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These chewy peanut butter cookies are perfectly soft in the middles with slightly crisp edges. This quick and easy recipe takes 20 minutes, there's no chill time, and you only need 9 simple ingredients!
I absolutely LOVE peanut butter. I probably eat it every day in some form or another and whenever I make chocolate peanut butter sandwich cookies they are gone within 24 hours.
But here's the thing: most traditional peanut butter cookies that I've tried are dry and crumbly, and I'm more of a gooey soft cookie kind of person.
These dairy free peanut butter cookies provide all the nostalgia of the traditional recipes, but with the soft chewy texture of a chocolate chip cookie.
Why These Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies Work
- These dairy free peanut butter cookies are baked at a low temperature to allow them time to spread out instead of being puffy.
- Peanut butter has a tendency to make cookies dry and chalky. This recipe uses just the right ratio of butter to peanut butter and a low amount of flour to create a soft middle.
- This recipe only requires just 9 basic ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry!
Step By Step Instructions
STEP ONE: Preheat the oven and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda then set aside.
STEP TWO: Use a standing mixer with the paddle attachment, or a hand mixer to beat the butter and peanut butter together until nice and smooth.
STEP THREE: Beat in both sugars until light and fluffy, then add in the egg and vanilla and mix again.
STEP FOUR: Slowly add in the dry ingredients until just combined.
STEP FIVE: Use a cookie scoop or your hands to form 1.5 tbsp-sized balls of dough and place them on the baking sheets.
STEP SIX: Bake one sheet at a time for 8-10 minutes. The edges will look set but the middles will look quite soft. Leave the cookies on a baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
FAQs and Expert Tips
This recipe uses smooth peanut butter, like Skippy or Kraft. I haven't tried using crunchy peanut butter, but if you like a little crunch, you can use crunchy.
If you're wanting to use natural (no sugar added) peanut butter, the cookies will be less sweet and they will likely spread out more. Using natural peanut butter will change the structure and texture of the cookies.
This is most likely a classic case of using too much flour. It's crucial to properly measure the flour in this recipe, as even 1 extra tablespoon of flour can completely change the structure of the cookies.
You also might have over baked them!
Yes! In fact - it's encouraged! I often add semi-sweet chocolate chips or chopped up dark chocolate to the dough before baking. Chocolate just makes everything better. Half of a cup is usually a good amount!
- Properly weighing your flour is CRUCIAL for soft and chewy peanut butter cookies. Even half of a tablespoon under or over the amount stated in the recipe will completely change the texture of the cookies. I texted this recipe 6 times - trust me!!! Either measure your flour using a food scale or use the proper scoop and level method.
- When mixing the dry ingredients with the wet, stop mixing right away when those last specks of flour have disappeared. Over-mixing the dough will lead to tough cookies.
- When the cookies are done, the edges will look set, but not golden brown. The middles will look really soft - don't worry, the cookies will set on the baking sheets for 10 minutes once you take them out of the oven. Taking the cookies out at this stage is the key to soft cookies!
- When you remove the cookies from the oven, they might look a bit puffy so give the baking sheet a gentle but firm tap on the edge of the counter to flatten them a little bit.
Storage and Freezing Instructions
These cookies should be stored for up to 5 days in an airtight container. You can also freeze the baked cookies in a freezer bag for later.
To thaw them, just remove from the freezer and leave them at room temperature until they're ready to eat!
More Cookie Recipes You'll Love
If you make this recipe, let me know how it went in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you! You can also tag me on Instagram or Facebook so I can check it out!
Soft and Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies
- standing mixer or hand mixer
- ½ cup butter (vegan or regular, softened)
- ½ cup creamy/smooth peanut butter (SEE NOTES)
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup + 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour (SEE NOTES)
- NOTE: This recipe has recently been tweaked for improvement! For the old recipe, please see "Notes" section below.Preheat oven to 350°F and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and baking soda then set aside.
- In the bowl of a standing mixer with the paddle attachment or using a hand mixer, beat peanut butter and butter together until smooth.
- Add in the granulated and brown sugars and beat until light and fluffy, then mix in the egg and vanilla extract.
- Pour the dry ingredients into the bowl and mix until just combined. It is important not to over-mix the dough!
- Use a cookie scoop or your hands to form 1.5 tbsp-sized balls of dough and bake one tray at a time for 8-13 minutes. The middles will look soft and the edges should look set, but not golden brown (if the edges are brown the cookies are already over-done!).
- When removing the cookies from the oven, gently but firmly bang the pan on the edge of the counter a couple times if they look too puffy. Let the cookies cool on a baking sheet for 10 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Please note that this recipe was been updated in April, 2022. These cookies are beloved by many readers so I want to make sure that you can still make the old version. The update was as follows:
Old version: 1 cup + 1 Tablespoon flour (increased flour in the updated recipe to create a little more thickness and a little less spread in the cookies)
The calorie information provided for this recipe is an estimate. The accuracy of the calories listed is not guaranteed.
This is my new favorite peanut butter cookie recipe! These could not be more delicious. I unfortunately realized that I only had half the amount of vanilla necessary midway through baking these so I substituted in one teaspoon of honey and they still turned out great! Also, for the other commenters wondering how you could get these flat my family decided to make these the old-fashioned way. After the dough was ready we rolled the cookie dough balls into sugar and squished them down with a fork in 2 opposite directions to give these the traditional peanut butter cookie design. They turned out perfect! I will now be trying out more recipes from this site as a currently pregnant cookie lover 🙂
Hi Brittany! YAY! This commend made my day! I'm so happy to hear that the cookies were a hit! Thanks so much for taking the time to come back and leave a review and can't wait to see what other recipes you try! 😀
Hi, I am using Gluten-free Flour because that's the only AP Flour I have right now. Surprisingly they are rather delicious!!
Hi Nekka, I am so happy to hear that you love the cookies and that they worked well with GF AP flour! Thanks for the review 🙂
I found your page through Instagram, and I am beyond pleased! I tried the soft and chewy peanut butter cookie recipe, it was fast to make, and everyone loved it! Can't wait to make more items from your recipes!
Hi Eika! I am so happy to hear that you loved the cookies! Thanks so much for the review, can't wait to see what you make next!
Hi Erika, Can I make these with Crunchy Peanut butter?
Hi Elizabeth! It will add some crunch to the cookies but it should work fine.
It's so easy and quick to do! One night I was craving some sweets and found this recipe on Instagram. I made it effortlessly, while switching the Peanut butter part (Tahini & Biscoff spread). It's a big win?
Hi Charlene! I am so happy to hear that you loved the cookies and that they worked with the tahini and biscoff! Thanks so much for taking the time to come back and leave a review 🙂
I only have natural peanut butter in the house. I understand it might spread more when baked, so I’ll refrigerate the dough to hopefully help with that, but how would you suggest I alter the sugar in this recipe to account for natural peanut butter (which doesn’t have added sugar)?
Hi Amanda! You may find that the cookies are still sweet enough for you, depending on your preference. If you like things a little sweeter, I'd suggest just reducing the salt to 1/4 teaspoon instead. You can also add 1 tablespoon extra of flour if chilling the dough doesn't seem to be working! I have heard other readers say the cookies were still great with natural peanut butter though! Enjoy 🙂
Amazing recipe easy to make and so delicious
Hi Chay! I'm so happy to hear how much you loved the recipe! Thanks so much for the review!
This was my first time trying out a peanut butter cookie recipe and it did not disappoint. I read through others and this one was by far the most intriguing to try out. The cookies came out so good, slight crisp on the outer part of the cookie. The recipe was so easy to follow. I think I found my go to recipe for peanut butter cookies. ?? ?
Hi Melissa! Yay, I'm so happy that you loved the recipe 😀 Thank you so much for taking the time to come back and leave a review!
THE best pb cookies I’ve ever made! This is now my go-to recipe! I already want to make another batch today because they are almost gone. Didn’t have parchment paper but the cookies didn’t stick 🙂 The batter won’t look thick / doughy enough but don’t worry they turn out amazingly.
Hi Alex! I'm so happy that you loved the recipe, this made my day! Thanks so much for taking the time to come leave a review 😀
Love these cookies. I could easily eat the entire batch in one night.
Sooo yummy ?
Hi Sebastian! So happy to hear that you loved the cookies! Thanks so much for the review 🙂
This recipe is to DIE for! I’m super picky with Peanut butter cookies and have always hated the crunchy dry ones. But this. This is perfection! Soft, chewy, and perfectly balanced with salty and sweet. And the best part? It’s SO easy! I’ve made them at least 5 times now and the consistency of this recipe is *chefs kiss* lol. I will add that I made a a few modifications per my personal taste/preference the last few times: I did a heaping 1/4 cup of smooth peanut butter and a leveled 1/4 cup of crunchy peanut butter for some added texture(you could probably just throw in crushed peanuts but I like that this isn’t overwhelming) and lastly I added peanut butter chips and y’all, I’m obsessed! Thank you thank you for sharing my husband and I’s new favorite cookie recipe!?
Hi Rachel! Wow this totally made my day! YAY I am SO happy to hear how much you loved the cookies, thank you so much for taking the time to come back and leave a review 🙂
Hi! This recipe is delicious!!! However, my cookies didn't spread out as much as your picture represents. Do you happen to know what causes this? I even tried banging the pan on the counter to flatten them and it didn't really work...please help. Thank you!
Hi Lacie! I'm so happy you loved the cookies! The biggest reason for the cookies not spreading is typically too much flour. I highly recommend weighing your flour with a food scale instead of using cups to ensure that there isn't too much flour in the dough!
Really delicious and easy to make! Made ours with semi sweet chocolate chips - yummy!!!!
Hi Michelle! I'm thrilled to hear that you loved the cookies! Thanks so much for the review 🙂
These cookies are awesome! Crisp around the edges and soft chewy middles...Love ?!
Hi Misty! YAY! I'm so happy you loved them! Thanks so much for the review 😀
What is the weight in grams for the flour?
148 g! The dry ingredient weights are under the metric tab, directly under the "Ingredients" heading.
Do you use salted or unsalted butter?
I've made these using both so you can use either one. If you like your cookies to be on the sweeter side, you can use unsalted.
These are delicious! I added a mashed up banana, and used sugar replacements. I can't have a lot of sugar in my diet. I also folded in some sugar free M&M's. They turned out amazing!
Hi Marie! I'm so happy to hear that you loved the recipe and that it worked out well with the modifications 🙂 M&M's sound like a great addition too! Thanks so much for taking the time to come back and leave a review!
I have tried different PB cookie recipes and this one is by far the best!!! If you want a soft moist PB cookie. This is the one 🙂
Hi Kendra! Yay! What a compliment! I'm so happy that you loved the cookies, thanks so much for taking the time to come back and leave a review 😀