This simple Chewy Homemade Peanut Butter Cookies recipe makes the best soft, thick cookies, with chocolate chips or chunks, M & M's or plain!
Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies Recipe
A few years ago we ate these Perfect Peanut Butter Cookies at a friends home and have been making them ever since.
For a soft peanut butter cookie lover these cookies are perfection.
I always throw M&M's in them because of how bright and colorful they make these cookies look. Ken, my husband, says he prefers them plain but he still gobbles them up anyways!
Simple Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe
These simple peanut butter cookies freeze beautifully even though I rarely get the opportunity to do it.
They usually disappear so fast I don't get the chance.
You can use chocolate chips or chunks, smarties or whatever you think would taste best to make these cookies perfect for you.
I even threw in some caramel M&M's by mistake.
I thought they were the chocolate version and they were so good I would definitely do that again. Intentionally this time!
Peanut Butter M&M or Reese's Pieces Cookies
I just LOVE using the new peanut butter flavored M&M's. They're the best flavor too, if you ask me.
You'll love taking every bite of these easy peanut butter cookies. The texture is perfect and the flavor divine.
Biting into the center or cracking each M&M is out of this world good. I always wish I included more M&M's. No matter how many I add in to my dough.
Same goes with Reese's Pieces. There never seems to be enough. My husband thinks I need to just eat a bowl of them instead but where's the fun in that?
Regardless, you may choose to use other types of M&Ms like regular chocolate M&Ms, caramel M&M's, the almond or peanut M&Ms with the actual nut inside, pretzel M&Ms, and the list goes on.
That being said, don't forget about Reese's Pieces or Smarties will work in a pinch and don't stop there.
- toffee bits
- butterscotch chips
- chocolate chips
- caramel chips
- malt balls
- chocolate covered caramels
- sprinkles or sparkles
After Baking Options - See instructions below
- chocolate KISS candies
- chocolate peanut butter cups
- chocolate covered caramels
Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe
A little trick is to press a peanut butter cup into the center or chocolate kisses as soon as the cookies come out of the oven and then right into your freezer.
Bake your cookies until the edges start to turn a light golden brown color.
As soon as you remove your cookies from the oven you need to press one chocolate KISS candy, peanut butter cup or whatever candy you decide to include, right into the center of each cookie.
Don't be concerned but your cookie might crack around the edges a little bit when pressing your treat into the middle of each freshly baked, right out of the oven, peanut butter cookie.
Transfer cookies from baking sheet to wire rack and allow your cookies to cool completely.
If using chocolate kisses these cookies are commonly known as kiss cookies or blossoms. They're quite popular and an oh so tasty kind of good.
I don't generally recommend adding chopped up peanut butter cups because they just melt and get really messy. Messy in a delicious way but messy.
Regardless of what you call them these cookies are totally addictive and downright delicious.
Homemade Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe
There are days when I believe I have the potential to be addicted to M&M's. I don't even bring them in the house unless I have a purpose.
Let me tell you that this is a great purpose.
These cookies are that good.
Simple Peanut Butter Cookies
Eating these peanut butter cookies right out of the oven is a habit I have developed over the years. I always burn myself at least a little. I can never wait for these cookies to cool down.
My husband thinks I'm nuts.
I LOVE eating one of these cookies when they're super hot, when the inside or center of the cookie is so warm, smooth and melt in your mouth creamy.
Busting or bursting open a candy in your mouth adds to the flavor explosion in your mouth and is simply almost too good for words.
Ingredients for Peanut Butter Cookies
- peanut butter
- brown sugar
- baking soda
- M & M's or whatever you want to include!
How to Make Homemade Peanut Butter Cookies
In a large bowl cream butter, peanut butter and sugars together until light and fluffy.
Add egg, and then the vanilla.
Slowly blend in the baking soda and flour until just combined. Do not over-mix.
Chill dough for at least an hour.
Remove dough from fridge and roll into balls. I make little golf balls around 2 inches in diameter.
Spread a thin layer of granulated or raw sugar on a plate and roll each dough ball to evenly coat (if desired). I usually do this and my husband always skips this step.
These cookies spread so be sure to space them out on your cookie sheet. I usually use parchment paper on an un-greased baking sheet.
Leave cookies on your baking sheet for 5-10 minutes and then transfer to a rack to cool.
No matter what size you decide to make your cookie balls, you will know when they are done because the tops will crack and you might notice a little brown around the edges. That is time to take them out of the oven.
These cookies will look undone, but will firm up as they cool. Do not over bake them.
How to Make Ahead, Freeze and Store Cookies
First, I have to tell you that this dough freezes beautifully.
You can make this peanut butter cookie dough in advance and freeze it airtight for up to three months. There are two ways to freeze your raw peanut butter cookie dough.
This chilled cookie dough takes moments to prepare and then you must decide how you want to freeze it.
Your first option is to use an ice cream scoop or a similarly shaped spoon. Place scooped dough balls on a parchment covered rimmed baking sheet.
Make sure the dough balls are as close in size as possible and that none of the peanut butter balls are touching each other.
Place inside your freezer for at least an hour, if not two.
Once scooped balls are somewhat frozen, place each inside a large resealable bag and place inside your freezer until needed. You can easily cook these peanut butter cookie balls from frozen.
Just add a couple minutes to your baking time. You don't need to thaw or defrost the dough before baking. How easy is that?
However, if you prefer, take all of your raw peanut butter cookie dough and simply place it all on top of parchment paper. Fold your parchment over top of the dough and adjust and roll the dough until it forms the shape of a log.
Place into a large resealable bag, an airtight container or wrap tightly in plastic wrap and freeze until needed. Allow dough to thaw until easy enough to shape and handle.
Then bake and that's it!
Freezing scooped balls is my favorite method and so much easier than freezing dough as one log. Super easy to have fresh cookies whenever you want and you can make as many as you want or need.
Please let me know which method you prefer.
Bottomline, to properly store your cookies they must be kept in an airtight container of some kind. I frequently, simply keep my cookies inside a large resealable bag.
This easily prevents the cookies from becoming dry and stale as long as there is a half a slice of bread inside the bag with the cookies too. The bread helps to keep your cookies fresher tasting for longer.
How to Keep Cookies Fresh?
Decorative Ceramic Cookie Jar
Growing up, we used to have this large, decorative, ceramic hippo on our kitchen table that was usually full of cookies. There was no seal that protected the cookies from drying out at all.
It is true that most of the cookies were dry or almost stale tasting but we didn't care a bit.
We happily ate whatever was there.
Now, if I would have taken an open, large resealable bag and pushed it right inside the hippo before adding the cookies.
My grandmother would have loved this little trick because she always keep cookies inside a cookie tin. I'm pretty sure my mother did too.
But. If I did.
I would place parchment paper on the bottom of the cookie tin followed by a flour tortilla and more parchment paper. Add a layer of cookies followed by parchment, another flour tortilla, more parchment and another layer of cookies and so on.
If you pre-cut or trace your cookie tin on your tortillas and parchment each layer fits in just fine and the flour tortillas will keep your cookies soft and super moist.
I always end with layer of cookies at the top of the cookie tin.
Another amazing cookie trick I learned years ago to make cookies taste fresh again is to preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Yep I said it. Oven.
Place cookies on top of a baking sheet and bake for somewhere between 4 and 5 minutes. Allow cookies to cool on top of your baking sheet for a minute or two and help yourself.
Serve your cookies while they're warm and enjoy every bite.
What Makes Cookies Chewy
There are a few reasons why cookies are soft and chewy.
The amount of moisture in a cookie ultimately determines how chewy a cookie is going to be. If your cookies are too heavy and dense consider adding more butter, egg yolk or yolks or a little extra liquid.
You can even add a little extra brown sugar because the molasses added to it can moisten your cookie.
To almost guarantee a chewy cookie texture I also have a few suggestions that don't involve adding or removing ingredients to your recipe.
First, simply remove your cookies from your oven when they're almost cooked or underdone.
Simply put, don't hesitate to remove your cookies from your oven when they aren't totally cooked at all. I mean fall apart uncooked.
Using your spatula, remove cookies from rimmed baking sheet and place on top of wire rack until cool. Cookie will look under cooked and generally shiny still on its surface. The edges might be starting to turn a light brown color.
The second suggestion is to do your best to promote even baking by rotating your rimmed baking sheet midway through baking.
Most ovens have hotspots and doing this helps to make sure all of your cookies are cooked at the same level or rate and at the same time.
This rule actually applies to everything you cook inside your oven.
If you are like me and always on the lookout for more cookie recipes, I have included some of my favorites below. Just in case this peanut butter cookie recipe isn't for you!
Other Delicious Cookie Recipes to Try
For all of you cookie lovers out there that prefer a softer, thicker peanut butter cookie then you have to roll the dice and give our recipe a try. I hope you have a moment to take a look at our video below!
Chewy Homemade Peanut Butter Cookies Video
Chewy Homemade Peanut Butter Cookies
Before Baking Options
After Baking Options
- chocolate KISS candies
- chocolate covered caramels
- chocolate peanut butter cups
- In a large bowl, using a handheld or stand mixer, cream butter (including peanut butter) and sugars together until light and fluffy.
- Add egg, and then the vanilla. Slowly mix in the baking soda and flour. Do not overmix.
- Chill dough for at least an hour.
- When you are ready to bake preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Remove dough from fridge and roll into balls. I make little golf balls around 2 inches in diameter. You can make them as big or as small as you would like.
- Spread a thin layer of granulated or raw sugar on a plate and roll each dough ball to evenly coat (if desired). I usually do this and my husband always skips this step.
- These cookies spread so be sure to space them out on your cookie sheet. I usually use parchment paper on an ungreased baking sheet.
- Bake for 20 minutes, on your middle rack, if your cookie balls are about 2 inches wide. Leave cookies on your baking sheet for 5-10 minutes and then transfer to a rack to cool.
- No matter what size you decide to make your cookie balls, you will know when they are done because the tops will crack and you might notice a little brown around the edges. That is time to take them out of the oven. These cookies will look undone, but will firm up as they cool. Do not over bake them.
- These cookies will stay fresh and soft in an airtight container for up to 5 or 6 days and freeze beautifully.
After Baking Options
- After Baking Optionschocolate KISS candieschocolate peanut butter cupschocolate covered caramels
- Bake your cookies until the edges start to turn a light golden brown color.
- A little trick is to press a peanut butter cup into the center or chocolate kisses as soon as the cookies come out of the oven and then right into your freezer.
- As soon as you remove your cookies from the oven you need to press one chocolate KISS candy, peanut butter cup, chocolate covered caramel or whatever candy you decide to include, right into the center of each cookie.
- Don't be concerned but your cookie might crack around the edges a little bit when pressing your treat into the middle of each freshly baked, right out of the oven, peanut butter cookie.
- Transfer cookies from baking sheet to wire rack and allow your cookies to cool completely.
- If using chocolate kisses these cookies are commonly known as kiss cookies or blossoms. They're quite popular and an oh so tasty kind of good.
- I don't generally recommend adding chopped up peanut butter cups because they just melt and get really messy. Messy in a delicious way but messy.
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