Protein Cookies

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5 from 1252 votes
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These protein cookies are soft, chewy, and made with just 4 ingredients! No flour and no sugar needed, each cookie packs in over 20 grams of clean protein!

protein cookies

When it comes to protein powder recipes, I have a handful of favorites on hand. If I’m not making protein brownies, protein muffins, or a protein mug cake, you’ll know I’m making some high protein cookies!

This protein cookie recipe was inspired by Quest protein cookies I saw at the grocery store. They were made with whey protein and had no sugar, barely any carbs, and claimed to taste like dessert. With a heft price tag, I had high hopes.

While they DID initially taste pretty good, several hours later I had the most intense stomach pains. Upon further inspection of the ingredient list, I was astounded to see a slew of hard-to-pronounce ingredients and SEVERAL kinds of artificial sweeteners!

Luckily, I’ve created a delicious and EASY version that will be quite the game-changer for all you protein dessert fans out there. Here is why you’ll LOVE these cookies-

  • They are made with just 4 ingredients and you will know every single one of them. There are no artificial sweeteners, no flour, and no fillers or additives whatsoever- Just wholesome and healthy ingredients.
  • All you need is one bowl and a mixing spoon to prepare.
  • You get protein from THREE different sources- the peanut butter, the egg, and the protein powder!

These protein powder cookies are sweet enough for dessert or perfect as a post-workout snack! Each cookie yields over 20 grams of protein and ZERO grams of added sugar. They are thick, soft, chewy, and loaded with chocolate chips.

What I love about these cookies is that they actually TASTE like normal cookies- No dense or powdery cookies here!

How do you make protein cookies?

The Ingredients

  • Peanut butter– Smooth and drippy peanut butter, with no added sugar. Avoid using crunchy peanut butter, as you’ll find the mixture harder to mix together.
  • Brown sugar substitute– A zero calorie and zero carb sweetener. You can also use erythritol, monk fruit sweetener, or coconut sugar.
  • Protein powder– The not-so-secret ingredient that gives the cookies a punch of protein. Stick to unflavored or vanilla flavored protein powders, as they don’t impact the overall flavor.
  • Egg– Room temperature eggs.

The Instructions

In a large mixing bowl, add all the ingredients and mix well, until a thick dough remains. Next, form 12 balls of dough and place them on a lined baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the edges are just done. Remove the cookies from the oven and let them cool completely.

high protein cookies

Which protein powder is best for baking?

Not every protein powder is created the same. Some are thicker than others, some are finer than others and some have different additives in them. As a general rule of thumb, all protein powders can work, but they will leave different textures. Here are the more mainstream protein powders and what texture and flavor profiles they have.

  • Brown Rice Protein Powder– Earthy in flavor and texture, this vegan protein powder keeps the cookies soft and chewy. Be sure to use a vanilla flavored one, otherwise, the cookies will be very bland. 
  • Casein Protein Powder– My favorite protein powder for baking. This blend of powder never dries out baked goods, and has the most delicious flavor.
  • Whey Protein Powder– My least favorite protein powder to use, whey is the most natural protein powder, and also the lowest in carbs. However, they are most prone to dry out baked goods, so be sure to keep an eye on it.

Tips to make the best protein cookie recipe

  • Do not overbake the cookies, as they continue to cook as they cool down. While the cookies may look a little underbaked, they will firm up beautifully while cooling down. 
  • For thicker and chewier cookies, refrigerate the dough for an hour before baking.
  • Be sure you like the taste of your protein powder, as the flavor will definitely come through (if you use an unflavored kind).

Dietary and flavor variations

  • Make them vegan! Swap out the egg for either a flax egg or a chia egg.
  • Add chocolate chips– Make chocolate chip protein cookies (as pictured) by folding through 1/2 cup of chocolate chips.
  • Oatmeal protein cookies– Fold through 1/2 cup of rolled oats and sprinkle a tablespoon of oats on top of each cookie.
  • Chocolate protein cookies– Add 1/2 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder and use chocolate protein powder.
  • Birthday cake cookies– Fold through 1/2 cup of sprinkles!

Storing and freezing tips

  • To store: Leftover cookies can be stored at room temperature, in an airtight container, for up to 14 days. If you’d like them to keep longer, store them in the refrigerator. 
  • To freeze: Place leftovers in a ziplock bag and store them in the freezer for up to 6 months.
protein powder cookies

Frequently Asked Questions

Are protein cookies good for you?

While protein cookies are a better option than candy bars or potato chips, store bought protein cookies are not actually healthy. They often have an extensive ingredient list and use several kinds of artificial sweeteners. Furthermore, they also contain just as many calories as a candy bar or potato chips.

Luckily, homemade protein cookies are something that can be enjoyed on a regular basis. They are a fantastic way to add protein to your diet and they use wholesome ingredients too.

Are Quest protein cookies keto?

Most quest cookies are not keto friendly, as the net carbs are still quite high. The only exception is the chocolate chip cookie flavor that has 5 grams net carbs.

Can I substitute the peanut butter?

Easily replace the peanut butter with either almond butter, cashew butter, or sunflower seed butter. Be sure that it is smooth and drippy in texture, so it will form a thick cookie dough.

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protein cookie recipe

Protein Cookies (4 Ingredients!)

5 from 1252 votes
These protein cookies are thick, chewy, and made with just 4 ingredients! No flour and no sugar needed, they taste delicious and pack in over 20 grams of protein!
Servings: 12 Cookies
Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 12 mins
Total: 17 mins

Ingredients  

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line a cookie sheet or baking tray with parchment paper and set aside.
  • In a small mixing bowl, combine all your ingredients and mix until combined.
  • Using your hands, form 12 balls of cookie dough and place them on the lined sheet. Press down on each cookie to form a cookie shape. Bake the cookies for 12-14 minutes, or until the edges begin to brown.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheet completely.

Notes

* Any smooth nut or seed butter will work.
** Or any granulated sweetener
*** For an eggless option, use 3 tablespoons of ground chia seed. 
TO STORE: Leftover cookies can be stored at room temperature, in an airtight container, for up to 14 days. If you’d like them to keep longer, store them in the refrigerator. 
TO FREEZE: Place leftovers in a ziplock bag and store them in the freezer for up to 6 months.

Nutrition

Serving: 1CookieCalories: 150kcalCarbohydrates: 5gProtein: 21gFat: 8gSodium: 116mgPotassium: 164mgFiber: 1gVitamin A: 23IUCalcium: 35mgIron: 1mgNET CARBS: 4g
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Author: Arman
Tried this recipe?Give us a shout at @thebigmansworld or tag #thebigmansworld!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this website.

Arman Liew

I’m a two time cookbook author, photographer, and writer, and passionate about creating easy and healthier recipes. I believe you don’t need to be experienced in the kitchen to make good food using simple ingredients that most importantly, taste delicious.

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Comments

  1. So funny- I have never really thought of what flavor birthday cake is- it’s just…birthday cake flavored!! I love this recipe though and I’m bookmarking it to try! Thanks for the link up and Happy Wednesday!

  2. Is it normal that my “reintroduction” of trying to eat wheat again has come solely in the form of Lenny & Larry’s cookies? Our booth was next to them at the Fancy Food show and needless to say 3 days of cookie samples was irresistible =l

    Which one is your fave!? I thought it would be birthday cake HANDS DOWN but i have to say snickerdoodle might have taken the (cake?..) for me. although I am sure your FULL SIZED ONE SERVING cookie is going to take all of my cakes, snickers and doodles and allow me to remain cookie full and gluten free 😉

    P.S. expo west.. what’s happening!?!?

    1. Nooo…the double chocolate. SO GOOD. I went through a few batches to get the proportions of that right!

      YES!!! I’m going to pop by one of my clients around 11 but have most of the day(s) free!

  3. You are a SAINT! As someone who is obsessed with Lenny & Larrys cookies I can only scream thank you for these!! Making this giant cookie of bliss asap. Gimme more flavors!! 😉

  4. Oh, wow, thank you for shedding the light on ‘Lenny’s and Larry’s.’ I’ve been wondering what they are. They are all over Instagram. They have a great PR campaign. This looks just as tasty!

  5. Such an awesome recipe, I’ve never tasted the cookies you mention but have definitely seen them around, these look so tasty!!

  6. I remember when we went to Farm Boy and you helped me decide to buy the GIANT Lenny & Larry’s white chocolate macadamia cookie along with the snickerdoodle one! The macros are absolutely AMAZING for your cookies!! Birthday cake has always been cake batter for me! 🙂 tastes awesome!

  7. Fun recipe! I have to say this one I’ll have to save…and maybe make for my husband as a treat for his birthday!

  8. There’s that cashew butter!! 🙂 Ugh I want this cookie right now. Birthday cake tastes like extra delicious vanilla cake with sprinkles. But if you think about it, shouldn’t birthday cake flavor be subject to your own preference? So like, I want carrot cake on my birthday. Birthday cake should taste like carrot cake to me.
    I’m being obnoxious k bye.

    1. Hahahahahaha MILD BUTTER!!!!!

      Yes. It totally should be. We’d also totally share the same birthday cake.

  9. You’re such a liar! Not because of the sprinkles…. 😛
    And I am with Alison. Birthday cake should taste like carrot cake. No competition.

  10. Omg yes. so ready for these.

    Question – which protein powder did you use in the picture? I know often you say which is pictured but I can’t find that in the text!

    1. YES! Can’t wait to share each flavor over the next week! 🙂

      The pictured one was a vegan blend but I’m going to test out a new brand today because I want to see if I can get a better texture which can last for a week- I’ll let you know!