Peanut Butter Surprise Cookies

Irresistable Peanut Butter Surprise Cookies

Yesterday was the first day of school. Yay!! My daughter woke up bright-eyed and eager to see her friends. My two boys, on the other hand, were groggy and reluctant to start the day. They could barely muster up enough motivation to roll out of bed without being told multiple times. Of course, they had no trouble waking before the crack of dawn all summer long. I guess lounging around in your pj’s and playing video games all day is more motivating than being confined to the unwelcoming concrete walls that make up the school.

The night before, all the kids were on edge and over-energized. For me, the day inched along, but as I remember from growing up, the day before school starts in the fall seems to go by in a single blink. Bedtime finally rolled around and the kids were giggly over the simplest of things. The final purge of summer silliness I suppose. It’s the pure happiness and anticipation, like this, that I miss about being a kid.

All that my middle child, Landon, could think about in the days leading up to the first day was when he would have the chance to go to lunch. I tried reassuring him that his homeroom teacher would let him know when his lunch would be, but nothing I said could ease Landon’s concern. What if they don’t tell me when my lunch is? What if I miss my lunch period because I can’t find the cafeteria? What if there is no time to eat? He went on and on. I finally had to stop with the reassuring and remind him that going 6 ½ hours without food would not kill him. Maybe I was a little harsh.

I thought that the kids deserved a sweet treat when they arrived home from their first day, so I made them one of their favorites – peanut butter surprise cookies. The outer layer is slightly crisp from the sugar coating, but easily gives way to a chewy, mildly peanut buttery cookie. My oldest views these cookies as simply a delivery system for melted Reese’s. I don’t blame him. After all, who could resist the gooey, melty, chocolaty, rich peanut buttery Reese’s in the center?

**For chewier cookies, I like to refrigerate my dough for at least an hour. This also makes the dough easier to roll.

**Be sure to chill the Reese cups before unwrapping them for easier paper removal.

Peanut Butter Surprise Cookies
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 38
From Everyday Food Issue #4 July/August 2003 pg. 109
  • ½ c creamy peanut butter
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 c light-brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 lg eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1½ c all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp fine salt
  • ⅓ c granulated sugar, for rolling dough
  • 38 mini Reese cups, chilled and unwrapped
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt, set aside.
  3. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the peanut butter and butter.
  4. Add brown sugar, beating until combined. Scrape down the bowl as necessary.
  5. Add the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla. Beat until combined.
  6. With the mixer on low, slowly add in the flour mixture until combined.
  7. Using a tablespoon sized cookie scoop, scoop and roll the dough into balls.
  8. Place rolled balls of dough into the granulated sugar, tossing to thoroughly coat.
  9. Place sugar-coated balls of dough onto a non-stick cookie sheet and bake for 7 minutes.
  10. Remove the cookie sheet from the oven and place one unwrapped peanut butter cup into the center of each cookie, pressing down slightly.
  11. Return the cookie sheet to the oven and bake for an additional 6 minutes.
  12. Allow to cool slightly before transferring to cooling rack to cool completely.


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