always a success.

Using butterscotch chips in place of chocolate chips when baking cookies is a great opportunity to further experiment with additional mix-ins. Toasted nuts, like walnuts, hazelnuts, or pistachios, offer a contrasting crunch to the creamy chip while exaggerating its richness. Coconut is a common pairing, as is seen in seven-layer magic bars, where the mild fruitiness melds beautifully with the molasses notes of the butterscotch. Buttery pretzels and savory potato chips both offer a balancing element that will heighten all other flavors present. And, while we are suggesting substituting chocolate chips for butterscotch ones, we won't blame you if you decide to use both in a single recipe.