Lower-Fat Peanut Butter Banana Cookies

by on December 23, 2008
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Lower-Fat Peanut Butter Banana CookiesEvery year around the holidays, I like to post a recipe (or two) that’s a little higher in fat than my normal fare. Last year it was Double Layer Pumpkin Cheesecake and the year before it was Eggnog Cheesecake.

This year I’m departing from the cheesecake theme to bring you a treat that’s higher in fat than most of my desserts yet still contains no processed oils or margarine. Peanut butter provides the flavor in these cookies, but it also provides the fat that makes their texture much more like “regular” cookies than low-fat ones. Mashed banana substitutes for margarine and imparts a distinctive flavor–and natural sweetness–of its own. The result is a cookie that’s slightly crisp on the outside, moist and tender on the inside. Throw in the optional chocolate chips and you have a healthier treat that’s good enough to serve at your next holiday party; don’t mention they’re low-fat, and no one will guess!

E loved these cookies, both with and without chocolate chips, and gave them 5 out of 5 crumbs on her new rating scale. They’re especially delicious served with soy nog or Pumpkin Spice Silk.

Lower-Fat Peanut Butter Banana Cookies

Lower-Fat Peanut Butter Banana Cookies

(printer-friendly version)

One of the great things about this recipe is that you probably have all the ingredients in your pantry. Use chunky peanut butter if you like pieces of peanut in your cookies. (I do!)


  • 1/2 cup natural peanut butter, chunky or smooth
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup mashed banana
  • 1 cup unbleached flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/4 cup non-dairy chocolate chips (optional)


Preheat oven to 375. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat.
Lower-Fat Peanut Butter Banana Cookies
Cream together the peanut butter and sugars. Add the mashed banana and mix until creamy.

In a separate bowl, combine the flours, baking powder, and salt. Add the flour mixture to the peanut butter a little at a time until totally absorbed. Add the chocolate chips, if desired, and mix until well-blended, but do not over-mix.

Drop by rounded tablespoons onto prepared pans, about 2 inches apart. Flatten with a fork dipped in water. (These cookies will not spread as they cook, so the shape they’re in when they come out of the oven will be about the same as when they went in.) Bake for about 10 minutes, until bottoms are golden brown. Remove and let cool before serving.

Makes 20 cookies.

Preparation time: 15 minute(s) | Cooking time: 10 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 20

Each without chocolate chips contains: 102 Calories (kcal); 3g Total Fat; (27% calories from fat); 3g Protein; 17g Carbohydrate; 0mg Cholesterol; 63mg Sodium; 1g Fiber.Weight Watchers 2 Points.

With chocolate chips: 116 Calories (kcal); 4g Total Fat; (30% calories from fat); 3g Protein; 19g Carbohydrate; 0mg Cholesterol; 64mg Sodium; 1g Fiber. Weight Watchers 2 Points.

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{ 44 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Anonymous November 13, 2009 at 10:11 am

Hi Susan
I will be making these in the evening. I have 2 medium size ripe bananas. Will those be sufficient to make 3/4 cup mashed bananas?

Thanks as always


2 SusanV November 13, 2009 at 10:13 am

I think two bananas will be plenty, but just in case, measure them first. Then if there's not enough, reduce the flour just a little.


3 Anonymous November 17, 2009 at 11:16 am

Hi Susan

2 Bananas worked fine. As someone commented earlier, it would be really easy if we have the mixer like you have shown in the picture. My fiance does not like peanut butter but he too loved these cookies.


4 Gloria December 10, 2009 at 10:43 pm

I just made those since my roommate got black bananas around. They are pretty good but very cakey not at all cookies like. I can't really taste the pb but my roommate can.


5 Anonymous December 12, 2009 at 4:05 am

Good Afternoon!!! blog.fatfreevegan.com is one of the best resourceful websites of its kind. I take advantage of reading it every day. I will be back.


6 Amber January 18, 2010 at 4:21 am

These were great! I switched the amounts of the banana and peanut butter. I also used 1/4C honey in place of 1/4C white sugar. All of this made the cookies chewier (and the banana/peanut butter flavor was more balanced). I recommend reserving a couple tablespoons of the white sugar and sprinkling it on top of the cookies with some cinnamon before putting them in the oven. For chewier cookies, follow the substitutions above, chill the dough in the fridge for 10 minutes, and only bake for 5-8 minutes. I also added a 2-3T each of almond milk and oil.


7 Wendy February 4, 2010 at 5:20 pm

Great recipe! I had to add about 2 T oil, but that was probably due to my 2 year old measuring the flour! And too many chocolate chips made their way in. But it made great cookies! Thanks!


8 Hema February 6, 2010 at 2:45 am

Thanks for the wonderful recipe. Your blog has lot of interesting recipes.


9 Emma the Vegan March 8, 2010 at 4:58 pm

I just finished making them, and they are some of the most delicious cookies I have had ever -vegan OR not vegan! Thanks so much!


10 Laura Nichols August 16, 2010 at 12:36 pm

I made these cookies yesterday. They turned out great. I make a lot of your recipes. My Husband and I turned vegan about 2 yrs ago. your website has been a life saver. Thanks


11 Christina September 17, 2010 at 10:35 am

Just made these cookies this morning. They are definately cake-like in nature, but are quite delightful nonetheless. I love the banana flavor but felt that the recipe was lacking something so I sprinkled the cookies with a pinch of sea salt and I found that added a new complexity to the overall flavor. Next time I think instead of using chocolate chips I will add salted pecans instead.


12 AmyLu September 29, 2010 at 10:55 am

Love your site! Question: Any ideas on how I could make this recipe gluten-free? Would almond flour work at all?


13 SusanV September 29, 2010 at 10:58 am

Amy, I’m going to refer you to the Gluten-Free Goddess’s cookie recipes at http://glutenfreegoddess.blogspot.com/2009/09/gluten-free-cookie-recipes.html because I haven’t made gluten-free cookies. I hope you’ll find an answer to your question there.


14 Dani @ Body By Nature September 29, 2010 at 12:08 pm

OH this looks amazing! I just bought dark chocolate peanut butter, I think it will work amazing!


15 Ashley September 29, 2010 at 6:36 pm

I am making these cookies right now and the smell delicious!! I love soft cake-y cookies!! I love your website and use/adapt recipes from it often!! Thanks!


16 Katie @ Live for the Long Run November 23, 2010 at 5:28 pm

I made these cookies today! My first vegan attempt at baking! I followed the directions exactly, making the first half without the chips and the second half with them. I had to let them cook a little longer (~13 – 14 minutes) for them to become golden on the bottom. They were delicious! Even my parents (who make a point to hate my vegetarian/vegan cooking) liked them!


17 Meredith December 24, 2010 at 9:14 am

I just finished making these as a healthier treat for my family to snack on over the next few days, and they are delicious! I didn’t have any chocolate chips left, so I left them out but they’re still great. Very good texture, I wouldn’t guess they’re lower fat.


18 Meredith December 25, 2010 at 9:44 am

The only problem is how many I’ve eaten in the last two days :).


19 jamileena March 26, 2011 at 7:49 pm

Awesome cookies!! I didn’t have brown sugar, so I used some molassas and less sugar than called for, also didnt have the other flour, just used all unbleached wheat. I agree with a previous poster, they needed a pinch of finishing salt. I made them with chocolate chips and the last bit of the batch that didn’t fit on one cookie sheet got fresh cooked, chopped bacon bits in them! Yum!! I know it adds fat and calories, but it was only a 1/2 a slice of bacon crumbled into about 8 or 9 cookies. Again, YUM!


20 jamileena March 27, 2011 at 4:31 pm

Whoops! Don’t mean to offend anyone with my bacon addition. I did not realize this was a vegan *website*! My apologies.

Still, a darn good base recipe. Im going to try adding some nutella in place of some of the pb & add some cocoa for that chocolate fix my husband craves.


21 Hilary April 1, 2011 at 10:12 am

I am OBSESSED with these cookies and your blog! I have made these cookies twice this week! Once with overripe bananas, once with almost unripe ones, both times with whole wheat flour (ok, it’s Indian whole wheat flour, called “atta” if anyone’s interested) and only raw sugar and both times they’ve been fantastic!!

To anyone wondering, these make your house smell delicious, if you cheat a little you can make them all in one bowl with one spoon, and I think mine were even better fresh from the fridge the next day. That’s as long as they’ve lasted 🙂

(I am an American living in India and not exactly a vegan by choice. After a lot of sick days, I’ve figured out that the meat and dairy is the biggest culprit in making me ill here. Your blog has really helped me figure out what I can cook that tastes like home with ingredients that keep me healthy. Thanks!)


22 Chelsey April 6, 2011 at 8:12 pm

Oh.my.god. Just made these cookies. Amazing. Thank you!


23 Sheri Williams August 9, 2011 at 5:17 pm

I just made them on an urge.They turned out great with only 7 minutes in my oven.I used all brown sugar and may cut the sugar next time as the bannanas added so much sweetness.Awesome recipe.Thank you.


24 Sadie November 7, 2011 at 5:57 am

These sound really good but I don’t have any brown sugar; what could I use instead?


25 Dee December 21, 2011 at 9:09 am

Could Peanut Butter powder somehow be substituted?


26 Susan Voisin December 21, 2011 at 9:12 am

I’ve never worked with peanut butter powder. It could work, but you’d have to replace the moisture with something–apple sauce or more mashed banana, maybe.


27 Melissa December 21, 2011 at 12:29 pm

My four year old enjoyed making these with me (added bonus – as they are vegan, there was no raw egg, and she could lick the spoon!) They are wonderful, yummy cookies. I agree that if your bananas are really ripe, you probably could lessen the amount of sugar in them as they are quite sweet. All in all, we will be making these often. Thank you for sharing!


28 Marie March 5, 2012 at 7:56 pm

I made those and they were a hit! I changed it a bit (not on purpose ): more peanut butter, less banana (as one reviewer suggested I switched the amount of banana and peanut butter). About 1 1/4 cup of flour (half white half whole wheat pastry). Just cane sugar. The baking time was about 20 min… they came out moist and chewy, exactly as I wanted them!


29 Casey B May 3, 2012 at 8:56 pm

These are incredible! I’ve made three batches in two weeks for different occasions and have had the highest compliments from non-vegans who have eaten them (I always find that the most impressive as they seem to doubt anything with the word ‘vegan’ associated with it!) Thank you!!


30 AVBear May 29, 2012 at 8:28 am

I have made these cookies twice now with great results both times. Thanks Susan!
The first time I followed the recipe exactly (well, with the addition of a bit of vanilla), and the second time with a few modifications (which work really well if you aren’t following as low-fat a diet as most of Susan’s recipes):
– I used the 3/4 c peanut butter mentioned by others, and because I felt they were too “banana-ey” last time,
– I subbed unsweetened apple sauce (1/2 cup) this time. The dough seemed a bit dry so
– I added a few tablespoons of soy milk at the end too, to make it more manageable.
All in all a great big hit. Thanks for the yummy yummy recipe! I love your website and draw inspiration from it almost daily! 🙂 Thank you Susan!


31 admattai July 7, 2012 at 2:12 pm

these are awesome! will make again soon. thank you for posting such great recipes!


32 Tamara November 7, 2012 at 12:18 pm

These are great!! I will definitely be making these again. I altered the recipe a little. Instead of 1/2 cup of sugar, I used 1/2 cup applesauce. And instead of 1/4 cup brown sugar, I used 1/4 cup maple surup. Instead of chocolate chips I cut up dates to the size of chocolate chips, and I also threw in 1/4 cup chopped pecans. I wanted my cookies not too sweet, and they were perfect this way!! I loved them. Perfect with oat milk!! I vote this 10 out of 10 crumbs : )


33 Toni January 27, 2013 at 9:56 am

Do you think this would work with almond butter and coconut flour?


34 Susan Voisin January 27, 2013 at 9:59 am

I haven’t tried it, but I don’t see why not.


35 Jessica February 9, 2013 at 4:45 pm

Susan, these were really good! Just made a batch for the evening. I definately needed to bake for 13 minutes though, on my PC stoneware.


36 Holly R February 15, 2013 at 11:41 pm

Great recipe! just made them and they are yummy! you can rally taste the banana and peanut butter 😉 thanks !


37 Carey March 4, 2013 at 12:31 pm

Hi Susan,

Wanted to make these this week… but I only have wheat flour… will that work or do I need the unbleached flour and pastry flour?


38 Susan Voisin March 4, 2013 at 12:56 pm

They will be heavier with regular whole wheat flour, but they should still be edible. Hope you enjoy them!


39 Aunty Batty Betty May 5, 2013 at 4:22 am

Instead of sugar (I’m trying t cut sugar out) can a date paste be used instead?


40 Susan Voisin May 5, 2013 at 8:52 am

I’m sure it’s possible, but you’ll have to experiment with how much of it and the other ingredients to use to get the right moisture balance because I haven’t tried it.


41 Art Scott June 18, 2013 at 4:13 pm

These are delicious, thank you 🙂


42 Esther J August 8, 2013 at 1:06 pm

I made these this morning following the recipe, except for the chocolate chips and (as usual with your recipes) they turned out wonderful! Later, as I rummaged through the cupboards I found I HAD chocolate chips all along. Drat! That would’ve knocked them out the park.

Oh well, I suppose there’s always next time.

Thanks, Susan!


43 Kathryn December 13, 2016 at 1:56 pm

Absolutely delicious. I adjusted this recipe for Christmas as follows; Omitted the chocolate chips, used reduced fat peanut butter (health reasons), increased the a/p flour by 1/2 cup, added 1 tsp vanilla with the banana addition. After mixing the dough, I refrigerated about 20 minutes. I formed the dough into small balls and rolled in granulated sugar and pressed a chocolate kiss into the center. I increased the bake time to about twelve minutes, until golden on bottom. Made about 30 cookies.
Thanks for the inspiration Susan!


44 Kathryn December 13, 2016 at 3:25 pm

Correction, I increased the a/p flour to 1/4 cup, sorry.


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