These Milk Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Shortbread Cookies are an easy slice and bake chocolate chip cookie and a to-die-for combination of peanut butter, chocolate chips, and shortbread!
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies are one of my most popular recipes
I thought it would be fun to try the recipe with milk chocolate for a slightly different flavor profile. Truth is, I’ll take any excuse to play with chocolate and peanut butter, the results are always delicious!
Shortbread is Scottish in origin
In its classic form it’s a super simple dough made by rubbing butter and sugar into flour. For all its humble farmhouse origins, shortbread has a deliciously addictive melt in your mouth texture that is unmatched in the baking world.
In fact the flavor of plain shortbread is wonderful because you actually taste the butter and flour themselves, and it’s a wonderful recipe to know because you almost always have the ingredients on hand to make up a batch.
Shortbread and shortbread cookies have a unique texture
You can roll out shortbread dough for cut out cookies, you can pat it into a pan or a cast iron skillet, or you can form the dough into a log to slice and bake. Certain kinds of shortbread dough can be pressed into intricate molds. Shortbread is unlike most cookies in that it contains no added liquids or eggs. It keeps its shape while baking, and it bakes at a low temperature so it doesn’t brown.
Shortbread literally melts in your mouth!
My original cookies were formulated to be slice and bake, but for these I went for a sleeker look. I chilled the dough in a disk, like pie dough, and then rolled it to about 1/3 inch thickness and cut it out with a cookie cutter. You can see that even the tiny fluted edges of my cookie cutter held their shape after baking.
Tips for working with shortbread recipes
Shortbread dough requires that you really work in the soft butter and sugar into the flour. The butter must be truly soft. Since there are no added liquids, the moisture of the butter is what holds the dough together. It will start out dry and crumbly, but eventually the butter, sugar and flour become one dough. It helps to get right in there with your hands to finish the process.
Keep in mind that any shortbread can always be patted into a pan and cooked that way. It helps to cut the shortbread into squares while it is still warm.
try some of my other shortbread recipes…
- Butter Pecan Shortbread
- Cranberry Orange Shortbread Cookies
- Cornish Clotted Cream Shortbread
- Lemon Sugar Shortbread
Milk Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Shortbread Cookies
- 2 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature, make sure it is completely soft
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter, yes, you can use chunky
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar, yes, you can use regular sugar
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cups milk chocolate chips, you can use mini chips if you like
- Set oven to 350F
- Cream the butter and peanut butter together until thoroughly combined. Beat in the vanilla.
- Sift the sugar, flour and salt together and then add to the butter mixture. Mix until the dough comes together and is no longer dry and crumbly. A stand mixer helps with this job.
- Add the chocolate chips in towards the end of mixing and distribute evenly.
- Turn the dough out onto a board and continue to work it with your hands until it comes together like a pie dough. Divide it in two equal parts, and shape them into flat disks. Wrap tightly in plastic and refrigerate for about an hour.
- Roll out the chilled dough on a lightly floured surface to your desired thickness. I rolled mine to about 1/4-1/3 inch.
- Bake on a parchment lined baking sheet for about 13-15 minutes. They will soft and white even when done, but will firm up as they cool.
- Let the cookies rest on the hot cookie sheet for a minute or two, and then transfer carefully to a cooling rack.
Questions and Reviews
Could you make these as a bar cookie, in a 9 x 13 pan? If so, how long would you bake them?
Can you replace butter with margarine?
I believe you can, but the texture and flavor will be a little bit different, so you’ll have to see if that’s acceptable for you.
Hi there! I’ve made this recipe three times in just as many weeks for various holidays events – a wonderful variation of the classic shortbread cookie! I had a question about how you got your cut-edges to come out so nice and cookies to hold their shape when baking. I came across this roll-out version from the original peanut butter recipe but realized it seemed the only difference was the recipe was doubled. I didn’t want to make that many cookies so I just used the original recipe and rolled it out before chilling for a few hours. I even chilled the dough overnight once I cut the shapes out. I didn’t get them back in the fridge very quick and the dough did warm up some in between chills. I wasn’t cutting any shapes with intricate points or details though. Mostly just squares and after baking, the edges got kinda wobbly and warped. Any tips? Thank you!
Not sure what might have happened Brittany, this recipe holds its shape pretty well. Is it possible you cut your dough thicker than I did here? That might account for the softer edges.
When you say sift the flour, sugar and salt together, does that mean using a sifter? For all three?
Yes, or you can whisk them together ~ the main point is to get them well combined.
Can you use almond flour in place of the all purpose flour in this recipe?
I’ve never tried, Sheila, sorry, so I can’t say. My guess is that they would be too fragile, but it might be worth a try. You could cook them as drop cookies rather than rolling them out.
Can you leave the peanut butter out? Just chocolate chip shortbread?
Yes, but then I would follow this recipe for Bittersweet Chocolate Chip Shortbread: https://theviewfromgreatisland.com/bittersweet-chocolate-chip-shortbread/ because leaving out the peanut butter will change the balance of fat to flour, etc. Hope you like them!
That is perfect and sounds yummy. I will give it a try!
I’ve got to try these with white chocolate chips, and maybe even butterscotch chips!
Sounds good to me!