Brown Butter Anzac Biscuits. This easy Anzac Biscuit recipe is chewy and oaty. Anzac biscuits are made with brown butter and honey or golden syrup for a perfect depth of flavour. These chewy Anzac biscuits keep well, so are great to make ahead of time. Anzac biscuits do not require any chill time, so come together quickly for the perfect soft and chewy homemade Anzac biscuit.
Table of contents
- Brown Butter Anzac Biscuits
- The Search for the "Perfect" Anzac Biscuit
- Ingredients in Anzac Biscuits
- How to make Anzac Biscuits
- Testing Variables for the perfect Anzac Biscuit
- Anzac Biscuits with Honey!?
- Why are there two quantities of butter in your recipe?
- FAQ for Anzac Biscuits
- A few more tips and tricks for making Anzac Biscuits (important, please read)
Brown Butter Anzac Biscuits
Happy Saturday! I have another New Zealand recipe (and Australian this time) classic to share with you today - Homemade Anzac biscuits! If you haven’t heard of or tried Anzac biscuits before, you are in for a treat.
Anzac Biscuits are an Oat based biscuit (what we call cookies). They are a stir together situation so are quick to make, and are chewy and delicious. They are a great homemade cookie recipe to have on hand.
The Anzac Biscuit recipe came about during the first World War, when people still at home would make biscuits from their ration packs to sell to raise money for the war effort, and the ingredient list originated from what was available - flour, rolled oats, sugar, butter, golden syrup, coconut, and baking soda.
Anzac biscuits are made around Anzac day, which is the 25th of April. This marks the day that the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (hence the name Anzac) landed at Gallipoli in 1914 and is a day of remembrance.
The Search for the "Perfect" Anzac Biscuit
I have shared a recipe for Anzac biscuits on my site before but it was 1) a long time ago and 2) not my ‘ideal’ version of an Anzac biscuit.
While all versions of homemade Anzac biscuits are basically a riff on the same base, using the same ingredients but different quantities to give different textures, I found during my testing that these are particularly sensitive to changes in ratios of ingredients - as little as 15g flour difference within the recipe made a huge change to the texture.
I think that it is something to do with the lack of eggs in the recipe, but regardless, I tweaked and tweaked the recipe, playing around with different ratios and baking temperatures to come up with what is, to me, the perfect recipe for Anzac biscuits. My version are a tiny bit crunchy around the edges, and perfectly chewy in the middle.
Ingredients in Anzac Biscuits
The ingredient list for homemade Anzac biscuits is fairly simple.
- Butter. I make brown butter anzac biscuits - browning the butter makes a huge difference flavour wise.
- Honey or golden syrup. I use honey in my recipe, if you would like to use Golden syrup, please go for it!
- Water. This gets added to the wet ingredients to add moisture to the cookies without adding extra greasiness.
- Baking Soda. Baking soda or bicarb soda is the main raising agent in Anzac biscuits - it is added to the wet ingredients before being mixed into the dry ingredients.
- Flour. Regular all-purpose flour.
- Desiccated coconut. I have only made these Anzac biscuits with desiccated coconut - if you wanted to use threaded that should work too I think!
- Oats. I use old fashioned oats to make my Anzac Biscuits - they give the cookies an amazing chewy finish.
- Sugar. Both light and dark brown sugar - brown for flavour, white for spread and chew.
- Salt. Important to balance out the sweetness! If you use salted butter, cut back on the salt quantity.
How to make Anzac Biscuits
The process for how to make homemade Anzac biscuits is super simple - they do not require preparation time so can be in the oven super quickly.
- Brown the butter. This is the first step - please read the recipe carefully along with my note about weighing the butter as there are two quantities in the recipe - one for the initial weight and one for the weight of the butter used in the recipe.
- Combine wet ingredients. The browned butter, honey (or golden syrup) and water are heated together on the stove to help melt the butter and incorporate the ingredients.
- Combine dry ingredients. All the remaining ingredients go into a bowl - the oats, sugars, coconut, flour, and salt.
- Add baking soda to wet ingredients. The heated wet ingredients come off the heat, and baking soda goes in. This will foam up slightly. I am a little unsure as to why the baking soda goes into the wet ingredients - I think it is to reduce the chance of any baking soda bombs (my banana cake uses a similar method).
- Wet ingredients go into dry ingredients. We know how this one goes. Wet into dry. Mix to combine with a spatula. The dough may seem a little greasy - this is ok, it is meant to be like that.
- Mix and scoop. Once the mixture is incorporated, scoop the cookie dough into balls using a cookie scoop, then roll into balls and place equally spaced on the tray.
- Bake. Bake the cookies for 12-15 minutes. Keep a close eye as they can get a little toasty. Remove from the oven and scoot with a cookie cutter if you like - these are a great cookie to scoot as it is super easy to get them perfectly round!
Testing Variables for the perfect Anzac Biscuit
I did switch a couple of things up during my Anzac Biscuit Testing which I think made a difference to the final outcome. The variables I was playing around with were:
- Ratios of brown to white sugar
- Flour quantity used in the recipe
- Baking temperature for the Anzac biscuits
Ratio of brown to white sugar.
For the most part, as is with most cookie recipes, brown sugar gives you a thicker biscuit. White sugar promotes spreading. So, coming up with a balance of the two lead to a cookie that has a nice spread and bakes up flat but still has enough thickness to give some chew in the middle.
I definitely went both ways with this, making some that were totally flat and crunchy and a couple that were like rocks. It was really interesting to see how the final outcome was affected by that ratio.
This is a pretty standard one that I tweak when making a cookie recipe, playing around with the ratio of butter to flour to change how the cookie spreads. I added too much after the first test and my cookies hardly spread, so I dropped the quantity for the third test and we got there.
Aside from the flour content the other variable I played around with was the oven temperature. This is a super easy one to test - I usually just divide up my batch and bake half at each temperature when I am testing.
Temperature really makes a difference in the final shape of the cookie - those baked at a higher temperature tend to spread a little more quickly than those baked a little lower, and for these a lower temperature was perfect, as it allowed them to spread a little slower, giving a chewier middle.
This highlights how important it is to make sure your oven is running to temperature - an oven thermometer is a great investment if you don’t have one already.
Anzac Biscuits with Honey!?
I kept the ingredient list the same for my Anzac biscuts as the traditional Anzac biscuit. I added a wee step - browning the butter. You don’t have to do this if you don’t want to. However, it is a super easy step to add a little more flavour to your Anzac biscuits without having to add any extra ingredients.
Anzac biscuits also traditionally use golden syrup, but it seems as if it is a little harder to find here than it is in Australia and New Zealand. So, I switched it out and used Honey instead. If you would like to use Golden Syrup then by all means go ahead - it is a 1:1 swap.
Why are there two quantities of butter in your recipe?
The 175g butter quantity comes from adding a little extra to the initial quantity to account for the loss in volume when browning the butter. You are cooking off the moisture, so you need to start with more regular butter than the quantity of brown butter called for in the recipe (I usually multiply the quantity of brown butter I need by 1.3 to work out how much I need to start with). It's not a typo in the recipe. You need to start with more butter to get the right quantity of brown butter for the recipe.
FAQ for Anzac Biscuits
Help, my biscuits spread!
An oven thermometer is a great investment if you don’t have one, just to check your oven temperature and calibrate if needed. I found that if people have issues with spreading and their biscuits coming out flat, it is often to do with an oven that is running hot.
Do I have to brown the butter?
If you don’t want to brown the butter in these, just use 135g melted butter.
Can I use Golden Syrup instead of honey?
If you want to use Golden Syrup in these instead of Honey, by all means go for it! It is a 1:1 sub.
Can I chill the dough before baking?
I tested this, and found that the dough doesn't keep particularly well, so you are best baking them all off then storing the biscuits.
How to store Anzac Biscuits
Anzac biscuits keep super well - up to five days at least at room temperature. Store in an airtight container.
A few more tips and tricks for making Anzac Biscuits (important, please read)
- If possible, bake these two trays at the same time. I found that the dough doesn’t rest super well, so you are best to bake them off just after mixing if you can. It isn’t the end of the world if you can’t but the texture of the second batch may be different to that of the first.
- Watch your Anzac biscuits carefully as they can get a little toasty on the bottoms! Mine needed 15 minutes. If you want them a little less golden and a bit softer drop the baking time by a minute or so. Check on them at 12 minutes and go from there.
- This recipe would halve very well as there are no eggs. However, the biscuits last a long time in an airtight container if you only have a few people in the house. (These will disappear quick though, promise!)
- I get you to roll the mixture into balls. You don’t need to flatten them down - they will flatten off themselves in the oven.
- If you would like to get your cookies super round you can do a #cookiescoot. Take a cutter slightly bigger than the cookie and place it over the top and use it to scoot it into a round shape when it is hot out of the oven.
For more New Zealand Recipes, Check out:
- Peanut Brownie Cookies
- Baked Cream Buns with Vanilla Bean Whipped Cream and Jam
- The Perfect Pavlova
- Custard Square
- Tan Square
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Brown Butter Anzac Biscuits. This easy Anzac Biscuit recipe is chewy and oaty. Anzac biscuits are made with brown butter and honey or golden syrup for a perfect depth of flavour. These chewy homemade Anzac biscuits keep well, so are great to make ahead of time.
- 175g Unsalted butter, cold from the fridge is fine (see note about butter quantities, salted butter also works great here)
- 40g honey or golden syrup
- 30g water
- ¾ tsp baking soda
- 135g all-purpose flour
- 50g desiccated coconut
- 110g Old-fashioned oats (Rolled Oats)
- 130g light or dark brown sugar
- 90g white sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- Preheat the oven to 325°f / 160°c. See notes about oven temp - if your oven is running hot, these will spread a lot. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Place the butter in a medium saucepan, and place over medium heat. Cook until the butter has melted, and then continue to cook, swirling the pan often, until the butter foams and turns golden brown and nutty - this should take 3-4 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and allow to cool slightly.
- Weigh out 135g (see Notes section below) of the brown butter and place into a small saucepan. Add the Honey and water, and place over a low heat, stirring frequently, until smooth and melted together.
- While the wet ingredients are heating up, in a large bowl, combine the flour, coconut, oats, brown sugar, white sugar, and salt. Mix until full incorporated.
- Once the butter and honey mixture is smooth and combined, remove from the heat and add the baking soda, mixing well to incorporate (it will foam up a little). Pour into the dry ingredients and stir with a spatula until well combined.
- Portion the mixture into 2 Tbsp balls (it will feel a little greasy but that is ok), and roll into balls. Space evenly on the baking sheets.
- Bake the cookies for 14 to 15 minutes, until they are golden brown and set around the edges. Check for doneness after 13 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and using a large cookie cutter, scoot the biscuits into a round shape if desired. Leave to cool on the pans - they will set up as they cool.
- Store biscuits in an airtight container.
You may notice that there are two quantities of butter in the recipe - the initial quantity of butter, then a second measurement in the method which is the quantity of brown butter. The larger initial quantity is to account for water loss when browning - read more about that in my FAQ.
If you are using the recipe scaling feature (2x or 3x) be aware that any quantities, measurements, pan sizes, and cooking times given in the method do not scale automatically - it's only the quantities in the Ingredient List that scale automatically.
IMPORTANT TIP. An oven thermometer is a great investment if you don’t have one, just to check your oven temperature and calibrate if needed. I found that if people have issues with spreading and their biscuits coming out flat, it is often to do with an oven that is running hot.
You need to make this recipe by weight. When I was testing I was changing the quantities of the ingredients by as little as 15g and seeing big changes in texture, so it’s super important that you get the right quantities here. This is the scale I have been loving lately if you are in need of a new one!
Keywords: Anzac Biscuit, Brown Butter, Oatmeal, Anzac Cookie