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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256 Comments

  1. These have to be the best peanut butter cookies I have ever made! I could not bake them after I mixed them so I did as you said and left them at room temperature for 1/2 hr. The only change is I rolled them in Toronado sugar and I took half the batter and added mini chocolate chips. Both batches came out delicious. This is my peanut butter cookie from now on! I believe it is mostly from the added butter and peanut butter that make them so creamy and delicious! Trick to not crumbling is to follow directions for cooling. I even left them on the cookie sheet another 5 minutes to be sure then transferred with a wide spatula. Thanks for sharing this recipe! Anytime I bake your recipes I am never disappointed!

    1. Darlene Dimitrovski says:

      I agree totally with Andrea. I have baked cookies for over 40 years and I have my favorites but my peanut butter cookie was good but these are great. Thank you for the recipe and thank you for the lesson in chemistry . I can apply it to other cookie recipes. I loved the thickness but the chewy crunchiness which you typically do not get in a cookie. This will be my peanut butter cookie recipe also.

      1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

        We’re thrilled you enjoyed these cookies, Darlene! Thank you for your positive feedback.

  2. The cookies had great taste. Mine came out a bit dry and I followed measurements and used appropriate ingredients. Any suggestions?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Ruth, we’re glad you enjoyed these cookies! It’s possible that the cookies had a bit too much flour in them — did you spoon and level to measure? They could also be slightly over baked — try a minute or so less in the oven next time. Hope this helps!

  3. I’m going to make this recipe today, but noted that my jar of Jif PB is 454 grams, not 500. Do I need to buy more PB for this recipe?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Dianne, yes — it’s best to wait to make this recipe when you have 2 full cups / 500 g of peanut butter. Enjoy!

  4. Rhonda Hager Ryan says:

    These are the best peanut butter cookies! I allow the unsealed butter and eggs to sit at room temperature while using KA flour, Skippy peanut butter and have even added 3/4 cup of butterscotch chips . I bake each batch for 11 minutes while allowing each baking sheet to cool between batches. (Thankfully we have 6 various baking sheets !) Perfection!

  5. Absolutely delicious peanut butter cookies – definitely the best I’ve ever made or tasted I’m in the UK so used the metric measurements and they are spot on (not always the case!). I have a NEFF oven and pretty much bake all cookies at 160°c, and in this case the cooking time was still 12 minutes (7 with a turn, plus 5). For those in the UK, I actually used self-raising flour (basically regular flour with raising ingredients already added) instead of the all-purpose with baking soda (only because I panic bought flour during lockdown!), and they still turned out perfect. I’ve also found that if stored in the top of the refrigerator I can easily shape then for baking straightway, which is great. Really faultless recipe and instructions. I’m going for a work-off-the-cookies walk now

  6. Best Peanut Butter Cookie recipe I have ever used. These cookies are so soft and flavorful. I made large cookies about 3 oz each and used Super Chunky Jif. They were the best Peanut Butter Cookies ever. Not dry at all and not too sweet just perfect. Thank you Sally…you are my go to for all things cookies! Your recipes never disappoint.

  7. Can the dough be fried with oil ?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Loveth! We don’t suggest frying these cookies.

  8. Hey Sally,
    I made the cookies and they are soooo amazing!
    Can’t wait for my niece to try them out.
    Thankyou so much!

    Lots of love from Nairobi, Kenya!

  9. FiddlersThree says:

    The best PB cookies bar none. So tasty and tender! I always bake these to give away as a thank you for a favour done. They never fail to get rave reviews! Thanks so much.

  10. Made these today and tried something different than the fork criss-cross. I had a few Easter cookie stamps that I have probably had for 20 years and have used them perhaps once. So I decided to test a few to see how they would work and they turned out super cute. Now I have delicious cookies that are cute, too! Can’t wait to give them all away! (I am gf and sugar free, so I won’t be able to try them, but they smell great!)

  11. Terrific! I was feeling nostalgic for the peanut butter cookies my grandmother used to make me so I decided to give these a try, and they did not disappoint! This recipe makes a big batch which is perfect because when I made these everyone wanted some. The texture is perfect, they are so rich and filling, and I will definitely be making these again. I tried big and small sizes, and they are perfect as huge thick cookies and smaller flat ones with a terrific texture throughout.

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      We’re so glad these reminded you of your grandmother’s cookies, Jamie! Thank you for giving them a try.

  12. I can’t say enough great things about this recipe, easy to make,dough freezes well making it easy to make fresh ones fast, and friends and family plead for more,they sure get eaten fast
    Thanks for this great recipe

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