Miso Peanut Butter Cookies With Sesame & Chocolate

April 24, 2021
9 Ratings
Photo by Julia Gartland. Prop Stylist: Sophie Pappas. Food Stylist: Anna Billingskog.
  • Prep time 20 minutes
  • Cook time 14 minutes
  • makes about 35 cookies
Author Notes

These cookies have a lot going on, and that’s a good thing. Nutty sesame seeds, dark chocolate chips, crunchy peanut butter, and umami-rich miso: They’re the ultimate cookie squad.

I posted them on Twitter when I first began messing with the recipe, and the likes flooded in: “A perfect cookie!!!!!!” “I need a few dozen of these 😍.” “Omg.” I knew I had to share the recipe.

The combination of peanut butter and miso lends a subtle savoriness, lifted up by the melty pools of dark chocolate. What’s more? The chewiness of these cookies really stands out. Melted butter and brown sugar give each bite a tender texture, balanced out by a crisp, crackly edge.

Black sesame seeds blanket the cookies, giving them an eye-catching, extra-crunchy crust. But if you’re short on sesame seeds, you can halve the called-for quantity, then half-dip each dough ball instead of fully rolling. White sesame seeds also work just fine, but won’t create the same beautiful contrast.

Easily swap dark for milk or semisweet chips if you prefer. Crunchy peanut butter adds texture, but creamy will work just as well. Avoid unsweetened (aka natural) peanut butter—the separated oil will change the consistency. As for miso, there are many kinds, but white miso is the least fermented, complementing the nutty flavors without overpowering them.

To store the cookies, seal them in an airtight container at room temperature, and they will stay fresh for up to four days. But I doubt you’ll have many leftover once you’ve had them fresh from the oven. —Kiera Wright-Ruiz

What You'll Need
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup white miso
  • 1/3 cup sweetened crunchy peanut butter
  • 1 large egg, at room-temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups dark chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup black sesame seeds
  1. Place a rack in the middle of oven and heat to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside.
  3. Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment or a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat together the brown sugar, granulated sugar, and melted butter at medium speed until the mixture falls in shiny ribbons when you stop and lift up the beaters, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the miso and peanut butter and continue to mix on medium until combined, about 1 minute. Add the egg and vanilla, and mix on medium until just incorporated.
  5. Add half of the flour mixture and mix on low until just combined. Add the remaining flour and mix on low until incorporated, being sure not to overmix.
  6. Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the chocolate chips. Mix by hand until combined.
  7. Place the sesame seeds in a small, shallow bowl. Scoop the cookies by rounded tablespoons (each one should be around the size of a ping pong ball). Roll between your hands until smooth. Roll the cookie dough balls in the sesame seeds to coat all sides. Place the balls on parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing 2 to 3 inches apart.
  8. Bake the cookies until edges are lightly golden brown and surface cracks appear on the tops, 12 to 14 minutes. Let them cool on baking sheets for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Hannah Wilson
    Hannah Wilson
  • Sarah MacDonald
    Sarah MacDonald
  • bhilz
  • huckabiz

17 Reviews

huckabiz June 12, 2023
My five cents on this recipe. Based on other comments I decided not to melt the butter but use a room temperature one instead. The butter base got really fluffy. I also added an additional tablespoon of both miso and peanut butter and a cup of chocolate chips. In the end it appeared to be too soft to roll a ball so I just scooped out the cookies and then sprinkled with some sesame. The result though was amazing and a bit surprising - I was sure it would be a chip cookie with an Asian twist but they turned out to be exact same consistency and flavor to the cookies I buy weekly in the nearby Shanghai bakery (minus chocolate chips- they don’t do it here :)
anne_thompson22 January 22, 2023
These cookies are delicious! A nice spin on the classic PB chocolate chip. I used natural, unsweetened crunchy PB (Field Day Brand), and I had no issue with consistency. Super fluffy and nice. I also did only 1/2 cup granulated sugar and 1 cup chocolate chips, and I thought the sweetness/chocolate ratio was perfect.
liliana November 10, 2022
Used only 1/2 cup white sugar and still way too sweet.
Next time will try with 1/4 cup or none.
Otherwise very interesting texture.
Becky M. August 31, 2022
How can you make these fluffier based on all the reviews?
GreenGoddess March 13, 2022
I love the ingredients and the idea behind these cookies. The problem for me was that, the 2 times that I have made these, they have come out fairly dry in my opinion. The first time I made them, I followed the recipe but used half buckwheat flour with a gluten free flour because I wanted to try a different type of flour, I thought they were dry because of the buckwheat. This time I used a gluten free flour and a little bit more butter, but the first batch was dry, with the remaining mix I used another egg and a little milk, which in my opinion made it better. I'm still going to try other adjustments because I like the peanut butter and miso in this recipe.
Liana May 15, 2021
Made these today and even after chiling in the fridge (before and after forming), they spread out A LOT. I'm thinking about making them with the creaming method instead of melted butter and/or using more flour. As I made them I kept wondering if I ought to add more flour but decided to try it once sticking to the recipe fairly closely. I liked the taste with the miso (I used dark, so it was a bit more burnt and umami and the peanut butter was an accent but not like peanut butter cookies). But it was way crunchy rather than soft in the center as the cookies were just flat. I used a combo of black sesame with some white mixed in, and it was a nice effect.
Jennifer J. March 24, 2021
I beat the butter and sugar together for ages but never got it to ribbon. I also used Teddy peanut butter which isn’t sweetened and the cookies still turned out yummy. I made one tray without black sesame seeds and preferred those- there’s enough going with these cookies without the extra flourish.
SnoopyKitchen March 3, 2021
These were delicious. The miso kept the cookies so soft and added a. I’ve depth and saltiness. I read about others having issues with them spreading so I was careful not to overmix and popped in the freezer for 5 min before baking.
FoodLife February 21, 2021
Received rave reviews after making these cookies. Divided the batch in half, one without chocolate chips for those who cannot indulge (me) and one with chips for those who can (jealous). I can only speak for the naked ones and I found the flavor fabulous and a bit addictive. I will be making these again.
I do agree with a previous review, didn’t know what a ribbon of butter meant so I mixed until it made sense for cookie dough. I also chilled the dough before baking.
Sara February 19, 2021
Disappointing — mine came out flat and not at all puffy and cute looking like the picture. I don’t know how you get just the melted butter and sugar to turn “ribbony” — that seems like it might be an error in the recipe? I’m a pretty experienced baker and have never seen this technique before, and it never happened in my mixer (just wet sand texture). Maybe would try again and just cream room temp butter as one would usually do with cookies...
bhilz March 1, 2021
The "ribbon stage" is something I see more when talking about whipping eggs with sugar and fat for a cake batter, but basically talks about a specific thickness/viscosity where the batter coming off the whisk is thick enough to leave an impression that looks like a ribbon. There are some helpful youtube videos that demonstrate this, if you want to check them out!
Hannah W. February 18, 2021
Couldn't taste the miso, barely the peanut butter and way too many chocolate chips! Was pretty disappointed honestly... Just not special or different enough :(
Laura J. February 14, 2021
I accidentally screwed up making these by mixing in 1/2 cup each of miso paste and peanut butter instead of the called for 1/3 cup. The first batch spread a little so I mixed in 4 tablespoons of flour in the remaining batter. Well, I'm not sure what the texture and taste would be if I'd done it correctly, but these taste fabulous! A nice Valentine's present for my husband who loves sesame seeds!
ABP February 14, 2021
These are FANTASTIC! We used toasted sesame seeds rather than black, and natural creamy peanut butter bc that's what we had on hand - and they still came out great! We also made some without chocolate chips for my one chocolate-averse kid and they're excellent too. Outstanding all around! Thank you!
Sarah M. February 13, 2021
Due to allergies I made these with gluten-free flour, a vegan egg substitute, and non-dairy butter. I also added a teaspoon of xantham gum. These cookies were fabulous!!! I will be making them often!!
Sarah M. February 13, 2021
I have a bunch of allergies so I used gluten-free flour, a vegan egg substitute, and non-dairy butter and I added a teaspoon of xantham gum. These cookies were amazing!!!! My family gobbled them up and we’ll be making them regularly!
leighanne February 12, 2021
I just made these! Little bit of a miso smell and aftertaste (not in a bad way, you just know it’s there) but great chewy texture with a nice firm bite on the edges. I’m into them.