Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies (5 Ingredients, Gluten-Free)

by Dorothy Reinhold on June 2, 2020

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Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies: Improbable as it seems, you can make an extremely delicious peanut butter cookie without any flour. With 5 simple ingredients, a gluten-free snack or dessert is only 20 minutes away.

Rediscovering an old recipe is like running into a long-lost friend, isn’t it? You’re so happy to meet up unexpectedly, and you wonder why you let the friendship lapse.

It was that way when I ran across this old recipe for a flourless peanut butter cookie. Some 30 years ago, back in the early ‘90s when I first heard about it, I made it as a lark, thinking a cookie without flour couldn’t possibly work as well or taste as good as one with.

Wrong and wrong. I recall making them numerous times back then, but of course, there are lots of recipes to try, and so little time, so I kept moving on to the next new thing.

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies with dots of dough on top, and sugarSo a decade ago when I ran across this recipe from my past, and immediately turned on the oven to make a batch, it struck me that in today’s world, this isn’t just a whimsical recipe, but one that might delight those who can’t eat flour, or those following a gluten-free diet.

It also might appeal to people who just plain don’t have any flour in the house, due to supply-line shortages or they simply ran out.

Today, the important factor in this recipe is what is missing from it.

How to make Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

It’s easy!

Orange-handled cookie scoop in the bowl with cookie doughStir the ingredients up in a mixing bowl. You can do this by hand, or very briefly with an electric mixer, your choice.

Cookies on parchment paper with an orange-handled cookie scoopLine a cookie sheet or baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone liner, for easy cleanup. Portion the dough out using a cookie scoop. I like to make them on the smallish side.

Woman's hand pressing fork tines into the top of peanut butter cookiesFlatten the cookies by pressing the top with the tines of a fork. This flattens and gives them a pattern. A crosshatch from fork tines is traditional, and signals to people that these are, in fact, peanut butter cookies!

Black spatula pressing down on cookies to make a patternYou could also use other kitchen implements to make patterns on the top. For example, a perforated spatula worked well for me!

The top of this Flourless Peanut Butter Cookie looks like a LegoDon’t they kind of look like the tops of Lego blocks?

Hand sprinkling sugar on top of peanut butter cookiesSprinkle the tops with coarse sugar crystals before baking.

Coarse sugar crystals decorates the top of a peanut butter cookieVoila…I present 5-Ingredient Gluten-Free Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies!

Whatever you call them, put a batch in the oven now. I challenge you to detect the missing flour.

5-ingredient Gluten-Free Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies on parchment paper

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies (5 Ingredients, Gluten-Free)

Prep Time: 8 minutes

Cook Time: 11 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 24-30 cookies

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies (5 Ingredients, Gluten-Free)

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies: Improbable as it seems, you can make an extremely delicious peanut butter cookie without any flour. With 5 simple ingredients, a gluten-free dessert is only 20 minutes away.


  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter (Jif, Skippy or your favorite commercial brand work fine)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • Garnish: coarse sugar crystals (I often use raw washed sugar crystals)


  1. Heat oven to 350F degrees. Place parchment paper or a silicone baking mat on a baking sheet and set sheet aside.
  2. Using electric mixer, blend all ingredients (except sugar crystals for garnish) together for 1 minute or so.
  3. Use a cookie scoop or spoon to portion tablespoon-sized balls of dough, and place them on parchment-lined baking sheet. You could roll these into balls if you like, but it is not necessary if you want to skip that step. Press top of each cookie with fork tines twice crosswise to form a classic crosshatch pattern. Or you can use another kitchen tool to create a different pattern on top. The cookies won't spread too much.
  4. Sprinkle tops of unbaked cookies with coarse sugar crystals or additional granulated sugar if desired. (Yes, you should desire this.)
  5. Bake for 11 minutes. Allow cookies to cool on baking pan at least 5 minutes (they are fragile until cooled). Remove to a rack and cool completely.
  6. Store in an airtight container.
  7. Makes about 30 cookies about 2 1/2 inches in diameter each.
  9. --Mix some mini chocolate chips into the dough before baking.
  10. --Sprinkle colored sprinkles or jimmies on top before baking, instead of the coarse sugar.
  11. --Melt some chocolate and once the cookies have cooled, dip an edge of the cookies (like 1/3 of the cookie) into the chocolate, and allow to cool on a rack.


Recipe source: Dorothy Reinhold | Shockingly Delicious


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Cookies on a wire cooling rack

This recipe was originally published April 10, 2012 and has been refreshed and republished today.

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