Looking for Valentine’s Day ideas, how about chocolate in the form of a gigantic cookie? These giant peanut butter chip cookies are similar to the ones served at Levain Bakery in New York City.
Like the other Levain copycats, these are big, fat, and have fudgy soft centers. The chocolate peanut butter chip cookies I tried in New York were very dark, and I’ve found this recipe to be most similar when made with a dark Dutch processed cocoa powder. The ones in the picture above were made with natural style, while the almost black cookies in the photo below were made with Hershey’s Dark.
Updated Picture (Made with Hershey’s Dark Cocoa Powder)
The other nice thing about this recipe is that it’s perfect for making ahead. Bake the cookies, wrap tightly and freeze. The texture improves!
Update: I’ve revised the recipe a bit and have a new photo. For cookies like the one in the photos above, use the recipe as-is. For cookies like the ones in the photo below, use the ingredients listed in the notes section, but follow the same technique. The second version calls for a mixture of cake & all-purpose flour, less cocoa powder and baking soda instead of baking powder. The second version spreads more, but has a slightly fudgier, heavier, texture. You can make the second version with dark cocoa (Hershey’s Dark) or natural style cocoa. The cookies made with natural style cocoa will be a lighter shade of brown.
- 8 ounces (2 sticks) cold, unsalted European style butter, chopped
- 1 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons (10 ounces) granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 1/4 cups (10.1 ounces) bread flour (can experiment with different flour blends)
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt, Morton
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 2/3 cups (2 ounces) Hershey’s Dark Dutch processed cocoa powder
- 1 cup extra dark chocolate chips
- 1 cup Reese's peanut butter chips
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat the cold butter until it is creamy. Add the sugar and continue to beat until blended. Gradually add the eggs and vanilla and continue beating with the paddle on medium until mixed, scraping sides of bowl once or twice. The coolness from the eggs should make the butter seize up again so the creamy mixture will appear lumpy.
- Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, mix the flour, salt, and baking powder. Mix in the cocoa. With the mixer on medium-low (or by hand with a heavy duty rubber scraper), gradually add the flour mixture stirring just until mixed. Stir in the chocolate chips peanut butter chips.
- Empty the batter onto a large flat surface and make sure all the ingredients are evenly incorporated. Instead of lumping it all together, keep it kind of loose. Divide into 12 raggedy pieces. The dough should be cold before you even put it in the refrigerator, but chilling the dough will help make the cookies taller. Chill or freeze dough until ready to use.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Bake on center rack for 18 minutes at 375. If using a convection oven, preheat to 350 F convection and bake for about 18 minutes at 350F convection. Let cool for about 5 minutes on the cookie sheet, then remove and finish cooling on a rack.
230 grams cold, European style butter (regular unsalted works, too)
1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
1 cup (200 grams) light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup cake flour (114 grams)
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (190 grams)
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/2 cup (40 grams) Hershey’s Dark Dutch processed cocoa powder (natural okay)
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup extra dark chocolate chips
1 cup Reese's peanut butter chips
Use same technique as above, but with this version you must chill the shaped dough balls for several hours to curb the spreading. Also, rather than make 12 balls of dough, make 8. Adapted from the chocolate chip version but with cocoa powder and more brown sugar.