Healthy Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

4.85 from 33 votes
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The most decadent-tasting Healthy Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies you’ll ever eat! Made with simple ingredients in 1 bowl, these dairy free + gluten free chocolate cookies will be a household favorite.3 chocolate cookies stacked on top of each other on a piece of parchment paper

Perfectly soft and chewy with melt-in-your-mouth centers and brimming with chocolate and peanut butter chips. What every chocolate cookie aspires to be, yet very few achieve. 

Thanks to this cookie recipe’s more wholesome ingredient lineup, you can feel good enjoying one (or three) anytime the craving strikes. Plus, they’re gluten- and dairy-free, which will likely appeal even more to the masses.

These healthy cookies are also super low-maintenance. They don’t require a mixer, chilling, or any advanced planning. In fact, all they call for is 1 mixing bowl and a baking sheet.

How to Make Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Many of the ingredients in this recipe may already be sitting in your pantry. 

And if you decide to bring them to a holiday gathering, no one will EVER guess they’re secretly healthy. Every blind taster I tested them on was in shock and immediately asked for the recipe.

Because truly, what’s NOT to love about a chocolate + peanut butter duo?

The IngredientsRecipe ingredients in separate bowls on a white board with labels

You’ll notice there’s no flour in the ingredient lineup for these gluten free chocolate cookies. But don’t worry, the cocoa powder thickens the batter plenty!

  • Peanut Butter: Look for a creamy, natural peanut butter with only peanuts and salt in the ingredients. Using a peanut butter with added oils and sugars may not work the same in this recipe. 
  • Eggs: You need 2 eggs to help bind the ingredients. I have not tested this recipe with flax eggs, so I cannot confirm a vegan alternative works the same.
  • Coconut Oil: These healthy chocolate cookies have no butter; instead, coconut oil makes them soft and chewy.
  • Cocoa Powder: Look for unsweetened cocoa powder for the best results. I typically use Hershey’s brand, which is available in the baking aisle of most grocery stores. 
  • Brown Sugar: Using brown sugar instead of white better balances the bitter undertones of the chocolate. The brown sugar also helps keep the cookies super moist.
  • Vanilla: A cookie must-have! Be sure to use pure vanilla extract.
  • Chocolate Chips: I like using a mix of chocolate and peanut butter chips. If making the recipe dairy-free, look for Enjoy Life brand of chocolate chips, which are allergen friendly.

Chocolate peanut butter cookies lined up on a baking sheet

The Directions

Step 1. Combine Eggs and Sugar

Preheat oven to 350ºF and line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

In a large mixing bowl, combine eggs and brown sugar; whisk well until combined.Eggs and brown sugar being whisked in a bowl

Step 2. Add Remaining Wet Ingredients

Add peanut butter, coconut oil, and vanilla; whisk well until smooth.Peanut butter, oil, and vanilla being whisked in a bowl

Step 3. Add Dry Ingredients

Add cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt; use a wooden spoon or spatula to mix until combined. (The batter will be thick.) Next, fold in chocolate chips.Cocoa powder and chocolate chips being mixed into a bowl of cookie dough

Step 4. Bake Cookies

Scoop and roll a heaping 1.5-2 Tablespoons of dough into balls, and arrange 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. 

Bake for 7 to 9 minutes, or until the edges appear set and the centers still look soft. Remove baking sheet from the oven and set it on a cooling rack or towel on the counter. Lift baking sheet and let it drop against the counter (or cooling rack) 1 to 2 times, which will help the cookies “drop” and spread slightly. 

Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet. Transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.Baked cookies on a parchment-lined baking sheet

Recipe Adaptations

These gluten free chocolate cookies are endlessly versatile. I like to switch up the extracts and chocolate chip varieties depending on the occasion or holiday. Here are some of my favorite variations:

  • Peppermint Chocolate Cookies: Swap the vanilla extract for peppermint extract, and use all chocolate chips, or a mix of chocolate and peppermint chocolate chips.
  • Double Chocolate Cookies: Use all chocolate chips instead of a mix of chocolate and peanut butter chips.
  • White Chocolate Chip Cookies: Use all white chocolate chips (my favorite brand is Ghirardelli) instead of milk or semi-sweet.
  • Reese’s Cup Cookies: In lieu of chocolate chips, use chopped up Reese’s cups!

Make-Ahead and Storage Tips

  • To Store: Keep cookies in an airtight storage container at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
  • To Freeze: Freeze baked cookies in a freezer-safe storage container or ziptop bag for up to 3 months. Thaw and enjoy as desired or bake directly from frozen, adding a few minutes to the baking time as needed.
  • To Refrigerate Cookie Dough: Prepare the cookie dough as directed, then store it in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before baking.
  • To Freeze Cookie Dough: Prepare the dough as directed, and lay the cookie dough balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Place the baking sheet in the freezer until the cookie dough is frozen solid. Freeze the frozen cookie balls in a freezer-safe ziptop bag or storage container for up to 3 months. Bake from frozen whenever a cookie craving strikes!

Chocolate cookies on a baking sheet with one broken into to see center

  • Baking Sheet: This one is long-lasting, non-stick, and warp-resistant.
  • Silicone Baking MatNonstick silicone releases food without the need for grease, cooking sprays, or parchment paper.
  • Cookie Scoop: For perfectly-portioned cookies, muffins, and more.
  • Mixing Bowl: Non-skid bottom stabilizes bowl while mixing, even when tilted!

More Healthy Dessert Recipes:

No-Bake Healthier S’mores Pie

Homemade Oatmeal Creme Pies

Healthy Pumpkin Bars

Fruit Crisps with Honey-Whipped Goat CheeseA cookie broken in half on a piece of parchment paper

If you give these healthy chocolate cookies a try, snap a pic and tag #dishingouthealth on Instagram so I can see your creations. I also really appreciate readers taking the time to leave a rating and review! Lastly, follow along on Facebook and Pinterest for the latest recipe updates.

4.85 from 33 votes

Healthy Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

The most decadent-tasting Healthy Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies you'll ever eat! Made with simple ingredients in 1 bowl, these cookies will be a household favorite.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 18

Equipment

  • Baking sheet
  • Mixing bowl

Ingredients  

  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 cup creamy natural peanut butter (just peanuts + salt in the ingredient list)
  • 2 Tbsp. melted and cooled coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt (or 1/4 tsp. fine table salt)
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips (I use a mix of semi-sweet and peanut butter chips)
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Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 350ºF and line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
    In a large mixing bowl, combine eggs and brown sugar; whisk well until combined. Add peanut butter, coconut oil, and vanilla; mix until smooth.
    Add cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt; use a wooden spoon or rubber spatula to mix until combined. (The batter will be thick.) Fold in chocolate chips.
  • Scoop and roll dough into heaping 1.5-2 Tablespoons balls, and arrange 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. 
    Bake for 8 to 9 minutes, or until the edges appear set and the centers still look soft. Remove baking sheet from the oven and set it on a cooling rack or towel on the counter. Lift baking sheet and let it drop against the counter (or cooling rack) 1 to 2 times, which will help the cookies "drop" and spread slightly. 
    Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet. Transfer to cooling rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining cookie dough.

Notes

To make Peppermint Chocolate Cookies, swap the vanilla for peppermint extract, and use all chocolate chips, or a mix of chocolate and peppermint chocolate chips.
 
  • To Store: Keep cookies in an airtight storage container at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
  • To Freeze: Freeze baked cookies in a freezer-safe storage container or ziptop bag for up to 3 months. Thaw and enjoy as desired or bake directly from frozen, adding a few minutes to the baking time as needed.
  • To Refrigerate Cookie Dough: Prepare the cookie dough as directed, then store it in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before baking.
  • To Freeze Cookie Dough: Prepare the dough as directed, and lay the cookie dough balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Place the baking sheet in the freezer until the cookie dough is frozen solid. Freeze the frozen cookie balls in a freezer-safe ziptop bag or storage container for up to 3 months. Bake from frozen whenever a cookie craving strikes!

Nutrition

Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 170kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 3.5g | Sodium: 108mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 11g

I calculate these values by hand to ensure accuracy, however expect up to a 10% variable depending on food brands.

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Recipe Rating




33 Comments

  1. Nicky says:

    4 stars
    i just made these today and they were yummy except for the fact the dough was like brownie batter…way too thin to make cookies. The only change I made was a little less sugar, about 1/2 cup which wouldn’t have made that big of a difference in the consistency. I just decided to make brownies/bars instead so I put the batter in a parchment lined 8×8 pan. It took about 35 min on 350, I started at 20 min and kept adding time. They were really good as brownies! I will try again to see if I can get the dough consistency.