Easy Simple Decadent Minimalist Peanut Butter Cookies

Back in our adolescent days, my sister and I would regularly watch the Food Network together after school.  Probably not hard to believe, if you know us!  You might be surprised though when I tell you that one of our favorite chefs on the line-up was – drumroll please– Paula Deen!  And it wasn’t just because of her love for butter.

Paula Deen’s home cooking show (specifically one episode) was where I discovered how simple and easy it could be to make something really decadent, delicious and legit without any flour or butter.  I actually used to make Paula’s original Magical Peanut Butter Cookies recipe unchanged for many years, and it was a huge hit with my family and friends. I only decided to experiment with altering the ingredients and ratios in Paula’s recipe a few years ago for personal health reasons, and since my healthier version is just as tasty as its original counterpart, I would like to share it with you! 

Freshly baked peanut butter cookies with canisters of baking ingredients in the background. Macro with shallow dof.

This minimalist recipe is INCREDIBLY rich and peanut butter-y (if that’s a word).


Creamy swirls of peanut butter on a vintage wooden spoon resting on a ceramic plate. Natural, textured fabric in the background. Shallow dof with focus on the peanut butter swirls.

Note:  If you are allergic to peanuts, you could easily substitute the peanut butter with sunflower seed butter or nut butter.  You really can’t go wrong!

So what did I change about the original recipe?  Just a couple things (I’m sorry, Paula Deen!):

  • When I watched Paula making her original recipe on TV, she used “mainstream” peanut butter, which I recommend you simply swap out for a natural alternative which contains no partially-hydrogenated oils.
  • Paula used Splenda® in her cookies. Click here to learn why I don’t believe in artificial sweeteners.  
  • Splenda® and table sugar are inter-changeable using a 1:1 ratio in baking, so I always used regular sugar to make Paula’s recipe with regular granulated sugar.  Nowadays, when I have it on hand I like to use coconut palm sugar
    • According to studies conducted by the Food & Nutrition Research Institute Department of Science & Technology in the Philippine Department of Agriculture, coconut sugar is significantly lower in glycemic index and higher in micronutrients (specifically iron, zinc, potassuim and calcium) as well as inulin (beneficial fiber) and phytonutrients (1).  It’s not much different otherwise so don’t worry about it if you don’t have it at home 🙂 

That said, here’s my peanut butter cookie recipe…

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies
Makes about 16 cookies
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  1. 1 cup peanut butter
  2. 1/2 to 3/4 cup coconut palm sugar
  3. 1 egg
  4. 1 teaspoon vanilla
  5. Pinch of salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl until they are a doughy consistency.
  3. Roll dough into tablespoon-sized dollops and flatten with a fork (to make cross-stitch pattern) onto ungreased cookie sheets.
  4. Bake at 350 F for about 10-12 minutes or until the edges are slightly browned.
  5. Let cookies cool for 5 minutes before removing from baking sheet, then let cool for another 10 minutes before transferring to a plate.
Diabetic Exchange
  1. 1 cookie = 1 carbohydrate, 1 fat
Adapted from Paula's Home Cooking
Adapted from Paula's Home Cooking
Wholeistic Living https://wholeisticliving.com/

  1.  http://www.pca.da.gov.ph/coconutrde/images/sugarpdfs/TPTrinidad_FNRI.pdf 


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