I Am Baker

Red Velvet Peanut Butter Blossoms

I grew up with a very basic peanut butter blossom recipe. It had a star shaped chocolate piece on top instead of the Hershey’s kiss.  They tasted the same, but there is something about seeing that simple star chocolate piece atop the light peanut butter cookie that makes my heart smile.

There was always a platter of homemade peanut butter blossoms, homemade peanut butter cups and sugar cookies in our house during the holidays.

Red Velvet Peanut Butter Blossoms #baking #cookies #christmas

My mom would get together with her friends and have Christmas baking marathons.  As the youngest kid I would often tag along, book in tow, and find a sweet spot to get lost on an adventure with Nancy Drew.  (Giving my dad, the only man in the house, a much deserved break from all the estrogen!)  At that age I had no desire to bake anything.  Ever.

During chapter breaks (I was an avid reader in my youth) I would make my way to the kitchen and grab a cookie.   My mom and her friend always knew I was there, but they would conveniently turn their backs just long enough for me to sneak a delectable bite.

Red Velvet Peanut Butter Blossoms #baking #cookies #christmas

After the long day baking they would pack up our share of treats and we would head home.  My mom always made sure some was set aside to donate, to bring to a family in need, or for a friend who needed a pick-me-up.

She was wise to instill that in me… that desire to spread joy and love to others.  (Especially through food!)  And I am so thankful to her for her acts of generosity and caring.

Red Velvet Peanut Butter Blossoms #baking #Christmas #cookies

One of the gifts I hope to share with you all is not only a recipe or a decorating technique, but being able to create a sweet memory with a loved one.  In the end, thats what is real important right?

Red Velvet Peanut Butter Blossoms


  • 1 bag Hershey's Kisses
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon red gel food coloring
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • pinch salt
  • 1/4 cup red sanding sugar


  1. Heat oven to 375
  2. Beat butter, peanut butter, and sugar in stand mixer for about 2 minutes on medium speed. Turn mixer to low and add in egg, milk, vanilla, and red food coloring. Mix for about 30 seconds to incorporate, then turn mixer to medium high and blend until light and fluffy.
  3. In a separate bowl sift cocoa, flour, baking soda and salt. With mixer on slow add flour mixture to sugar mixture and beat until just combined.
  4. Remove mixer bowl from stand. Shape dough into 1 inch balls. Pour red sanding sugar onto small plate or bowl. Roll dough ball in sanding sugar and place on prepared cookie sheet about 2 inches apart.
  5. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes.
  6. While baking unwrap Hershey's Kisses. Once cookies are done baking, remove from oven and immediately press a chocolate Kiss into the center of each cookie. The cookie should crack around edges.
  7. Allow cookies to cool to room temperature.
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Adapted from nycityeats.com

I think what made these cookies so special was not only the extra cocoa richness, but the red sanding sugar.  It really made the cookies sparkle and shine and my kids couldn’t stop talking about them!

I found the red sanding sugar at my local grocery store, but McCormick has a recipe if you want to make your own.

Red Velvet Peanut Butter Blossoms #cookies #redvelvet #christmas

I am hoping to create some fun baking traditions in my family and know these will be a part of it!  Do you have any holiday time baking traditions?


  1. Teresa says

    My husband is a diabetic so no sweet stuff :-( Looks great. Thanks for sharing. I may keep anyway so if I get the hankering to do it anyway :-)

  2. Joey says

    I also have a daughter with peanut and tree nut allergies. Could the peanut butter simply be omitted? Or would that change the composition of the dough altogether? They look so yummy and beautiful
    that I really would like to find a way to make them safely for her!

    • says

      I would actually just make an entirely different recipe for the red velvet cookie. Removing the peanut butter from this recipe would, as you mentioned, just alter it too much. Happy Baking!

    • says

      Use a Red Velvet Cake Mix (just the dry mix) with just 1/2 c. veg. oil and 2 eggs. Mix with a mixer until the dry cake mix has absorbed the eggs and oil. Dough will be malleable like playdough. Shape into balls (anywhere from 24-36 balls per cake mix depending on how cake like you want them to be). Roll each ball in red sparkle sugar and put on lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes. Sprinkle the hot cookies with chocolate shot sprinkles or, I like to frost the cookies when they cool. This cookie recipe makes a more cake like cookie. I make my own buttercream frosting, or cream cheese icing works, or even icing from a can.

  3. Jenn SW says

    My daughter and I just finished making these and I can’t stop “taste testing” them! They are so good, if my husband doesn’t get home soon he may be out of luck! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Briana says

    I just made a batch of PB blossoms and THEN opened my email. d’oh, looks like I’ll just have to make more cookies. Darn.

  5. Melissa says

    The recipe says to place on prepared cookie sheets, but I couldn’t find anywhere in the recipe where it tells you how to prepare them. Maybe I missed it, but help, please.

    • says

      You can prepare a sheet any number of ways: By spraying it with cooking spray, buttering it then flouring it, using parchment paper, using aluminum foil, or even no product at all. Its really up to you to determine what works best in ensuring your cookie wont stick to your pan. :)

  6. Elizabeth says

    Where are you located? I live in denver and have the HARDEST time with all my baked goods flattening. I alter the leavening ingredients and that helps with them not overflowing and falling in the oven, but they still don’t get nice and high like these look. They still taste good, but I’d like to have pretty stuff too! Does anyone have experience with this?

    • christian girl says

      yes, mine flattened too, could be the altitude, I’m at 5500 ft, tried smaller, shorter bake time, but no luck.

  7. ollie says

    Had to laugh at the discussion about the kisses melting. The original recipe for these cookies from years ago had you put the kisses on and then put them back in the oven for a few minutes.

  8. Amy says

    I would love to make these but omitting the pb. Have you or anyone else on here ever made these without PB? I would like to know what you substituted it with, if anything.

  9. says

    Can I use regular red sugar I used to sprinkle on Christmas cookies in place of the sanding sugar as i don’t know where to buy sanding sugar around me?

  10. Amanda Thomas says

    Do you use salted or unsalted butter? This didn’t state so I am assuming regular salted butter. Also, for the 1 1/3 cup sugar, would it help if i did 1 cup white sugar and a 1/3 cup brown sugar to help the cookies stay slightly softer?

    • says

      I have not made the sugar substitutions so I cant speak for how well they would work. I do not see how using salted/unsalted butter would make a difference in this specific recipe, but for the record I used unsalted. Thanks!

  11. Cindy Witt says

    I just finished making these cookies to take to work for Valentine’s Day.
    They may not make it…I’ve already eaten 3 of them!! Very good and so

  12. The says

    Hey! I just got done prepping to make these cookies.. and I was wondering, is the dough suppose to be so dark before being baked? It’s really dark and I am making these for my husband, and I am worried they won’t turn out as bright as pictured…

  13. Tonia says

    I made these this week for a Valentine’s day treat, but used dark chocolate kisses. They were a huge hit with both family and coworkers!

  14. Cindy says

    Mine did not get this beautiful vibrant red. Mine where either pinkish or a dark red. But delicious. How can I get them to be this nice red color? Any suggestions? Thanks for the recipe.

  15. christian girl says

    they are good, however mine collapsed, I tried smaller size, shorter time, but still collapsed. Nothing was said about high altitude, I’m at 5500 ft.

    • says

      I am not at a high altitude, so I do not create recipes for high altitude baking. What exactly do you mean “collapsed”? The cookie itself did not hold its shape?

  16. Donna Howard says

    Made these yesterday! Yum yum yum. I used a peanut butter heart instead of the kiss, just because I had some hearts I wanted to get rid of. These are totally the best pb cookies!! Thank you so much for your great creativity!!

  17. Sandy says

    Just made these cookies for a Valentines Dinner gathering with friends. To say I am disappointed is an understatement. I followed the recipe exactly as written and the cookies flattened out into pancakes. It called for more flour I think, but as this was my first time making them, I was not sure how they would turn out if I added more. In any event, not only are they flat, but they are hard and too crunchy for my preference and the flavour is rather blah. I won’t be making these again and now have to bring something store bought which I did not want to do.

    • says

      Wow Sandy! I am so sorry!! I can perplexed as to why the cookies would have flattened… that is not common occurrence with this recipe. Did you make any substitutions? Are you from a humid climate? Was your baking soda expired? Is your oven properly calibrated? I would be happy to trouble shoot with you.

  18. Amy says

    Do you have a suggestion for a replacement for the pb? We don’t eat PB in our house and I would love to make these. Do you think they would be ok without pb?

  19. says

    I have not tried it in this recipe (yet) but in the past I have substituted Biscoff (or Trader Joe’s Cookie Butter spread) for the peanut butter in recipes with great success. We also have a pb allergy in our house and the stuff is a godsend!


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