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Chocolate Caramel Cookies

These chocolate caramel cookies are proof that you can’t judge a book by its cover. Inside each rich, chocolate cookie is a gooey caramel center!

Stack of chocolate caramel cookies with caramel seeping out

I love a cookie that’s hiding a surprise. These chewy chocolate peanut butter munchies are fantastic if you love peanut butter cups, cream cheese-filled gingerbread for the holidays, and these chocolate caramel cookies, which are so good you’ll want to have them 365 days a year.

Why You’ll Love These Chocolate Caramel Cookies

  • Easy to make. No need to boil your own caramel on the stovetop—this recipe calls for store-bought caramels, which are tucked into the cookie dough.
  • Made with pantry staples. Other than the caramels, the ingredients are things you’re likely to have on hand in your kitchen, especially if you bake regularly.
  • A classic combination. Caramel isn’t typically one of my go-to flavors, but even I can’t resist when it’s paired with chocolate. If you like chocolate-caramel bars, you’ll enjoy these chocolate caramel cookies, too.
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Overhead view of ingredients for chocolate caramel cookies

What You’ll Need

Scroll down to the recipe card to find the ingredient quantities and recipe instructions.

  • Soft caramels – Soft Werther’s or the Kraft caramels you melt for making caramel apples are perfect, or splurge on a fancier variety. It’s up to you!
  • All-purpose flour – Here’s how to measure flour for baking.
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder – Learn more: Types of Chocolate: A Home Baker’s Guide
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Unsalted butter – Wonder why baking recipes usually call for unsalted butter? Learn more: Unsalted or Salted Butter: Which is Better for Baking?
  • Granulated sugar
  • Dark brown sugar – Dark brown sugar adds more depth to the flavor of these chocolate caramel cookies thanks to its higher molasses content.
  • Eggs – You’ll need one whole egg and one egg yolk. You can freeze the white for a recipe where you only need a white and no yolk!
  • Vanilla extract – I like to use my homemade vanilla extract.

How to Make Chocolate Caramel Cookies

  • Prepare. Preheat your to 350°F and line your baking sheets. Cut the caramels in half.
  • Mix the dry ingredients. Whisk the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a bowl.
  • Mix the wet ingredients. Use an electric mixer to beat the butter until it’s fluffy, then add the sugars. Once the sugar is incorporated, beat in the egg and egg yolk, followed by the vanilla.
  • Finish the dough. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low speed.
  • Form the cookies. Press a tablespoon of dough into a circle and put 2 caramel halves in the middle. Fold the dough up and around the caramels and seal. 
  • Bake. One pan at a time, bake the chocolate caramel cookies until set, or about 10 to 12 minutes.
  • Cool. Set the pans on wire racks to cool for 5 minutes. Then transfer the cookies from the pans directly to the racks to finish cooling. (Learn more: Why Every Baker Needs Wire Cooling Racks)

Tips for Success

  • Sift the cocoa powder. Especially if it’s been sitting in your pantry for a while, it can have a tendency to be a bit lumpy.
  • Soften the butter. Don’t forget to take the butter out before starting the recipe. This helps it mix smoothly into the dough. Learn more: How to Soften Butter
  • Don’t skip cutting the caramels. Do take the time to cut the caramels into smaller pieces. Doing this ensures that the cookie dough can wrap around them well. 
  • Pinch the dough closed. Make sure to seal the dough well—although there’s nothing wrong with a little warm caramel oozing out of a cookie!
  • Know the basics. If you’re new to baking, these baking tips for beginners are a great place to start.
Overhead view of chocolate caramel cookies on silpat with some broken to show gooey middles


  • Make them double chocolate. Use chocolate caramels instead of regular for an extra hit of chocolate in every bite.
  • Try another filling. Chocolate-covered almonds, Hershey’s kisses, hazelnuts… or use a bunch of different fillings for something like a Whitman’s Sampler of chocolate cookies. You won’t know what you get until you bite in!
  • Add a topping. Drizzle the cooled cookies with melted dark or white chocolate, or add flaky sea salt to the tops of the cookies for a sweet-and-salty combination.
Stack of chocolate caramel cookies, with top cookie bitten to show center

How to Store

Store chocolate caramel cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 to 4 days. You can heat them in the microwave for a few seconds to make the middles gooey if you’d like.

Can I Freeze This Recipe?

You can freeze these chocolate caramel cookies for up to 3 months in an airtight container or freezer bag. Heat them in the microwave before enjoying or let them thaw at room temperature.

Hand breaking apart chocolate caramel cookie to show gooey center

More Recipes With Caramel

Chocolate Caramel Cookies

Yield 36 cookies
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 32 minutes

These easy chocolate caramel cookies prove you can’t judge a book by its cover. Inside each soft, chewy cookie is a gooey caramel center!

Overhead view of chocolate caramel cookie broken in half to show gooey middle


  • 36 soft caramels
  • 2 & 1/4 cups (270g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (42g) unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners.
  2. Cut each caramel in half and set side.
  3. Whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  4. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Add the sugars and mix well. Mix in the egg and egg yolk; then, add vanilla.
  5. Reduce the mixer speed to low. Add the flour mixture and mix just until combined.
  6. Form a tablespoon of dough into a circle. Place 2 caramel halves in the center of the circle. Fold the dough around the caramels, making sure to seal well. Place each cookie on the prepared pans, leaving about 2 inches between cookies.
  7. Bake one pan at a time for 10 to 12 minutes or until the cookies are set.
  8. Cool the cookies on the pans on wire racks for 5 minutes. Then transfer the cookies from the pans directly onto a wire rack to cool completely.


Recipe adapted from The Ultimate Chocolate Cookie Book.

Store chocolate caramel cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 to 4 days. You can heat them in the microwave for a few seconds to make the middles gooey if you’d like.

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    20 Comments on “Chocolate Caramel Cookies”

  1. I love caramel so much!! I can’t bake these because I would probably eat them all in one sitting!

  2. Oh and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!

  3. Hi Jennifer,
    your blog looks great!
    Wow, FIVE cookbooks…I’m really jealous now =)
    Are they all so nice?
    These cookies look by the way pretty good to me, can’t wait for your variations! =)

  4. Wow, these sound terrific! Caramel and chocolate are such a yummy pairing!

  5. Nicole, thanks for the birthday wishes!

    Julia, I think the cookbooks will all be great. I already have quite a “to try” list. I’m trying to think of some good variations on these cookies.

    Gilly, they are good and, best of all, easy!

  6. Happy belated birthday! You should consider submitting these amazing cookies for SHF #23. It’s being hosted by Alanna of A Veggie Venture.

  7. whoa. a caramel center?

  8. These had to be gooey and delicious! You have a lovely website, Jennifer. (thank you for your kind words about my baby site) 🙂

  9. i love the idea of a fun center. maybe a reese’s cup?

  10. Ivonne – Thanks for the birthday wishes. I’ll be sure to get these sent in to SHF.

    Jen – Thanks for stopping by!

    Connie – Oh, yeah. A lovely, gooey caramel center.

    Rachel – Quinn and I were actually saying today that we think these would be a great use of leftover Halloween candy. Hopefully, we won’t forget and we’ll see these again post-Halloween.

  11. I would have loved to have made these the week I was obsessed with caramel.
    Looks great.

  12. Ooo, thanks for the recipe. I am so going to make these!

  13. Hi Jennifer, I found your site via a comment you posted on sweetnicks. I wish I had seen it earlier, it’s just so delightful! You’ve done such a wonderful job with it, I’m really excited about exploring it some more. And these cookies look excellent! 🙂

  14. Oh my god, what a brilliant idea for a cookie – I’d never thought of surrounding cookie dough with a treat!

  15. That oozing caramel looks so delicious! I love caramel, especially with chocolate so this is my kind of cookie. I bet some kind of peanutbutter filling would be good too. Make it like a Reese’s, in cookie form.

  16. holy cow…those look incredible…

  17. These look incredible, but like Nicole said, I’d worry I’d eat ’em all in one sitting. 🙂 It’s got me thinking about other candy stuffed inside cookies… maybe Junior Mints?!

  18. Great idea for a lovely surprise!

  19. Great SHF entry! The line about the Whitman Sampler was great–I had been thinking along those lines when I read Karen’s (from A Couple of Tarts) entry: Rolo Cookies. Candy and cookies together. Just as it should be! *smile*

  20. I love the Caramelhenge. It actually makes a really pretty picture with the way the light is hitting it!

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