If you love peanut butter cookies and quick, easy recipes, you’ll go crazy over these crisp, buttery, One-Bowl Reese’s Peanut Butter Cookies!
If you follow The Café, you probably remember the Roasted Red Pepper Tomato Soup I shared in my last post. The soup was an inspiration from a charming little café/market that Scott and I discovered recently near our new home in the mountains of North Carolina. What I didn’t share was that there was another inspiration I got that same day – for these wonderful One-Bowl Reese’s Peanut Butter Cookies.
As we were checking out after lunch, we noticed a bakery case with an assortment of homemade treats. The large crinkly cookies with chunks of peanut butter cups caught my eye. “Let’s try one of those!” The young man behind the counter pulled out one of the delicious looking cookies and tucked it in a small paper sack.
I’d only planned to take one bite, just for “research” purposes, as I’m always curious about new recipe ideas. To be honest, I find that one bite is usually all I need because so many cookies out there (in my opinion) “just aren’t worth the calories”. I guess you might call me a “cookie snob” and I’ll be the first to admit, it’s true! If I’m going to indulge, I want it to be something wonderful!
Let’s just say Scott and I dueled for the last bite of that wonderful peanut butter cookie! It was crisp, buttery and studded with chunks of Reese’s peanut butter cups. I could hardly wait to get home and start figuring out a recipe that would rival the cookie we enjoyed that day.
One-bowl cookies, a win-win!
Since I’m fessing up today about being a cookie snob, I’ve also have to admit that I’ve become a bit lazy when it comes to making cookies. Ever since I began making one-bowl cookies, several years ago, my stand mixer has been going through withdrawal.
If I can mix up a batch of cookies in one bowl, without pulling out a mixer or any other appliances, it seems like a no-brainer. And now, I can hardly stand going through all of the fuss of creaming the butter and sugar, combining the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, mixing it all together, then washing all those dishes. See what I mean? Lazy.
I definitely wanted these peanut butter cookies to be an easy one-bowl recipe so I followed the same technique that I used with my One-Bowl Toffee Bar Chocolate Chip Cookies. It’s a simple method in which cold butter is partially melted in the microwave (or stovetop). Partially melting the butter makes the dough easy to mix up by hand but not so loose that it’s hard to scoop. It takes about 30-45 seconds in the microwave and about the same amount of time on the stove top.
The cookies at our favorite little café had chunks of peanut butter cups scattered over the tops. The first time I made my cookies, I mixed chopped peanut butter cups into the dough and then tried adding additional chunks to the top of the dough balls before baking. The peanut butter cups all melted into the cookies and didn’t look very attractive. The next time I added half of the candy to the dough and topped the cookies with the remaining chunks, as they emerged from the oven. Perfect!
I’ve made these cookies a bunch of times. Every time someone takes the first bite, their eyes get big and I hear things like “Wow!” or “Yum!” or “These are so… good!” I think you’ll get the same response and that you’ll love how easy these peanut butter cookies are! You can have cookies rolling out of the oven in less than 30 minutes. And between you can me, let’s just call ourselves smart, efficient cookie makers instead of lazy. That sounds much better, right?
Café Tips for making this One-Bowl Reese’s Peanut Butter Cookies
- You want to start with cold butter and warm it in the microwave (or stovetop) until it is just beginning to melt. My microwave is 1000 watts and takes about 30 seconds. It should look like this:
- If the dough seems too loose to scoop nicely, stick the bowl in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes and you’ll be good to go! It should look like this:
- You can use either light or dark brown sugar for these peanut butter cookies. I like the deep, rich color of the cookies when made with dark brown sugar.
- Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups come in several different sizes. I started out using the miniatures which required unwrapping. Then I discovered the Minis which are a small version and unwrapped! I cut each one into 4-5 chunks.
- I use a medium size ice cream (or cookie) scoop to scoop up my dough for uniform size cookies.
- I love these pre-cut parchment paper sheets. They come with 100 sheets in a box so they last forever and come in a flat box for easy storage.
- It always seems that a few cookies in a batch don’t like to cooperate and come out of the oven with an irregular shape. If you use a metal spatula while the cookies are still hot you can gently push the back into a nice circular shape.
- If you’re in a hurry, add all the chunked peanut butter cups to the dough. But for a really pretty presentation, only add half to the dough and top the cookies with the remaining candy just as they emerge from the oven.
- These cookies freeze well. Allow them to cool completely on a cooling rack, then transfer to a ziplock bag or airtight storage container and freeze.
- For a wonderful dessert, serve these One-Bowl Reese’s Peanut Butter Cookies with a bowl of ice cream, drizzled with this Ridiculously Easy Caramel Sauce.
Other One-Bowl, No-Mixer Cookies you might like:
- ½ cup cold butter 4-ounces
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup smooth peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ⅓ cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup roughly chopped Reese’s peanut butter cups 18-20 miniature cups, about 6 ounces
Preheat oven to 350˚F degrees. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper for easy cleanup.
Place butter in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high for 25-30 seconds. Butter should be only partially melted (see pic above).
Add sugars and egg and stir well. Add peanut butter and vanilla, stir until smooth.
Sprinkle flour, baking soda and salt evenly over the butter mixture and stir until all flour is incorporated. Add half of the chopped Reese’s peanut butter cups and stir to distribute evenly.
Scoop dough in mounds then roll into balls and place about 2 inches apart on prepared pans. Bake for 14-16 minutes or until golden. If baking both pans at the same time, rotate pans halfway through baking time.
Remove from oven and immediately top cookies with remaining chopped peanut butter cups. I use about 5 or 6 pieces per cookie.
Transfer cookies to a metal rack to cool completely. Enjoy!!
See Café Tips above for complete instructions and tips.
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