These Peanut Butter Cookies are a classic recipe for soft and chewy peanut butter cookies with just the right level of crispiness. These cookies take 10 minutes to prep and have the perfect sweet and nutty flavor.
Best Peanut Butter Cookies
Is there anything better than classic peanut butter cookies? The soft, melt-in-your-mouth texture, the crispy edges and soft center.
These homemade peanut butter cookies are, if I do say so myself, the best peanut butter cookies I've ever had. They come together with just a few simple ingredients and a few minutes of prep.
They're soft and chewy in the center with golden brown, crispy edges, and the best peanut buttery flavor.
These cookies are the perfect way for any peanut butter lover to satisfy their sweet tooth!
Prepare the Peanut Butter Cookies
These easy peanut butter cookies are made with pantry staples and take just 10 minutes to prep!
Scroll to the recipe card below for the ingredient amounts and full instructions.
- In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, use an electric hand mixer or stand mixer with a paddle attachment to beat the butter until creamy. Add in the sugars and mix until combined, then beat in the egg followed by the peanut butter and vanilla extract.
- Using low speed, mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, then cover the bowl and chill for 1-2 hours.
- Pour ½ cup of granulated sugar into a small bowl, then portion the dough out into 1 tablespoon-sized cookie dough balls. Roll each ball in the sugar, then place onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Use a fork to form the crisscross pattern in each dough ball, gently pressing down into a cookie shape.
- Bake the cookies in a preheated oven at 350ºF until the tops are lightly browned and the edges are just starting to crisp. Cool the baked cookies on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Tips and Notes
- The type of peanut butter matters! For this recipe, I recommend a more processed variety of creamy peanut butter. Natural peanut butter varieties don't hold the cookies together as well and they can spread too much as they bake.
- Use unsalted butter. Using unsalted butter allows you to control the saltiness of your cookies. If all you have is salted, then skip the added salt.
- Line the baking sheets. Lining the baking sheets with parchment paper helps prevent the cookies from sticking or burning, but also prevents them from spreading as they bake.
- Chill the dough. Chilling the dough is imperative to successful cookies. A couple of hours in the fridge allows it to firm up and prevents the cookies from spreading.
- Don't over-bake. I recommend taking the cookies out of the oven as soon as the top and edges begin to turn light brown. They'll still appear soft in the center. They will finish setting up as they cool and be deliciously soft and chewy.
- Make peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. Add a scoop of your favorite chocolate chips for the classic peanut butter and chocolate combo.
- Add some texture. Simply swap the creamy peanut butter out for crunchy peanut butter.
- Make double peanut butter cookies. Try mixing in a handful of peanut butter baking chips for some extra nutty flavor.
Room Temperature: Leftover cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Freezer: For longer storage, you can store them in the freezer too! Simply layer them in a freezer-safe container or freezer bag, separated by sheets of parchment paper, and store in the freezer for up to 2 months.
When you're ready to enjoy the frozen cookies, simply let them thaw at room temperature or warm them from frozen in the microwave.
Why Do You Put Fork Marks in Peanut Butter Cookies?
Turns out, the criss-cross pattern you see on all traditional peanut butter cookies is not just for show! It serves a practical purpose too.
Peanut butter cookie dough is denser than many varieties of cookie dough. Adding the hash marks to the cookies helps the cookies bake more evenly and allows the center to remain nice and chewy with those yummy crispy edges.
What is the Purpose of Peanut Butter in Cookies?
While the obvious purpose of peanut butter in cookies is to add peanut butter flavor, it also adds to the texture of the cookies.
The extra fat in the nut butter actually creates a soft and tender texture AND helps the cookie dough hold together.
Why Are My Peanut Butter Cookies Crumbling and Falling Apart?
There may be a couple of reasons that your peanut butter cookies aren't holding together:
- Over-measured flour. For the most accurate measurements, it is best to actually weigh your flour out using a kitchen scale. If you don't want to weigh your flour, I recommend gently spooning it into a measuring cup, then leveling it off gently. This prevents over-measuring, which can create a dry and crumbly texture.
- Over-baked cookies. Over-baking the cookies can cause them to be brittle and crumbly. Watch them closely towards the end of the baking time so that you're pulling them out of the oven at the right time!
Recipe Card with Ingredient Amounts and Instructions
- 1 ⅓ cups (170 g) all-purpose flour
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup (115 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- ½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar, plus an extra ⅓ cup for rolling the cookies
- ½ cup (100 g) dark brown sugar
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- ¾ cup (185 g) creamy peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.1 ⅓ cups (170 g) all-purpose flour¾ teaspoon baking soda¼ teaspoon salt
- Using an electric mixer, beat the butter for 1-2 minutes until light and creamy. Add both sugars and continue mixing until completely combined, about 2-3 minutes.½ cup (115 g) unsalted butter½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar½ cup (100 g) dark brown sugar
- Add the egg, and mix until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.1 large egg
- Add the peanut butter and vanilla, and beat until combined.¾ cup (185 g) creamy peanut butter1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Use low speed, and incorporate the dry ingredients just until mixed and no flour streaks remain.
- Cover, and refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F, and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Pour ⅓ cup of granulated sugar into a small bowl. Roll about 1 tablespoon of cookie dough into a ball, then coat it in sugar.
- Place the cookie dough onto the prepared baking sheet, and continue with the remaining dough placing them 2-inches apart. Use a fork to make a criss cross pattern in the dough by pressing down gently on top of each cookie dough ball.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned but still soft. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Scroll up and see the post for tips, FAQs, and storage recommendations.