Chocolate Brownie Cookie Crumbles


Chocolate brownie cookies that turned into wonderful crumbles. Not to be confused with chocolate crinkle cookies, these are fudgy lush and brownie like in texture – so intense in chocolate with added flower salt and nuts.

Previously named crumbles, as my daughter took them out the oven and bashed them half way through baking to make them look crumbly. Mistakes in baking can often lead to deliciousness – that’s the way the cookie crumbles!

chocolate brownie cookie

It all started one August.  Lucie rebelled after her 12th birthday in the loveliest possible way: she flung me out of the kitchen. She had a burning desire to make cookies.  But on her own.  No Mum intervention whatsoever.

Alas, I can’t help myself: somehow I have to intervene.  Am I a control freak?  If anyone knows me, you could say I take over the kitchen so it must become frustrating. I mean, even I’d hate to live with me.

She followed the recipe to the letter, or so I thought, from her book, La Cuisine C’est Simple! by Katharine Ibbs.  It’s in French – and so well-presented for kids learning to cook from scratch.  But then she added nuts and told me afterwards she added more peanut butter than stated and cut down the sugar (she remembered I tend to do this as habit). Before we knew it, the recipe had changed quite a bit.

playing with chocolate brownie cookie dough

Lucie still plays with the dough!

Placing large dollops of the cookie dough on the tray, she saw them rise in the oven after the first few minutes.  Panic struck, and without telling me, opened up the oven door, took them out and bashed them all flat with a pie slice, then returned them to the oven.
Et voilà!  The cookie crumbles were born.  A delicious accident.

Sometimes mistakes in the kitchen are a way of discovering new dishes – the best one we know is the classic French Tarte Tatin.  The kids asked me recently if I could make les caves à l’orange again.  Do you know what they were?  My earliest macarons while experimenting with reduced sugar – long before the book was even thought of.  Out of the oven came orange flavoured empty shells that had puffed up with no feet – and the girls christened them les caves, which was rather fitting.  Do you think I can make them again?  No.  Because I had no idea what I had done wrong.

I guess that’s the way the cookie crumbles!

cutting 3 kinds of chocolate drops

A few years on, Lucie is still making them – but now without the bashing bit to make them crumbly.  Now they’re ‘just’ chocolate brownie cookies – but with a mixture of good quality chocolate (e.g. we use Barry or Valhrona). Often in place of chocolate drops/chips, she chops up a mixture of white, milk and plain (72% cacao) and adds finely chopped walnuts or pistachios.

See how fudgy and lush they are inside?

inside of a fudgy chocolate brownie cookie

On a side note, Lucie is now also making her own macarons – following the recipe to the letter from my book, Mad About Macarons without my help in the kitchen.  Well, technically I am still helping, I suppose! This lot was her latest assembly line – each one was just beautiful before she packed them away in the box and left them to mature for a couple of days.  They were divine. But I digress. Back to the brownie cookies.

line-up of shiny chocolate macarons sandwiched together at home

Now Lucie makes these cookies regularly – as with the peanut butter sablé cookies. They are so quick and easy to make – please just use good quality chocolate.

This still is the best and most delicious treat for a proud Mum. Ever. When I finally get thrown out of the kitchen and told the cookies or macarons are ready! My job is done. See the specks of fleur de sel salt? That’s the part that makes them rather addictive…

a chocolate brownie cookie next to daffodils

More Quick & Easy Cookie Recipes

Breakfast Oat Cookies with Cranberry, Orange & Hazelnut 

Chocolate Chip Hazelnut Cookies

French Salted Butter Biscuits (Palets Bretons)

Melting Moments (mini oat & cherry cookies)

Peanut Butter & Chocolate Chip Sablé Cookies

chocolate brownie cookie
5 from 1 vote

Chocolate Brownie Cookie Crumbles

Author: Jill Colonna
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time14 mins
Total Time34 mins
Course : teatime, Party Food, Picnics
Cuisine : French
Keyword : chocolate crumble cookies
Servings : 20 cookies


Chocolate brownie cookies that turned into wonderful crumbles. Not to be confused with chocolate crinkle cookies, these are more fudgy and brownie like in texture - so intense in chocolate with added salt and nuts.


  • 125 g (4.5oz) unsalted butter softened
  • 70 g (3oz) light brown sugar
  • 50 g (2oz) sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 140 g (5oz) peanut butter (or Nutella)
  • 2-3 drops vanilla extract or 1/4 tsp vanilla powder
  • 200 g (7oz) Plain flour (all-purpose)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 30 g (2tbsp) unsweetened cocoa powder (I use Van Houten)
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt (fleur de sel)
  • 125 g (4.5oz) dark chocolate chips or mix of chocolates
  • 30 g (2tbsp) mixed nuts roughly chopped


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/360°F/Gas 4.  In a large bowl, mix the butter and the sugars with an electric whisk (or in a stand mixer) until smooth and creamy.
  • Add the egg, peanut butter and vanilla extract and beat again until the ingredients are well mixed.
  • Sift the flour into another large bowl, adding the baking powder, cocoa powder and salt and mix with a  wooden spoon.
  • Add the flour mix to the first bowl and mix well with the wooden spoon.  Add the nuts and chocolate chips. (The mix will be rather thick but this is normal).
  • Place 6 or 7 heaped tablespoons of the cookie dough on a baking tray covered with baking parchment or a Silpat silicone mat.  Leave a good space between each, as they'll spread out a bit during cooking.  (Either make another batch but we do just the one and keep the dough in the fridge for more next day.)
  • Bake the cookies in the oven for 14 minutes for normal brownie cookies.  But for crumbles, remove from the oven after 10 minutes, flatten them down with a pie slice until they break up slightly, and continue to bake for 4 minutes.  Remove from the oven and leave the cookies to cool on a wire rack for 2-3 minutes.

This recipe was originally published in January 2014 but has now been updated with new images and text.

From the market

From the kitchen

8 responses to “Chocolate Brownie Cookie Crumbles”

  1. 5 stars
    LOVE these! They turn out perfectly every time, and it’s always so fun to vary the types of chocolate chips and nuts…

  2. I LOVE this story, and the cookies look fabulous! Honestly, could go one or 3 right now! haha! Oh, and a cup of tea! 🙂

    • Gosh – I completely forgot about these cookies – this is such an ancient post! Thanks x

  3. Adorable! They remind me of Cowgirl Cookies in Soho at Olives and my favorites. But with white chocolate chunks and dried cherries…

  4. I think Lucie cooks/bakes just like her Grandpa. Love the opening of the oven door and bashing the cakes with the pie slice.

  5. Ooh, Lucie is a budding baker! And one with good intuition. I have a feeling there will be lots more sweets from your girl in the future. These “crumbles” look divine.

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