Nicely baked, chewy cookies aren't just made with white flour! These Whole Wheat Peanut Butter Cookies are nutty, lightly crunchy, chewy, and full of peanut butter flavor.
This recipe was originally published on March 27, 2020. It was updated with new photos and additional recipe information on November 16, 2020.
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Looking for a sweet treat or some baking therapy to brighten up your days? Me too. These Whole Wheat Peanut Butter Cookies are delicious for anyone over 3500-4000 feet. They're chewy, nutty, lightly crispy and the perfect way to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Rolling out these whole wheat cookies is a breeze, too. Just roll the cookies into balls and then lightly press them down with the bottom of a glass cup. Enjoy baking, friends!
It's baking time again, everybody!
Yep, even though we're just here by ourselves for the indefinite future and I'm being safe by not giving baked goods away for the time being, I still find that I want to bake every few days.
If I keep this up much longer I might be buying a large chest freezer by the end of this to accommodate all of the cookies, brookies, and mochi balls, and the like. 🙂
I'd like to say that would mean I wouldn't then bake for a while when life gets back to order, but I doubt that will be the case.
'Cause when isn't baking a good idea? After all, baking is used to get through for downtimes and celebrate up times; to entertain on a quiet afternoon and to enjoy with friends and family during the busy holiday seasons.
So, whether you're reading this now or at some other time in the future, it's likely still a great time to bake.
And I hope you bake these cookies along with me, celebrating community, hope, and delicious treats regardless of where we are in time or the world.
Here at Mae's Menu, we have a variety of readers: those who are more experienced in the kitchen and want to zip straight through to the recipe and those who want to learn more about the dish, potential substitutions, and more.
To skip straight to the recipe, just click "Jump to Recipe" at the top left of this post. To browse the post quickly, just click the headings in the table of contents below.
Table of contents
- These Whole Wheat Peanut Butter Cookies Are...
- Recipe ingredients:
- Recipe substitutions:
- White flour cookies vs. whole wheat flour cookies:
- Can you make these cookies at high altitude?
- Can you make these cookies gluten-free?
- How do you roll out peanut butter cookies?
- Do you need to line the cookie sheet?
- What type of whole wheat flour is best for this recipe?
- Can you use other types of nut or seed butter in this whole wheat cookie recipe?
- How do you make your cookies all the same size?
- How do you know when your peanut butter cookies are done?
- How do you make these cookies?
- Tools needed to make these easy peanut butter cookies:
- Other baking recipes you might like:
- Other Recipes You Can Make at High Altitude:
These Whole Wheat Peanut Butter Cookies Are...
- Hard to eat just one of
- Utterly addicting
- The perfect afternoon snack
- A delightful dessert
- And, of course, a great Netflix snack 😉
Indulge in a little baking therapy while getting some healthy whole grains with this peanut butter cookie recipe! After we make the cookie batter, we'll roll out the cookies into balls, flatten them with the bottom of a glass, and then give them a quick bake in the oven. Simple as that!
- Unsalted butter -- if you don't have unsalted butter you can use salted, just reduce the salt in the rest of the recipe to ¼ teaspoon
- Natural creamy peanut butter -- stir your peanut butter well and let it come to room temperature before making this recipe
- Granulated white sugar
- Pure liquid vanilla extract -- imitation vanilla works alright, but the pure extract is worth the splurge if you can afford it
- Jumbo eggs -- these bind the cookies together. See my notes below how many large eggs you can substitute in.
- Milk -- we need just a bit (really-- only a teaspoon)
- Whole wheat flour -- nutty and delicious, the perfect compliment for peanut butter!
- Baking powder
- Salt -- naturally enhances that delicious peanut flavor
- Eggs -- if you don't have jumbo eggs you can substitute in 3 large eggs
- Vanilla -- pure powdered vanilla extract should work in place of the liquid vanilla extract
- Peanut butter -- traditional, or non-natural, peanut butter should work in place of the natural in a pinch. I recommend sticking with natural if you can, however. It gives the cookies a great texture and makes them healthier, too!
White flour cookies vs. whole wheat flour cookies:
There are a few main differences between white flour cookies and whole wheat flour cookies. Here is a summary:
- Whole wheat flour bakes better at high altitudes because of its high protein content.
- Whole wheat flour has more fiber and nutrition benefits. See this article for a list!
- Whole wheat flour has a nuttier flavor, which complements the flavor of the peanut butter perfectly!
Can you make these cookies at high altitude?
Yes, you definitely can make these cookies at high altitude! I regularly make them at 5000 feet (I live in Colorado) with no issue at all.
You don't need to adjust the recipe, either, so just bake away!
Can you make these cookies gluten-free?
I haven't personally made these cookies gluten-free yet so I can't promise anything, but I would bet that these cookies would be delicious with a 1-to-1 gluten-free flour.
Just substitute the same amount of 1-to-1 gluten-free flour in place of the whole wheat flour and you should be good to go! If you're adventurous and try making the cookies this way, please let me know how they go!
How do you roll out peanut butter cookies?
These peanut butter cookies are, thankfully, super easy to roll out. Here's how:
- Scoop the cookies with a 2 tablespoon cookie scooper
- Spray your hands with a quick spray of non-stick cooking spray
- Roll the cookies with your hands into large balls
- Spray the bottom of a drinking glass with non-stick spray
- Dip the drinking glass into a small dish of granulated white sugar
- Gently place down a cookie until it is ¼ inch thick
- Dip the drinking glass in sugar again and repeat steps 5 & 6 on the remaining cookies
Do you need to line the cookie sheet?
Yes, you need to line the cookie sheet with parchment paper for this recipe.
If you don't have parchment paper you can also use a Silpat, or silicone, baking sheet!
What type of whole wheat flour is best for this recipe?
The best whole wheat flour for this recipe is white whole wheat flour. It adds a nutty flavor and nutrition to the recipe without making the cookies too dry or stiff.
You can find white whole wheat cookies at most major grocery store chains, Trader Joe's, and Whole Foods.
Can you use other types of nut or seed butter in this whole wheat cookie recipe?
Yes, you can make these whole wheat cookies with other types of nut or seed butter. Almond butter, cashew butter, and even sunflower seed butter would all be tasty in these cookies.
Just make sure to choose a nut butter that has no added sugar and you can make this recipe as directed, just substituting the nut or seed butter in!
How do you make your cookies all the same size?
The easiest way to make your cookies the same size is to use a cookie scooper. I like the size #40 ones for this recipe!
How do you know when your peanut butter cookies are done?
You will know when your peanut butter cookies are done when they start to look golden brown on the bottom of the cookies.
So, at the end of the baking time, just lift up the corner of a cookie with a spatula and check for that golden brown color!
How do you make these cookies?
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line your baking sheets with parchment paper or a Silpat mat.
- In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter, peanut butter, and sugar.
- Add in the vanilla, eggs, and milk and cream the mixture together until smooth and tan colored.
- In a small mixing bowl, lightly whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt until combined.
- Add half of the flour mixture to the peanut butter and whisk in slowly.
- Add the remaining flour and whisk in until combined and a thick batter forms.
- Roll the peanut butter dough into scant 2 tablespoon balls and place them 2-3 inches apart on the baking sheet.
- Spray a drinking glass with non-stick spray.
- Dip the drinking glass in a small dish of granulated sugar and gently press down on the top of the peanut butter balls until flattened to ¼ inch, re-sugaring the glass between cookies.
- Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies are golden brown on the bottom.
Tools needed to make these easy peanut butter cookies:
- 2 large cookie baking sheets
- Parchment paper or silicone baking mat
- Stand mixer or hand mixer
- Mixing bowls
- Measuring cups & spoons
- Rubber spatula
- Large cookie scoop
Other baking recipes you might like:
- Peanut Butter Brookies
- Whole Wheat Beer Bread
- Gluten-Free Zucchini Bread
- No Yeast Oatmeal Bread
- Lemon Bars
Other Recipes You Can Make at High Altitude:
- Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Chocolate Hazelnut Fudgy Bonbons
- High Altitude Sugar Cookies
- High Altitude Chocolate Chip Cookies
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Make part-chewy, part-crunchy, and 100% peanut buttery cookies at high altitude with my favorite Whole Wheat Peanut Butter Cookies!
For best results use natural peanut butter and whole wheat flour -- they give the cookies a nutty flavor and texture that just can't be beat!
- ⅓ cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- ⅔ cup natural creamy peanut butter, brought to room temperature
- 1 ½ cup granulated white sugar, DIVIDED
- ½ teaspoon liquid vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon milk
- 1 ¾ cup (or 210g) whole wheat flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl or in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter, peanut butter, and 1 ¼ cups of the granulated sugar on medium speed until the mixture is a pale tan color, or for about 1-1.5 minutes.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add in the vanilla, eggs, and milk and cream the mixture again for 30-45 seconds, or until the egg is fully incorporated into the creamed mixture. Scrape down the sides of the bowl again.
- In a small or medium-size mixing bowl, lightly whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt, until the powder and salt are incorporated into the flour.
- Add half of the flour to the creamed butter mixture in the mixing bowl and run on low speed for 20-30 seconds, or until no streaks of dry flour remain in the batter.
- Add the second half of the flour to the batter and run on low speed for 20-30 more seconds, or until it's fully incorporated as well. Scrape down the sides of the bowl again and run the mixer on medium speed for 15-30 seconds, or until a thick batter forms.
- Roll the peanut butter dough out into 2 tablespoon balls and place them 2-3 inches apart on the parchment paper.
- Pour the remaining ¼ cup granulated sugar in a small bowl. Spray the bottom of a drinking class with non-stick spray and dip it in the granulated sugar. Lightly press down on a peanut butter ball until it's about ¼" thick. Repeat this step with the rest of the cookies, dipping the bottom of the glass in the sugar between each cookie.
- Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, or until they're lightly golden around the edges of the cookies, the bottoms are starting to brown, and the cookies are baked through.
- Remove the cookie sheets from the oven and let them cool for 5 minutes on a cooling rack. Then, gently move the cookies from the pan to the cooling rack and let them cool until they're room temperature. Enjoy!
- If you bake two sheets of cookies at once, rotate the sheets from top to bottom halfway through the baking time.
- To keep the cookies from sticking to your hands, give your hands a quick shot of non-stick cooking spray before rolling.
- These cookies will stay fresh covered in an air-tight container at room temperature for 3-4 days or frozen in a freezer-safe container for up to 2 months.
- This recipe is also high-altitude friendly! Just follow the directions as listed.
Amount Per Serving Calories 204Total Fat 9gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 30mgSodium 127mgCarbohydrates 28gFiber 1gSugar 17gProtein 4g
This nutrition breakdown is just an estimate of the nutritional value of this recipe and cannot be taken as facts. The owners of Mae's Menu are not nutritionists or dieticians and therefore cannot be held accountable for this nutrition estimate. Please contact your nutritionist or medical professional for a nutritional breakdown of this food. Furthermore, this food is not intended to prevent, diagnose, cure, or treat any disease.