Peanut Butter Cup Cookies - Easy-to-make, Soft and Chewy
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Peanut Butter Cup Cookies - Easy-to-make, Soft and Chewy
Peanut butter blossoms get an upgrade in these adorable peanut butter cookies. What sets this recipe apart (besides the mini peanut butter candies) is a little more peanut butter and light brown sugar.
The extra peanut butter ensures a wonderful texture and unmissable peanut flavor.
An extra dose of brown sugar does a few things: it adds a caramel hue that brings out the peanut flavor, creates a wonderful chew, and provides moisture that keeps cookies from drying out.
A generous amount of salt rounds out the dough, ensuring that the cookie itself isn't too sweet and balances well with the center of the peanut butter cup.
There really is no bad time to make these pecan cookies. They're easy to make anytime, making them a tasty option for a last-minute treat.
They also store well in an airtight container, so you can make a batch and keep them on the counter to sip throughout the day for a sweet pick-me-up.
The best peanut butter for this recipe
The best peanut butter for these cookies is Skippy or Jif style creamy peanut butter.
This no-stirring, shelf-stable type of peanut butter produces the best flavor and texture and provides just the right amount of moisture and fat.
Chunky or crunchy peanut butter also works in this recipe.
However, if you're craving a bit of peanut texture, the peanut butter chunks end up being minimal and unnoticeable in the finished cookies.
Natural peanut butter will work in a pinch with a few caveats.
First, the best way to swap out the natural creamy brands for the no-stir creamy ones is by weight, and be sure to stir well first.
When testing with natural peanut butter, I noticed that the dough and cookies were a bit drier. I suggest baking the cookies closer to 8 minutes than 12.
Tips for Making Peanut Butter Cookies
Use butter and egg at room temperature. Room temperature ingredients are more easily incorporated.
If the butter is cold, you'll need to beat more to soften the dough, which can incorporate too much air and make the cookie drier.
Do not over mix the dough after adding the flour mixture. Over mixing can result in hard cookies.
Have your mini peanut butter cups prepped and ready to go.
While slightly cracking is to be expected, the longer you let the cookie cool before adding the peanut butter cup, the more the top will crack.
For quick assembly, unwrap the chocolates before the cookies come out of the oven.
Try a different sweet
Other sweets that would be delicious in these cookies include:
- Chocolate covered candies or caramel cups such as Rolls
plain chocolate chunks
- Chocolate kisses
- A piece of Snickers for a real explosion of textures
- Make these cookies ahead of time
- The dough can be prepared, portioned, and stored in a sealed plastic bag in the freezer for up to 1 month. When it's time to bake, prepare the mini muffin pan and bake as described in the recipe.
- Bake cookies from frozen; they may need a few extra minutes of cooking.
- Nonstick cooking spray for greasing the pan
- 1 1/3 cups (180 g) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 2/3 cup (180 g) creamy peanut butter, such as Skippy or Jif
- 6 tablespoons (84 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2/3 cup (150g) light brown sugar
- 1/3 cup (70g) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 24 to 30 mini peanut butter cups, unwrapped
Preheat oven to 350°F
Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat. Lightly spray cavities of a nonstick mini muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.
Combine the dry ingredients:
In a small bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder and set aside.
Cream peanut butter and butter:
Add the peanut butter and butter to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or to a large bowl using a hand mixer.
Beat on medium speed until fully combined and creamy, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Stop and scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula as necessary.
The mixture will be loose and on the thinner side.
Add sugars, egg and vanilla:
Add the brown sugar and granulated sugar to the bowl and beat on medium speed, scraping down the bowl as necessary, until thick and fluffy, 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat on medium speed, scraping as necessary, until fully incorporated and the mixture is light and creamy, about 15 seconds more.
Add the flour mixture:
Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and beat on low, scraping as necessary, until just combined with no dry flour residue, about 20 seconds.
Use a rubber spatula to give the batter a good stir, scraping the bottom of the bowl to make sure everything is well combined.
Bake the cookies:
Bake cookies, turning halfway through baking time, until golden brown, slightly puffed, and tops are matte and dry to the touch, 8 to 12 minutes.
It's okay if the cookies are just beginning to brown around the edges, but the tops shouldn't brown enough (or they're overbaked).
While the cookies are baking, unwrap the mini peanut butter cups.
Finish up with the mini peanut butter cups:
Remove the baking sheet from the oven and place it on a wire rack. Immediately, while the cookies are still warm, press a mini unwrapped peanut butter cup into the center of each cookie.
Let cookies cool in pan until lightly set and cool enough to handle, about 5 minutes.
Cool the cookies:
Carefully holding the top of one cookie, twist to release it from the tin and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
If you feel the cookie is tender or the chocolate is moving, allow the cookies to cool an additional 5 minutes in the pan.
Serve completely cold or still warm while the peanut butter cup melts.
Leftover cookies can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container in a single layer or stacked with a piece of wax or parchment paper between cookies for up to 4 days.
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