These Peanut Butter Cookies are absolutely PERFECT and so easy to make! Thick, soft, and slightly chewy with tons of peanutty flavor. Your new go-to recipe!
Tessa's Recipe Rundown...
Taste: Ultra peanut buttery and perfectly sweet. Texture: Soft, tender, and slightly chewy. Perfect with a glass of milk! Ease: Very simple and easy. Pros: My favorite PB cookie recipe. No dough chilling required. Cons: None!! Would I make this again? Of course.
To know me is to know my love and obsession for peanut butter.
So when I realized that in over 10 years of blogging, I had never published my recipe for classic Peanut Butter Cookies, I was in shock. How could I have been so neglectful to all my fellow PB lovers?!
So I actually took my go-to recipe and got to work tweaking and improving until I got the perfect balance of nutty flavor and thick, tender, and slightly chewy texture in every bite.
This is a simple and easy old-fashioned peanut butter cookie recipe, you don’t even need to chill the dough. But it’s one of those recipes I hope you add to your repertoire and return to again and again. Especially during the Christmas cookie season!
How to Make the BEST Peanut Butter Cookies
How to make peanut butter cookies thick and soft:
Peanut butter is one of those ingredients that basically automatically lends itself to a thick texture in cookies. It’s thick and rich all on its own, and that translates to the final result. That’s actually why we press the tines of a fork into the balls of cookie dough to flatten it into a disk shape. Otherwise the cookies would hardly spread.
Now the key to soft peanut butter cookies is the perfect ratio of PB, butter, flour, and leavening which is what I believe I’ve accomplished here! Plus a hefty amount of brown sugar, which draws in moisture for soft and tender cookies.
Lastly, for soft cookies be sure not to over-bake these. They’ll continue to bake from the residual heat of the oven. I find it’s best to remove them *just* before they look completely done so you don’t over do it.
What’s the best peanut butter to use for cookies?
When it comes to baking in general, conventional creamy peanut butter is usually best. Some “natural” peanut butter products have too much oil separation and won’t make for a cohesive dough. You can usually get away with the more natural options among conventional brands like Skippy, Jif, or Justin’s – as long as they have an ingredient like palm oil or vegetable oil to keep everything smooth.
Can Peanut Butter Cookies be frozen?
Yes! Freeze baked cookies in an airtight container for about 1 month. Allow to defrost at room temperature then re-fresh in a 300°F oven for about 5 minutes, if desired. You can also freeze the disks of cookie dough (that have been rolled in sugar and pressed with the fork) in an airtight container for several months. Allow to thaw to room temperature before baking.
1 1/2sticks (170 grams) unsalted butter, at cool room temperature
1/4cup(50 grams) granulated sugar
3/4cup(150 grams) light brown sugar
3/4cup(200 grams) creamy peanut butter (don’t use “natural” peanut butter)
1/3cup(67 grams) granulated sugar
Preheat the oven to 350°Line large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar on medium-high speed until smooth and well combined, about 2 minutes. Beat in the peanut butter until well combined. Beat in the egg and vanilla. On low speed, gradually add the flour mixture, beating until combined.
Place the granulated sugar for rolling in a small bowl. Using a medium spring-loaded cookie scoop, form the dough into 1 1/2 tablespoon rounds. Roll between your palms to smooth then roll in the granulated sugar before placing on the prepared baking sheets, spacing about 2 inches apart. Slightly flatten the dough by pressing the back of a fork into each ball of dough twice to create a crisscross pattern.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until the edges are slightly browned. Let cool on baking sheets for 10 minutes before removing the cookies to wire racks to cool completely.
If you make this recipe, be sure to snap a picture and share it on Instagram with #handletheheat so we can all see!
Recipe byTessa Arias
Photos by Ashley McLaughlin.
I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)
As a trained chef and cookbook author, I share trusted baking recipes your friends & family will love alongside insights into the science of sweets. I help take the luck out of baking so you *always* have delicious results! Learn more here.
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