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Browned Butter Cashew Cookies

A shortbread cookie that will melt in your mouth! The rich, savory flavors from browned butter, coconut oil and cashews come together so perfectly in these cookies! Topped with a browned butter and vanilla bean frosting and a cashew, these are delectable and pretty on a platter…if they last that long!

If you’re looking for a cookie that is sweet, savory, and full of melt-in-your-mouth goodness, this is the one! Browned butter, need I say more? Now if you haven’t heard or tried brown butter before, I’ll briefly explain what it is and I promise you, it’ll be one of the best things to involve in your baking. Brown butter is cooking the butter just beyond the point of being melted. The butter will become foamy just as it begins to brown and then as it’s stirred down, it becomes nice and toasty. Browning butter brings out such a caramelized, nutty richness to its flavor which is easily enveloped in any bake that it’s a part of.

A helpful tip when browning butter: After browning your butter, place the butter in a large stainless steel or glass bowl in an ice bath. This brings the temperature of the butter down more quickly. Using a spatula, scrape down the butter, stirring through one time before using it in bakes. If you’re planning on using it later, it can be put in an airtight container and stored in the refrigerator.


1 cup unsalted butter

½ cup coconut oil

½ cup light brown sugar

2 tablespoons molasses

1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste

½ cup cashews, finely chopped

Demerara sugar, for rolling

1 cup whole cashews, reserved for topping

For the frosting:

3 cups powdered sugar

½ cup unsalted butter, browned

1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste

2 to 4 tablespoons heavy cream or milk


Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring continuously until butter reaches a rich, golden brown. Watch butter very closely to ensure it does not burn. This will take about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool completely. Repeat this process with butter for frosting (1 stick) and reserve for later.

In a large bowl, using a handheld mixer, cream browned butter on medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes. Add coconut oil, mixing until fully combined. Add sugars and mix on medium speed until mixture becomes creamy. Stir in molasses and vanilla bean paste. Slowly stir flour into mixture, and stir until fully combined, scraping down sides of the bowl until mixed well. Stir in chopped cashews. Refrigerate dough for 30 to 60 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°. Roll cookie dough into 1-inch balls, then roll in demerara sugar. Place on baking sheets lined with parchment paper, about 1 inch apart. Bake for 12 minutes and let cool completely.

For the frosting:

In the bowl of a stand mixer or using a handheld mixer, mix browned butter and powdered sugar along with vanilla bean paste on low to medium speed. Slowly incorporate cream or milk, increasing to a medium to high speed, adding cream/milk to reach desired consistency. Spread frosting evenly over cookies, topping each cookie with a cashew.

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