At first glance, you see a basic chocolate cookie. Simple, chocolatey, no frills. What you see is what you get, right?
Wrong! You take a bite out of said "simple chocolate cookie," and inside you find a big ball of peanut buttery goodness. The kind of peanut buttery goodness that reminds you of a Reese's Peanut Butter Halloween pumpkin. But the cookie you hold is so much better, given its vegan nature and all-natural peanut butter core (That means it's healthy, right? Yep, definitely healthy.).
Friends, when it comes to dessert, few food combinations make my heart melt as much as peanut butter + chocolate. After locating the ultimate peanut butter blondie recipe earlier this summer, I was certain I had reached peanut butter + chocolate nirvana. However, I'm pleased to say that my blondies have met a life partner and soulmate in these Chocolate Peanut Butter Pillows.
Did you say pillows? Oh yes I did. Anyone else willing to take a nap on one of these babies? I have no doubt I'd wake up with a stiff neck, a missing pillow, and chocolate crumbs around my mouth. So worth it though :)
My only word of caution with this recipe is to monitor the stickiness of the chocolate dough, and adjust accordingly. I learned the hard way (with chocolate dough-covered hands) that this dough must be firm enough and cold enough to work with! I added a little extra cocoa powder and flour to what the recipe called for to reduce the dough's stickiness. I also made one small batch, and then stuck the dough in the freezer 20 minutes before making the second batch. Again: it was all worth it in the end.
Move over Reese's. Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar is in town. And boy do they mean business.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Pillows (vegan)
(recipe from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar)
These little wonders remind me of the cookie version of the chocolate-dipped peanut butter balls we make for the holidays. Remember to keep the chocolate dough cold and keep your hands covered in flour when molding the dough.
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 3 TBSP milk
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup plus 3 TBSP cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1/4 tsp. salt
Peanut Butter Filling:
- 3/4 cup all-natural, salted peanut butter (if your peanut butter is un-salted, add 1/4 tsp. salt to the dough)
- 2/3 cup powdered sugar
- 2 - 3 TBSP milk
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
1) In a large mixing bowl, combine oil, sugar, maple syrup, milk, and vanilla. Mix until smooth. Sift in flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix to form a moist dough. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours (or, I accelerated the process by placing in the freezer for about a half hour to 45 minutes. However you choose, just make sure you keep the dough cold!).
2) Make the peanut butter filling: In another mixing bowl, use a mixer to beat together the peanut butter, powdered sugar, 2 TBSP milk, and vanilla to form a moist but firm dough. If peanut butter dough is too dry and crumbly, add in the additional tablespoon of milk. If dough is too wet, knead in some extra powdered sugar.
3) Preheat oven to 350 degrees and coat two cookie sheets with cooking spray.
4) Roll peanut butter dough into 24 balls. Coat hands with flour and scoop a generous tablespoon of chocolate dough. Flatten dough into a disc in your hand and place a peanut butter ball in the center. Wrap chocolate dough around peanut butter and roll into a smooth ball in your hands. Place on cookie sheet and repeat with remaining dough. Remember: keep the chocolate dough cold (you may have to work in shifts). If desired, you can oh-so-gently press on the top of each cookie a little to flatten it just a bit, but it's not necessary. Space dough balls 2 inches apart on cookie sheet.
5) Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to stand for 5 minutes before placing on a cooling rack to cool completely.