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How to Make Peanut Butter Cookies from Scratch?

Peanut butter cookies are a classic delight worldwide and originated as a dessert in the West. These cookies are so yummy; just the scent of them, freshly baked, is enough to make you drool.

Their flamboyant texture makes you want to grab it and have a bite, without any delay. Once you taste it, you cannot stop munching on them until you are bloated, or they are finished. However, no amount of peanut butter cookies is enough, ever. Bakers came up with several recipes for peanut butter cookies in the past, all for their customers’ satisfaction or beloved ones. They also attempt to discover a new recipe that would shake the world of desserts from its core.

Here are a few names of recipes for peanut butter cookies.

  • classic peanut butter cookies
  • fancy peanut butter cookies
  • chunky peanut butter cookies
  • crunchy peanut butter cookies
  • soft peanut butter cookies

In each of these recipes for peanut butter cookies, apart from minute changes in certain ingredients’ composition, most of the formula is the same. So, understanding just the classic recipe would be enough for you to determine what others would require.

Classic Homemade Peanut Butter Cookies Recipe from Scratch

A typical homemade peanut butter cookie recipe is quite simple. You need only a few ingredients, making you the best tasting dessert.
Interestingly, you need no addictive ingredients, but the final product would be so addictive that you can’t help but continue munching away. The essential elements required to make peanut butter cookies are as such.

Unsalted Butter

Have you ever experienced putting a cookie in your mouth, only to feel it melt therein? Don’t you love it? To be honest, we all do. Butter has a melting point of just around the body’s average temperature.
For that reason, when we consume any product that contains butter, that products start to melt in our mouths, giving us a soothing experience, we shall never forget. That is the beauty of butter.
If you’re wondering, “Why to use unsalted butter? What’s wrong with a salted one?” the answer is quite apparent. Peanut Butter is a dessert, and we require a handsome amount of butter in it. If we use salted butter instead of unsalted one, the final product may not be as yummy. Instead, there is a risk that it would be salty.
However, as we shall explore ahead, salt is indeed required to make peanut butter cookies. But we add it separately to configure just the right amount of salt.

Crunchy Peanut Butter

What is a peanut butter cookie without peanut butter? You can make simple cookies too, but you must add a particular ingredient to give them a unique taste.
For example, to make chocolate chip cookies, we need cocoa and chocolate chips. Without a specific component, all types of cookies will end up becoming “plain cookies.”
You must wonder, “Why the crunchy peanut butter now? Why not ordinary peanut butter?”. Crunchy Peanut Butter has to do a lot with tradition. Of course, you can add simple peanut butter too. However, peanut butter cookies are mostly known for their crunchy and crispy taste.
Crunchy peanut butter leaves a sharp taste in one’s mouth and gives them a feeling that, indeed, they are consuming real peanuts along with the cookies.
Without this crunch, you may not even realize that you are eating genuine peanut butter cookies, which makes you miss out on all the fun.

White Sugar

The main thing that makes the peanut butter cookies a dessert is sweetness, and sweetness comes from sugar. Therefore, white sugar is the second most fundamental ingredient (of course, after peanut butter) in the peanut butter cookies recipe.

All-Purpose Flour

Flour is the foundational component of any baking product. It is the flour in which all the other ingredients are imbedded since it makes most of the work (followed by sugar and butter).
Although self-rising or white flour is also used in baking, an all-purpose flour would be more appropriate in baking peanut butter cookies because it contains just the right amount of proteins and gluten.
All-purpose flour gives just the right amount of elasticity to the dough and a texture so good that it would make your mouth water by just the sight of it.

Brown Sugar

Like white sugar, brown sugar also contributes to the sweetness and the unique taste of the cookies. We can also consider it the second most fundamental ingredient in this recipe, along with the white sugar.

Baking Soda

Sodium bicarbonate, an essential ingredient in the baking process, is a leavening agent. In other words, it gives the cookies a rise.
While other ingredients act as leavening agents, like yeast, baking soda is a more critical ingredient, in this case, i.e., baking homemade peanut butter cookies.
Unlike a cake, you do not need a notable rise in the final product’s height in cookies. However, what you need here is a quick release that can best come about by baking soda.

Baking Powder

Although it has a texture similar to baking soda (i.e., a white powder), it also includes the compound that makes baking soda (i.e., Sodium bicarbonate),
it is a unique ingredient that is different from baking soda. Make sure you do not confuse both in the baking process, or your baking regimen will collapse.
Baking powder is responsible for increasing the volume and lightening the peanut butter cookies’ texture, unlike baking soda.

Salt

A layman would argue, “A dessert is supposed to be sweet. Are you nuts? Why are you adding salt?”. Well, the reality is somewhat different.
While it is natural to consider salt the polar opposite of sugar, it should be remembered that salt mainly adds depth and complexity to the taste of cookies, which is intriguing to the person who consumes them.
Without salt, the cookies would have no balance in their flavor, and the final product would taste like simple, non-granulated sugar.

The Procedure for Preparing Homemade Peanut Butter Cookies from the Start

While we know all the ingredients required to make the most delicate peanut butter cookies, it is also essential to know what quantity is needed for each element. What specific steps need to be followed to prepare the cookies with perfection and without any hassle.
The steps and procedure of baking homemade peanut butter cookies are as such.

Prepare the Butter Mixture

Use the ingredients in these quantities.

  • 1 cup of unsalted butter
  • 1 cup of crunchy peanut butter
  • 1 cup of white sugar
  • 1 cup of packed brown sugar
  • two eggs

You have to prepare the mixture of unsalted butter, crunchy peanut butter, and white and brown sugar by mixing them well in a bowl. Keep at it until you have a refined mixture.
Too much or too little will result in a failed final product or one of low quality. After you have made the mixture, add well-beaten eggs into them and remix them for a while.

Sift other Ingredients Separately

Use the required ingredients in these quantities.

  • 2.5 cups of all-purpose flour
  • one teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1.5 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon of salt

You have to sift all the ingredients in the flour well for a while. However, you have to do it in a separate bowl from the butter mixture.
Doing them together would destroy the process, and your final product would become impossible or incapable of preparing.
After you have sifted all the ingredients, you must add the butter mixture to them and put it in the refrigerator for an hour.
This last step is essential because it allows the mixture to settle down, and the cooling unit makes it more appropriate for the baking process.

Roll the Dough

After the mixture has settled in the refrigerator for an hour, bring it out. Next, roll the dough into small balls (preferably of 1 inch) and keep them at an appropriate distance (so they do not come in contact in the rising or flattening process).
Next, use a fork to flatten all the balls. The fork gives them a shape that is appropriate for peanut butter cookies. Although delightful in their proper domain, Smooth cookies are not suitable or traditional when it comes to peanut butter cookies.

Let it Bake in the Oven

Now put the cookies into the Oven. Bake it for an appropriate time (of around 10 minutes) at a proper temperature (about 190 °C).
However, this is not absolute. The time and temperature may vary according to the composition of the ingredients or certain other circumstances.
So, it would be best to bake at an intermediate temperature until you see the cookies turning brown.
If you bake at a temperature too hot, it may burn from the outside while remaining unbaked from the inside. During the baking process, keep a constant check to ensure the process is going smoothly.
Now enjoy your delicious cookies, and share it with others to spread the love!

Frequently Asked Questions on Baking Peanut Butter Cookies

Due to some confusion and curiosity that revolve around the recipe, several people have asked us questions regarding peanut butter cookie baking for a long. We shall answer some of the most frequently asked questions.

Why can’t I Use One Type of Sugar?

Although both sugars’ primary purpose is adding sweetness, they each have their respective roles to play. White sugar is hygroscopic; it absorbs moisture and adds crisp to the final product. On the other hand, brown sugar makes the product chewy.

What to do if all I Have is Salted Butter?

Unsalted butter is used so that the salt can be added separately. That gives us an advantage since we can change the amount of salt depending on our desires.
If all you have is salted butter, do not add salt separately. The final product would have a good flavor, but you may not configure the amount of salt you need.

I can not Configure the Temperature in my Oven. What to Do?

In that case, you most likely have a convection oven. Reduce the baking time a little compared to the standard time given in the recipe, and keep checking the cookies to see if they are doing fine.

The Final Cookies are Flat. What to Do?

It is either adding hot butter into the batter or having baking soda that has turned old. Make sure to refrigerate the mixture for a while before you bake it, and test your baking soda by adding vinegar. If it fizzes, then it is good to use.

Can I Configure my Final Product by Slightly Tweaking the Composition?

Yes, with a slight change of composition, there is potential for the final product to come out differently.
It is an exciting activity to do if you like experimenting or looking for a unique recipe of your liking for peanut butter cookies.
However, do remember that chances of failure and disappointment are exceedingly high. And you may not get the perfect cookies of your liking on the first try.

Final Thoughts Peanut Butter Cookies

With time, the best bakers worldwide are always coming up with newer recipes for their products. Peanut Butter cookies are no exception amongst them. The recipe we provided you with was a “classic” recipe used for ages.
However, for different tastes and textures in cookies, some recipes are starkly different, and their final products give an entirely different product that may hold a similar flavor. Be sure to check out all those recipes since they will add versatility and give you a more exciting baking and tasting experience.

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