Update: This article has been updated to reflect the original source of the viral video from @everydaychiffon.
How about some cookies to go with your whipped coffee?
As people are searching for dishes to make at home amid the coronavirus pandemic, recipes with minimal ingredients reign supreme. Last week brought us Dalgona — a frothy, creamy coffee drink with just three ingredients. This week, it’s all about cookies. Home cooks all over our screens seem to making the same flourless peanut butter cookies with so few ingredients, it almost doesn’t make sense.
The recipe went viral shortly after blogger C.J. Oldenkamp of @everydaychiffon shared it on Tik Tok. Her video — which has over 1.5 million views — calls for just five ingredients: 1 cup light brown sugar, 1 cup peanut butter, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon baking soda, and ½ cup chocolate chips.
My son made delicious flourless chocolate chip peanut butter cookies with a recipe he found on TikTok. This being at home thing can be lovely, sometimes! pic.twitter.com/cpQXiNeW3D— Sara Goldrick-Rab (@saragoldrickrab) April 7, 2020
It’s easy to see why they’d be a hit, but considering a majority of viral food hacks eventually get debunked, does this one actually work? Oh yes, yes it does.
First off, the combination of ingredients is not an entirely new concept. The Brooklyn-based bakery Ovenly included a similar recipe in their 2014 cookbook. Smitten Kitchen blogged about the sweets a year later. And the website Tablespoon published the exact recipe seen in the Tik Tok video in 2019. Chances were that trying the recipe as-is was going to achieve some level of success — but a recent at-home test confirmed it. They’re crispy on the outside, gooey on the inside and perfectly salty-sweet. We do have a few notes to share, though.
Stick to processed peanut butter if you have it, not the natural stuff as the oil would affect the texture of an already-sticky dough. You can however sub in crunchy peanut butter for some added fun.
It’s a good idea to grease your measuring cup before adding the peanut butter so it slides right out.
Consider freezing the cookies for 10 to 15 minutes before baking. It’s definitely not necessary, but they’ll maintain their shape a little better in the oven if you do. If you prefer a thin cookie, skip this.
The recipe originally calls for baking 8 to 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Everyone’s oven is different, but if your batch isn’t getting too brown on top, leave them in an extra 2 to 4 minutes. Those baked for just 8 minutes tasted more like peanut butter fudge than cookies.
Finally, substitutions are more than okay. Cashew, almond or sunflower butter would all work fine. Dark brown sugar, or even granulated sugar will do. Don’t have baking soda? Try 3 teaspoons baking powder instead.
Get the full recipe below.
5-Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies
1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 cup peanut butter
1 tsp. baking soda
½ cup chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment paper.
2. Stir together sugar, peanut butter, egg and baking soda in a medium bowl. Fold in chocolate chips. Divide cookie dough into 12 balls on prepared baking sheets using a cookie scoop. Freeze for 10 minutes, if desired.
3. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes.
4. Cool cookies on baking sheets for 5 minutes. Transfer to wire racks, and let cool completely, about 10 minutes.