These peanut butter and jelly cookies will get your taste buds (and inner child) smiling!
So I have to admit, these aren’t the prettiest cookies I’ve ever made, but they are the most delicious!
These nostalgic treats are a cross between a classic peanut butter cookie and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich—it’s your childhood dream come true! I was inspired by those peanut butter thumbprint cookies with the chocolate kiss on top, but I found some strawberry jam from my cousin’s wedding in the cupboard and couldn’t resist that old school PB&J combo.
I even slipped a little jam into the batter—it made the cookies spread slightly and gave them a nice, chewy texture. The sweetness of the jam complements the subtle nuttiness of the peanut butter cookie. There is a perfect ratio of PB to J in each bite. These are seriously addicting—I ate at least 15, for real. I swear the longer they sat, the better they got. My coworkers destroyed them the day after I made them (sorry you never got one, Loren!).
I used to turn my nose up at baking with all the measuring and precision it requires, but I’ve really come to love it over the past year. I use recipes as a guide, not a manual. I like to switch up ingredients and make alterations, but I was afraid to do this with recipes that required baking, fearing it would change the chemical composition of the dish and perhaps blow up?? You never know. I’ve learned the key is experimentation.
Test a recipe. Note where the flaws are. Make changes accordingly. Test again.
Do you think these cookies turned out perfectly the first time I made them? Hell nah. They puffed up like pillows. This is also why I added jam to the batter—sugar turns to liquid and makes them spread more, especially since jam is already liquidy. Do they look perfect now? Yup.
They’re all different sizes because I didn’t use a cookie scoop when forming the balls. Not to mention the jam in the center looks like a scene from a Tarantino film. But, do they look and taste better? Yes.
Baking is tough, but stick with it. Next time your brownies sink or your cookies come out like frisbees, I encourage you to diagnose the issue (Google is your friend) and try again. Trust me, there is nothing more satisfying than solving a baking mystery!
CHEWY PEANUT BUTTER JELLY COOKIES
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup strawberry jam (any flavor) + extra to fill cookies
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups flour + 1-2 tbsp extra (if too loose)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
Pull the egg out of the fridge 30 minutes prior to baking.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt and set aside. In a large mixing bowl cream the peanut butter, butter, sugar, brown sugar, and jam with a hand mixer (or by hand). Add the egg and vanilla and and beat until combined.
Slowly add the flour mixture and beat until incorporated. If the dough seems too loose, add a couple more tablespoons of flour. Do not over mix the dough once the flour is incorporated.
Optional: refrigerate dough for 15-30 minutes.
Line a cookie sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Form the dough into 1 inch balls with a cookie scoop, if you have one (I didn’t), and place on cookie sheet a couple inches apart. Make a dent with your thumb on top of each dough ball.
Bake cookies for 7 minutes. Take out and fill tops with jam and continue baking for 5-7 minutes. Total baking time will be about 12-14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container.