recipes, Sweet Pastries, Winter

Short Crust Cookies With Peanut Butter

It’s hard to believe that it’s already December. I have the feeling that there are two kinds of people. The ones who stuff themselves with cookies during the whole holiday season and the others who wait until the 24th of December until they eat their first Christmas cookies. I belong to the first group without any doubt, which is why I already have a cookie recipe for you. With this recipe for short crust cookies with peanut butter filling you have the choice whether you want to prepare the dough sugar-free and a little lower in calories or the very classic way. I am a believer that cookies don’t have to be healthy during the holiday season. But if you prefer some diet-friendly, low-sugar or higher-fiber cookies, this recipe has you covered as well.

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short crust cookies with peanut butter filling

Healthy Short Crust Cookies – Is that even possible?

A short crust cookie dough consists of only four ingredients, flour, butter, powdered sugar and egg. Accordingly, it is not that easy to prepare it healthier. After all, butter and sugar are big and important components of a good short crust pastry. However, there are a few ways in which you can make short curst a little healthier if you want to.

The first thing you can change for a healthy short crust dough is the flour. You can replace half of the wheat or spelt flour with whole wheat flour. To prepare the short crust cookies sugar-free, you can use powdered erythritol instead of powdered sugar. You can buy this ready-made online. Alternatively, you can make it yourself by adding the erythritol to a blender. And of course you can go with a lower-calorie butter substitute.

Therefore, if you want to make your short crust cookies a little healthier, you can make a healthier shortcrust pastry  instead of the classic recipe. To do this, swap out half the flour for whole wheat flour, the powdered sugar for powdered erythritol, and the butter for a lower calorie substitute. As a result, you not only reduce the amount of calories a bit, but also make them sugar-free. Therefore, this recipe is also perfect for those who are on a low-sugar-diet.

Cookies with peanut butter – what you need for them

Like so many cookies, these short crust cookies with peanut butter are prepared in three steps. Step one is the dough, which must be refrigerated before baking. In step two, the cookies are cut out and baked. And in the last step you can decorate them. In the case of our short crust cookies, this means that one half is coated with nut butter, a second cookie is placed on top as a lid and next they are dipped in melted dark chocolate.

But, before we go through the steps in detail, here are the ingredients you will need for these short crust cookies with peanut butter.

  • 250 grams or 2 cups of all-purpose flour (for a healthy shortcrust pastry you can use 125 grams of wholewheat flour and 125 grams of all-purpose flour)
  • 125 grams or 9 tbsp of butter (to save some calories you can use lower calorie butter substitute)
  • 70 grams or 2/3 cups of powdered sugar (powdered erythritol can be used for a sugar-free and healthy shortbread. Just put the erythritol in a blender and blend it briefly)
  • 1 egg

For decorating

  • 100 grams or a bit less than ½ cup of roasted peanut butter (I’ll link my absolute favorite peanut butter here*) – alternatively you can use any other nut butter like cashew, hazelnut or pistachio nut butter
  • 150 grams or dark chocolate couverture (~ 5.3 oz)

Esay Short Crust Cookies for Christmas – this is how it’s done…

Okay, step one is obviously the dough. With a short crust cookie dough, it’s important that the butter is cool. But to make it easier to knead the dough, it’s best to cut it into small cubes. Well, to make the shortcrust pastry first put the flour and powdered sugar in your bowl. Next, add the egg and the butter cubes. Now you can knead the dough either by hand or with the kneading hooks of your kitchen machine. If you only have a hand mixer, you can knead the dough briefly with the dough hooks first before moving on to hand kneading.

how to make a short crust cookie dough

Once the dough is well combined, you can transfer it to a plate and flatten it a bit. This way it will chill faster in the fridge. Then, cover it with foil and let it chill for 20 to 30 minutes.

After that, comes step two. For this, you can first preheat your oven to 320°F or 160°C convection (350°F / 180°C bottom/upper heat) and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Next, roll out the dough thinly on a lightly floured work surface and then cut it out. All cookie cutters without holes in the center are suitable for this.  The cut-out cookies are then baked in the oven for about 10 minutes and then pulled onto a cooling rack to cool.

short crust cookies

Christmas Cookies With Peanut Butter

The next step is to decorate the cookies. For this, take exactly half of the cookies and put some peanut butter in the middle. Instead of peanut butter, you can also use any other nut or seed butter. Next, grab the second half and put it on top as a lid. Next melt 2/3 of the dark chocolate over a water bath or in the microwave while you chop the remaining 50 grams. Once the chocolate is melted, add the chopped chocolate and mix well until the entire chocolate is melted. Then you can dip the cookies with peanut butter halfway into the chocolate and place them on some parchment paper to dry. Once the chocolate is dry, you can transfer the cookies to a cookie tin.

short crust cookies dipped in chocolate

I hope you like this easy recipe for short crust cookies with peanut butter. As I mentioned earlier, I think it’s okay to indulge in some unhealthy snacks like delicious, sweet cookies during the Christmas season. However, for those who, for whatever reason, still prefer to bake a few healthier cookies, I hope that this recipe will give you some ideas for a healthier shortcrust pastry. And of course, you can use it for all kinds of short crust cookie recipes.

If you have any questions or suggestions feel free to drop them in the comments, or send me a massage via email or Instagram (@julesbalancedrecipes). Also, I’d appreciate your comment and rating on this recipe if you’ve tried it. It’s easy to do via the comments section below this post.

Have fun trying it out and bon appétit,

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short crust cookies for christmas
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short crust cookies

Easy Short Crust Cookies With Peanut Butter

Julia Schmitt
These cookies with peanut butter and dark chocolate can be prepared with a classic shortcrust pastry or a sugar-free and healthier version of it. Instead of peanut butter you can also use any other nut butter of your choice.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Resting Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr 20 mins
Course pastries
Cuisine german
Servings 50 cookies
Calories 72 kcal


  • optional: kitchen maschine or hand mixer with dough hook
  • Rolling Pin
  • cookie cutter
  • baking tray, parchment paper


short crust cookie dough

  • 250 g all-purpose flour ~ 2 cups (for a whole-grain short crust dough use 125 g (1 cup) whole-wheat flour and 125g (1 cup) all-purpose flour)
  • 125 g butter ~ 9 tbsp (save some calories by using a lower calorie butter substitute)
  • 70 g powdered sugar ~ ⅔ cups (powdered erythritol can be used for a sugar-free and healthy shortcrust pastry. Just put the erythritol in a blender and blend it briefly)
  • 1 egg

for decorating

  • 100 g roasted, natural peanut butter bit less than ½ cup (or any other nut butter of your choice)
  • 150 g dark chocolate couverture (~ 5.3 oz)


Prepare the shortcrust pastry

  • Place all ingredients in a mixing bowl or on a clean work surface and knead with a dough hook and/or your hands until you have a smooth, firm dough. (Those using half whole-wheat flour may need to add a teaspoon of milk if the dough is too dry). Flatten dough on a plate, cover with foil and chill for 30 minutes.

Bake the cookies

  • Preheat the oven to 320°F/ 160°C convection oven (350°F/ 180° top/ bottom heat), line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Roll out the dough, cut out cookies and place on the baking sheet. Knead remaining dough again and repeat process until the dough is used up.
  • Bake the cookies (each tray separately) for 10 minutes, transfer to a cooling rack and allow to cool.

Decorate Cookies

  • Set aside half of the cookies. Coat bottom of each cookie with peanut butter (or another nut or seed butters of choice). Place the remaining cookies on top as a lid.
  • Melt 2/3(100g) of the chocolate over a water bath or in the microwave. Meanwhile, chop the remaining chocolate into small pieces. Stir it into the melted chocolate until everything is melted. Dip the cookies with one side in the melted chocolate, place on a baking sheet to dry.
    When dry, store them in an airtight cookie jar.


nutritional values per cookie:
  • calories: 72 kcal
  • fat: 3.4 g
  • carbohydrates: 6.6 g
  • Protein: 1.4 g


Calories: 72kcal
Keyword christmas, christmas cookies, cookies recipe, holiday season, shortcrust pastry
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