Gluten-free Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich Cookies

I never had peanut butter before moving to the United States. It was not sold in Italy, and in all honesty, initially I thought it was like Nutella: sweet and high in calories. Growing up I had to keep an eye on my unhealthy choices, so Nutella wasn’t allowed, though it would certainly have been among my favorite ones. So, for the longest time I didn’t eat peanut butter, trying to avoid the extra calories. When I then learned that there was a natural version, I finally decided to taste it. And I loved it. I loved the mix of sweet and salty and the crunch of the peanuts.

In my country we don’t utilize many nut butters in their simpler forms, with no additives. So I was interested in learning more about its history. According to the National Peanut Board, the earliest reference to peanut butter can be traced back to the Ancient Incas and the Aztecs who ground roasted peanuts into a paste. However, modern peanut butter, and its process of production and the equipment used to make it, can be credited to at least three inventors. In 1884 Marcellus Gilmore Edson of Canada patented peanut paste, the finished product from milling roasted peanuts between two heated surfaces. In 1895 Dr. John Harvey Kellogg (the creator of Kellogg’s cereal) patented a process for creating peanut butter from raw peanuts. He marketed it as a nutritious protein substitute for people who could hardly chew solid food. In 1903, Dr. Ambrose Straub of St. Louis, Missouri patented a peanut-butter-making machine.

Now, happy to eat it with a banana or with a piece of gluten-free bread and a tablespoon of jelly, I reserve my peanut butter treats to a few scarce days in a month – because, yes, the calories are still insane, even if packed with protein. Though, knowing how much my American family enjoys the peanut butter and jelly combination, I searched for a recipe that would allow me to bring it to them in the form of a cookie. The inspiration came from Bake from Scratch’s Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich Cookies with creamy peanut butter mousse and grape jelly layered between two chewy peanut butter cookies.


Gluten-free Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich Cookies

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Recipe by Simona Gluten-free Course: RecipesDifficulty: Medium
Prep time




Cooking time




  • For the cookies
  • 113 g 113 Unsalted butter – 1/2 cup

  • 200 g 200 Granulated sugar, divided – 1 cup

  • 110 g 110 Light Brown sugar – 1/2 cup

  • 1 large 1 egg

  • 1 large 1 egg yolk

  • 192 g 192 Creamy peanut butter – 3/4 cup (I used JIF Natural Creamy Peanut Butter)

  • 1 1/2 tsps 1 1/2 Vanilla extract

  • 234 g 234 Simona’s Flour Mix – 1 1/2 cup

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 Baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 Baking soda

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 Salt

  • For the Peanut butter mousse
  • 113 g 113 Unsalted butter – 1/2 cup

  • 115 g 115 Cream cheese – half a package

  • 85 g 85 Creamy peanut butter – 1/3 cup (I used JIF Natural Creamy Peanut Butter)

  • 90 g 90 Confectioners’ sugar – 3/4 cup

  • 1 Tbsp 1 Heavy cream

  • To assemble
  • 107 g 107 Grape jelly – 1/3 cup


  • For the cookies
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter, ½ cup (100 grams) granulated sugar, and brown sugar at medium speed until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes, stopping to scrape sides of bowl.
  • Add egg and egg yolk, beating well. Add peanut butter and vanilla extract, beating until combined.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. With mixer on low speed, gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating just until combined.
  • Using a 1½-tablespoon spring-loaded scoop, scoop dough into mounds (about 28 grams each), and place on prepared pan. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Place remaining ½ cup (100 grams) granulated sugar in a small bowl. Roll each mound into a ball, and roll balls in sugar, coating completely. Place 2½ inches apart on prepared pans. Press tines of a fork into each ball, making a crosshatch design – honestly I didn’t do it, because I forgot.
  • Bake until light golden brown, 12 to 14 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking. Let cool on pans for 5 minutes. Remove from pans, and let cool completely on wire racks.
  • For the peanut butter mousse
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed until smooth. Beat in peanut butter. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar in two additions alternately with cream, beating until smooth. Use immediately.
  • To assemble
  • Place Peanut Butter Mousse in a piping bag fitted with a ½-inch round piping tip. Pipe Peanut Butter Mousse onto flat side of half of cookies.
  • Spoon about 1 teaspoon (7 grams) jelly onto flat side of remaining cookies. Sandwich together peanut butter cookies and jelly cookies.
  • Refrigerate until filling is set, about 30 minutes. Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.

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