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Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies (Crispy Sablé Style)

5

Easy recipe for the ultimate melt-in-the-mouth crunchy peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. Like a French butter sablé, they’re healthy as reduced in sugar. Texture-wise they are crisp yet soft rather than chewy with a subtle saltiness that makes them irresistible.

golden brown cookies cooling on a wire tray with a pile of chocolate chips

Easy Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

It’s already the second week of the mid-term school winter holidays. The children have had a ball with sleep-overs, ‘hanging out’ chez les amis (‘playing’ is now banned from our silly adult vocabulary.) On return from their friends’ homes, they described what they had for dinner and, top of the list, what was for goûter at 4pm official French snack time. They raved about their friends’ homemade cookies.
‘You know, Mum, they made the most incredible cookies. They put chocolate chips in them, and peanut butter.’
Why don’t we ever make cookies like them?”

WHAT?! Ah bon. I could feel myself standing to my full height. After constantly testing French pâtisserie recipes for my 2nd book, Teatime in Paris they’ve had éclairs, financiers, crêpes, tarts and mille-feuilles, macarons and ice creams. After making all these, I hadn’t made the simplest cookies made with peanut butter.

When I mentioned the reaction to the friends’ cookies, my Mum burst into hysterics. Apparently, I’m Granny’s double: my Mum used to come home from a friend’s house, also raving about what she’d eaten there and my Granny would throw a wobbly with the kids. Nobody could be better than my proud, Scottish Granny. ‘What? She served you tinned mandarines and you think that’s better than what you get here?’

I didn’t even realise that I demonstrated the same. Exactly the same. Thanks for putting me in my place, Mum. I deserved that.

rows of golden cookies cooling on a rack

How do you Simple Peanut Butter Cookies Better?

That being said, I still set about making the best ever peanut butter cookies. How can you make simple cookies better? By using the best quality ingredients you can. Use good unsalted butter, best quality dark chocolate chips (I use Barry), and the best crunchy peanut butter. A few years ago, peanut butter wasn’t something the French normally keep in their store cupboards but it’s getting better in supermarkets and health food stores with much more choice today.

Use your favourite brand (e.g. Jif in the USA). In France, I prefer to buy the natural kinds with no added salt or sugar. Just ensure you stir it well first, as the natural peanuts and their oil separate in the jar.

The result are soft, melt-in-the-mouth yet crispy-on-the-outside peanut butter cookies. They are particularly buttery. So much so, they are a bit like French sablé cookies (see my recipe for salted butter biscuits, Palets Bretons). Using good quality dark chocolate chips makes them even better!

rows of golden chocolate chip-studded cookies cooling

Consistent, Precise Baking – Even for Easy Cookies

To make it up to them from a cookie-less Mum back then, I took inspiration from my American blogging friends making cookies that used peanut butter.

I found many super peanut butter recipes. The problem, however, is that so many US recipes deal in cups. In France (and now the UK) we prefer grams. It’s not to be difficult. The reason being, by dosing the ingredients using a digital scale, it’s precise and means that the results are more consistent.  For more on the subject, read my article about Why We Use Digital Scales: Weight vs Volume. As a result, we wildly adapted a mix of several recipes using cups and came up with this version in grams/ounces.

Soft Textured Cookies with a Crisp Outer Bite

Since then, I’ve tweaked the dosage yet again to make it more like shortbread or a French sablé. This is due to the extra butter. The result is a soft yet crispy texture on the outside. What’s more, they just so happen to be a little addictive with the slight addition of salt.

Want to make them even crispier? It’s easy. Just press the cookies down slightly on the tray before baking, either with a fork or with the fingers to flatten.

Peanut butter and chocolate chip cookies recipe

Even crispier as we’ve been slightly flattened before baking

The girls did a great job. The texture wasn’t too soft or too crispy either – just somewhere in between. I prefer how it’s subtle and gives enough crunch and saltiness. No need to use an electric mixer: the children wanted a hands-on approach, which is much more fun – and an arm workout as holiday sport!

They’re melt-in-the-mouth, not too sweet, have an appealing saltiness to them, and they’re rather compulsive eating – a bit on the same lines as these sesame tuiles.

Where did my step-by-step images go? Check back later, I’m off to make more.
Don’t you love excuses like this? The things I do for you 🙂

Crunchy Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies

peanut butter chocolate chip cookies cooling

5 from 1 vote

Crunchy Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Sablé Cookies

Author: Jill Colonna
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time12 mins
Total Time27 mins
Course : teatime, Party Food
Cuisine : American, British
Keyword : peanut butter cookies, peanut butter chocolate
Servings : 30 cookies
Calories : 278kcal

Description

Easy recipe for melt-in-the-mouth cookies made with crunchy peanut butter, dark chocolate chips and reduced in sugar. In the style of buttery shortbread or French sablés. Great for baking with kids.

Ingredients

  • 125 g (4.5oz) butter, unsalted softened
  • 50 g (2oz) sugar
  • 25 g (1oz) light brown sugar (cane sugar)*
  • 1 egg organic
  • 100 g (3.5oz) crunchy peanut butter (or smooth)
  • good pinch salt (fleur de sel)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 110 g (4oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract or vanilla powder
  • 100 g (3.5oz) dark chocolate chips

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/360°F/Gas 4 and line a couple of baking sheets with baking parchment or a silicone mat.
  • In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars* with a good spatula until the sugar has disappeared and the mix is pale and creamy. Gradually add in the rest of the ingredients, mixing well. (The dough can be frozen at this point if you don't use all of it.)
  • Spoon out small portions of the mixture on the baking sheets, leaving a good gap in between each as they spread out.
    If you like cookies slightly crispy on the outside, then flatten them slightly with a fork and bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden. Otherwise leave them as little mounds.
  • When cooled, transfer the cookies to a wire rack.

Notes

* I love to use a mixture of the sugars: using a little light brown cane sugar adds that crunch to the texture. However, 75g/3oz of one kind is good too. 
The dough is ideal for freezing.
278 calories for a serving of 3 cookies each.

This recipe was first published 27 February 2012 but is now being updated with new images and made easier to read.

Love peanut butter? Then you’ll love the taste of black sesame ice cream. Try it and discover the similar taste sensation!

From the market

From the kitchen

63 responses to “Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies (Crispy Sablé Style)”

  1. 5 stars
    I may not be a kid anymore, but now I’m making those cookies at university. They are GREAT – even with a ridiculous oven! Love you mum x

    • This has to be the best comment EVER! Thanks Julie. Feels like we’re still making them together x

  2. Hahaha! My mother used to slave over a hot oven making all sorts of wonderful desserts for us as kids and we’d crave shop-bought pineapple layer cake (bleaugh!)

    I have to say, I share your children’s weakness for peanut butter and chocolate chips – these are on the baking schedule next week. Great pics too, Jill. Hx

  3. It’s so funny that your children want cookies when they’ve had choux buns and other fancy French pastries–as a child, I was just the opposite! These cookies look perfect, tender in the middle and crunchy around the edges.

    • Can totally hear you! I think it had something to do with the 60s generation…well that’s what I’m blaming it on, anyway 😉

  4. Some of the best recipes are improvised and some of the loveliest memories are made in the kitchen with our families.

  5. I see you’re in France but just in case you were wondering or are back in the UK my husband has been able to find me pretzels in Lidl. Do you have Lidl in France? I’m an American living in Scotland so I’m just the opposite, I prefer my recipes in cups! I grew up with peanut butter cookies and I have trouble finding chocolate chips here too. I was surprised that friends and family here were just getting into peanut butter. My granny had the “magic refrigerator”. No matter what time of day or when you stopped by she would start pulling out food and pretty soon the table was groaning. She always baked something, too, every day because Grandpa liked his desserts. Enjoyed the recipe! Janet

    • I like the sound of your granny’s refrigerator. I have vivid memories of my granny’s larder – a huge walk-in Aladdin’s cupboard in her kitchen. She used to tell us to go and get something in the ‘scullery’. Thanks for reminding me! Yes, we have Lidl in France, Janet.

  6. I’m not a huge peanut butter fan, but when it’s combined with chocolate in a cookie like this, I can’t help but fantasize about it.. Those photos are creating some serious cravings lol Congratulations on Top 9 Jill!! Well done! Sending you lots of air hugs and kisses <3

  7. These cookies look amazing 🙂 I know my best friend would love some ~ thanks for sharing and congratulations for making it to Top 9!

  8. You are a FABULOUS Mum!!! I know the girls were thrilled with these wonderful cookies…and how I giggled at the comments from both your daughters and your own mum…priceless 🙂 And thanks so much for the mention, my friend…along with a big congratulations for the Top 9 today! Hooray~

    PS…my oldest(25 y/o)sent me a text with a link to a cookie recipe yesterday…LOL. You’ll be getting requests for many years to come!

  9. Your cookies are gorgeous, and delish! I’m sure that your kids had a ball making these. I grew up on these cookies, and so did my kids. Baking with kids is so much fun.

    Congrats on the Top 9 today!

  10. i always divide my batter in half and add chocolate chips to one part. its undeniably delicious. your cookies look great. crisp on the edges, just how i like it.

  11. OOOHHH MY! Can I have a couple to go with my cup of tea please??? Great job girls!!! :-))))) And beautifl pictures Jill! <3

  12. I have recently discovered the joy of chocolate chips in peanut butter cookies…I honestly don’t know why I didn’t know about this before, but life has been a wee bit happier since!

  13. That’s so funny your kids wanted plain ol’ peanut butter cookies – I’d much prefer your macarons and choux! =P These look great – pb & chocolate is the perfect combo.

    Thanks for the mention – next time, you can try it with the jam. 😉

  14. I’m with the kids…let’s tear down these cookies stacks and get to eating them! Look delicious!

  15. Your stack of cookies looks like the Waverly symbol at the bottom of the screen. Lol. Looks delish. I want 20, like asap!

  16. Good old elbow grease is perfect for when you’ve got your kids helping you, makes them feel like they really worked hard on them 😉 And it’s interesting how we inherit qualities from our mums/dads/grandmoms/grandpas. Only when someone points them out do we realize who we’re turning into 🙂 And I actually love that. Because I see myself becoming more like my mom and grandmom, in certain instances.

  17. Jill, these peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips look great, and reading your description just make me want to try one…salty and slightly crunchy…
    Such a fun time in the kitchen with the kids…hope you are having a wonderful week 🙂

    • Thanks so much, Juliana. Having a super week – going so fast and already about to take my parents back to the airport!

  18. These sound brilliant, I’m yet to bake anything with peanut butter in and you’ve made me crave it! It’s lovely that your kids wanted the ‘hands on’ approach to making them!

  19. Please come back to Glasgow and make me cookies and macarons all the time. 😉

    • See you on 10th March at the Mitchell Library. I’ll be there 11am making macarons – don’t know how without a kitchen but I’ll work that one out!

    • That means the kids will have to eat extra peanut butter. Good idea, though, Carol!

  20. AH HA!
    You will have to read ‘French Children Do Not Throw Food’ (the Brit title of ‘Bringing Up Bebe’)
    You can browse it at WHSmith.
    French children bake EVERY weekend according to Druckerman.
    AND they are not allowed to eat the raw dough or eat any of their baking UNTIL it is Gouter time(4:30PM).
    That way they learn independence, patience and how to deal with frustration.
    I am currently looking for French adoptive parents since I have none of those sparkling qualities.
    So let the baking begin!
    voila xxcarolg

    • Aha. Am I turning French? Too funny. Do they say anything about bringing up your children to respect the 24-hour waiting line for macarons to mature to perfection? 😉
      Mine don’t bake every weekend, tisk, tisk. They’re always too busy with other activities so it’s a holiday sport.

  21. Making cookies must be a piece of cake for you compared to choux buns, éclairs, financiers, chocolate fondants, pancakes, crêpes! =D Sometimes all kids want is something different once in a while. Your cookies look really delicious Jill! I love how you made the tall tower!

  22. Delicious looking cookies Jill! Funny that your kids beg for them though, I would LOVE all the stuff you are always making ;)! Peanut butter and chocolate are such a heavenly combination, I bet your kids ate them up in no time :)!

  23. I am not a fan of peanut butter in cookies, but even I am tempted to try these! They look lovely and you are a pro-stacker, Jill! Nobody stacks delicious treats like you do 🙂 Gorgeous pictures!

  24. Look at Natie with the clever comment! I am not much of a sweets eater but I love me some cookies. I’ll take 2 dozen.

    Be well

  25. Hmmm, I don’t even like peanut butter cookies but this sounds great, Jill! I have some crunchy peanut butter that my boys have decided they don’t like, so I know what to use it in now 🙂

    • Too funny, Janet. I didn’t think I’d like them either but it’s on the list to make again!

  26. What beautiful photography – you take a traditional recipe and renew it every time 😀
    Looks delicious!!!

    Cheers
    Choc Chip Uru
    Latest: Marbled Muffintopcookiecake Hybrid

  27. Ooh there’s nothing like having a Reese’s in the form of a cookie. These sound delicious. I bet they’d taste sensational dipping 1/2 the cookie in melted chocolate then left to harden. Yum.

    Sounds like you’ll be taking up more than just macaron baking for a bit. Baking with my kids was always theist fun. Enjoy it while you can. Mine are now 22 and 26.

    • Don’t the kids grow up so fast? Great idea on dipping them half in chocolate. I’ve done it with macs but why didn’t I think of that for a cookie? Cheers, Vicki.

  28. Two of my favorite flavors in your cookies. Thanks for the recipe.

  29. These look super fantastic. I would eat a dozen of them. A classic cookie 🙂

  30. I love the story – its a classic for both generations. Great cookies although I love your other delicious creations as well. The bubbly in the background is a nice touch 🙂

    • Merci – yes, the Champomy is kids’ champagne in France: just sparkly apple juice, although I am also partial to the other kind 😉

  31. Classic flavors in one cookie-yum!These are a great one for the cookie jar. Your teamwork really turned out a tasty looking cookie too. Also, sounds like you and the kids had a fun afternoon in the kitchen.
    Thanks for the mention here also, sweet friend. Happy Monday!

    • Thanks so much for the inspiration, Tina. We had such a wonderful time in the kitchen. Happy times.

  32. Oh my those look perfect! If you’re going to do chocolate chips (and I don’t mind) do them right! Love the segue from “playing” to “hanging out.” Growing up – but you don’t leave chocolate chips behind.

    • Or chips, for that matter, Claudia 😉
      Yep, if I mention, come around to play the look is thrown. Oops…

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