Browned Butter Peanut Butter Cookies


14 Tbsp/200 g unsalted butter
1/2 cup/100 g white sugar
3/4 cup/150 g dark brown sugar
1 1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg yolk
1 large egg
2 cups/255 g all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup/240 g peanut butter

1. Preheat your oven to 375º F.

2. Here’s the secret of this recipe: brown the butter! Put the butter in the pan and brown it. Do this carefully. You have to use your nose and eyes to make sure the butter is browned and not burnt.

3. Mix the sugars, salt, vanilla extract, eggs and peanut butter in a bowl. Allow the browned butter to cool for a few minutes and add to the mix.

4. Mix in the flour. Do not over mix or you’ll develop the gluten and end up with a disagreeably chewy cookie.

5. Form the dough into balls, spread them out on a baking sheet and compress with a fork. Sprinkle some sugar and sea salt on top of the cookies.

6. Here’s the second secret of this recipe: don’t over bake! You want a moist, not hard cookie. Depending on your oven you’ll probably bake somewhere between 8 and 10 minutes.

This cookie is a pandemic accident. I set out to make Josey Baker’s chocolate chip cookie which is based on a recipe in Cooks Illustrated. What makes that cookie so good is the browned butter. I made my dough and went for the chocolate chips only to discover that we had no chocolate chips. Not wanting to risk the ‘rona with a run to the market, I reached for a cup of peanut butter and dumped it in. Success!

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  1. I’m right with you! My best ways to amp a flavor profile are 1) brown the butter; 2) substitute brown sugar, 3) substitute buttermilk. Of course, you may get flatter, softer cookies with brown sugar and if you add buttermilk you need to add a pinch of baking soda in some things but those are experiments I’m willing to engage in to boost the flavor.

    I have also been known to brown a bunch of butter and then stir it over a bowl of ice until it returns to a butter-like consistency. Great on veggies as well as in baking. But the time-consuming business of stirring it over ice is important or you get a brittle, separated product that’s more or less useless.

    On a different subject, I wonder how you’re receiving word of the promising results of the Pfizer vaccine. I understand that you may still need to be vaccinated (even if you *were* in the Pfizer study). But it must feel great to know you were part of this potentially life-saving effort and that you can look forward to not being a vector of compromising your wife’s health. I hope that day arrives swiftly now! And thanks on behalf of the rest of us!

    • Thanks for the browned butter tips! I got news through the grapevine that Pfizer is considering calling the vaccine a success and administering the vaccine to the placebo group. I think I’m in the placebo group as I had no reaction at all. I’ll post an update when I get more news.

    • Thanks for being my editor and catching this mistake. I’ve fixed the post–you mix it in with everything else in step 3.

  2. And Mr. Homegrown maintains his Patreon base for another year LOLOLOLOLOLOL. There is no baked good I love more than peanut butter cookies.

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