"Fuel your body...Delight your senses"
Stephanie Brina-Herres, MS, RD, CDN
Stephanie is an American Heart Association award winning Registered Dietitian (RD) and NY State credentialed Certified Dietitian-Nutritionist (CDN).
With solid expertise built over more than three decades of practice and spanning six states, Stephanie's background includes being a seasoned clinician, consultant, educator (including full-time professor), presenter, author, researcher, program coordinator, consumer scientist (including recipe developer), advocate, counselor, coach, and mentor.
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2011Want a cookie recipe that is EASY to make & that virtually any one can make for the holidays? (or any other time for that matter!)
These work quite well for many a cookie exchange, too.
Peanut Butter Blossoms
We do a version of these in our family without adding extra fat besides what is already in the peanut butter, so the cookies with the rolled oats in them come out chewier that way. As a result, the photo shown below won’t look like the sugar coated versions of peanut butter blossoms that you see posted at the various peanut butter manufacturer or candy company websites. We just wanted to be sure to give you a heads up about why the photo will look different.
The version our family does has no additional fat besides the fat in the peanut butter (which is plenty, actually) and some of the flour has been replaced with Rolled Oats aka Old Fashioned Oats.
My husband suggested using an “alpine skier slope” analogy to describe how easy or hard a recipe might be, so this qualifies for a “beginner slope” analogy as in just above a “bunny slope” per se. (The stovetop peanut butter chews children typically make in middle school in Family & Consumer Science class would be at the easiest “bunny slope” level).
Although all nut prices are up this year, including peanut prices and thus peanut butter prices, still this is a cookie that many children as well as adults can enjoy as long as there are no allergy or sensitivity issues, of course.
Many variations of a recipe for these exist and if you enter the name “Peanut Butter Blossoms” into a search engine box you’ll find a variety of recipe options will come up for you to choose from.
A recipe calling for 1.5 – 1.75 cups of flour will probably make about 4 dozen or 48 cookies. Our recipe makes a smaller batch of 25-30 cookies.
We substitute Rolled Oats for some of the flour, use no butter nor any butter flavored shortening, and make a totally different recipe.
All the equipment besides your oven that you’ll need is:
- one medium mixing bowl
- a silicone spatula and a large mixing spoon
- measuring cups and measuring spoons
- a couple of cookie sheets
- some parchment baking paper (preferably double-sided silicone coated)
- size #40 cookie scoop
- two oven mitts (hot mitts)
- trivets or hot pads to put the hot cookie sheets down on (we like silicone mats for this)
- wire cookie cooling racks
- airtight storage container
- offset wide cookie spatula/turner
Here’s our recipe:
Preheat oven and bake at 350°F
Makes approx 25-30 cookies (you also need that many Chocolate Kisses, unwrapped)
- 1 cup hydrogenated creamy peanut butter *
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 3 Tbsp. All-purpose Flour (preferably Unbleached)
- 1/4 cup Rolled Oats
- 1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
- 2 Tbsp Tap Water
*this recipe will not work as well if you use a more liquid oil peanut butter as then the peanut oil is more likely to leak out of suspension; look for an ingredient label that reads something like: roasted peanuts; sugar; hydrogenated vegetable oils (cottonseed, soybean and rapeseed); salt.
Although from a nutritional profile standpoint a more liquid oil type peanut butter is preferable, for cookie making it simply will not work quite as well. We developed this recipe to skip using any butter fat or butter flavored shortening, so that was our compromise to remove some saturated or hydrogenated fat.
- Into medium size mixing bowl add sugar, peanut butter, and egg; mix. Then add vanilla, oats, flour, and finally stir in water up to 3 Tbsp so that mixture is easier to portion.
- Mix thoroughly.
- Line each cookie sheet with double-sided silicone-coated parchment baking paper.
- Scoop a ball of approx 1- 1.5 Tbsp of cookie dough (#60 or #40 cookie scoop or use your preferred technique using tableware spoons to shape a ball around 1″ in diameter) and place on parchment covered baking sheets.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown on top.
- Remove entire sheet of parchment baking paper from cookie sheet onto wire cookie cooling rack. Place a single Chocolate Kiss in the center of each cookie while the cookies are still hot.
- Once cookies have cooled off, using a cookie spatula, remove cookies from parchment paper and place cookies on another wire cookie cooling rack and allow to completely cool before storing in a SINGLE layer as the chocolate kiss in the center will remain soft at room temperature. [We actually store ours single layer (before later transferring these to holiday tins for gifting as part of a cookie assortment) in a large round pizza pan lined with plastic wrap and then put a clear plastic bag over the top and close it up. Whenever anyone opens the bag, the air becomes perfumed with the aroma of peanuts! If you like peanuts, you’ll be in for a treat!]
Cookie recipes you will find on the www most likely will be variations of a drop type sugar cookie and thus suggest using creamy smooth peanut butter (although for a different texture you could use other peanut butter options), some butter or butter flavored shortening, white sugar or brown sugar or a mixture of those sugars as you prefer, some egg, vanilla extract, some flour, some baking soda plus some salt, possibly some baking powder (depends on the recipe), a little liquid such as milk, and for the tops of the cookies, milk chocolate “kisses” look nice.
A video showing the basic method for a drop sugar cookie provides a nice demonstration. I personally prefer recipes without the extra butter in them that the recipe used in the video features.
I do think that using a clean wire whisk or large fork to mix together the flour and leavening agents is always a good idea. Actually, if you stir together the dry ingredients in a separate bowl using a wire whisk or large fork, you will probably get a better dispersement of the leavening agents, etc., into the flour than if you sifted the mixture together as some testing to that end has indicated.
Note: we don’t roll the completed raw cookie dough balls in granulated sugar either–whether or not you do that is totally up to you, but we do NOT suggest it.
The version of the cookies we like to make are yummy just as is!
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3 Responses to “Holiday Baking – Very Easy-to-Make Peanut Butter Blossoms Cookies”
J Neyrg said on December 23rd, 2011 at 1:17 am
Can I use “sun” butter in these cookies as my g’son is allergic to peanuts. It is the same consistency of regular peanut butter. Thank you.
Stephanie said on December 23rd, 2011 at 2:44 am
Your’s is an excellent question about the Sunflower Butter product and if it can be substituted for hydrogenated Peanut Butter in this cookie recipe.
Honestly, I have never baked with Sunflower Butter, however, I looked the product up on the www and this is what I noted: there is a version of the product (SunButter® Natural No-Stir Creamy) that is noted to be made from the following ingredients: Sunflower Seed, Evaporated Cane Syrup, Palm oil to prevent separation, Salt, and Natural Mixed Tocopherols to preserve freshness. http://www.sunbutter.com/products-natural-no-stir.php
Based on that description of that version of a Sun Butter product, I would say you could probably use it in place of the hydrogenated Peanut Butter mentioned in the recipe, but it is likely some of the oil may leak out (it will depend upon the palm oil used) and that would be unavoidable. All that will do is make the cookie a little chewier at first after it bakes, but then the cookie would again soften a tiny bit once it fully cools and is stored in an air-tight closed plastic container–just remember these cookies need to be stored as a single layer only.
We did try using a thinner style of peanut butter without so much hydrogenated fat in it and some oil leaked out on the parchment paper, so that is why we don’t put that type of nut butter as our first suggested choice when making a recipe like this one. The product will simply be denser and chewier when that happens.
The key sensory element for these cookies is the seed or nut butter that is used–it will predominate.
We often pair these cookies up in a mixed cookie gift container with some other sugar cookies that tend to be drier because they contain rolled oats and use some egg whites, etc., so the nut butter cookies help to keep the other cookies from drying out. A seed butter cookie with some palm oil in it should act in the same way.
I can well appreciate that you would like to make your g’son a pb blossom look-alike cookie and what I don’t know is how Sun Butter tastes. I honestly don’t know if it can provide the flavor to carry such a cookie off.
Let me know if you decide to experiment using the SunButter product and if so, how they come out.
J Neyr said on January 22nd, 2012 at 12:22 am
Thank you for your input. Sunbutter is not distributed where I live so I have not tasted it. Sunbutter is the only product my daughter could find that is not processed in a plant where other nuts are processed as my g’son is very allergic to peanuts. See this page for further info if you are interested. Thank you again.
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