Six words…chocolate, filled, peanut, butter, sandwich, cookies. If that isn’t enough to tempt you to make these gorgeously golden little beauties, then maybe knowing the recipe is from Deb Perelman’s book will. I love, love, love her recipes (evidence here, here, and here) and this one is just wonderful! They take a little effort, but what wonderful things don’t?
Chocolate-Filled Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies
Yield 40 cookies
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup smooth peanut butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon fine or flaky sea salt
- 8 ounce semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 3 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- pinch of sea salt
- To make the batter, use an electric mixer and beat the butter until it’s light and fluffy. Add in the peanut butter and thoroughly mix it all together, then beat in the sugars and the egg until you have a smooth mixture.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Then add the flour mixture to the batter and mix it at a low speed until it’s all combined. (Your batter should be thick and a bit crumbly.)
- Split the dough into two lumps and do one of two things:
- For circular cookies, form each dough half into 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inch logs, about 12 inches long. Wrap each log in plastic wrap and freeze them for 30 minutes.
- For shaped cookies, flatten each dough half in plastic wrap and refrigerate them for at least an hour before rolling them out to use with cookie cutters.
- Once your dough is ready and freezing or chilling, preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Cover two or three baking sheets with parchment paper and begin cutting your cookies:
- For circular cookies, once the dough logs are firm, slice 40 cookies from each log, holding the log gently to keep it from cracking or breaking.
- For shaped cookies, once the dough halves are chilled, roll them out one at a time, to 1/4 inch thickness. Use your desired cookie cutter to make approximately 80 cookies (to form 40 sandwiches). Use as little flour as possible and understand that the dough will be crumbly. Just keep shaping it together in your cookie cutters and keep rolling your dough scraps into a ball to repeat the process. Your dough will be fragile, but keep the faith! The cookies will bake beautifully.
- Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes each, until they are puffed and lightly golden on the edges. After baking, store the cookies on cooling racks and do not fill them until they are completely cooled.
- To make the filling, use a double broiler or a bowl set over a pot of simmering water and combine the chocolate, peanut butter, butter, and a pinch of sea salt. Whisk everything together until it’s all smooth and melted.
- Move the mixture away from heat and let it cool until it’s thick but spreadable. You can speed up the process by placing the mixture in the refrigerator or a bowl of cold water, but be sure to stir it frequently so that it chills evenly.
- Smear about 1 teaspoon of filling in between two cookies or for a prettier and more precise method, put the filling in a bag and cut off a corner, essentially making a pastry bag. Press the cookies together to distribute the filling to the edges, but not too much so that it comes out.
- Let the cookies set so that the chocolate firms up, then devour them one by one, as you’ve worked so hard and you deserve them! But really, there’s 40 cookies here. Bring ‘em to work, share ‘em with your neighbors, spread the love.
*According to Deb (the creator of this recipe), the unbaked cookie dough will keep, well wrapped, for up to three days in the refrigerator and up to two months in the freezer. The cookies can be stored in an airtight container in room temperature for a week and for two months in the freezer.