No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

This is a week of recipes where the finished dish doesn’t look good, but tastes really good, so I lead with a picture of something else. Yesterday it was Kachin Chicken Curry with a picture of a mortar and pestle, today it’s No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies from Baked Explorations with an image of peanut butter in a measuring cup. You’ll understand why when we get to the end.

First things first: why No-Bake? Why now?

Well, deep in the trenches of my apartment hunt (which is ending today, thank God, with a lease-signing in Atwater Village…more soon) I craved a cookie but didn’t want to go through the rigamarole of dirtying my stand mixer, etc. I thumbed through the new Baked book and came across this cookie recipe which goes straight from pot to cookie sheet to refrigerator to your mouth.


It’s really a rather genius idea. You put a little milk, some cocoa powder, sugar and butter in a pot and turn up the heat. When it comes to a boil, you let it cook for 90 seconds and then you add peanut butter, oats and vanilla.


That’s pretty much it. You scoop the “dough” on to a cookie sheet with an ice cream scoop, flatten the cookies a bit and refrigerate until you’re ready to eat. Here’s what they look like at the end.


It’s not that they’re gross-looking, per se, it’s just that they look unfinished. Trust me, though: they’re done. And they taste really good, pretty much what you’d expect chocolate, peanut butter, and oats to taste like all scrunched together. And in terms of an easy thing to make to satisfy a cookie craving with very little clean-up, this is the recipe for you. It won’t be on the cover of a food magazine any time soon, but it’ll be in your mouth and you’ll be happy about that fact, I guarantee it.

Recipe: No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

Summary: From Baked Explorations, makes 18 small cookies or 6 very large ones.


  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/8 cup dark unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes, softened
  • 1/2 cup chunky peanut butter (smooth works fine too)
  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • A pinch of salt (my addition, but worthwhile)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a heavy saucepan over medium heat, stir together the milk, sugar, cocoa powder, and butter until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved. Bring the mixture to a boil, stop stirring and boil for a full 90 seconds. Remove the pan from the heat and add the peanut butter, oats, salt and vanilla. Stir until the mixture is combined.
  3. Use a small ice cream scoop with a release mechanism or a tablespoon to drop the no-bake cookies onto the baking sheet (leave some room around them; they will spread). Let the cookies cool, then refrigerate them for at least 1 hour. They can be eaten directly from the refrigerator or at room temp.

Preparation time: 20 minute(s)

Cooking time: 5 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 8

15 thoughts on “No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies”

  1. Lorinda Morrow Jarvis

    Question: Splenda blend work or no? (For lazy people with sweettooths who are type II types.

    1. Adam Amateur Gourmet

      Sure, it’s worth a go. I’d try it using less. You can taste the raw batter and add more if necessary; they don’t get cooked, so it won’t change flavors later on.

  2. My favorite childhood cookie! We are it straight from the bowl while warm. I now make them with coconut oil, honey, dried fruit and natural p butter for a healthy snack.

  3. I make these all the time. Even at Christmas with red & green M&M’s on top. They are not the prettiest cookie ,but yummy. Am anxiously awaiting to see pics of your new place. We are also in process of moving out of home with mint condition red and stainless counter tops from 1952 and the original mint condition Geneva cupboards that we own to a 1983 apartment kitchen. We look forward to less work with upkeep – but will miss cooking,canning and baking in my retro kitchen. July will bring big changes – good luck with yours !

  4. Pumped to try these out! I love no-bakes and these look different than mine. I typically use Hershey’s special dark cocoa powder to make them even more rich!

  5. Karen@Mignardise

    Love these. You can find them on the counter of almost any convenience store in Maine, but I’d rather make them myself, especially when it’s so easy.

  6. Read this and, posthaste, whipped up a batch for myself. How did you know that today, this first summer day of 2013, we’d need something chocolatey and a little salty to munch that doesn’t cause the house to roast from the oven? Perfect timing. I’ve had them before but never made them. Worth the (easy) effort.

    1. Adam Amateur Gourmet

      Ya, I mean, they’re cookies… just use the butter. It’s not like peanut butter and sugar and chocolate are particularly healthy anyway.

  7. Enric Martinez

    OMG! It deserves the Nobel Price!
    I need to try it right now… well, it’s 0:55 here in Holland, thus leaving ot for tomorrow. Problem is that I got the munchies :P

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