Peanut Butter Smooches (vegan and gluten free)

pb smooch

Merry Christmas Eve! Today’s recipe and post is my way of wishing a happy holidays to all of my friends and readers around the globe! This is my last, last-minute recipe idea before I take a little break for the next several days to spend with family. I’m so excited to share this cookie idea with you all, this is my vegan and gluten free version of one of the best holiday treats ever (in my opinion), peanut butter kiss cookies. Also called peanut butter blossoms. Are you familiar with these little bites of heaven?

close up cookie

In the original, a Hershey’s Kiss is smushed into the center of the cookies right after bringing them out of the oven. Instead of Hershey Kisses, I used squares of a good (vegan) dark chocolate bar. Check out your local grocery store, every time I look at the chocolate selection they’ve added even more dairy-free/vegan and fair trade chocolate. It’s awesome! It’s so easy to find good chocolate these days. After gently pressing the chocolate square onto the soft peanut butter cookie, it becomes melty and delicious. If you’re traveling with these cookies, just pop them in the freezer for several minutes to harden the chocolate back up (like I did above).

pb melt

These are everything I remember about the original cookie, chewy, soft, peanut-buttery, melt-in-your-mouth, and oh so chocolate-y. I didn’t try anything tricky with these, like using sweet potatoes or dates, I wanted them to be easy to throw together, with ingredients you probably have on hand. These peanut butter smooches have less than 10 ingredients and take about 15 minutes to make. And I promise they’re a crowd pleaser!

peanut butter cookie

Throw these cookies together, grab a mug of hot chocolate, get cozy, and watch some classic Christmas movies. That’s my plan anyway πŸ˜‰

Hope you all have a healthy, happy, and relaxing holiday!

Peanut Butter Smooch Cookies

makes about 15 – 18 cookies

  • 1/2 cup natural peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar, date sugar, or other granulated sweetener
  • 1 Tbsp unrefined coconut oil, melted
  • 2 Tbsp applesauce
  • 1 Tbsp of flax + 2 Tbsp water combined
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup of oat flour (just blend rolled oats in your blender or food processor until a fine flour is formed)
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • Optional: pinch of salt
  • About 16-18 small squares of dark chocolate from about 1 – 1 1/2 bars (I cut them into smaller squares)
  • Optional: extra granulated sweetener for rolling.

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degree F. Prepare a cookie sheet with parchment paper or silpat.
  2. Combine the first 6 ingredients in a medium bowl. Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt in a second bowl. Mix wet into dry. Roll dough into 1 inch balls and roll into coconut sugar if desired, then place on prepared cookie sheet. Bake for about 8-10 minutes, just until the bottoms are slightly golden. They look underdone when you take them out and that’s ok, they will firm up as they cool. This ensures they will be soft and not too dry.
  3. Remove from oven, and while still hot, gently place a square of chocolate into the center of each one, using one hand to hold the sides of the cookie so it doesn’t become too cracked. Let them cool for a while before setting on a wire rack to cool completely. To transport, set them back on the cooled pan and place in the freezer until chocolate has hardened. Store in a covered container.
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