Christmas means a lot of things to me, as I’m sure it may to you as well. First of all, to me it is a celebration of my Savior, coming down to earth as a tiny baby to be our Rescuer. It is a gathering of loved ones sharing memories and thoughtful gifts. It is a time for all things cozy and comforting – twinkling lights, crackling fires, nostalgic Christmas tunes and fuzzy slippers… But Christmas also means all things COOKIES!
Now, in the Christmas cookie department, there are the traditional cookies we make every year, and then there are a few new twists I like to bring into the mix as well. These Peanut Butter Buckeye Brownie Cookies fall into the latter category. I LOVE peanut butter and chocolate and I LOVE brownies, and I’m starting to think almost everything tastes better with a sprinkle of flakey sea salt.
These Peanut Butter Buckeye Brownie Cookies might just be one of the best cookies I’ve made it a while. The way your teeth sinks into that thick layer of creamy sweetened peanut butter filling is heavenly! The chewy homemade brownie layer is soft and fudgy. The thick drizzle of semisweet chocolate on top is perfection! All together, it’s a chocolate peanut butter lover’s dream come true – all in one cookie!
And they are as rich and decadent as they look. Even for me, a die-hard cookie lover, one was plenty!
And just a note on the flakey sea salt. If you want to be fancy and use a really nice salt, go for the Maldon Sea Salt. This would make a great stocking stuffer for the bakers in your life! It’s formed in a beautiful pyramid shape and is wonderful for finishing sweet desserts like these cookies.
I also like to add a little bit of oil to a drizzled chocolate because it allows the chocolate to set “softly”. This means that when you take a bite of the cookie, it won’t crack into pieces and make a mess. But after a few hours it will set hard enough that the cookies can be stacked and stored. I did try keeping a few cookies in the refrigerator, and while they still tasted great, the texture of the brownie was best at room temperature.Print
For the Cookies
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon coffee extract
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
For the Filling
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons softened butter
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Chocolate Drizzle
- 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 3 teaspoons oil
- Flakey sea salt for finishing
- In a small saucepan, melt butter and sugar together over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Cool slightly, then whisk in beaten eggs, 1/4 cup chocolate chips, vanilla extract, and coffee extract. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking soda together. Add butter mixture to the flour mixture and stir together until just combined. Chill one hour.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare a baking sheet by lining with parchment paper or Silpat, or grease the pan itself so the brownie cookies won’t stick. Scoop 18 balls (about 2 tablespoons per cookie) onto your baking sheet (9 per sheet so they have room to spread) and bake for 11-12 minutes. Transfer the brownie cookies to a cooling rack and cool completely before topping with peanut butter filling.
- To make the filling, mix peanut butter, powdered sugar, softened butter and vanilla together until smooth in a medium bowl. This can be done by hand, or with a hand mixer. Scoop 1 tablespoon of the peanut butter filling onto the center of each cookie, and then use an offset spatula or a butter knife to spread it nearly to the edge of the cookie.
- Melt 1 cup of chocolate chips with 3 tablespoons of oil (I used avocado oil) and stir until smooth. Be careful not to overheat the chocolate or the chocolate may seize up. Pour the melted chocolate into a Ziploc bag and cut a tiny piece of the bottom corner off (or you can use a piping bag and small tip). Drizzle chocolate over each cookie and sprinkle with sea salt flakes. The chocolate on top of the cookies should set after a couple of hours so they can be stacked and stored.