These Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies are the perfect peanut butter cookie made healthier and still straight up delicious! These cookies are packed with peanut butter flavor, have soft and chewy centers, and just slightly crisp edges. This Peanut Butter Cookies recipe is so quick and easy to make! Made in just one bowl and with better-for-you ingredients.
What Do These Healthy Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies Taste Like?
These Peanut Butter Cookies are the perfect cookie for the peanut butter lovers in your life. These cookies are made with natural peanut butter, which contains no added oils or sugars, giving the cookies the perfect peanut butter-y flavor. The cookies are dense and thick, but perfectly soft and chewy. If you like your peanut butter cookies gooey, bake these just shy of 10 minutes to get that so soft and almost under-baked cookie center. Dip one side of the cookie in some melted dark chocolate and sprinkle with flakey sea salt to really take these cookies to the next level!
Why Do Peanut Butter Cookies Have Fork Marks?
The Classic Peanut Butter Cookie always has the quintessential fork cross hatching. This method was popularized by a Pillsbury publication from the 1930’s that instructs pressing peanut butter cookie dough down with the tines of a fork. This method has become the traditional look of a peanut butter cookie. The fork hashtag is basically the cookie’s way of saying “Hey, I’m a PB cookie, not just some random other ambiguous disc of joy”. While an excellent way to distinguish a peanut butter it also serves a practical purpose. Peanut butter cookie dough is dense and does not spread much when baked. Using a fork is a good method to press down the dough and ensures uniform baking.
What Ingredients Are Used In This Homemade Peanut Butter Cookies Recipe?
These Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies are made better-for-you as they contain no refined sugars, flours, or oils. They are paleo-ish meaning they are grain free, gluten free, and dairy free. They are “paleo-ish” because of the peanut butter, which is not technically paleo-approved. Here’s a look at the ingredients used and some variations/substitutions.
- Peanut Butter – The main ingredient! Use a creamy, natural peanut butter that has only 1 ingredient (peanuts). Natural peanut butters do not have any added ingredients that prevent separation, so be sure to stir the peanut butter well, in the jar, before measuring. You can use a pre-salted peanut butter if that’s what you have on hand, just omit the salt listed in the recipe. I used Once Again’s Creamy Peanut Butter.
- Coconut Sugar – The best granulated sweetener for refined sugar free baking. I use and love Nutiva’s Coconut Sugar for the reasonable pricing and excellent quality.
- Coconut Oil – Helps crisp the cookies and is used instead of butter to make these peanut butter cookies dairy free. Use refined coconut oil for a no-coconut flavor.
- Egg – To help puff the cookies. As there is only one egg in these cookies I feel confident that an egg replacer, such as a flax egg, would work instead to make these vegan. I have not tested this. Please let me know if you do!
- Vanilla – Flavor!
- Cassava – An unprocessed flour that is gluten, grain, and nut free. I use and love Otto’s.
- Tapioca Flour – To help thicken the dough without making it too floury.
- Baking Powder & Baking Soda – We need both here to help lift and puff the cookies.
- Salt – To help enhance the peanut butter flavor.
How Do You Make Peanut Butter Cookies?
These Healthier Peanut Butter Cookies are so quick and easy to make. They are made in just one bowl and bake up in a flash! This recipe makes twelve 3 inch cookies which fit perfectly on a single half sheet pan! So you can go from empty mixing bowl to cookie filled cooling rack in under 30 minutes! I loved these cookies with one side dipped in dark chocolate and sprinkled with sea salt. But that’s totally optional, these are great on their own. Here’s a look at the steps and step-by-step photos below!
- Heat oven to 360 and prepare a baking sheet by lining with parchment paper. The trick to getting a perfectly soft and chewy peanut butter cookie is to bake the cookies in a just slightly hotter oven. The extra heat crisps the outside but keeps the inside soft.
- Mix wet ingredients together. Beat the peanut butter, coconut sugar, coconut oil, and egg together for about 1 minute. Add the vanilla and beat on medium. The mixture will get thick and shiny at first, but then start to smooth out and stick against the sides of the bowl forming a thick and creamy mixture, about 2 more minutes. (Second picture in grid below.)
- Add dry ingredients. Stir on low until just fully incorporated.
- Scoop dough onto parchment lined baking sheet. I use my 50 mm cookie scoop to make twelve 3 inch cookies.
- Create fork hash marks. The easiest way to create these marks is to the press fork down evenly onto the cookie dough. But instead of lifting the fork straight up, roll the fork handle forward towards the further edge of the cookie to easily lift the fork off the dough. It’s more of a rolling motion than an up and down motion. Make second cross going the opposite direction.
- Bake! The cookies are done when the tops are puffed and edges are starting to brown. Bake for less time for a softer cookie and longer for a firmer cookie.
- Let cool!
- Dip in melted chocolate and sprinkle with sea salt if you like!
These will last up to 3 days, stored in an airtight container at room temperature. Afterwards, move to freezer for longer storage.
These Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies are perfect for all the peanut butter or cookie lovers in your life. They are perfectly peanut buttery, have a glorious soft and chewy texture, and made with better-for-you ingredients! They are so easy and fun to make that I’m sure you won’t be making this recipe once!
paleo-ish (gluten free, grain free, dairy free), naturally sweetened
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Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies
These Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies are the perfect peanut butter cookie made healthier and straight up delicious. These cookies are packed with peanut butter flavor, have a delicious soft and chewy inside, and just slightly crisp edges – all the qualities a good cookie should have.
paleo-ish (gluten/grain/dairy free), naturally sweetened
- 1/2 cup (136 grams) natural peanut butter *see notes
- 3/4 cup (114 grams) coconut sugar
- 1/3 cup (60 grams) coconut oil melted and cooled
- 1 egg ideally room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp (54 grams) cassava flour spooned and leveled
- 3 tbsp (22 grams) tapioca flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
Chocolate Dip (optional)
- 1/4 cup chocolate chips or chunks
- 1/4 tsp coconut oil
- flakey sea salt
Heat oven to 360 (yep, 360) and prepare a baking sheet by lining with parchment paper.
Mix wet ingredients together. In the bowl of a stand mixer beat together the peanut butter, coconut sugar, coconut oil, and egg together, on high speed, for about 1 minute or until well combined.
Add the vanilla and continue to beat on medium speed. The mixture will get thick and shiny at first, but then smooth out and catch against the sides of the bowl creating a thick and creamy texture, about 2 more minutes. (See photo.)
Add dry ingredients and stir on low until just fully incorporated. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl once or twice during mixing to ensure ingredients are evenly distributed without overmixing.
Scoop dough into 12 even balls and place at least 2 inches apart on the prepared parchment lined baking sheet.
Create fork hash marks. Press the fork down onto cookie dough, roll forward to lift fork off the dough, then cross again in the opposite direction to create the criss cross pattern. Repeat with all cookies.
Bake cookies for 9-11 minutes. The cookies are done when the tops are puffed and edges are starting to brown. Bake for 9-10 minutes for a soft gooey cookie or 11 minutes for a firmer cookie with a still soft inside.
Let cool on baking sheet for at least 3 minutes, then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.
To dip in chocolate melt 1/4 cup of chocolate chips/chunks with 1/4 tsp coconut oil. Stir well until thick and shiny. Let cool several minutes. Dip sides of cookies in the chocolate, place on parchment lined baking sheet and sprinkle with sea salt. Once chocolate is firm enjoy!
Storage: These will last up to 3 days, stored in an airtight container at room temperature. Afterwards, move to freezer for longer storage.
Helpful Kitchen Tools (affiliate links): 50 mm cookie scoop, baking sheet, silicone spatula, kitchen scale
Peanut Butter – Use a creamy natural peanut that has only 1 ingredient (peanuts). Natural peanut butters do not have ingredients that prevent separation so be sure to stir the peanut butter well before measuring. You can use a pre-salted peanut butter if that’s what you have on hand, just omit the salt listed in the recipe. I used Once Again’s Creamy Peanut Butter.
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