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Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

November 21, 2019

Makes 20-22 Cookies


I saw the photo of these cookies on Smitten Kitchen and knew I had to make them immediately. I made them again and again in the weeks to follow because they are THAT good and relatively easy to perfect. They are not too chocolatey, with a creamy, peanut buttery center. There’s just enough salt, with a perfect balance of flavor and texture. Need I say more? If you like the combination of chocolate and peanut butter then these cookies are for you! Warning, these may be hard to share.


Filling Ingredients:

2/3 cup (170 grams) creamy peanut butter (I used salted)

2/3 cup (80 grams) powdered sugar (no need to sift)

2 pinches kosher salt


Cookie Ingredients:

½ cup (115 grams or 4 oz) unsalted butter, at room temp

½ cup (100 grams) granulated sugar, plus more for coating cookies

½ cup (95 grams) dark brown sugar

¼ cup (65 grams) creamy peanut butter (I used salted)

1 large egg, at room temp

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/3 cup (175 grams) all-purpose flour

2/3 cup (55 grams) dutch-process cocoa powder (for a darker, richer, nuttier cookie)

2 teaspoons baking powder

¼ teaspoon fine sea salt or table salt (to taste, I didn’t need to add this because my peanut butter was already salted)


Instructions:

Heat oven to 375° F. Line 2 sheet trays with parchment or silicone pad.


Mix together the filling ingredients until smooth. Scoop heaping teaspoons of filling and roll them gently into balls. Set them on a plate or tray and freeze them while you continue with the rest of the recipe. If you have a scale, weigh the balls so they are all uniform in size.


Beat butter, sugars, and peanut butter on medium speed until creamy and smooth. Scrape the bowl once or twice along the way. Add egg, vanilla, and salt (if using) and beat until combined. Scrape the bowl and beat for another minute.


Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, and baking powder. Put a cup or so of granulated sugar in a bowl and set that aside.


Add the dry ingredients to the butter and sugar mixture on low speed and mix until just combined. (You can finish mixing with your hand to make sure all of the flour is incorporated). Overmixing will create a tough cookie, cake, or any baked product.


Scoop about 2 tablespoons of cookie dough (I used a purple #40 scoop), place in the palm of your hand and flatten it. Take a frozen peanut butter ball and place it in the middle of the flattened disc. Gently gather the sides of the dough up and over the frozen ball so that it is completely encased in the cookie dough. Roll it a bit in your palms to make it nice and smooth.



Roll the ball in granulated sugar, place on the baking tray and gently flatten with the palm of your hand or the bottom of a glass. You don’t have to completely squish it, just a gently push. Continue with the rest of the dough.


Bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes. I think mine were perfect at 9, but it depends on your oven. Yes, this seems like very little time to bake a cookie, but we are only trying to bake that outer portion of dough and let the middle center remain soft and melty. Let cookies cool in the pan for 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack. Devour the cookies.



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