Peanut butter and chocolate are the perfect combination in these one-bowl, decadent, ultra-soft double chocolate peanut butter brownies!

I know that chocolate peanut butter brownies are far from a new thing (as in, I’m no pioneer with today’s recipe).

Personally, I’ve never had a brownie where the peanut butter is all wrapped up in the batter, like this version, instead of being swirled and dolloped and layered all over the brownie batter.

And I’m pretty sure this is what I’ve always wanted a peanut butter chocolate brownie to be. Deeply chocolate with a delightfully strong yet subtle presence of peanut butter.

Four brownies stacked on top of each other on a white plate.

It kind of sneaks up on you, that peanut butter factor, especially considering you aren’t looking at any pretty swirls of peanut butter before shoving a brownie in your face. But man, these brownies are amazing.

The peanut butter gives them a velvety, ultra-soft texture missing from traditional chewy brownies.

A MKC reader-slash-friend, Linda, sent me this recipe letting me know she won a bake-off with these divine double chocolate peanut butter brownies. I can attest that winning a contest with these babies is not out of the realm of possibility.

They are ridiculously yummy.

Top view of a brownie with a bite taken out stacked on top of another brownie.

I’ve made them several times over the last few weeks and even froze a double batch for our family reunion at the beginning of July.

All I can say is more than one extended family member ended up in tears when the brownies ran out. (Ok, so both those family members were under five years old, but still, I think a few of the 35-year olds were fighting back tears, too.)

And I feel like a broken record since I’ve said this many times over the last few weeks, but these brownies are dangerously delicious straight out of the freezer.

Just had to get that little tidbit of knowledge out of the way.

Three chocolate brownies stacked on top of each other on a white plate.

UPDATE: You can just skip over all the mumbo jumbo below about cocoa powder because Linda, who gave me the recipe, let me know that she’s always just used regular, unsweetened cocoa powder in these brownies and it works great! So there you go! 

Can we talk for just a sec about the cocoa powder in the recipe? You’ll notice that it calls for Dutch-process cocoa power.

Here’s an older post explaining the difference between Dutch-process cocoa powder and your every day natural, unsweetened cocoa powder. In short, Dutch-process cocoa powder is usually used in a recipe that has baking powder as a leavener, whereas natural, unsweetened cocoa powder (like Hershey’s) needs baking soda for leavening.

For recipes where no leavener is used (like this favorite brownie recipe or for puddings or chocolate sauces), Dutch-process OR natural, unsweetened cocoa can be used, depending on what flavor profile you are going for.

What does that mean for this recipe? I know some of you are wondering if you can you swap in natural cocoa powder for the Dutch-process?

I usually try to test that kind of thing out with recipes where I know it will be a big question, but even though I’ve made these several times, I didn’t try it because they are so fantastic just the way they are.

The deep, dark Dutch-process cocoa powder makes the flavor of the brownies mellow and rich and absolutely delicious.

Two chocolate brownies stacked on top of each other, with a bite taken out of the top one.

(UPDATE: Linda, who gave me the recipe says she’s only ever used natural, unsweetened cocoa powder. So never fear, it should work great!)

And if there’s ever been one recipe to give you that push to get some Dutch-process cocoa powder, it might be this one.

I’ve bought Dutch-process cocoa from many places over the years: Penzey’s, Amazon (the Droste brand), Winco (my local grocery store) bulk bins, Orson Gygi (in a 5 pound bag), and the Ghirardelli Majestic brand (also from Orson Gygi). I’ve been super happy with every one of those options. (The bulk bins and Orson Gygi’s large bags are by far the most inexpensive option.)

Phew! Enough talk about cocoa powder. Go make some brownies (preferably these delicious chocolate peanut butter brownies, of course)!

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Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownies

4.60 stars (75 ratings)


  • ¾ cup (170 g) salted butter, softened, (12 tablespoons)
  • ¾ cup (191 g) creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups (424 g) granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (43 g) Dutch-process or natural, unsweetened cocoa powder (see note)
  • 1 ¾ cups (249 g) all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 cups (340 g) semisweet chocolate chunk or chocolate chips


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9X13-inch aluminum/metal pan and set aside.
  • In a large bowl, whip the butter and peanut butter together with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy, 1-2 minutes. Add the sugar and mix well. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix until combined. Stir in the cocoa until the mixture is smooth and no dry streaks remain.
  • Add the flour, baking powder and salt. Stir once or twice (there will still be dry spots) and then add the chocolate chunks or chips. Stir until no dry streaks remain; the batter will be thick.
  • Spread the batter evenly in the pan.
  • Bake for 20-24 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs. Don’t overbake!
  • Let the brownies cool completely in the pan. Cut into squares and serve chilled or at room temperature. The baked and cooled brownies freeze well.


Cocoa: I’ve only ever used Dutch-processed cocoa powder in this recipe (the Ghirardelli Majestic brand – I’ve given suggestions for other brands up in the post), but Linda, who gave me the recipe says she uses natural, unsweetened cocoa all the time with great results (and she did win a bake-off after all!). Dutch-process cocoa will give the brownies a deeper, more mellow flavor – but it sounds like either will work!
Serving: 1 Brownie, Calories: 298kcal, Carbohydrates: 34g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 17g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 43mg, Sodium: 138mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 23g

Recipe Source: adapted slightly from a recipe sent to me by a sweet MKC reader, Linda T., who won first place in a bake-off with these babies!