Introduction: Ultimate Peanut Butter Cookies
Peanut butter blossoms are popular holiday cookies (at least back home for me), but my husband and I aren't really fond of the hard kiss in the center. I thought it might be fun to make them with miniature Reese's cups instead, but then I thought that might be too hard too. So then I thought it would be fun to cut them up and add them in like chocolate chips. But then, I thought I need to go further and decided it would be fun to ALSO stuff them with a peanut butter mixture (like in Peanut Butter Cups).
This results in these awesome cookies that are just packed with peanut butter-y goodness and stay soft and chewy, just the way I like them.
*All of the cookies you see in the picture above are the stuffed ones I made. You can see they are a bit puffier than the regular cookies I baked, but really not by much.
Step 1: Supplies
These cookies took some planning ahead for me. I ended up looking at 4 different recipes people have used, looked up what it takes to make softer cookies, and consulted with (aka harrassed) Jessyratfink. The result is these cookies which are delicious.
This recipe makes roughly 24 cookies depending on how big your cookies are.
- 1 1/2 Cups of All-Purpose Flour
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 3/4 Cup Light Brown Sugar
- 1/4 Cup Sugar
- 1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter - room temperature
- 1/2 Cup Peanut Butter - you can do crunchy peanut butter if you want, your choice
- 1 Large Egg + 1 yoke - room temperature
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 24 Miniature Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, cut up - you can use however many you want, I went with 1 PB cup per cookie I planned to make
- 3/4c - 1c each of Peanut Butter and Powdered Sugar - for stuffing
- I wasn't sure how this would work so I only did 1/4c of each and stuffed 7 cookies. It was so tasty, I wish I had done them all this way. Whether you do this is up to you. You can also use smaller amounts for each cookie if you are worried about going too crazy on Peanut Butter.
If you have your own Peanut Butter cookie recipe you like to use, feel free to make that instead and just add the PB cups and PB stuffing.
- Add in peanuts (if you would rather do that than use crunchy peanut butter) - I don't recommend using chunky or peanuts for the PB center as it is supposed to be smooth, but in the cookies should be fine.
- Drizzle melted chocolate (or melted chocolate + some peanut butter) over the cookies
- Baking sheets
- Parchment Paper - I decided to bake them on this as Jessyratfink recommended it, as well as the internet, to get chewier cookies; a Baking Mat should also work nicely, just avoid putting them straight on the metal pan if you want chewier cookies
- Cutting board and Knife
- Mixing bowls and measuring utensils
- Cooling Racks
Cooking Temp: 350 F
Cooking Time: 10-12 minutes - I did 12 minutes on the regular ones and 12 -14 on the stuffed ones, but use your own judgment on how you like them. They may look not as baked as normal PB cookies, but don't worry, they are. The gooey middle makes them look like they may not be baked enough, but as long as the outside starts to brown, you should be good to go. The next time I make these, I'll still probably stick with 12 minutes for the stuffed, though, even at 14 minutes they didn't burn, just got a tad crunchier than I would have liked.
Step 2: Preparation
Stuffed Cookies: not necessary, but recommended as it's very tasty
If you are going to stuff the cookies, start by mixing equal parts powdered sugar and peanut butter.
As I mentioned, I did 1/4c of each and made 7 balls for the cookies. Your amounts will depend on how many cookies you do and how big of balls you make. You could probably make do with 3/4c of each for 24 cookies, but you can go up to 1c each if you want more gooeyness.
If you would like, after rolling the mixture into balls, flatten those balls a bit before freezing (not a lot, just a little). It will help the cookie not look as tall when it bakes. The bulge from the added peanut butter center is noticeable in the final cookie, but honestly, it's not too bad. So this is just if you feel like it.
Stick these in the freezer so they will be easier to work with later. You don't have to do this way ahead of time. As long as you do this first, they should be firm by the time you need them.
Cutting up Peanut Butter Cups:
Prepare your Reese's Peanut Butter cups by cutting them up. I cut each cup into 8 pieces (cut in half, top/bottom, and cut each half in 4). Another option is to unwrap them, put them in a bag and freeze them, and then smash them once they are hard. I wanted nice chunks so I took the time to cut them all up, but the smashing method works too. Cut up as many as you want. I did 24 so there would be roughly 1 PB cup per cookie.
Once you are ready, you can preheat oven to 350 F. Or do that before doing any prep work. All depends on how fast your oven preheats.
Step 3: Mix Dry
As with most cookies, you want to mix the dry and wet ingredients separately. I'm going to start with dry. In a bowl, mix together your flour, baking powder, and salt.
Step 4: Mix Wet
Now for the wet. Start by mixing together your sugars and then mixing in your room temperature butter.
Once those are mixed well, you can add in your peanut butter, eggs, vanilla, and cut up peanut butter cups. I decided to mix the PB cups in now because I figured it would be easier to mix them in with wet ingredients rather than the finished cookie batter.
Step 5: Mix Everything and Add PB Center
Carefully and slowly mix the dry ingredients into your wet ingredients. I got anxious and spilled some of my flour so just be careful.
Get your cookies ready!
I recommend getting all of your cookies ready at once (I made 24) so you can get them all evenly proportioned.
For stuffed cookies, take the amount of cookie batter you would for a normal cookie and kind of flatten it out. Put a ball (or disc) of your hardened peanut butter center into the cookie dough and then just wrap it around the ball. All you need to do is cover the ball the best you can with the cookie dough and then just put it on the pan.
Do not flatten the cookie (it will be hard with the frozen peanut butter center anyway), but if you leave them round they shouldn't spread as much and should stay chewier.
Step 6: Bake and Wait
Bake your cookies at 350F for about 10 - 14 minutes. As I mentioned earlier, I baked mine for about 12 minutes (some for 14 but I think they would have been fine at 12).
Let them sit on the pan until you can safely move them, then put them on the cooking rack until the are done.
Step 7: Enjoy!
If you want to enjoy the stuffed cookies with a more gooey center, you either need to eat them when they are still warm from the oven or give them a quick zap in the microwave before eating. They are still good once they cool, but the center will be more like a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup consistency.
These really are the best. I can't wait to make them again, all with peanut butter-y centers!