Looking for a festive no bake dessert to serve this season? Chocolate Covered Ritz Crackers, also known as Peanut Butter Ritz Cracker Cookies, are the way to go! All you need are five simple ingredients and about 45 minutes to make this delicious treat that’s perfect to share.
Today’s the day! The Sweetest Season is here… and I’m starting off with a sweet treat that I first discovered when I was a small child.
Ritz Cracker Cookies
When I was a child, our next door neighbors always made the most delicious peanut butter no bake cookies around Christmas.
They’d share a plate with our family every year, and I looked forward to this kind gesture every year because it was thoughtful… and the cookies were also amazingly delicious.
These simple Ritz peanut butter sandwiches were dunked in white chocolate to give them a snowman appearance.
They were my first taste of sweet and salty desserts, and I’ve been into them ever since.
Recently, I’ve been thinking of this sweet gesture from these neighbors and wondered… how would their recipe taste with semisweet chocolate?
Turns out, it’s delicious.
Why I love this recipe:
It’s hard not to love a no bake treat that involves peanut butter, melted chocolate and a favorite cracker of mine.
The combination is a little sweet, a little salty, partially crunchy and partially creamy.
For these, I added some festive sprinkles for some and flaky sea salt for others. I also drizzled some of the cookies with additional chocolate… because why not?
These are the perfect treat to serve during the holiday season, but they’re perfect for any time or occasion.
Here are some more things to love about it:
- All you need are four ingredients. (And honestly, you could make this cookie with three if you skip the sprinkles.)
- These are ready and done in an hour, give or take. The prep time isn’t terrible, but it can be a little time-consuming dipping the sandwiches in the melted chocolate mixture.
- No oven necessary! You can make these Ritz cookies with minimal kitchen tools.
- Switch up the decorations, depending on your mood and who’s going to be enjoying these cookies.
If you love peanut butter and chocolate together, this sandwich cookie recipe is calling your name!
Need some sweet inspiration? Head on over to my Dessert Recipe Index for more ideas!
Let’s talk about The Sweetest Season and Cookies for Kids Cancer!
The Sweetest Season is my annual holiday cookie week.
In 2011, I decided to share my favorite Christmas cookies… then invited other bloggers to join me. The celebration grew, we changed the name to make it more inclusive, my friend Susannah stepped up to help and the rest is history.
And now, every year, food bloggers get together to share new holiday cookie recipes.
This year, we’re raising money in support of Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, a recognized 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to funding research for new, innovative and less-toxic treatments for childhood cancer.
Since 2008, Cookies for Kids’ Cancer has granted nearly $18 million to pediatric cancer research in the form of 100+ research grants to leading pediatric cancer centers. More than 35 treatments available to kids battling cancer today were stemmed from these grants.
We’d love for you to help us raise money for this cause! You can donate through our fundraising page.
Currently, Cookies for Kids’ Cancer is in a matching window with their friends at OXO. This means OXO will match every dollar up to $100,000 raised through the end of 2023. So whatever money we raise will automatically double!
What you need to make this recipe:
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- Sheet pan or cookie sheet
- Parchment paper or wax paper
- Small mixing bowl (that’s microwave safe) or a liquid measuring cup
- Tipless piping bag
Let’s talk ingredients!
In addition to the tools above, you’re going to need some ingredients to make this recipe, too! Chances are, you might already have some of them in your fridge or pantry. Scroll down to the recipe card for the full measurements and instructions.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Ritz crackers — these buttery crackers are a classic for a reason… and the reason this cookie recipe gets its name. Please do not substitute out the cracker.
- Peanut butter — I used a salted peanut butter that has low sugar, so my cookies were less sweet. You can use traditional peanut butter or natural… it just depends on your tastebuds and if you want your cookies to be sweeter! This is imperative to make the creamy peanut butter filling and works best at room temperature.
- Chocolate chips — I used semisweet for this recipe, but you can use whatever your favorite is!
- Coconut oil — or another neutral oil (like vegetable oil or canola oil) to add to the chocolate chips
- Toppings — we used a combination of Christmas sprinkles, as well as flaky sea salt, to decorate these cookies. You can also take the extra melted chocolate and drizzle it onto the sandwich cookies.
Variations to try:
- Use different chocolate. I used semisweet chocolate chips. This recipe would be wonderful with milk chocolate chips, bittersweet chocolate or even dark chocolate. It just depends on your tastebuds.
- Skip the chocolate chips and use chocolate almond bark or chocolate candy melts. I prefer the flavor of the chocolate chips, but you do you.
- Swap out the nut butter. Don’t like peanut butter? Use almond butter or cashew butter. Sunbutter would be a great option, too. I’ve never tried these with chunky peanut butter, but I bet that would be tasty, too.
- Use a sweet dessert spread. If you want your cookies to be sweeter, you could use Nutella, marshmallow fluff, dulce de leche (or a thick caramel) or cookie butter in place of the peanut butter.
- Add different toppings. While I love the Christmas sprinkles, I recognize it’s not the holiday season year-round. Use your favorite sprinkles for these any time. You could also crush some almonds or peanuts to go on top or use flaky sea salt to add some more saltiness.
How to make Chocolate Covered Ritz Cookies
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or wax paper. Set aside.
Lay out all the crackers that you intend to use on the prepared sheet pans.
Scoop peanut butter onto half of the crackers. Gently press another cracker on top of the peanut butter to make the Ritz cracker sandwiches.
If the peanut butter is a little soft, transfer the entire sheet pan into the freezer so it can firm up. This way, it won’t ooze into the chocolate.
Melt the chocolate chips and the coconut oil in the microwave. (Be sure to use a microwave-safe bowl.) I do this in 30-second increments until the chocolate is completely melted.
I heat the chocolate in 30-second intervals until melted. Stir after each round so that the chocolate does not burn. You could also use the double boiler method to melt the chocolate on the stovetop.
Dip the peanut butter ritz crackers into the melted chocolate. Use a fork to dunk and flip the sandwiches until coated.
When you lift the cookies out of the chocolate, tap on the side of the bowl to remove excess chocolate, then transfer to the prepared sheet pan in a single layer. Leave some space between each so they don’t stick to each other.
Continue the process for all the cookies, until coated.
Decorate the wet chocolate coating.
- Add sprinkles.
- Sprinkle on flaky sea salt.
- Transfer the rest of the melted chocolate into a piping bag or plastic baggie. Drizzle it over the cookies.
Let the chocolate set for 30-45 minutes before transferring to an airtight container!
How to store
Once the chocolate is set, transfer to an airtight food storage container for up to 2 weeks. Keep in the fridge so that the chocolate does not melt.
Erin’s Easy Entertaining Tips
I love tasty no bake cookies like these because they’re easy to make and share throughout the holiday season, as well as the rest of the year.
These would be a lovely addition to serve at a holiday party or a cookie swap because they don’t require any baking time… just a little patience.
Here are some things I’d do if I want to host with ‘em:
- Make the chocolate peanut butter cookies early. Since they keep in the fridge, you can put them together before people are arriving and make them at your leisure.
- Double or triple the recipe if you want to share with more people.
- Switch up the toppings and have a few variations for everyone to try.
- Send guests home with a goodie bag that include a few of these.
Frequently Asked Questions
This recipe involves just five simple ingredients: Ritz crackers, creamy peanut butter, chocolate, coconut oil and any toppings (like sprinkles or flaky sea salt.)
Yes! Ritz crackers are vegan. And you can make these cookies vegan if you use vegan chocolate chips and sprinkles.
No. These crackers are made with gluten. There are gluten free Ritz cracker recipes to make at home, as well as boxes that you can purchase, if you need these cookies to be gluten free.
Quick tips and tricks to making the best Chocolate Peanut Butter Ritz Cookies
- Make them ahead of time. These no bake cookies keep for up to two weeks. Make them in advance and double or triple the recipe.
- Get your kids involved. My girls have a BLAST helping with recipes like these. I bet yours will, too. It’s messy, but kid-friendly. Their involvement will depend on their age and ability, so help them with it!
- Add them to a cookie gift box to brighten someone’s day.
- Switch them up! Use a different type of chocolate or a different topping to give these some fun flair throughout the year.
- How to store: Once the chocolate is set, transfer the cookies to an airtight food storage container for up to 2 weeks. Keep in the fridge so that the chocolate does not melt.
More chocolate covered treats for the holiday season:
- Chocolate Rice Krispie Treats
- Chocolate Dipped Strawberries
- Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
- Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge
Here’s how you make them:
Chocolate Covered Ritz Cracker Cookies
- 32 ritz crackers 1 sleeve from a regular-sized box
- ½ cup creamy peanut butter 140g
- 1 ½ cups semisweet chocolate chips 300g
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon sprinkles or flaky sea salt
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- Line a large sheet pan with parchment paper or wax paper. Set aside.
- Lay out all the crackers that you intend to use on the prepared sheet pans. I set half facing up and the other half facing down since you will only fill half.
- Scoop peanut butter onto half of the crackers. Use about 1 ½ to 2 teaspoons per cracker. Gently press another cracker on top of the peanut butter to make the sandwiches. You will have 16 sandwiches.
- If the peanut butter is a little gooey right now, pop the sheet pan into the freezer for that to firm up for 10-15 minutes. If the peanut butter is too runny, it runs the risk of spilling out of the cookies.
- Melt the chocolate chips and the coconut oil in the microwave in a heat-safe bowl. Do this in 30-second increments until the chocolate is completely melted.
- Dip the peanut butter sandwiches into the melted chocolate. Use a fork to dunk and flip the sandwiches until completely coated.
- When you lift the cookies out of the chocolate, tap on the side of the bowl to remove excess chocolate, then transfer to the prepared sheet pan.
- Continue the process for all the cookies until they have all been coated.
- Decorate. Add sprinkles or flaky sea salt to the tops of the cookies. You can also transfer the rest of the melted chocolate into a piping bag or plastic baggie and drizzle it onto the cookies for a fancy look.
- Let the chocolate set for 30-45 minutes before transferring to an airtight container! Enjoy!
Erin Parker is a Southern gal living in Texas with her husband and two daughters. She started The Speckled Palate to share what she was cooking as a newlywed… and over the years, it’s evolved to capture her love for hosting. Specifically, the EASIEST, lowest key entertaining because everyone deserves to see their people and connect over good food. Learn more about her…