Classic peanut butter cookies are soft, chewy, and topped with a trademark criss-cross pattern! Packed with tons of peanut butter flavor, these easy peanut butter cookies are a family favorite you’ll make again and again! Bonus: you can freeze peanut butter cookie dough for up to 2 months.
Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe
Growing up, peanut butter cookies were not a household staple. My mom rarely baked them; she’s team chocolate chip. And on the rare occasion we bought them from the store, they were always just ok. No wonder it took me ages to get around to perfecting and pointing this recipe. But after weeks of recipe testing, late night peanut butter runs, and mountains of dirty dishes: I finally perfected the peanut butter cookie.
These peanut butter cookies are:
- soft but chewy and just a little bit crunchy at the edges
- full of peanut butter flavor without being too peanut buttery (does that make sense?)
- freezer friendly
- made with just 9 simple, everyday ingredients
- a dream come true for peanut butter purists
- absolutely delicious with an ice cold glass of milk
Ingredients for Peanut Butter Cookies:
- Butter: Be sure to use unsalted butter, and bring it to room temperature before use. Butter that’s too cold won’t properly cream with the sugars.
- Peanut Butter: For best results, use regular creamy peanut butter, like JIF or Skippy. I do not suggest using natural peanut butter, or subbing almond butter. Crunchy peanut butter will work if you want a crunchier peanut butter cookie.
- Vanilla Extract: Be sure to use pure vanilla, not imitation or artificial vanilla. If you don’t have this ingredient on hand, you may simply omit it. The cookies won’t have the same depth of flavor but will still be delicious.
- Sugar: A combination of granulated sugar and brown sugar are used to sweeten the cookies and add depth of flavor.
- Eggs: Use large eggs and be sure to bring them to room temperature before use.
- All-Purpose Flour: I don not suggest subbing almond flour or coconut flour in this recipe. Some readers have reported great success using a 1 for 1
- Chemical Leavening Agents: Baking soda and baking powder help these cookies spread and puff up in the oven. Be sure yours are fresh, as expired leavening agents don’t preform well, and can add an unpleasant taste to the cookies.
- Salt: If you only have salted butter, you can use it and omit this ingredient. But salt helps enhance the flavors in the recipe while balances sweetness.
How to Make Peanut Butter Cookies
- Make the Cookie Dough: In a large bowl beat the butter and peanut butter until smooth. Toss in the sugars, eggs, and vanilla and beat well. Finally, mix in the dry ingredients, mixing just until combined. Do not over mix your cookie dough or the cookies will bake up cakey.
- Chill the Cookie Dough: Cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for at least an hour. If the cookie dough is too firm to scoop, let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes to soften.
- Prep the Oven: 20 minutes before you plan on baking, preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). You’ll also want to line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Bake: Scoop out cookie dough, roll it into balls, and place it on your prepared baking pan. Use a fork to make criss cross marks on the top of each cookie. Then bake until the edges are golden and the centers have set.
- Cool: Cool the cookies on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.
If you’ve been searching for the perfect peanut butter cookie recipe, try these today! This recipe is peanut butter cookie bliss! Trust me when I say just one bite will turn you into a believer. And don’t be surprised if you find yourself stocking your freezer with this cookie dough once a month. They’re borderline addicting and a family favorite!
More Peanut Butter Cookies Recipes:
- Soft Batch Chocolate Chunk Peanut Butter Cookies
- Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Santa’s Favorite Peanut Butter M&M Cookies
- Bakery-Style Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Salted Pretzel Peanut Butter Bourbon Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Peanut Butter Monster Cookies
Perfect Peanut Butter Cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter, at room temperature
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 and 1/4 cups light brown sugar, packed
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (bleached or unbleached will work fine)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (kosher or table salt)
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl using a handheld electric mixer, beat the butter until smooth and creamy. Add in the peanut butter and vanilla and beat until smooth; about 2 minutes. Add in both sugars and beat until light and fluffy, scraping down the sides as needed, about 2 minutes. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Turn mixer off. Add in the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Whisk the ingredients together lightly before turning the mixer back on low and mixing in the dry ingredients until just combined. Be sure not to over mix here. Cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for 1 hour, or up to 2 days. If you refrigerate the cookie dough for more than an hour, you may need to let it thaw a little before scooping.
When ready to bake:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Scoop two tablespoon sized mounds of dough onto the prepared cookie sheet, leaving a few inches between each cookies for spreading. Use a fork to make crosshatch marks on the top of each cookie, if desired. Bake for 11-13 minutes, or until the edges are golden and the centers have set. Cool cookies on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.