Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies

Soft vegan peanut butter cookies are melt-in-your-mouth delicious. The combination of peanut butter and vegan butter in a creamy dough sprinkled with sugar gives this cookie recipe its signature flavor.

A stack of vegan peanut butter cookies sits in the foreground. Behind them is a white container full of peanut butter and a wire rack with more cookies cooling after being pulled from the oven.

Everyone loves a good, soft cookie. These vegan peanut butter cookies are one of my favorites because they’re easy to make and a real crowd favorite. I like how I can bake them a little longer for crispy cookies, or shorter for soft, tender cookies. They’re delicious either way!

Why This Recipe is a Winner

  • Chia seeds are combined directly in the batter, creating an egg replacer without mixing it with water first
  • Adding brown sugar makes super moist and delicious cookies
  • Using whole wheat pastry flour keeps these cookies soft and tender, but still healthier than many cookies

What You Need

You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.

Here are the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe:

  • Vegan butter — Use storebought like Earth Balance or make your own vegan butter.
  • Peanut butter — Use either creamy or crunchy peanut butter.
  • Chia seeds — You can buy these at many grocery stores, health food stores, or online.
  • Granulated sugar
  • Brown sugar — Use light, dark, or homemade brown sugar.
  • Flour — I used whole wheat pastry flour (different from whole wheat flour) or substitute all-purpose flour.
  • Baking soda + Baking powder
  • Vanilla
  • Plant-based milk — Use almond milk, soy milk, or your favorite plant-based milk.

Ingredient Spotlight

A small, white bowl holds creamy peanut butter inside.

What Peanut Butter is Best for Cookies?

There are three basic types of peanut butter: 1) Natural (the kind that has to be stirred, 2) Creamy, and 3) Crunchy. Some types of peanut butter work better for different recipes. Most of the time I prefer using natural peanut butter because it doesn’t have added hydrogenated oils or sugar. For this recipe, I recommend using creamy or crunchy because it’s hydrogenated and the oils won’t separate as easily.

How to Make Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies

  1. Cream butter and sugar with a mixer.
  2. Beat in the chia seeds and vanilla extract. 
  3. Mix the dry ingredients from the flour to the salt.
  4. Make the batter by stirring together flour and peanut butter mixtures.
  5. Add plant-based milk to achieve a soft dough.
  6. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  7. Shape chilled dough into 1-inch balls, roll them in sugar, and place them on cookie sheets.
  8. Create crisscross marks on the top of each cookie dough ball, slightly flattening each one. 
  9. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until light brown. Cool cookies on a wire rack to cool.

Here are more detailed step-by-step instructions.

Step One: Make Cookie Batter

  1. Add vegan butter and peanut butter to a mixing bowl. Beat on medium-high speed for 30 seconds.
  2. Add a half cup of granulated sugar and all of the brown sugar and beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally.
  3. Beat in the chia seeds and vanilla until combined. 
    Looking down on a mixing bowl full of cookie dough batter.
  4. Stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  5. Pour the flour mixture into the peanut butter mixture and mix until the ingredients are combined.
    A stand mixer is full of peanut butter cookie dough and is in a glass bowl with the basic mixer attachment.
  6. Add plant-based milk, one tablespoon at a time, and stir to achieve a soft dough.
  7. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Step two: Roll and Bake

  1. Shape dough into 1-inch balls.
    The cookie dough for these vegan peanut butter balls sit on a baking pan. A pinch of the dough is sitting on a kitchen measuring tool to help weight cookies to make them equally sized.
  2. Roll balls in reserved, granulated sugar to coat.
    A hand is holding a vegan peanut butter cookie dough ball over a plate of sugar. The cookie dough ball has been partially rolled in the sugar.
  3. Place rolled balls 1 to 2 inches apart on prepared cookie sheets.
  4. Use a fork to create crisscross marks on the top of each dough ball, slightly flattening each one. 
    A fork is pressing down on the sugared cookie dough balls, gently pressing them and creating criss-cross indentations in the cookies.
  5. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until light brown.
  6. Allow cookies to cool for a moment on the cookie sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool.

I actually measured the cookie dough balls to make sure each cookie was uniform in size. Creating consistency in the size of your cookies means they’ll all come out with the same texture, tenderness, and color.

Storage Tips

Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 10 days. Or they can be refrigerated for up to 15 days. They can be frozen for up to 2 months.

Egg Substitutes for Cookies

Making eggless peanut butter cookies is easier than you think. For this recipe, I’m using chia seeds as an egg replacer, but you can also use a flax seed egg. Here are even more great egg substitutes for cookies:

  • Mashed Banana — You can use 1/4 cup of mashed bananas per egg, but bananas are flavorful and it will impact the flavor of your finished cookie.
  • Applesauce — Another go-to favorite egg replacer is applesauce. Use 1/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce for each egg in a recipe.
  • Vegan Yogurt — Substitute 1/4 cup of vegan yogurt for each egg in your recipe.
  • Egg Replacer — You can purchase egg replacer mixes. Follow the instructions on the package to mix your egg for these cookies.

Make-ahead Tips

There are a couple of ways to make these cookies ahead of time.

  1. Freeze the cookie dough balls — Place them on a tray in the freezer. Once they’re frozen, transfer them to a freezer bag. To bake, place frozen cookie dough balls on a cooking sheet and add 2 to 3 minutes to the baking time.
  2. Make the cookies, allow them to cool completely, and then freeze them. Allow an hour for the cookies to thaw, and then serve! They’ll keep up to 2 months in the freezer.

This is a perfect recipe for freezing. See my tips for Frozen Cookie Dough.

My preference is to have a tender, healthy peanut butter cookie. There should be a little soft crumb in the middle and just a bit of crispy on the outside. I found baking for 8 to 9 minutes was perfect to achieve this result. Of course, if your cookie dough balls are frozen, it will require a little extra baking time.

Rows of finished vegan cookies sit next to each other. There's a bite taken out of the one in the middle.

More Peanut Butter Recipes

These vegan peanut butter cookies are so good. Here are even more delicious vegan peanut butter recipes.

A stack of vegan cookies is sitting in the foreground. A hand is holding a cookie right above the stack and there's a bite taken out of that cookie.
A square-cropped image of a stack of vegan peanut butter cookies and a hand holding one with a bite taken out.

Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies

These tender, soft vegan peanut butter cookies are melt-in-your-mouth delicious. They have lots of delicious peanut butter flavor, with a softly sweet sensation, thanks to brown sugar.
5 from 5 votes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 22 minutes
Servings: 24 cookies
Calories: 103kcal
Author: Marly

Ingredients

  • ½ cup vegan butter
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar , divided
  • ½ cup brown sugar , packed
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 ¼ cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons plant-based milk

Instructions

  • In a stand mixer, add vegan butter and peanut butter. Beat on medium-high speed for 30 seconds. Add a half cup of granulated sugar and all of the brown sugar and beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in the chia seeds and vanilla until combined. 
  • In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Stir to combine. Pour the flour mixture into the peanut butter mixture and use a spatula to stir until the ingredients are combined. Add plant-based milk, one tablespoon at a time, and stir to achieve a soft dough. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • When the cookie dough is chilled, heat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Cover two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  • Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll balls in reserved, granulated sugar to coat. Place rolled balls 1 to 2 inches apart on prepared cookie sheets. Using a fork to create crisscross marks on the top of each dough ball, slightly flattening each one. 
  • Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until light brown. Allow cooling for a moment on the cookie sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool. Makes about 36 cookies.

Recommended Equipment

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Nutrition Facts
Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies
Amount Per Serving
Calories 103 Calories from Fat 45
% Daily Value*
Fat 5g8%
Saturated Fat 1g5%
Sodium 127mg5%
Potassium 59mg2%
Carbohydrates 12g4%
Sugar 11g12%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 180IU4%
Calcium 16mg2%
Iron 0.2mg1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

This post was originally published in 2018 and was updated to include new photos, new text, and an updated recipe in 2021.

Celebrate National Peanut Butter Day

It’s time to celebrate again! That’s because today is national peanut butter day. This must be my favorite day of the year because I love me some peanut butter. In fact, I’m so excited by this food day, I coordinated efforts with my food blogging friends to share with you lots of exciting peanut butter day recipes.

Please note, some of these recipes may not be vegetarian or vegan. You can reach out to me if you’d like help veganizing any of the recipes found in the links below.

So, here we go, some awesome national peanut butter day recipes:

That’s it for today’s national peanut butter day posts!

8 Responses to Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies

  1. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyKara Reply

    These look so yummy, and I love that you can eat the cookie dough with no worries. Perfect!

  2. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyLucy @ Supergoldenbakes Reply

    Chia seed is a great natural ingredient in these vegan cookies. I can’t get over how good that sugar coating looks too. Delicious.

  3. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyStacie Vaughan Reply

    Oh my yum! I’m obsessed with peanut butter cookies too.

  4. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyRosemary Reply

    Peanut butter cookies are my favourite and yours look amazing. I look forward to making them.

  5. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyLacey Reply

    I just made these, tried 3 different sizes, including what is recommended, and they didn’t turn out like the picture at all!!!! They r VERY flat and crunchy, I mean, FLAT! And yes, I followed the directions exactly! They don’t taste bad, but they’re more like a crisp than a cookie

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      Hi Lacy. Thanks for your note. I’m wondering if maybe you used natural peanut butter? The kind with the oil at the top that has to be stirred before you use it. This recipe used creamy peanut butter, like Jiff or Skippy. In baking it really makes a difference. I make these cookies a lot (Shawn’s mom requests it when they come into town), but I’m always sure to have creamy peanut butter on hand to make it.

  6. Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyLaura Reply

    These cookies are so delicious! I used natural peanut butter and all purpose flour and they came out perfect. My guess on Lacey’s review is that if her cookies were flat she probably used expired baking soda/powder. If you pour a little in your hand and sprinkle water it should sizzle a bit. If nothing happens then it’s expired then your cookies won’t rise.

    • Avatar thumbnail image for MarlyMarly

      Hi Laura. Thanks for your comment. I’m so glad you like this recipe. It’s my mother-in-law’s favorite so I make it often. Great point about the baking soda/baking powder. It’s so easy to think they last forever, but sadly, they don’t!

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