Very Peanut Butter Cookies

Packed with double the peanut butter, these very peanut butter cookies boast a dense flavor, remarkably soft texture, thick center, and a deliciously crumbly edge. My go-to best peanut butter cookie recipe!

stack of peanut butter cookies

I know these cookies look familiar to you. Peanut butter cookies are nothing new in our kitchens and certainly nothing new on Sally’s Baking Addiction. Along with oatmeal raisin cookies and chocolate chip cookies, peanut butter cookies rank high on my repeat recipes list!

I have a recipe for the classics on my website and another in Sally’s Cookie Addiction, but can there be room for one more? With 2 cups of peanut butter in the cookie dough, today’s extra soft cookies steal the spotlight. We’re using the same cookie dough as my bakery-style peanut butter chunk cookies, a cookie recipe I’ve grown to love so much that they’re now the only peanut butter cookies I bake. Today’s cookies are easy to make, completely packed with flavor, and boast a deliciously crumbly criss-cross pattern on top. Love them!

Meet your new favorite peanut butter cookie recipe.

peanut butter cookies

Less Flour, More Peanut Butter

I call these very peanut butter cookies because they’re packed with 2 cups of peanut butter in the dough. This is 2x the amount of my previous recipe AND they have less flour, so you can be sure today’s cookies are dense with flavor! They remind me of these peanut butter oatmeal cookies in terms of peanut butter flavor, but they don’t have the chewy oat texture.

By the way, did you know that nut butter can take the place of flour in some recipes? These flourless almond butter cookies require just 5 ingredients. Almond butter provides enough structure and stability so there’s no need for any flour at all. If you’re looking for a gluten free peanut butter cookie, use that recipe and replace the almond butter with peanut butter.

Here’s What You’ll Love:

  • Crumbly edges
  • Packed with flavor
  • Extra soft
  • Crisp sugar coating
  • Easy straightforward recipe

My first piece of advice… make a double batch so you can freeze the cookie dough. No need to thaw, just bake for an extra minute or two. You never know when a cookie emergency will rear its head. You might not have time to make cookies from scratch, but you’ll have frozen peanut butter cookie dough. That’s a lifesaver!

peanut butter cookie dough in a glass bowl

How to Make Peanut Butter Cookies

The cookie dough comes together in about 10 minutes.

  1. Whisk the dry ingredients together. You need flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  2. Cream the butter and sugars together. Make sure the butter is cool to touch, not overly warm or melted. Here’s what room temperature butter really means. Use more granulated sugar than brown sugar. When making chocolate chip cookies, I always prefer to use more brown sugar than white sugar because it produces a softer cookie. With peanut butter cookies, however, the peanut butter already makes the cookies soft. More brown sugar made them EXTRA soft, so they fell apart. Too much of a good thing.
  3. Beat in eggs, peanut butter, and vanilla extract.
  4. Mix dry and wet ingredients together.
  5. Chill the cookie dough. Chilling the cookie dough is important, but this dough is thick so it doesn’t need hours inside the refrigerator. A quick 1 hour of chilling will prevent the cookies from over-spreading.
  6. Roll into balls and coat with sugar. Each dough ball is about 1.5 Tablespoons. Roll each into granulated sugar for an extra sparkly crunch!
  7. Indent fork marks on top for that classic peanut butter criss-cross cookie.
  8. Bake until the edges are set, about 12 minutes.

 

 

peanut butter cookie dough balls on baking sheet

adding a criss cross to peanut butter cookies with a fork

Best Peanut Butter for Cookies

The most common mistake with peanut butter cookies is using the wrong type of peanut butter. The BEST peanut butter for cookies is a processed creamy peanut butter, preferably Jif or Skippy. (Those are my preferred brands for baking.) Natural-style peanut butter is my choice for eating, but it just doesn’t produce the same type of cookie as its processed counterpart. Natural peanut butter lends dry, crumbly cookies. I recommend processed peanut butter for my peanut butter blossoms and peanut butter jam thumbprints too.

If you prefer peanut chunks, use Jif or Skippy crunchy. See recipe note.

Want to add extra peanut flavor? Go for it! Fold 1/2 cup of chopped peanuts or peanut butter chips into the cookie dough.

stack of peanut butter cookies

I’ve made hundreds of different cookie recipes and I say with 100% confidence that these are the best traditional peanut butter cookies I’ve ever had. And I know you’ll agree!

More No-Fail Cookie Recipes

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stack of peanut butter cookies

Very Peanut Butter Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes
  • Yield: 40 cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Packed with double the peanut butter, these very peanut butter cookies boast a dense flavor, remarkably soft texture, thick center, and a deliciously crumbly edge. Chill the cookie dough for at least 1 hour to prevent excess spreading.


Ingredients

  • 2 and 1/2 cups (310g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (230g; 2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup (150g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 cups (500g) creamy peanut butter*
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar for rolling
  • optional: 1/2 cup (65g) finely chopped peanuts

Instructions

  1. Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and both sugars together on medium speed until smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Add the eggs and beat on high until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the peanut butter and vanilla, then beat on high speed until combined.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, then mix on low until combined. With the mixer running on low speed, add the peanuts, if using. Dough will be thick and soft.
  4. Cover and chill the dough for 1 hour in the refrigerator (and up to 2-3 days). If chilling for longer than a few hours, though, allow to sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before rolling and baking because the dough will be quite hard.
  5. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. (Always recommended for cookies.) Set aside.
  6. Roll cookie dough into balls, about 1.5 Tablespoons of dough per cookie, and then roll the balls in granulated sugar. Use a fork to make a crisscross indent on top of each. Bake each batch for 10-12 minutes until very lightly browned on the sides. The centers will look very soft.
  7. Remove from the oven. Cool cookies on the baking sheets for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. 
  8. Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. Allow to come to room temperature then continue with step 5. Baked cookies freeze well for up to 3 months. Unbaked cookie dough balls, without sugar coating, freeze well for up to 3 months. Let frozen cookie dough balls sit on the counter for 30 minutes, roll in sugar, indent a crisscross pattern with a fork, then bake for an extra minute. No need to completely thaw. Click here for my tips and tricks on freezing cookie dough.
  2. Peanut Butter: It’s best to use a processed peanut butter like Jif creamy or Skippy creamy. I do not suggest using natural style, oily peanut butter. Crunchy peanut butter adds peanut chunks as well as a more crumbly texture. I prefer to use creamy in this recipe.
  3. Check out my top 5 cookie tips before beginning. It includes how to prevent cookies from over-spreading and why room temperature makes a difference.

Keywords: peanut butter, cookies, Christmas cookies

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233 Comments

  1. These cookies tasted absolutely wonderful. The only problem is they are rather crumbly, even the next day. My husband loved the strong peanut butter flavor so I hesitate to drop down to 1 cup. Is there a way to make the cookie less crumbly or, preferably, with some crunch? Has anyone tried using half butter/half shortening? TIA!

    1. I also had issues with this cookie crumbling. The flavor is good but it falls apart while eating it. I rechecked the recipe and it appears I followed it exactly. The sad part is all the premium ingredients are now tossed.

      1. Try all white sugar instead of brown sugar and white.

  2. I tried this recipe for the first time this weekend. The cookies came out perfect! Slightly crumbly on the edges but soft in the middle. They are so delicious and a definite treat! My son is mad about peanut butter so this may become a regular bake for me 🙂

  3. My teen baked these for me yesterday. They are 100% absolutely perfect. I will never try another peanut butter cookie recipe again. This is IT. Pleasantly crumbly outside, dense rich peanutty interior.

  4. Goid flavor

  5. Nancy J. Mills says:

    Good flavor but dry consistency, crumbly. I followed directions . will not use this recipe again.

  6. Made these this evening and I was very happy with the cookies!!!! Also, I was able to make 4 dozen with a few extras to spare. I will make these again.

  7. Samantha Barber says:

    I have made these cookies plenty of times by now and I dont have this issue of it being crumbly, I whip my butter on its own until its almost white then I add the sugar and egg and vanilla, incorporating until smooth. Once I add the peanut butter I let it go for a little bit of time, then slowly incorporate the dry it will look wet and unable to form but I only chill it for 30 minutes. Then I weigh out 2oz portions and they are fluffy, crispy on the edge and soft on the inside, I cook them for 15-17 minutes.

  8. Howard J cutshall says:

    When I was looking for a peanut butter cookie recipe this is exactly what I was looking for. great cookie!

  9. I made these cookies today, wow the best peanut butter cookies ever! I followed the recipe to a T. Mine did not crumble. I did the first batch right away and the 2nd batch I refrigerated.

  10. terrible recipe 🙁

  11. Easy recipe, super rich flavour, the best peanut butter cookies I’ve ever had

  12. Love this recipe, although my cookies did fall apart easily when being transported….would adding milk to the batter help, like maybe 1/4 cup??

    1. Hi Ryan! Thanks so much for the feedback. 1/4 cup milk may be too much– I’d try 2 Tablespoons.

  13. I love Sally. Use all of her recipes.. really did not like this recipe . Would not use again

  14. I’ve made that recipe more than 10 times now. It’s perfect with natural peanut butter, the smooth one. I usually add a cup of small chocolate chips instead of chopped peanuts. miam miam !

  15. Excellent! Will be my go-to pb cookie recipe from now on. (Note: I added roasted peanuts and some peanut butter chips just because I felt like it. Great, either way!)

  16. We loved it!

  17. I hacked a random persons email says:

    I loved this!

  18. I use crunchy peanut butter and it turned out amazing. Crumble at the sides and soft centre. Thanks for the recipe

  19. I read the suggested peanut butters, but I have mix nut butters from Costco that will expire next month, so I am curious to try them, however, I am an avid follower, LOVE Sally and couldn’t imagine a bad recipe…ever! Before Sally, I couldn’t bake anything! I do now and it’s so much fun. Can’t wait to add your books to my skoolie kitchen!

  20. Denise Gaddis says:

    Making right now! Their just crumbling getting off the cookie sheet. What could I have done wrong! Please help before I discard batter. Thanks

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Denise! Make sure you’re using creamy peanut butter (not natural style). Spoon and level the flour and avoid over-baking. You can add 1-2 Tablespoons of milk to the dough if needed. Next time you can slightly under-bake to avoid drying out, too.

  21. Definitely the best peanut butter cookies. My husband requests every week.

  22. Hi Sally – I want to make my husbands favorite cookie, chocolate chip peanut butter. I have been looking for a great peanut butter cookie recipe with chocolate chips and haven’t found a great one. Could I do this one and add chocolate chips to it? Should I make any adjustments and what amount of chocolate chips? I was thinking a cup and a quarter.
    Thanks in advance!

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Kerstin, absolutely — you can add 1 cup of your favorite add-ins like chocolate chips. You might also enjoy our Big Bakery-Style Peanut Butter Chunk Cookies. Happy baking!

  23. SUPER dry and crumbly. Sucks the moisture right out of your mouth. And they all fall apart. I’m tossing them all in the trash. 🙁

  24. Simply Delicious ! Sally you never disappoint:)

  25. is it unsweeten peanut butter or sweeten?

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