I’m a big fan of no-fuss baking, especially when it comes to cookies.  This particular cookie I’m sharing with you today is truly remarkable because it uses only four ingredients and also happens to be gluten-free.  And chances are good you have all these ingredients you need in your kitchen now: peanut butter, eggs, sugar, and vanilla. 

Using either creamy or chunky natural peanut butter, these cookies are crispy on the outside and a little soft on the inside.  Yielding only 15 cookies, these are the perfect cookies for setting out on a plate and sharing with friends.  It is also one of those recipes you can easily make with your children because it is so simple and quick to whip up a batch. 

From our home to yours, enjoy!

Mix the peanut butter, egg, sugar, and vanilla until the dough is mixed.  A hand or stand mixer is nice but you can easily mix this dough by using a wooden spoon and some muscle power.

Scooping mounds of dough using a medium cookie scoop will yield perfect shaped cookies every single time.  Using the tines of a fork to press the dough down gives each cookie that recognizable, signature peanut butter cookie look.

Voila! Peanut butter cookie perfection!

Want to enjoy a steaming cup of authentic chai with your cookies? We’ve got you covered! Get the recipe here. There’s a kid-friendly version, too!

Recipe: 4 Ingredients Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

  • Prep Time: 5 min(s)
  • Cook Time: 10 min(s)
  • Total Time: 15 min(s)
  • Servings: 15

Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup natural peanut butter, smooth or crunchy
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Using a hand or stand mixer, mix the peanut butter, sugar, egg and vanilla on low speed until well combined.
  3. Using a medium cookie scoop, scoop about 1 1/2 tablespoons of dough 1 1/2-inches apart onto the baking sheet. If you don't have a cookie scoop, drop the dough with a spoon.
  4. Flatten the dough balls the tines of a fork, making a cross pattern on the cookies.
  5. Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes until they are golden around the edges. Allow the cookies to rest on the counter for 2 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.

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  • http://www.annonciaweb.com Tom

    Hi from France,

    I thank you for this recipe. I ‘ll try soon. I don’t know if theses cookies are That I knew :)
    Nice blog.

    • jill kovach

      I tried this recipe and they turned out terrible. I believe my problem was the reduced fat peanut butter I used. So oily!

  • Gabrielle

    I love how simple this recipe is. Will have to try with my kids this weekend. Thanks.

  • melissa

    I have used this recipe for a little over a year now and it is simple and really good. My kids love them!

  • Jeannine Kuck

    I have made this recipe a couple times before. Very yummy! You don’t need all that sugar though. I cut it in 1/2 once and they were just as good. I have also subbed the sugar for xylitol (using only 1/4 cup) and they were also really good (hubby couldn’t tell the difference between the real sugar and sugar substitute).

    • Mitzi

      What a great idea!

  • Karin

    I just made these cookies, mixing by hand with a wooden spoon, and the dough ended up being incredibly oily. They’re cooling now, so I don’t know how much the taste will be affected, if any, but I was wondering if the oiliness was from hand mixing? Or maybe something else?

    • Alice Currah

      Hi Karin,
      What type of peanut butter did you use? I personally love SKippy Natural Peanut Butter – it doesn’t’ have excessive oil in it.

      • Jaqueline

        Is it ok just to use regular creamy peanut butter or does it have to be natural?

        • Alice Currah

          Regular is fine. Just make sure it does not have excess oil floating on the top.

    • Kathy Schroeder

      The only difference between this recipe and my great grandma, is the addition of itablespoon cold water. We also used a fork to cream the peanut butter. Excessive mixing will cause it to heat up, causing the mixture to become oily. Only mix until grainy, the add vanilla and water Mix just enough to incorperate the liquid. The Cold water helps keep it from becomminig oily as well.

  • Janice

    Thanks for the simple recipe- love it when a Gluten free treat doesn’t call for some funky or expensive ingredient.

  • toni

    My son is allergic to wheat, gluten, eggs, milk, nuts, strawberries, and tomatoes..I will use an egg substitute and pea-butter and give these a try…they look yummy!

    • lina

      Just wondering if egg replacer and sun butter can be used to replace the peanut butter and egg. Son allergic to both. Thanks!

      • Suzanne

        I just made these. I used Sunflower butter and egg replacer, 1/2 a cup of sugar and they were a bit oily but still good:)

  • http://yahoo Dgee

    These are the best cookies I’ve used it for about 5 yrs for holliday gifts and treats for the Granny’s and everyone just loves them. Got the recipe from my mother. Grrrreat!

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  • http://www.elscoelectric.com ToddDenver

    Fantastic, my kids love them!

  • Frank

    Can you freeze these cookies?

    • Kathy Schroeder

      These cookies freeze beautifully.

  • Misty

    Yes you can freeze them. Use regular peanut butter, reduced fat does not work with this recipe.

    • Sabrina

      I use reduced fat walmart brand peanut butter [great value i think it’s called], at least 3 times and they always turn out perfect. Also i originally found these on cooks.com and they didn’t call for vanilla, still just good with our without. :O)

  • Monica

    I made these tonight. I have gestational diabetes so I subbed 1/2 cup of agave syrup for the sugar and added about a 1/2 cup of almond meal flour to firm it up after the agave syrup. They were darn good and did not raise my blood sugar. Celebrating that I have added a nice treat to my very boring diet. Thank you!!! My son loved them. He will help me make them next time around.

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  • http://pinterest.com/xmelanieleax/ Melanie

    These were so easy to make. Tried them tonight and loved them. They were very moist and just fell apart in your mouth, just how I like a cookie. Perfect recipe for me. Thanks so much!(:

  • Erin

    I was really disappointed with this recipe. After reading the reviews it seemed like a sure thing, so i doubled the recipe. Wow! What a waste of so much peanut butter. I made the recipe as directed except i sub agave and flour as a previous reviewer also did. Not sure what went wrong but something definitely did!

    • Alice Currah

      Hi Erin,
      Sorry the recipe did not work out for you. Because this recipe only uses 4 ingredients I wanted to mention the importance of not substituting agave for the sugar. The texture of the sugar helps hold the cookie dough together.

    • Kathy Schroeder

      I don’t mean this to sound rude, just a statement. People, if you don’t follow the recipe, it is not fair to criticize it. Not every substitution is appropriate for every recipe.

  • Gretche

    Want to try these. Does it have to be natural peanut butter?

    • Alice Currah

      Hi Gretche,
      You can use whatever peanut butter you would like. I like Skippy Natural.

  • Selma

    Made these this afternoon and OH MY! sooo good. It was so easy and quick! will make again… lots of times. Thanks!

  • Sonia

    These were amazing and so easy
    We always have these ingredients
    My 2 yr old help with the fork part

  • Holly

    You can also make this with out the vanilla, but I like to use chocolate chips.

  • Val

    I followed this exactly. My mixture ended looking like a crumb crust–not beautifully smooth. The cookies crumbled during the criss cross and fell even more apart once baked. I used kirkland’s natural peanut butter (creamy)

    • Alice Currah

      Hi Val,
      Although I’m not familiar with the Kirkland Select’s natural peanut butter, I am going to guess/assume it is like Adam’s peanut butter where it has a ton of oil on top and you have to stir it? If this is the case, you might want to try it with Skippy Natural Peanut Butter. It has the consistency of regular Skippy or Jif, which I have found to be the best type of texturer for PB cookies.

  • Alice

    These sound delicious. Thanks for the recipe Here} I will give it a try! :)

  • Patt

    Are you using regular sugar or brown sugar? I made one similar recipe but that one used brown sugar..turn out that the texture of the cookie is very sticky and soft. Also it burnt so easy even i only put them in the oven for 8 instead of 10 minutes….is this because i used brown sugar? Or beat it with wooden spoon?

    • Alice Currah

      Hi Patt,
      I use regular granular sugar. Browbn sugar tends to make cookies slightly less sweet. I would also recommend turning down your oven temp. slightly by 25 degrees.

  • Holly

    cookies taste excellent!, but came out really flat and large; anyone know why??

    • Alice Currah

      It could be your peanut butter. The best type of peanut butter I’ve found to work in this recipe is one that doesn’t have excessive oil.

  • Liz

    Holly, my first question to you is…are you at high altitude? I’ve found ALL my recipes need tweaking at my high elevation. Usually it’s a matter of less sugar, hotter oven and less baking time. I am about to try this recipe, and yes I’m scared it will be ruined, lol. But I’m going to try 3/4 C sugar, 25* hotter oven and 8-10 min baking time. (30 min later) ok, so it worked! Cookies are great! I did notice they were a bit soft at 8 min so I baked @ 375* for 10 min. They look beautiful! :)

    • Holly

      I will give that a try Liz the next time I make them;and I use the Kraft peanut butter

  • Liz

    Oh, FYI I used the Kirkland Natural Peanut Butter.

  • http://mysoutherncharmedlife.com/ goodgravyboat

    Love the simplicity of this recipe. Whipped up a batch and we enjoyed them. Thanks!

  • Amanda VH

    I just made these for the first time and they are, seriously, the BEST pb cookies I have ever had. And I’ve tried a lot :). Next time I think I will use crunchy pb bc I love the extra crunch.

  • MichelleS

    I saw this recipe and I instantly made it. We are on a budget And trying to get the kids to stay off of the snacks/food they take for lunch so I’m trying to be creative with after school snacks, making stuff with what we already have! This was so easy and it is delicious!!!! The dough came out perfect and so did the cookies! I will definitely keep this recipe!! Keep them coming =]

  • Christine

    I made the cookies exactly how you said to but I added simi sweet chocolate morsels for some reason the cookies are not hardening! Did I do something wrong with adding the chocolate?

  • shelly

    dont make this the cookies just turn into a pile of mush and burn.

  • Dawn

    These are called magic cookies and was posted in a mag. A few months back was a famous (can’t remember who) singer recipe.

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  • Debbie

    Made this with peter pans new honey roasted creamy peanut ….they were delish!!! So easy!!

  • Lindsey

    I made these the other day and they are amazing! I read the comments and made them with half the sugar, and they were totally sweet enough and I didn’t feel as guilty about consuming four at once. =)

  • Renee

    I found this recipe on Pinterest and HAD to try it out. The cookies are in the oven as I type this, I hope they come out okay. The dough was SUPER oily. I mean OILY, like enough to where it was dripping from my hands. I used regular PB. Maybe I put too much? I don’t know. Regardless, I’m looking forward to them coming out and me tasting them:) Thanks for the recipe.

  • Sarah

    just made these and they are fantastic!!!!! thanks for the super easy recipe!!!!

  • amber

    I found these on pinterest and they turned out delicious ! I had my 3 year-old twins help and the recipe took no time at all.

    My experience in the past with the Kirkland natural peanut butter is that it isn’t good for peanut butter cookies so I bought some regular peanut butter for the first time in forever.

    I can’t wait to try the xylitol next time.

  • laura

    I don’t have parchment paper so I am going to try aluminum foil. I hope it works!

  • Taylor

    I just made these cookies and they turned out perfect. I use a hand mixer and roundys creamy peanut butter! So quick and simple. Took only 12 minutes for the whole process!

  • Shauna

    I just made these cookies tonight for my twin nephews who are go and they turned out awesome!
    Thanks!

  • TNLawgirl

    I think I may cry. I’ve been gluten free for health reasons for over 6 months. I miss cookies! And now here is a delicious and easy recipe for peanut butter cookies. I baked some tonight and relished very bite with a cold glass of milk. Thank you!

    • Christine Sykes

      I just went gluten free for health as well…finding these cookies….I’M SO EXCITED!!!!! :D

      • Catherine Peebles

        Having gone gluten free, too, I should share a very good resource with you: lots of great, practical recipes at: glutenfreeonashoestring.com
        (I am not affiliated with that site — just happen to refer to it constantly since my spouse was diagnosed with celiac several years back.)

    • Robin Phillips

      My fiancé was diagnosed with Celiac and weve had a terrible time with this. We did find some gluten free Shortbread Cookies that he really likes. They are made by Schar. The drawback is the cost! A 7 oz bag is $5.0 and the only place we could find them at Schnucks grocery.

  • tasha

    do you know how many calories these have in them?

    • Christine Sykes

      About 170..

  • jordan

    My family and i just tried these and they are delicious!!!!

  • http://www.thehealthyfamilyandhome.com Karielyn

    Any thoughts on using almond butter to replace the peanut butter?

    • Renee

      freakin yummy, also made it with sunflower butter, even better!

  • Jen

    I just made these using 3/4 cup sugar and ended up with 13 cookies (guess I like them larger). I used Skippy Natural but all PB about same calories. I’m a hawk with my calories and I calculated 163 per cookie (for batch of 13).

  • http://TheHandmadeHouse.net Britta

    Just made these, they taste pretty good, but the dough was very sticky, so sticky that I couldn’t put the fork marks on them, and at 10 minutes they still looked very undercooked. I left them in for 5 more minutes and they still had a dough-y look about them but I pulled them out anyway. They taste good, but a little too chewy. (I will def make again though because of how fast and easy they are.) I used regular Jif Crunchy peanut butter, maybe it is too oily?

  • Angela

    Thank you for a wonderful recipe for my family- these turn out perfectly each and every time we make them… I do use a fork dipped in sugar to keep the dough from sticking when make marks on the cookies!

  • Nikki

    I made these tonight and they were great! I used regular Peter Pan creamy peanut butter.

  • Rachel

    I just made these and they are delicious. I followed the recipe and mine were not oily. I think maybe because I used a spatula to mix it and did not mix it a lot, just enough to incorporate all the ingredients.

  • Morels

    Thank you for taking the time to post recipes. The ease of preparation was very good. Recipe is easy to follow. For our family it ended up being a waste of money in a time we cant afford to throw it away. Dough & finished cookies are very oily. Because there is so much sugar and not much else, the peanut butter flavor is almost lost. That depth of flavor from a well rounded – ingredient wise – recipe is missing. But so many others love them! So you be the judge!

    • cathe

      the peanut butter used makes all the difference in amount of oil and the peanut butter taste itself. personally we reduced the amount of sugar but we tend to do that anyhow.

    • http://www.facebook.com/KnittinKityn Erica Krueger

      The brand of peanut butter makes a big difference. The generic PB has almost no peanut flavor for all the other junk they add to it. Natural PB has very few added ingredients so there’s more peanut flavor.

  • Pat McFtridge

    I used to make this recipe back in the 80’s and it was delicious then, if and when you change the ingredients and it turns out wrong why oh why are you complaining!? Just make the cokkies as instructed and eat!

  • Sylvia

    I have made these cookies for 20 years. They are very easy, don’t bother with the mixer just use a fork to mix( who needs to wash all that stuff). I never time them, just watch- after the cookie puffs up and flattens back down, I take them out. Theywill just have a slight browning on the bottom of the cookie. Often if I wait for browning around the edge, the cookie is harder than I like after it cools. It is great for children to do, and I used it in my classroom with special needs adults for

  • Leslie

    I like this receipe but I find 1 cup sugar is way too much.. I reduce the sugar and add s bit more peanut butter… Very easy to make quickly…. And very good too!!

  • Indira

    Cookies were so perfect. Thank you for a perfect recipe. Appreciate the comments for selecting the peanut butter. My family loved it.

  • Deanna

    Fantastic! Very rich but very good. I followed the recipe and they turned out wonderfully–exactly like the picture.
    I took them out a couple minutes early thinking I would preserve a soft texture; however, the only thing I preserved was the raw dough in the middle of each cookies. I blame the person that challenged me by saying he had never had a soft peanut butter cookie: not my fault.
    I used a second batch to do the full 10 minutes and, of course, they were perfect.

    Follow the recipe!

  • http://twitter.com/jeanloveslife Jean Watson

    I have made these many times using Splenda (granulated in large bag). Great for diabetics.

    • Renee

      splenda=cancer causing chemical.

      xylitol=natural no calorie sweetener (might want to add baking soda to compensate)

    • Lisa

      Used Truvia baking mix. It’s made with stevia (a plant), not a chemical as another reader stated.

      • http://www.facebook.com/shelley.boyle.16 Shelley Boyle

        Truvia does have Stevia plant in it but it also has artificial ingredients. They deceive with all Natural and the word Stevia, Keep in mind Natural Flavoring can be Aspartame. Aspartame does not have to be listed as such…Many use “Natural Flavoring” and you think it’s okay. When it indeed is not.

  • Marcy Jane

    I do not flatten with a fork—but as soon as they come out of oven I press an unwrapped chocolate kiss in the middle. Makes em super good.

    • Zoe

      If you don’t flatten them with a fork, does it make them more chewy?

      • Alice Currah

        Hi. No, not more chewy but probably more uncooked.

  • http://www.facebook.com/desiree.rull Desiree Rull

    love it, love it, love it! a friend of mine who usually hates peanut butter cookies. but when she tried one of these she popped another in her mouth!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sandy-Archer/100002508515058 Sandy Archer

    I made these tonight and added a little baking soda and dark cocoa powder to the recipe. I used a melon baller to scoop with. I baked them on a silicone baking sheet. Hope I have the will power not to eat all of them. Thank you for sharing your recipe.

  • disqus_F1XoWr9JLq

    Would using “Adams” 100% natural Organic penut butter change the texture of the batter? And would the cookies turn out the same?

  • grossjames

    Absolutely delicious and perfect. I make my own peanut butter at home (so easy, so much healthier, and so much cheaper than buying it!), and they weren’t the least bit greasy. I also cut the sugar a bit and only used 3/4 cup.

  • Megan Gerlach

    Just made these cookies! Just wondering if anyone’s seemed not done in the middle. I left them in a couple extra min.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=8820497 Kathleen Schramm Nesheiwat

    I made these with Trader Joe’s Sunflower Seed Butter (Sunbutter) for my peanut allergic daughter. The batter was too sticky to press down with the fork, but we bought thought they came out great!

  • Hollie

    I just made these.. Like another reader, I followed the recipe but omitted vanilla and added chocolate chips. The cookies taste great but some feel apart and didn’t set. I wouldn’t say they are greasy like I have seen others mention, but I can imagine a better texture using a peanut butter that doesn’t contain any oil. Unfortunately, even though my PB was a natural variety, it contained palm oil which may have caused them to be more oily than I would prefer!

  • Heather

    I made these, but I replaces the sugar with Splenda, and they turned out too soft. I think next time I will use half sugar and half Splenda.

  • Cori

    Just made these with my 2.5 year old! They were super easy and delish! Used smuckers natural pb. Made heart shaped thumb prints in middle and filled with jelly. Yumm. Pb&j cookies

  • Becky

    Very good, hubby loved them!

  • http://twitter.com/macley Leyda M.

    I just baked these cookies & they turned out very good. I did only use 1/2 C of sugar but still delicious :).

  • Dana Leach

    We grind our own peanut butter at the grocery store. Will this kind work for this recipe?

  • Zoe

    I tried these cookies a few days ago and found myself very impressed. These cookies are so simple yet so delicious, they were all gone in about 2 days. Being wheat intorelent, its hard to find recipes that are easy and taste great, as most gluten free recipes turn out tasting weird and going very dry. I was so happy with these cookies! I didnt use an electric mixer, i used a wooden spoon and seemed to work just as well. I drizzled them with dark chocolate, which sort of evened out the sweetness of the biscuit. 10/10 rating from me, the only downside being that they went a bit hard after they had cooled. Otherwise, I highly reccommend these cookies!

  • Ann V.

    I just made these cookies for the very first time and I used brown sugar and I used egg whites and they turned out every good and I am going to keep making them.

  • Tracy DeHart

    The video says and shows 1 tablespoon of vanilla but the written recipe says 1 teaspoon of vanilla.

    • tbwynne

      Hi Tracy. Thanks for pointing that out. I updated the blog post to “1 tablespoon.”

  • disqus_M3apN6HxiQ

    I’ve been making these for 30 years! Classic and great!:)

  • Rochell Fideldy

    I to have been making these cookies for about 20 years.
    Except I don’t use the vanilla, I do use about a half teaspoon of baking soda. It helps keep the cookies soft.
    At Christmas time I roll them into balls then into sugar bake and press stars or kisses.
    Awesome post!!!

  • Nancy Hanford

    HELP.. my dough is way too dry what can I do????

    • Alice Currah

      Hi Nancy,
      Can you explain? Your dough shouldn’t be that dry at all since there is no flour. You can always add in a little more peanut butter.

  • Robin Phillips

    Ive also made these cookies for many years, even before my fiancé was diagnosed with Celiac. Betty Crocker has some cookie and cake mixes that taste exactly like the original mixes. He loves the chocolate chip cookies!!

  • Rosie

    can i use brown sugar instead of white?

  • Penny

    these cookies will be great for my family

  • Sabrina Bree

    I’ve made these “1 cup peanut butter cookies” [that’s what some websites call ‘em], a few times once I discovered the recipe, never had vanilla on hand though and they were great..but I never ate the dough, no matter how tempting…hello..it has RAW egg in it…. :o).

  • Opal Fisher

    I am not a peanut butter lover,but these cookies taste great.Really quick and simple,will be making more some day soon with the grandbabies they can even help.Thanks Currah.Great recipe.

  • calima

    These came out yummy, the kids enjoyed helping out. We added some chopped dark chocolate to the mix. Simple to make and delicious, but next time we will reduce the sugar, as they came out too sweet.