The Best Soft Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe (Without Brown Sugar)

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Our easy Peanut Butter Cookie recipe without brown sugar is just what you need to get some of that coziness going in your life.

The best part? We’re making these delicious cookies without brown sugar! Yup, we’re using just simple ingredients, like good ol’ white sugar, that most of us have sitting in our pantry.

Reasons to love this recipe

  • Melt-in-Your-Mouth Good – These classic peanut butter cookies without brown sugar just melt in your mouth 
  • Flavor Bomb – The peanut butter flavor in these cookies is seriously the best!
  • Share the Love – This recipe makes about 30 cookies – so lots to enjoy and share!
  • Quick and Easy – It’s such an easy cookie recipe, you’ll be dunking them in milk in no time!
stack of peanut butter cookies made without brown sugar plate of cookies in background

Ingredients

Each ingredient plays a role in our peanut butter cookies recipe to bring you a cookie that’s just downright delicious:

  • Peanut Butter: Try to get smooth peanut butter that’s all-natural – you’ll notice the difference. Chunky peanut butter works, too.
  • Flour: The backbone of any cookie. Here, we use regular ol’ bleached, all-purpose flour.
  • Butter: What’s a cookie without the buttery goodness? Use unsalted butter to keep the sodium levels down.
  • Egg: Brings moisture and helps with the cookie’s structure.
  • Baking Soda: Helps the cookies rise and spread, for that perfect crumbly texture.
  • Sugar: Helps create that irresistible golden crust. We use white sugar to keep things simple. 
  • Vanilla Extract: Elevates the other flavors.
pile of soft peanut butter cookies on parchment paper

How to make Peanut Butter Cookies

Follow these simple instructions to make these easy Peanut Butter Cookies. See the recipe card below for more help.

  1. Cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl
  2. Add in a large egg
  3. Mix in the vanilla extract
  4. Stir in the peanut butter
  5. Combine the wet and dry ingredients until smooth
  6. Use a scoop to form cookie dough balls
  7. Press a criss-cross pattern into each cookie with the back of a fork
  8. Sprinkle a bit of sugar on top
  9. Bake cookies until golden brown

Expert Peanut Butter Cookies tips

Follow these expert tips to make the best Peanut Butter Cookies no brown sugar:

  • Sift the flour: It only takes a couple of minutes and makes your cookies super light and airy.
  • Room Temp Rules: For the best texture, let your eggs and butter get to room temperature before mixing. Cold ingredients just don’t blend well.
  • Natural Nuttiness: Use natural peanut butter – it has no added sugar – letting the pure nutty goodness shine through. Any natural brand will do!
  • Nut Swap: Substitute almond butter for peanut butter to add a different sweet and nutty flavor to your cookies.
  • Dough Stash: No time to bake right away? Wrap your peanut butter cookie dough in plastic wrap and keep it in the fridge for up to 3 days.
closeup of freshly baked peanut butter cookie recipe without brown sugar

How to Serve

When it comes to serving these delicious homemade Peanut Butter Cookies without brown sugar, you have lots of options! 

Enjoy them fresh out of the oven for that melty, gooey experience, or let them cool on a wire rack to achieve that classic crunchy texture. 

They’re perfect as a standalone treat, or you can level them up by sandwiching some ice cream between two cookies!

closeup of peanut butter cookies made without brown sugar and candle in background

How to Store

To store your PB cookies, follow these instructions. First, let them cool completely on a wire rack. Once cooled, place them in an airtight container separated by layers of parchment paper.

Freezing already-baked cookies isn’t a good idea – they lose their texture. However, freezing the ball of dough works great – just use a freezer bag or airtight container. 

For the experts among us, make a large dough ‘sausage’ to freeze. It’s easy to then take off frozen cookie slices and throw them in the oven every time you fancy freshly baked cookies. 

FAQs

Here are some of the questions people have asked me when baking cookies without brown sugar:

Should peanut butter cookies be soft or crunchy?

Ah, the age-old debate! Honestly, it’s all about personal preference. Some like ’em soft and chewy, while others prefer a good crunch. 

a wreath of peanut butter cookies without brown sugar

The good news? This recipe is good for both! For nice and soft peanut butter cookies, just adjust the baking time and use slightly more sugar. 

Why are my peanut butter cookies too crumbly?

If your cookies are falling apart, the culprit is usually too much flour or not enough fat. 

Make sure you’re measuring ingredients accurately. Be sure to use natural peanut butter – it adds extra moisture to the mix.

Best Soft Peanut Butter Cookies

What should I keep stocked in my pantry for baking?

Great question! For spontaneous baking sessions, I always have flour, white sugar, baking soda, and vanilla extract on hand. And of course, you can’t forget the butter and eggs in the fridge!

I like to keep a baker’s pantry stocked so I can bake whenever the mood hits. Check out our Baker’s Pantry Guide.

Where did I get my inspiration for this recipe?

When I think about Peanut Butter Cookies, I think about my sister Cathy, and it’s a cozy feeling all over. We used to bake them together, and she’s all about the soft, chewy kind.

closeup stack of peanut butter cookies on white parchment paper

Now, I bet there are hundreds of different recipes for peanut butter cookies. You’ve got variations with whole wheat flour, gluten-free options, and sweeteners ranging from brown sugar to honey. 

Some even have mini chocolate chips or chocolate chunks, and some use creamy peanut butter and others use crunchy peanut butter.

But for me, it’s all about keeping it simple and classic, with those iconic fork marks on the top, just like Mom used to make – they give me major food nostalgia. 

You might also like…

Craving more cookies? While this is our absolute favorite peanut butter cookie recipe, we have lots more cookie recipes you should try:

Final thoughts

Could this be the best peanut butter cookie recipe?

THANKS SO MUCH for following and being part of the Pie Lady Bakes community! We’re all about sharing easy-to-make vintage recipes that remind us of the ones our moms and grandmas used to make.

If you haven’t already, you can sign up for my weekly email newsletter using this link. It’s absolutely free, and you’ll never miss out on any of my new recipes.

See you soon!

Judy

★★★★★ 

If you’ve made this delicious Peanut Butter Cookie recipe without brown sugar, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. Be sure to give us a 5-star rating!

★★★★★ 


closeup of freshly baked peanut butter cookie recipe without brown sugar

Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe Without Brown Sugar

4.58 from 138 votes

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Judy Kahansky
The yummiest peanut butter cookie recipe that doesn't use brown sugar. A classic cookie that melts in your mouth. You can also freeze your PB cookies for up to 3 months.
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 30
Calories 124 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar - + 1/4 cup additional to roll cookies
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter - at room temperature
  • 1 egg – room temperature
  • 1 cup smooth all natural peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven to 375F
  • Place a sheet of parchment paper on a cookie sheet
  • In a medium bowl, sift the all purpose flour, and add in the baking soda and salt* (Why use salt?)
  • In a large bowl, and using a small hand mixer, mix the sugar and butter together until creamy
  • Mix in the egg, peanut butter and vanilla
  • Gradually add the flour mixture (dry mixture) to the wet ingredients
  • You will end up with a slightly stiff peanut butter cookie dough batter
  • Using a small cookie scoop drop the cookie dough onto the parchment paper, making sure to space them apart
  • Using a fork, press the fork tines into the cookie dough once, and then change direction and press the fork tines again, creating a cross hatch pattern.
  • Sprinkle the cookies with a small amount of white sugar before they go into the oven
  • Bake for 12 to 15 minutes until golden
  • TIP: Tear a sheet of parchment paper to get the next batch of cookies ready to bake – and use a second cookie sheet if you have one or be ready to switch over once your first batch comes out of the oven.
  • Hmmm. They smell so good don’t they?
  • Let the cookies cool, and of course after sampling one or two 🙂 you can store them in an airtight container.  We use large ziplock bags and keep them in the fridge.
  • You can also freeze your cookies for up to 3 months. 

VIDEO

Notes

This recipe uses natural peanut butter, and often the oil will separate. Make sure you have stirred the peanut butter well before using.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 124kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 95mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g

These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment, star rating or post your photo on Instagram and tag @pieladybakes

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Judy Kahansky is an experienced writer and baker, creating delicious desserts (including pie!) for over 40 years. She loves to take classic and vintage recipes and update them to fit the busy lives of her readers. When not baking, Judy and her husband Mark are passionate golfers, travelers and dog lovers, spending as much time as they can with their sweet pup Millie.