These flourless peanut butter brownie cookies are so rich and indulgent tasting, you won’t miss the flour and butter. Made with only 7 simple ingredients, you’ll find any excuse to make them!
This week I’ve been doing a little post-vacation detox of sorts. I have my first wedding dress fitting in 1 week and the wedding countdown is almost at 3 months. It’s getting close!
This month, I’ve made a goal to walk/run 100 miles and to eat a little cleaner. Lots of these have been on the menu this week. For all you long distance runners, 100 miles in 4 weeks may not sound like much but it’s certainly more than I’ve ever done in 30 days! So far, I’ve logged 28 miles in 6 days (and what feels like 1 million squats) and I currently cannot feel my legs. Tomorrow is a rest day with a lot of wine.
Question: do you have any workout goals this summer?
Yesterday’s recipe may not be considered health food, but I absolutely will put these indulgent-tasting chocolate peanut butter cookies into that category. I find that “healthy” is a relative term and what may seem healthy to me, may not be healthy to someone else.
Flourless cookies, starting from a base of homemade peanut butter and unsweetened cocoa powder, is absolutely what I would call a healthy dessert option.
These 7 ingredient cookies taste like thick, incredibly chewy peanut butter brownies. Yes, brownies. Thick, chewy chewy chewy brownies. Kevin loved how soft and rich tasting they were and I loved how the centers of the cookies were moist, yet somewhat crumbly. A texture lover’s dream cookie, indeed.
This gluten free cookie recipe is an adaption of my Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cookies, which came from my Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies, which I adapted from King Arthur’s Flour cookies. See what happens when you find a winning basic cookie recipe?
There are so many ways to play around with this nut butter based flourless cookie recipe. Clearly, I have a little too much fun in the kitchen sometimes.
I made today’s cookies with my favorite homemade peanut butter. If you look closely, you can see some of the peanuts not ground up in the cookies. I like my peanut butter on the crunchy, grainy side. My homemade peanut butter is made from honey roasted peanuts and has won the hearts of all my friends and family who’ve tasted it. I’m pretty sure there is a honey roasted peanut shortage in my area, solely because of that recipe.
You may certainly use regular peanut butter, just steer clear of any very oily, liquidy brands. The more oily and wet your peanut butter, the more your cookies will spread. Make sure you keep that in mind. Peanut butters I suggest using? Skippy Natural, my homemade peanut butter, Jif Natural, or even my homemade almond butter.
Other ingredients used: 1 egg, brown sugar (I successfully reduced the amount), a dash of vanilla extract, unsweetened cocoa powder, baking soda for some lift, and peanut butter chips. The peanut butter chips are optional and you may certainly use a healthier add-in option like peanuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, etc. Some readers have had luck using a vegan flax egg option for previous versions of this recipe, but I have not.
A note on the brown sugar: I have never had success using a liquid sweetener like maple syrup or honey in this gluten free cookie recipe. Update: I have, however, successfully made them with coconut sugar instead of brown sugar. Very tasty!
The secret to their soft, chewy centers? Bake the cookies for only 9-10 minutes. Underbaking is key to their brownie-like interior! If you overbake them, the cookies will be quite hard and crispy. If that’s what you prefer, go for about 11-12 minutes.
It’s a total head scratcher that a simple 7 ingredient cookie can taste so darn fudgy and rich. Kevin’s friends were shocked there was no butter or flour used in the recipe. Not like they care, these guys will eat anything you put in front of them. But still…
I practiced a ton of self control this week as I concentrate on eating healthier and my 100 mile goal. Each night, I’ve treated myself to 1 cookie after dinner and you know what? It completely satisfies my dessert craving that magically hits me at 8pm every night. Like clockwork. Every night. Funny how that happens.
These flourless brownie-like cookies are little miracles. Go ahead and double the recipe, trust me. Thank me later!
Flourless Peanut Butter Brownie Cookies
These thick and fudgy flourless peanut butter brownie cookies are made with only 7 ingredients. Ultra chewy, melt-in-your-mouth, and gluten free. They taste so indulgent.=
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup (250g) honey roasted peanut butter, at room temperature (not warm)1
- 1/3 cup (67g) light or dark brown sugar, lightly packed2
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 cup (21g) unsweetened cocoa powder (Dutch-process can be used)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup peanut butter chips3
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C) and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the egg until beaten. Mix in the peanut butter, then the brown sugar, baking soda, and cocoa powder. Mix everything together very well, then mix in the vanilla extract. Finally, fold in the peanut butter chips until combined.
- Scoop the dough, about 1.5 Tablespoons each, onto prepared baking sheet. Bake two batches - 6-7 cookies on each baking sheet each. Gently press down on the dough mounds with the back of a spoon. If you find the cookie dough balls are a little oily from your peanut butter-- mine usually are-- blot each with a paper towel.
- Bake for 9-10 minutes. The cookies will look very soft-- that's ok! For crispier cookies, bake up to 11-12 minutes. Allow the cookies to cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Sometimes I press a couple more peanut butter chips into the tops of each cookie immediately after coming out of the oven. This is optional and only for looks!
- Make ahead tip: Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week. Baked cookies freeze well - up to three months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well - up to three months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw.
- You can use homemade, natural, or commercial peanut butter butter, however the type you use will alter their texture slightly. I found the best texture was with 1 cup of my homemade honey roasted peanut butter or 1/2 cup Skippy Natural PB and 1/2 cup all-natural, organic peanut butter. Be sure to stir in any excess oil on top of the natural brands, and get it completely mixed in. Otherwise, your cookies will spread. You may want to add another Tablespoon of brown sugar if your peanut butter isn't sweet like the honey roasted kind I use.
- I have not had luck using a liquid sweetener such as honey, maple syrup, or agave. Update: I have, however, successfully used coconut sugar instead of brown sugar. Very tasty!
- Instead of peanut butter chips, try dark chocolate chunks, colorful sunflower seeds (like here), sliced almonds, honey roasted peanuts, or chocolate chips.
Adapted from my Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cookies
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A couple more gluten free goodies:
See more naturally gluten free recipes.