Cookies

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Soft and Thick Peanut Butter Crunch Cookies

Published January 30, 2014 by jenmatteson

I’m 100% positive I found my very favorite peanut butter cookie recipe!  I often find they get too crisp, or flatten out to chewy crackers or potato chips.  This is the second time I’ve used this peanut butter cookie recipe, and it was no fluke that I loved them the first time.  I honestly think the second time was better.  That could also be because it’s January, and we’re all watching what we eat now, right? 😉

Soft and Thick Peanut Butter Crunch Cookies

Let me go back to the first time I used this recipe.  It was for our drink tasting party, and I had a hankering for peanut butter blossoms.  I honestly thought my grandma made the best, but I was wrong.  I made half the batch with peanut butter cups – I didn’t have kisses and wanted to use up what I already had in my baking cabinet.  The other half I got kind of creative with.  I have almost a case of Nestle Crunch bars (thanks, Dad!), so I figured I’d try chopping a few up and putting them in.  Yeah, it was the bomb.

Soft and Thick Peanut Butter Crunch Cookies

I made a double batch for my husband and his boys, who left me for the weekend to go on his annual ice fishing trip.  Too bad for him it’s -20 degrees, probably colder where he is going.  But maybe the cookies will help keep him warm, or the booze.  You decide.  Anyway, these cookies stay nice and thick, but remain soft and chewy – and not just for the day you baked them.  They stay soft for days, which is awesome!

Soft and Thick Peanut Butter Crunch Cookies
Soft and Thick Peanut Butter Cookies

Source: Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction
Servings: Makes 24 cookies

Ingredients:

1/2 stick unsalted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour

Directions:

1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar at medium speed.  One at a time, mix in peanut butter, egg, then vanilla, scraping down sides as needed.  Slowly mix in baking soda and flour until just combined, careful not to over-mix.  **This is where I added two chopped up Crunch bars.  Use your own add-ins (chocolate or white chocolate chips, raisins, M&Ms, Kisses, caramel, or anything else you like) or just keep them deliciously plain.  Wrap dough tightly in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare baking sheet with foil, parchment paper or cooking spray.  Roll dough into approximately 1-inch balls, about 2 tbsps., and place on prepared baking sheet.  Bake for 8-10 minutes (mine took exactly 10 to be perfectly soft, but this will vary based on ovens and size of cookies).  Remove from oven, and if desired, press fork crosswise into each cookie softly.  Let cool slightly on baking sheet, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

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Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Published August 16, 2013 by jenmatteson

I love peanut butter cookies, and I wanted to bring something sweet to share over the weekend while camping, so I thought, what a perfect chance for me to make a batch!  I loved my Grammie’s cookies growing up, but they were always hard, and I prefer my cookies soft and chewy.  I went in search of a tried and true recipe on my trusty cooking board, and then I was now stuck in the position of choosing which recipe to make.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

I decided to go with Jessica’s recipe from Sunny Side Up.  I’ve never made anything from her blog before, so I was happy to once again, find some new ideas!  The reason I settled on these cookies was more because of the story that went with them.  These cookies were in her husband’s top 5 recipes that she makes.  That’s saying a lot, so I thought it was the perfect recipe to try out.  I especially loved the addition of the chocolate chips.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

I only had egg whites on hand, so I think that may have affected the consistency of my dough.  It was too sticky for me to roll and dip into sugar, so I basically just spooned it onto the prepared baking sheet.  That said, I couldn’t really press a fork into them either, so after trying the first batch to come out of the oven, I decided to just forego the fork thing.  I assumed they will still taste the same, just not look quite as pretty 😉

The cookies, while quite thin, turned out delicious.  They even made a great substitute for graham crackers in s’mores!  Note to self, bring everything you can think of if you go on a camping trip that Leah’s husband packed for.  The cookie wasn’t too crispy, but not so soft that they just seemed under-baked.  The addition of the chocolate chips was wonderful, because who doesn’t like peanut butter and chocolate in holy matrimony?  Certainly not me.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Source: Adapted from Sunny Side Up
Servings: Makes about 4 dozen cookies

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks unsalted butter
1 cup peanut butter (I used half chunky and half creamy)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare two baking sheets with foil and cooking spray.

2. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.  Set aside.

3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and peanut butter together.  Add sugars and continue to mix until light and fluffy.  Add egg, milk and vanilla extract until combined.  Slowly add in dry ingredients until everything is incorporated.  Stir in chocolate chips.

4. Roll a rounded tablespoon of dough into a ball, dip top into sugar, and place on baking sheet.  Press tines of a fork twice (crosswise) into each cookie lightly.  Continue until baking sheet is full (I omitted this step as my dough was too sticky).  Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes.  Mine took exactly 11 minutes, but every oven varies, so keep a close eye on them.  Remove from oven, let cool on pan for 1 minute, then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

Deep Dish Cookie Pies

Published December 22, 2012 by jenmatteson

Who doesn’t love a warm chocolate chip cookie?  I saw this recipe and knew I had to try it out.  These deep dish cookies taste like they came out of a fancy restaurant for someone’s birthday.  The inside is slightly undercooked, the top is crisp, and the entire thing is sinfully delightful.  Add a small scoop of vanilla ice cream, and you’ll be in heaven.  The fun thing about these is that they are in individual servings, although, I would definitely opt to share mine with someone else!  The recipe makes 12 deep dish cookies, so I made four, and froze the rest of the dough in two separate zip-top baggies for future use.  I’m not sure how long they will last in the freezer though… 😉

Impress your family with this dessert this holiday season!  You can thank me later.

Deep Dish Cookie Pie

Deep Dish Cookie Pies

Source: Dainty Chef
Servings: 12 cookie pies

Ingredients:

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
2 sticks unsalted butter, cool and cubed in 1/4-inch
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups chocolate chips (I used dark chocolate chips)
vanilla ice cream for serving

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  In a medium bowl, combine flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda.  Set aside.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy.  Continue mixing and add eggs and vanilla.  Mix until well combined.  Slowly add in dry ingredients until well incorporated.  Fold in chocolate chips.

3. Fill ramekins about 3/4 full with raw, room temperature dough.  Place on baking sheet and bake 18-20 minutes, until top becomes slightly golden brown.  The inside will be slightly under-baked.  Top with vanilla ice cream and serve.

Girl Scouts ain’t got nothing on my Thick Mint Ice Cream Sandwiches

Published December 9, 2012 by jenmatteson

Remember when there used to be only two or three kinds of Girl Scout cookies?  At least I feel like there were.  There are so many different kinds these days, it’s hard to decide.  Maybe that’s how those girls get you to buy more boxes – more options.  Sneaky!  Regardless of how many choices we have, the most popular Girl Scout cookie are the thin mints (followed by Samoas – my personal favorite).  Admit it, even if you don’t buy them, you love them!  Someone at work bought them and shared them (who knows why), you stopped over at a friends’ and they happened to have them, or better yet, you’re house sitting someone’s house and you find some in their freezer and sneak a few.  Admit it, you snoop through their fridge and freezer 😉  But, no longer do you have to sneak your favorite Girl Scout cookie because these ice cream sandwiches are your perfect fix!

Thick Mint Ice Cream Sandwiches

As a dessert for my aunt’s cookie exchange, she originally suggested doing an ice cream sandwich.  Then, she sent me a cookie sandwich recipe with a peppermint frosting filling.  I was about to go with that, but decided we should do the ice cream sandwich, and use the chocolate cookie recipe she suggested, but fill it with mint chocolate chip ice cream.  What a fantastic idea!  Before serving them, I warmed the cookies (since they were already baked before the event), then scooped some ice cream over one cookie and topped with another, and BAM!

Thick Mint Ice Cream Sandwiches

These were so amazingly good.  They tasted like a SUPER thin mint, but of course, even better!  The warm chocolate cookie with the melty ice cream in the middle was a match made in heaven.  You need to make these for your next party…or just because!

Thick Mint Ice Cream Sandwiches

Source: Adapted from my Aunt Kay’s Recipe
Servings:

Ingredients:

6 tbsp unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
2 tbsp water
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
mint chocolate chip ice cream

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a saucepan, combine butter, brown sugar, water and chocolate chips.  Melt together over a low heat, stirring constantly.  Once melted, remove from stove top and transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer.  Let cool slightly.  Beat in eggs and vanilla.

2. In another bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt.  Slowly add flour mixture to chocolate mixture while beating.  Mix until well combined.  Using your hands, roll 2-inch balls of dough and drop onto a prepared baking sheet.  Leave plenty of room between the cookies (I only put 6 on a sheet) as they spread nicely.  Bake until just cooked through, about 10 minutes.  Remove and let rest for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.

3. Taking one cookie, top side down on a plate, scoop two small scoops of ice cream and top with another cookie.  Repeat for remaining cookies.  Serve immediately, or wrap each tightly in foil and store in freezer in a zip-top bag.

Nutella Cookies with White Chocolate Chips

Published October 2, 2012 by jenmatteson

The only thing I can think of when I hear Nutella is Giada De Laurentiis, AKA bobble-head.  Her head is huge if you haven’t noticed (well, huge for how tiny her body is).  Also, she’s not so nice.  At least, that is what came across on the latest Next Food Network Star season.  Bobby has always been my favorite, but I really have grown to love Alton Brown.  Even Nate, who has (or had) Giada on his list, says he’s not such a big fan after watching her.  She was just so mean to her team and the other mentors; she seemed like a diva to me.

Back to the cookies.  I don’t think I’ve ever actually purchased Nutella, but I know I’ve had it because I know I like it.  I happened to buy it because I couldn’t find chocolate peanut butter at my local grocery store to make 3 ingredient chocolate peanut butter granola cookies.  I ended up finding some at a different store, but I still had the Nutella on hand, so I needed to make something with that.  Since our 3 ingredient cookies are almost to the end, I decided cookies wouldn’t be such a bad idea.  Plus, I can always bring them to work and they’ll be gone within the day.

The original recipe didn’t include the white chocolate chips, but I thought they looked a little plain without, so I went ahead and added them.  They were super yummy, and the coco powder with the hazelnut butter is a real winner.  The white chocolate chips gives the cookies a little crunch and an added flavor element.  They would have been great without them, but I liked the addition.  I tried to pull them out of the oven just a little before they were cooked through, but they still got a little crisp.  I generally like chewy cookies, but these were really good, even with the crunch.

Nutella Cookies with White Chocolate Chips

Source: Adapted from Adventures of the Yankee Kitchen Ninja
Servings: Makes 36 cookies

Ingredients:

2 cups flour
1/4 cup coco powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 cup Nutella
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup white chocolate chips

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, whisk flour, coco powder, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar.  Add eggs one at a time and beat until well incorporated.  Add Nutella and vanilla and continue mixing.  Slowly add in dry ingredients.  The mixture will become very thick.  Remove bowl from stand mixer and stir in white chocolate chips.  Cover bowl tightly with plastic and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.

3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare baking sheets with parchment paper or cooking spray.  Roll dough mixture into 1-inch balls and place on cookie sheet.  Make sure to leave plenty of room between cookies as they spread quite a bit.  Bake for 12-14 minutes, until almost cooked through.  Remove from oven and cool on wire rack.

3 Ingredient Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies!

Published September 24, 2012 by jenmatteson

I’ve finally gotten around to reading my September issue of Food and Wine (thanks to a little work trip to Milwaukee), and there was an entire section of three ingredient recipes (salt, pepper and oil were not included as ingredients).  There is nothing I love more than a great recipe with limited ingredients, so I picked out a handful of recipes to add to my “to try” pile.  The first one I just had to try was Chocolate Peanut Butter Granola Cookies.  What kind of cookie has only three ingredients?  This one.

My local grocery store didn’t have chocolate peanut butter, only hazelnut butter – not the same.  I stopped at my local super center, and they even had the brand recommended by Food and Wine.  Score!  I also grabbed some granola with dried cherries from the bulk bins.

Food and Wine has never steered me in the wrong direction with recipes, but I was a little concerned that the cookies wouldn’t be sweet enough, and almost added sugar to the cookie dough.  I didn’t.  But, I sorta wish I did.  The cookies turned out really good, but they are more bitter than sweet.  They taste good, but I do think they could be a bit sweeter.  A sweeter granola would work as well.

**Edit: After having them on hand for a few days, I actually really love these cookies.  They are a great dose of chocolate, and I am LOVING the dried cherries (fruit that was in my granola).  I highly recommend these!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Granola Cookies

Source: Food and Wine
Servings: 1 dozen

Ingredients:

2 cups granola with nuts and dried fruit, separated
1 cup chocolate peanut butter (I used Peanut Butter & Co.)
1 egg
pinch of salt

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.  Add one cup of the granola into a medium bowl.  From the remaining cup of granola, pick out the fruit and add to the first bowl.  Add the granola without fruit to a food processor and pulse until finely ground.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add ground granola, peanut butter, egg, and salt.  Beat at a low-speed until smooth.  Add the remaining granola and fruit and mix until just combined.

3. Form the cookie dough into 1 inch balls and place them on a baking sheet.  Flatten the balls with the tines of a fork.  Bake for until cookies are browned around the edges, about 15 minutes.  Let cookies cool completely on baking sheet.  Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Neiman Marcus Chocolate Chip Cookies – A $250 Recipe?

Published August 10, 2012 by jenmatteson

Chocolate chip cookies are usually one of those recipes that you grow up with; it was your mother’s, or grandmother’s, or great great grandmother’s.  Maybe it was Toll House 😉  My point is, most people usually stick to the same chocolate chip cookie recipe for most of their lives.  Growing up, I always used my mother’s, which I think may have been passed on to her.  It was basically the Toll House recipe with a few small alterations.  Once I got in my 20’s, I started using a recipe containing vanilla pudding.  This kept the cookies ultra moist.  Generally, I still use that recipe.

However, I saw this recipe online about a year ago and thought the story behind it sounded interesting.  Legend has it, a woman and her child were shopping at Neiman Marcus and stopped in their cafe for a little snack.  They each had one of their chocolate chip cookies.  The woman liked them so much, she asked the waiter for the recipe.  He said he could give it to her, but he’d have to charge her “two-fifty”.  She said, “that’s fine, just add it to my tab,” and he handed over the recipe.  When she received her credit card bill in the mail a few weeks later, she was shocked to find that the cost of the recipe was $250, not $2.50.  Since she already saw the recipe and her card was charged, she decided she’d plaster it all over the internet.  Ha!  I suppose it’s not like she got her money’s worth, but at least the rest of the world never had to pay $250 for their “secret recipe”.

I printed this recipe at least a year ago, and of course didn’t keep any links to where I actually found it.  After Googling it, I did find the exact same recipe on allrecipes.com.  Sadly, it seems the story behind the cookies are an urban myth, and Neiman Marcus has never charged for their recipe.  Furthermore, after researching it, there are a handful of recipes similar to the one I used, as well as other recipes that claim to be the $250 secret recipe, but include oatmeal and do not have the espresso powder.   I don’t know which is the “real” recipe, but I had to try the one with espresso powder in it!  They were super moist, packed with chocolate (YUM!) and the espresso powder really gave it an extra kick!

Where did you get your chocolate chip recipe from?

Neiman Marcus Chocolate Chip Cookies

Source: All Recipes
Servings: Makes 30 cookies

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
3 tbsp sugar
1 egg
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp instant espresso coffee powder
1 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugars at medium speed until light and fluffy.  Add egg and vanilla extract and mix until well combined.

2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Slowly beat into the butter mixture at low-speed until combined.  Stir in the espresso coffee powder and chocolate chips.

3. Drop 1 oz scoops of dough on greased baking sheets.  Bake for 16-18 minutes, until nicely browned around the edges.  I take mine out at exactly 16 minutes so they stay a little chewy in the middle.

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