Old-Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies

These old-fashioned peanut butter cookies, made with sugar, flour, peanut butter, and eggs, are like the cookies you grew up with, crispy, chewy, and peanut buttery.

A stack of five old-fashioned peanut butter cookies, with crosshatch marks on top

Adapted from Moira Sanders | Lori Elstone | The Harrow Fair Cookbook | Whitecap, 2010

According to the authors of the cookbook in which we found this recipe, these yummy peanut butter cookies come from Mila Klomp, who won 1st prize in the 9- to 12-year-old category at a local fair. While don’t know Mila, it’s abundantly clear to us that she certainly knows her peanut butter cookies. Er, let us rephrase that. For someone so young, she certainly knows her old-fashioned peanut butter cookies. Crisp at the edges, chewy on the inside, and peanutty through and through. [Editor’s Note: If you have a thing for peanut butter cookies that are crisp throughout, fear not, we can appease that craving with a recipe, too.] Pass the milk, please.–Renee Schettler

Old-Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies

A stack of five old-fashioned peanut butter cookies, with crosshatch marks on top
These old-fashioned peanut butter cookies, made with sugar, flour, peanut butter, and eggs, are like the cookies you grew up with, crispy, chewy, and peanut buttery.
Moira Sanders & Lori Elstone

Prep 15 mins
Cook 10 mins
Total 1 hr
Dessert
American
48 cookies
131 kcal
5 / 11 votes
Print RecipeBuy the The Harrow Fair Cookbook cookbook

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Ingredients 

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar preferably light
  • 2 sticks (8 oz) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup creamy or crunchy peanut butter
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda*
  • 1 tablespoon hot water

Directions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment, beat the granulated and brown sugars and butter on high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the peanut butter, eggs, and vanilla, reduce the speed to medium, and beat until thoroughly combined.
  • Mix the flour and salt together in a small bowl. With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour and salt to the peanut butter mixture and blend thoroughly. In a small bowl, stir together the baking soda and hot water and add it to the cookie dough, mixing until just combined.
  • Drop the dough in heaping tablespoons onto the parchment. Gently press a fork into each cookie, first vertically, then horizontally, to create the classic peanut butter cookie crisscross. (If an extra sparkly, extra crunchy cookie is desired, dip your fork in a little granulated sugar prior to pressing it into the dough.)
  • Bake for 8 to 12 minutes, until the cookies have barely begun to turn golden at the edges.
  • Let the cookies cool for a minute or more on the baking sheet, then move them to a wire rack to cool at least a little. (The cookies will get crisper the longer they cool.) Store the cookies in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Print RecipeBuy the The Harrow Fair Cookbook cookbook

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Notes

*Why do you dissolve baking soda in hot water for baking cookies?

First off, you use baking soda to help keep those peanut butter cookies from spreading too much (and becoming one giant cookie, as good as that sounds). But why mix it with hot water? Have you ever gotten a taste of pure baking soda? Yes? That’s why. Dissolving it a little bit, at the end of the recipe, and then combining it with all the other ingredients ensures that it’s evenly distributed within the mixture.

Show Nutrition

Serving: 1cookieCalories: 131kcal (7%)Carbohydrates: 16g (5%)Protein: 2g (4%)Fat: 7g (11%)Saturated Fat: 3g (19%)Trans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 18mg (6%)Sodium: 99mg (4%)Potassium: 54mg (2%)Fiber: 1g (4%)Sugar: 9g (10%)Vitamin A: 129IU (3%)Calcium: 10mg (1%)Iron: 1mg (6%)

Recipe Testers' Reviews

This is a perfect old-fashioned peanut butter cookie. The recipe is as simple as a cookie can be: cream together the butter and sugars, add the dry ingredients, scoop, and bake.

The yield really was 5 dozen and the cookies baked in exactly 8 minutes to achieve a perfect crunchy edge and chewy center.

This will definitely be my go-to peanut butter cookie recipe.

I wasn’t a big fan of peanut butter cookies, but this recipe made one out of me. This is an amazingly moist and chewy cookie that can be made in a cinch. Just lovely.

The time of 8 minutes was bang on.


Originally published September 7, 2012

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Comments

  1. Well I just made them as is (except I screwed up and added the baking soda to the flour and salt, as per most recipes) I do love the results. What is the reason behind adding baking soda to water first? This chemistry stuff escapes me.

    Thinking today I’ll try the recipe with the Speculoos. How bad can it be? The other thought was making a cream of butter, speculoos and conf sugar as a filling to a thin chocolate or vanilla crisp cookie…(can you tell we’re procrastinating here?)

    Thanks!

  2. Anyone tried replacing peanut butter with speculoos? I love a good peanut butter cookie and will make these as is, but I’ve also been eyeballing that half jar of speculoos thinking they’d make a great cookie…? Ideas?

  3. Just made a double batch. Really yummy. FYI a double batch is a bit too much for the Classic KitchenAid mixer, it worked ok, but it required a little help with the process of adding the watered baking powder. Have to get rid of these, out of my house before I eat them all!

    1. Well, to me that is hen I know I have a hit: When I have to unload baked goods on friends and family because they are so good.

      One note about the classic KitchenAid mixer: I have both the classic and the 7-quart. I find that when making most recipes, the 7-quart is just too large. So I pull it out only if I’m doubling or tripling a recipe. Or sometimes I just make two batches of the same batter or dough in the classic.

  4. OMG! This is the perfect peanut butter cookie! They are like little peanut butter pillows of deliciousness!!

  5. Do you patiently wait to order your annual supply of Girl Scout cookies because you haven’t found an equivalent? Wait no more. These peanut butter cookies are delicious both straight from the oven or the next day if they haven’t been devoured. They’ve become a family favorite and are so simple to make, although most nights I bake half the batch and refrigerate the rest for another great snack a couple nights later.

    1. We can think of no higher compliment, Susan. Many, many thanks, not just for letting us know your family’s fondness for the cookies, but for the tip on baking half a batch at a time, as I love the delayed, er, rather, extended gratification.

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