Lemons and Basil

{GF} Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with Chocolate Hazelnut

SO apparently sandwich cookies and GIVEAWAYS go hand in hand, a perfect pairing if you as me! Perhaps you remember these Pumpkin Whoopie Pies I posted last Fall…if so, then you might also remember that thanks to Coaction, we were able to couple those cookies with a giveaway for a set of my Five Must Have Kitchen Gadgets. Well, I’m thrilled to say that I am once again teaming up with Coaction for another great giveaway! And along with a giveaway, I’ve got these delightful Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with a Chocolate Hazelnut Filling to share with you!

So let’s first talk about these Gluten-Free Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies, and then we’ll get to the giveaway! A few weeks ago, a dear friend of mine invited Brighton and I to join her and her two youngest children to go the Nashville Zoo. We planned to meet in the morning and each agreed to pack a healthy lunch for ourselves and our little one{s} so we could take a break midway for a picnic. I love to bake and asked her what sort of sweets her adorable littles ones prefer. I gave her a quick disclaimer saying that while I loved to bake healthy sweets for Josh and I {and Lemons and Basil of course}, when it comes to baking for others, I typically stick to more conventional recipes, always made from scratch, but with your typically mixture of sugar, flour, butter, eggs, etc. She shared that she and her family have been working hard to eat clean and that while her kids may be young, they have a very mature palate and would likely love a healthy sweet.

SO…knowing her sweet kiddos like most things chocolate, and thinking on this peanut butter chocolate combo I’ve toyed with for a while, I set out to come up with this GF Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookie recipe.

I had two goals: 1.} Use wholesome ingredients with nutritional value, 2.} Create a cookie that while healthier, still appeals to a younger crowd

In an effort to achieve these two goals, I used dark chocolate in place of milk, replaced regular white sugar with honey and organic coconut sugar {you can read about the benefits of coconut sugar here}, and used whole organic oats and hazelnut meal in place of refined processed flour, which is stripped of nearly all nutrients.

The outcome? Let’s just say this; when it was time for our picnic, we started laying out our of spread of food, and before we even realized it, both of her little ones had a cookie in their hands and were chowing down on them! My heart soared knowing that these healthy Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies were not only a new favorite of mine and Josh’s, but were a hit with the kids. It gives me hope that even at a young age, Brighton too, will have an appreciation for healthier sweets and foods! Don’t get me wrong, I have no intention of keeping him from the occasional ice cream, cupcake, or cookie, but I hope and pray, that like these little ones, he learns to enjoy things made with real, whole foods, that nourish his body!

SO, being that each of these sweet kiddos, devoured not one, but two of these GF Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with Chocolate Hazelnut Filling on our picnic, I think its safe to say that they’re a winner! I hope you’ll try making them for your family as well!

Now, let’s get to this GIVEAWAY! Notice that adorable picnic tote pictured below? This is one of the three bags included in today’s giveaway from PACKiT’s incredible line of reusable bags. This company was started by a mom of three who was tired of mushy blueberries and wanted to find a way to ensure she and her family could eat well, even when away from the home! Check out more of their story here!   

This bag is both fashionable and functional, making it perfect for a picnic in the park, afternoon hike, or day at the beach. The entire bag is freezable, allowing you to fold it up, stick it in the freezer over night, and remove the next day, where it will keep your food and drinks cold for up to 10 hours! It was the perfect bag for our day at the zoo, my salad, water, and snacks were perfectly cooled after several hours sitting in the hot car!


  • Built-in freezable gel keeps items cool up to 10 hours (depending on external temperatures)
  • Fits food and drinks for four people, a six-pack and snacks or four 750ml-1L bottles
  • Top flap unzips to reveal dry storage compartment for napkins and utensils (utensils not included)
  • Cold compartment’s large zip opening allows for faster packing and lets you see exactly where items are stored
  • Roomy design lets you store drinks upright and avoid spills
  • Webbed straps for easy carrying on the arm or shoulder
  • Zip closure and top flap lock in cold, dry air
  • Made from food-safe, nontoxic poly canvas and waterproof EVA
  • PVC-, BPA-, phthalate- and lead-free


  • FOLD IT: The Freezable Picnic Tote flattens to the thickness of a large magazine for compact storage.
  • FREEZE IT: The entire bag goes in your freezer overnight (12 hours) to activate its built-in freezable gel. By morning, the walls of the bag will be completely frozen and ready to chill just like a fridge.
  • PACK & GO: Fill your Freezable Picnic Tote with food and drinks just before you leave home. Now they’ll stay cool and fresh all day!

Best of all, this is just one of the three bags included in this giveaway, it will also include the PACKiT’s Freezable Traveler Lunch Bag in black and their Freezable Carryall Lunch Bag in Fiesta! Scroll down and register for your chance to win a set of these three travel bags – you have until Friday, May 6th to enter!

Look how cute they are! If only I had gotten a picture of them EATING the cookies… but once the food was out, I was completely distracted – enjoying time with friends, the warm sunshine, and of course, the food!

Win 3 PACKiT Freezable Travel Bags

GF Peanut Butter Cookie Sandwiches with Chocolate Hazelnut Filling
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Kaylee Pauley
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 22
These GF Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies with Chocolate Hazelnut Filling are rich in flavor and loaded with wholesome goodness!
  • 3/4 cup creamy unsalted natural peanut butter
  • 1 cup organic coconut sugar
  • 2 tsp teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup organic oats {gluten-free if needed}
  • 1/2 cup hazelnut meal
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup almond milk
  • 2 cups hazelnut meal
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 tbsp almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons cacoa powder
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Add organic oats and hazelnut meal to NutriBullet and blend 5-10 seconds until a fine flour-like consistency is reached, set aside.
  3. Add peanut butter, coconut sugar and vanilla extract to bowl of food processor, and process for 20-30 seconds or until smooth and creamy.
  4. Add the blended oat flour, hazelnut meal, baking soda, and salt to the creamy peanut butter mixture in the food processor bowl, process until all ingredients are well combined. Add the almond milk and mix again.
  5. Roll cookie dough in small 1” balls, add to parchment lined baking sheet and bake for approximately 7 minutes. Remove, press lightly with fork and allow to cool completely.
  6. For the Chocolate Hazelnut Filling:
  7. Add hazelnut meal to food processor and process for 5-7 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides as necessary. The hazelnut meal will begin to clump up as the oil breaks down, continue to process until a thick butter-like consistency reached. Because I wanted a thicker filling, I didn't worry about processing it to a thin liquid nut-butter like consistency, but rather left it thick and somewhat pasty.
  8. Meanwhile, melt the dark chocolate chips and almond milk in small saucepan over very low heat. Stir consistently until completely melted and smooth.
  9. Add vanilla, melted chocolate, cacoa powder, vanilla, honey, and sea salt to hazelnut butter and process again until well combined and a smooth consistency is reached.
  10. Once the cookies have completely cooled, flip 22 cookies on their back, spread with chocolate hazelnut filling, then top with another cookie to create a mini sandwich.
  11. Store in freezer or refrigerator for 5-7 days, allowing them to come to room temperature before serving.