It’s the holiday season which means cookies, cookies, cookies! As I’ve said many times on this blog, I am obsessed with cookies. In my opinion, they are the perfect dessert. So, to celebrate this time of year I’m going into all-out-cookie-mode! This is the first in my Holiday Cookie Bonanza Series and I hope you’re as excited as I am for all the delicious cookie recipes to come. I’m kicking off my healthier holiday cookie series with these Pretzel & Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies!
What Do These Pretzel & Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies Taste Like?
These are the ultimate cookies for the sweet & a little salty dessert lovers! A super moist and chewy peanut butter cookie studded with gooey chocolate chips and crunchy pretzel pieces. These Pretzel & Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies are the intersection of the all the best snacky ingredients: salty & sweet, gooey & crunchy, chewy & crispy. The name is a mouthful but there’s no better way describe this glorious cookie combo! Each component is as essential as the next in creating what is pretty much the perfect cookie bite.
How Do You Make Pretzel & Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies?
These cookies are incredibly easy to make! They are made in just one bowl, have only 12 total ingredients, and can be done in under 30 minutes! Here’s a look at the steps.
- Mix the wet ingredients together.
- Add in the dry ingredients.
- Chill the dough. This is recommended, but optional if you’re short on time. The cookies will just be thinner, but still delicious, if the dough is not chilled.
- Stir in the chocolate chips and pretzel pieces.
- Scoop the dough. I use my trusty 50 mm scoop (about 3 tablespoons) for ease and making equally sized cookies.
- Top dough with a whole pretzel, more chocolate chips, and sea salt.
- Bake for just about 10 minutes.
- Let cool slightly.
Make Ahead: The dough can be made ahead and kept, covered, in the freezer until ready to bake. Just stir in the chocolate chips and pretzel pieces into the dough before scooping, this prevents the pretzels from becoming soggy in the freezer.
What Ingredients Are Used In These Pretzel & Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies?
These awesome cookies are incredibly delicious while being better-for-you. They contain no refined sugars, flours, or oils. The cookie base is paleo-friendly, meaning the dough does not contain gluten, grain, or dairy! And they are easily made nut-free by substituting the peanut butter for sunflower seed butter! These cookies are made with only 12 total (including the salt!) simple, real ingredients. Here’s a quick rundown of the ingredients used and some recommended substitutes.
- Peanut Butter – Chocolate and peanut butter are always delicious together. These are also easily made paleo-friendly, peanut and nut-free by substituting the peanut butter for sunflower seed butter. Alternatively, any thick and creamy nut/seed butter can be used here such as almond or cashew butter. Choose a nut/seed butter that contains only one ingredient and no added sugars or oils. For the PB version, I used Once Again’s Creamy Unsweetened Peanut Butter.
- Coconut Sugar – The best refined sugar free granular sweetener. Coconut sugar gives them the perfect amount of sweetness without being overbearing.
- Avocado Oil – Gives the cookies some additional moisture and helps crisp the cookies. Sub for olive oil or melted and cooled coconut oil.
- Egg – To help puff the cookies.
- Vanilla – For flavor!
- Cassava Flour – A gluten and grain free flour which behaves very similarly to white flour but is not bleached, refined, or overly processed. It’s nut free and paleo!
- Tapioca Flour – Tapioca flour helps thicken the dough without making them too floury.
- Cinnamon – More flavor!
- Chocolate Chips – Can’t have a chocolate chip cookie without the chocolate chips! I used regular sized semi-sweet chocolate chips. I have been loving the ones by Guittard, for the high quality of the chocolate, and grabbing them whenever I see them on sale at Whole Foods. For strictly refined sugar free, use your favorite coconut or maple sugar sweetened bars chopped into chunks!
- Pretzel Twists – Use any pretzel twists you like! There are several gluten free and paleo-friendly pretzels found in most stores today. Or mix it up and use pretzel sticks! I used Quinn’s Classic Whole Grain Sea Salt Pretzel Twists which are gluten free but not paleo.
These cookies boast all the best flavor combinations in one single cookie! Chocolate and peanut butter is a much loved, classic combo but leveled up with the addition of crunchy and salty pretzel pieces! These are sure to be the envy of any cookie swap or holiday party. However, these would truly be welcome anytime of year when you happen to be craving some awesome cookie goodness.
paleo-option (gluten/grain/dairy free), naturally sweetened, nut free-option
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Pretzel & Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies
A so soft and chewy peanut butter cookie spiked with pretzel pieces and chocolate chips. It's ooey gooey goodness, crunchy and moist, salty and sweet all in one delicious cookie! Made with only 12 ingredients and in one bowl! Easily made nut-free & paleo!
gluten free, grain free, dairy free, nut-free
- 3/4 cup coconut sugar (114 grams)
- 1/2 cup peanut butter (136 grams) sub Sunbutter (120 grams) to make paleo & nut-free
- 1/4 cup avocado oil (61 grams) sub olive or coconut oil (melted and cooled)
- 1 egg large
- 1 tsp vanilla (4 grams)
- 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp cassava flour (48 grams)
- 3 tbsp tapioca flour (22 grams)
- 1 tsp baking powder (5 grams)
- 1 tsp cinnamon (2 grams)
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips (78 grams)
- 1/2 cup chopped pretzel twists (32 grams) + 13 whole twists for cookie topping
- flakey sea salt optional
In the bowl of a stand mixer, or a large bowl if mixing by hand, whisk together the wet ingredients until thick and well incorporated.
Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add in the dry ingredients and stir until just mixed, scraping down the sides of the bowl once more during mixing to ensure ingredients are well distributed without overmixing.
Chill the dough in the fridge for 20 minutes, preferably 2 hours. See notes below on skipping this step.
When ready to bake, heat oven to 350 degrees and prepare baking sheet by lining with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Stir the pretzel pieces and chocolate chips into the dough.
Using a cookie scoop, ideally a 50 mm (about 3 tbsp), place dough balls at least 2 inches apart on the baking sheet.
Press a whole mini pretzel twist into the top of each dough ball. If you like, top with a few more chocolate chips and some flakey sea salt as well.
Bake cookies for 9-11 minutes or until cookies are set in the middle and edges are starting to brown.
Let cookies cool on baking sheet for at least 5 minutes before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.
Store at room temperature in an airtight container for 2-3 day. Then move to freezer for longer storage.
Chilling Time: Ideally chill the dough in the freezer for two hours, 20 minutes if you're short on time. If you can spare absolutely no time, skip this step completely, this will just yield thinner crispier cookies.
Storage: Store cookies at room temperature in an airtight container for a day or so. Afterwards move to the freezer for longer storage.
Nut Free: Use 1/2 cup sunflower seed butter (120 grams) instead of peanut butter. Any thick and creamy nut/seed butter will do such as almond butter or cashew. Use one that contains one ingredient (no added sugars or oil). Thoroughly mix the nut/seed butter in the container before measuring and do not use the compacted paste at the bottom.
Strictly Paleo: For strictly paleo sub PB for another nut/seed butter as described above. And use your favorite coconut or maple sugar sweetened chocolate bar chopped into chunks instead of chips. And use your favorite grain free pretzels such as these or these.
Pretzels: I used Quinn Whole Grain Pretzel Twists in this recipe. They are gluten free but not grain free. Use your favorite brand of pretzel twists. Or mix it up and use pretzel sticks, chop into small pieces and press a few longer sticks into the top instead of a twist!
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