Crispy, Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies

I’ve shied away from making peanut butter cookies for years now – probably since Home Economics in high school – because they’re too rich and too sweet for me.

Or so I thought. This past weekend, I wanted to try a different cookie from my usual line-up and I had a jar of crunchy peanut butter with probably 3 tablespoons left, so I tried Deb’s peanut butter cookie recipe. She adapted the recipe from the Magnolia Bakery cookbook (“Wait, Magnolia makes more than just cupcakes?”).

These are the lightest peanut butter cookies I’ve tasted. And they fit my perfect cookie prototype of crispy exterior / chewy interior. I think it’s preferable to use crunchy peanut butter for the texture and I added rolled oats for texture.  The next time I make these I might try adding even more oats. You can do the same, just be sure to adjust the ratio of flour to oats. 1:1 seemed to work for me (i.e., I replaced ½ cup of flour with oats).

Also, the original recipe called for both peanut butter and chocolate chips, but I don’t think either is needed. In fact, I feel again that the sweetness can maybe be cut down just a bit. But really, that’s very optional. They’re great at the current level of sweetness. It’s dangerously easy to put down like half of dozen of them in 15 minutes.

photo (21)

fresh out of the oven

photo (22)

different angle, anyone?

photo (23)

let the scarfing begin

Peanut Butter Cookies (Adapted from Smitten Kitchen)

3/4 cups wheat flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup peanut butter at room temperature (crunchy)
3/4 cup, minus 1 Tbsp, sugar
1/2 cup loosely packed light brown sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Optional, for sprinkling: 1 tablespoon sugar, regular or superfine

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine the flour, the baking soda, the baking powder, and the salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the butter and the peanut butter together until fluffy.
  3. Add the sugars and beat until smooth. Add the egg and mix well. Add the milk and the vanilla extract. Add the flour mixture and beat thoroughly.
  4. Stir in the peanut butter and chocolate chips. Place sprinkling sugar — the remaining tablespoon — on a plate.
  5. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls into the sugar, then onto ungreased cookie sheets, leaving several inches between for expansion.
  6. Using a fork, lightly indent with a criss-cross pattern. I like my cookies on the flatter side so I flattened the cookies a good amount while doing this and got good results.
  7. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Do not overbake. Cookies may appear to be underdone, but they are not.
  8. Cool the cookies on the sheets for 1 minute, then remove to a rack to cool completely.
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