These vegan peanut butter chocolate chip cookies are so soft and chewy, you'll never know they're vegan and gluten free! Each one is packed with peanut butter flavor with mini chocolate chips in every bite. They can be made in less than 20 minutes with no chilling time and just a few simple ingredients.
What Makes These The Best Vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
First, the name pretty much says it all. These cookies perfectly pair peanut butter and chocolate in cookie form and are also made vegan friendly on top of being gluten free! What more could you need in a cookie?
The soft gooey texture is also a major plus. Many times peanut butter can dry out a cookie and make it chunky and puffy. Not these cookies though! These are extra gooey chewy cookies. Using natural peanut butter is key here. Don't try to use any of the "no-stir" peanut butters as they add certain ingredients to remove the oil separation. When it comes to vegan peanut butter cookies, the oil separation is needed so that the peanut butter is fairly thin when combined with the other ingredients.
My favorite part about these delicious cookies though has to be the short list of simple ingredients. These cookies require no weird ingredients at all, just 4 main pantry staples that you probably already have on hand.
I actually adapted this recipe from my vegan chocolate chip oatmeal cookies since they're so popular and simple to make. Check out my oat flour chocolate chip cookies or my fudgy brownie cookies too for more cookies treats!
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Peanut butter - The star of the cookie show. Creamy peanut butter that has oil separation is key. You can use crunchy peanut butter kind if you want little bits of peanuts in the dough though. The "no-stir" peanut butter will not work in this recipe. Feel free to use any type of nut butter like almond butter, cashew butter, or sunflower butter.
- Coconut sugar - Used to sweeten the cookies. The molasses in the sugar help the dough spread in the oven so the cookies aren't chunky. Light brown sugar will work as well.
- Apple sauce - This is the egg substitute in this recipe. I prefer apple sauce over a flax egg because of the extra fruit juice that comes with it which adds a delicious hint of sweetness and helps the cookies spread. If you prefer a flax egg, you will want to make 2 for this recipe (2 Tbsp flax meal + 6 Tbsp water).
- Oat flour - The gluten free flour used in these cookies. It adds a soft nutty flavor that pairs really well with the peanut butter. You can use store bought oat flour or make your own at home by blending up rolled oats in a food processor. All purpose or gluten free 1:1 baking flour will also work.
- Chocolate chips - I use mini vegan chocolate chips so that the cookies are filled with chocolate in every bite. Any type of chocolate chips, chocolate chunks, or chopped up chocolate bars swill work. Be sure to use a vegan brand if desired.
Step by Step Directions
These vegan cookies are super simple to make. You will need a large bowl, electric mixer or stand mixer, and a baking sheet.
Step 1 : Mix together the sugar with the wet ingredients. Add the peanut butter, apple sauce, vanilla extract, and coconut sugar to a bowl. Beat well with a mixer until well combined.
Step 2 : Fold in the dry ingredients. Slowly mix in the oat flour and baking soda into the bowl with a rubber spatula. Only mix until no large flour clumps remain so that you don't risk over mixing the batter.
Step 3 : Add the chocolate chips. Fold in the chocolate chips gently with the rubber spatula to disburse into the cookie dough.
Step 4 : Scoop onto baking tray. Use a large cookie scoop to scoop the cookie dough balls on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper for easy clean up. Leave about 3 inches in between each cookie so they have room to spread in the oven.
Bake the cookies until the edges are just turning golden brown and then take them out of the oven. For best results, you want the cookies to be slightly under-baked. They will continue to cook even after they have been pulled out of the oven. The cookies will be slightly puffed up which is okay. As they cool down they will, for lack of a better word, deflate into a normal cookie size with a gooey center and crispy edges.
Once the cookies have cooled down slightly, transfer them to a cooling rack to cool down to room temperature.
- Use a peanut butter with oil separation. When you're ready to use it for these cookies, give it a good stir to incorporate the oil and then measure. The peanut butter will be much thinner than no-stir peanut butters and will provide the cookie dough with extra moisture ensure a chewy soft cookie. I prefer to use smooth peanut butter so the texture is that of a regular chocolate chip cookie but the crunchy kind will work too.
- Pull the cookies out of the oven slightly under-baked. They will cook even more as they cool down.
- While the cookies are fresh out of the oven, use a fork to help slide the edges of each cookie into the center to create a round perfect cookie shape.
- Also while the cookies are still warm on the baking sheet, sprinkle a few more chocolate chips on top. You can even add some sea salt flakes if you want!
How to Store The Cookies
Make sure the cookies have cooled down completely before storing them. Place the cookies in an airtight container with a lid and store them out on the counter for up to 5 days or keep them in the fridge for a week.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, because this is a vegan cookie dough and we are using oat flour the cookie dough is safe to eat raw! If you use all purpose flour make sure to heat treat it if you plan to eat the dough.
Go ahead and scoop the dough into cookie dough balls on a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet and freeze them until solid. Then you can peel the cookie dough scoops of the paper and place them in a bag or container to store in the freezer for up to 3 months. When ready to bake, let the dough thaw out on the counter while the oven preheats and then bake as directed.
For more cookie recipes, check out my:
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Vegan Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 1 cup natural peanut butter
- 1 cup coconut sugar - or light brown sugar
- ⅔ cup apple sauce - unsweetened and plain
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup oat flour
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 cup mini chocolate chips - vegan
- Preheat oven to 350 F. In a large bowl, mix together the peanut butter, coconut sugar, apple sauce, and vanilla extract until well combined. This can be done with a hand mixer, stand mixer, or a stiff whisk.
- Slowly fold in the oat flour and baking soda with a rubber spatula until no large flour clumps remain.
- Add the mini chocolate chips to the bowl and mix into the batter.
- Use a large cookie scoop to scoop the dough into cookie dough balls onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper for easy clean up. Leave at least 3 inches in between each cookie scoop so they have room to spread a little. Bake the cookies in the oven for 8 - 10 minutes until the edges are just beginning to brown. You want the cookies to be slightly under-baked before taking them out of the oven because they will make more even after they come out of the oven.
- For perfectly round cookies, use the edge of a fork to slide the edges of the cookies towards the center while they are still warm. Sprinkle extra chocolate chips on top while the cookies are still warm if desired and then let them cool before moving them to a rack to cool completely.