Christmas Cookie Recipe: Peanut Butter Cookies

Admit it.

You knew cookies were coming this What’s Cooking Wednesday.

I won’t be making the amount I did last year, but I can’t let Christmas pass without a few types of cookies. Mom trained me well!

In fact, today’s recipe’s is my mom’s, although she always makes “Peanut Butter Blossoms,” which are peanut butter cookies with a Hershey’s Kiss nestled in the center. I’ll include those directions here as well for those who are interested, but since I didn’t have any kisses (of the chocolate persuasion), I went with the old-fashioned peanut butter criss cross kind of cookie.

This is also my first of, I hope, two entries in Susan, the Food Blogga‘s Eat Christmas Cookies event. Last year I submitted Thumbprints, another *very* basic but delicious Christmas cookie.

What can I say? Christmas cookies aren’t about fancy at our house; they’re just about YUM.

See lots of other great recipes at Susan’s Eat Christmas Cookies round-up here.

Mom’s Peanut Butter Cookies
(makes about 10 dozen)

  • 1/2 c shortening
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 c brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 egg, unbeaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 c peanut butter
  • 1 3/4 c sifted flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp milk

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. Mix shortening and sugars, and then add the egg and vanilla. Beat well.

3. Add in peanut butter. Blend well.

4. Add milk and mix in.

5. Mix together dry ingredients in a separate bowl. and add gradually to mixture. Mix well until a soft dough is formed. I do this last part by hand.

6. Pull off small chunks to roll into balls and then roll balls in sugar.

7. If you are making plain peanut butter cookies, put the balls on an ungreased cookie sheet and then flatten out with a fork, criss-crossing as shown in the photo. Bake for about 8-10 minutes, until cookies are lightly browning on top.

8. If you are making peanut butter blossoms, put the balls on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 8 minutes. Then remove and place a Hershey’s Kiss on top of each cookie, pressing and twisting slightly so that the cookie cracks around the edges. Bake for another 2-3 minutes. Let sit until chocolate cools.

Buon appetito!

29 Beans of Wisdom to “Christmas Cookie Recipe: Peanut Butter Cookies”
  1. I love, love peanut butter and will definitely make this! Thanks for the recipe!

    Grace @ Sandier Pastures’s last blog post..WW – Dubai in December

    Enjoy Grace! These cookies are one of my favorites 🙂

  2. 12.10.2008

    I’m glad you posted this. I was thinking about you, your cookies, your open fire and Christmas spirit just yesterday! (Drool away.)

    Hee hee…still going strong here! Supposed to be a nasty day…perhaps I’ll do some more baking….

  3. Great recipe.

    I just saw on CNN Int’l there is a big storm headed our way. Lots of rain and wind.

    Perfect weather for baking. 🙂

    nyc/caribbean ragazza’s last blog post..What’s Cooking Wednesday – Strawberry Rhubarb Tarts

    Just started raining here…I hear it’s supposed to last all day and into tomorrow too.

  4. 12.10.2008

    Christmas cookies, yum! Your recipe sounds great!
    Last year I made marzipan “fruits” and cinnamon stars – deeply yummy, especially the cinnamon stars – “zimtsterne”

    Absolute Vanilla’s last blog post..I’m back – and the guinea fowl chronicles continue…

    Mmmm cinnamon stars…care to share a recipe?

  5. 12.10.2008

    The cookies looks so beautiful and delicious pilled up like that.

    Thank you 🙂 They are definitely tasty!

  6. 12.10.2008

    Oh , these are favorites! I’ve already made a double batch of peanut butter kiss cookies, and I’m told it’s time to make some more. Not sure if I could resist adding the kiss and serving them plain, but your peanut butter cookies look beautiful as well!

    anno’s last blog post..Sunday Scribblings: Traditions — Yet another list

    My mom never makes them without the kisses either; I like to be different…plus they don’t sell Hershey’s kisses here (and I’ve apparently eaten all the ones my mom has sent) 😉

  7. 12.10.2008

    Yum! I think I’ll try this recipe for a party my design class is having next week. Thanks!

    Gini’s last blog post..The Hugs Heal Shop Makeover and 3 Awesome New Designs!

    I hope you enjoy it! If you like things *really* peanut buttery, you might want to up the amount as these are quite subtly PB-y :

  8. Michele

    How did you get shortening in Italy? Do you bring it from home?

    *lowers head* My mom sends Crisco.

  9. 12.10.2008

    Wow, those look absolutely delicious! This is definitely getting bookmarked and I’ll be giving it a try at the weekend!

    Vixel’s last blog post..Christmas Songs

    Enjoy Vixel!

  10. 12.10.2008

    Love the little santa. I am a sucker for cutesie style Christmas decor. BTW, PB Blossoms are my favorite cookie. Then again it is hard NOT to like anything with PB in it. Maddie feels the same way 🙂

    Nice job. How long before they are all gone??

    You’re assuming there are still some here? Hah! Yes, the doggies *love* these…peanut butter hounds!

  11. 12.10.2008

    Those cookies look wonderful! I love Peanut Butter…



    Me too Rosa! Thanks so much for stopping by 🙂

  12. joanne at frutto della passione

    What about an M&M in the center? I always serve peanut butter cookies with M&Ms scattered over them at my little guy’s birthday parties and the two taste pretty good together. Would that be a valid substitute?

    joanne at frutto della passione’s last blog post..Anna’s nuts!

    Sounds great to me Joanne! I love chocolate and peanut butter together. Any idea how the candy shell would do in the heat? Hmm… (I can’t find plain M&Ms here either though) 🙁

  13. Oh, when I was a kid, I used to love to make peanut butter blossoms with Hershey’s kisses. Can you find a more kid-friendly cookie? And our Christmas cookies tend to be unfussy family favorites too. But that’s part of their charm. Thanks for this deliciously classic recipe, Michelle! Ciao!

    Susan from Food Blogga’s last blog post..How to Make Traditional Italian Almond Biscotti

    They are *definitely* great for kids…even to help making them (as are many of my Mom’s go-to cookie recipes) 🙂

  14. 12.10.2008

    How far do you have to travel to find peanut butter in Calabria? I used to have people bring it to me from the States, but for the past year I’ve been able to find it at the supermarket locally!

    saretta’s last blog post..Via Puccini

    In the past couple years, it’s been showing up closer and closer to me! Most big supermarkets have it now (quite expensive, but it’s there)!

  15. 12.10.2008

    Oh my heavens! I was just wanting to make peanut butter cookies with kisses in them, and I’ve never done it before…thank you for the directions!! I was also really wanting to win the lottery…can you make that happen as well? I’ll totally give you a cut of the winnings 😉

    sadira’s last blog post..Holiday Presence :: Day Fifteen

    Hah! Great timing! Now let’s see what we can do about this lottery thing….

  16. 12.10.2008

    I *love* peanut butter cookies! 🙂 This is slightly different then the one I usually make….think I might have to give this one a try! YUM!! 🙂

    LuLu’s last blog post..Feast of the Immaculate Conception

    Hope you like these too LuLu!

  17. 12.10.2008

    I love how peanut butter cookies always have the fork print!

    I looked around on recent posts to see if you had posted the winner for the Diana Spechler novel, “Who By Fire.”

    Have you had the drawing yet? I only ask because I’m about to purchase a good amount of books from amazon 🙂

    Eryn’s last blog post..I couldn’t resist…

    I snuck it in at the end of this post Eryn; sorry you weren’t the lucky gal, but do let me know what you think of the rest of the book when you finish…and feel free to use my Amazon link for your purchases 😉

  18. YUM. You sure you can’t make more of these for our shopping day? You know we won’t find anything this good around here!!

    Cherrye at My Bella Vita’s last blog post..Celebrating Christmas in Italy, Part IV: Christmas Day Traditions

    This is an excellent argument, Cherrye.

  19. Karina

    I am so looking forward to cheating on Jenny Craig this Christmas, and these cookies just topped the list of ways I’m going to do it. Lol

    Love that kind of holiday planning Karina!

  20. Bobbie in Alaska!

    Peanut Butter cookies are my favorite!

    Funny thing, I have never made them for Christmas. I always have to try to something new for the holidays, this year being Lemoncello’s – from FoodBlogga, along with my traditional Zucchini Bread and Pecan Dreams.

    I think after the hollidays are over I am going to make a batch.

    Mmmm, I’ll have some of each Bobbie 🙂

  21. Pat

    Yummy looking cookies Michelle! Do you make cuccidatti ( fig cookies) too?

    I’ve never even heard of them Pat; they sound Sicilian?

  22. Gil

    This post is killing me as they look just like the ones they used to serve at the school in my town and at our Board of Education meetings. Peanuts are now a no-no due to the advent of food allergies. Time for me to go buy some Nabisco peanut butter cookies.

    Oh come on Gil…it’s time to bake! 😉

  23. 12.11.2008

    You can make a thumbprint in the cookies before you bake them and pipe or spoon some melted chocolate into the space after they have cooled. Not quire the same as a kiss, but just as good.
    I would send you some kisses but I don’t buy Hershey chocolate anymore. I am boycotting them!

    Good suggestion. I think I may have OD’d on the blossoms over the years b/c I actually really enjoy these without the chocolate now. I’m sure my tastes will change again in a few years. Yes, I remembered your Hershey boycott. I don’t have a choice but to boycott as their products aren’t sold here….

  24. 12.13.2008

    These look deliziosissimi! Knowing how much PB costs in Italy, I hope your PB cookie eaters appreciate your efforts! 🙂

    Natalie’s last blog post..Sick in America

    Hah, good point! Luckily I eat most of them…and I’m *very* appreciative 😉

  25. 12.13.2008

    I think I like peanut butter cookies better without the chocolate. Maybe just because I love the criss-cross fork print; it’s one of those things that never changes. These are great photos too — wonderful composition and the cookies came out looking really crispy and light.

    I hear you on the criss cross! It’s what gets me too. Thanks for the compliments on the photos–I wasn’t *thrilled* with them because they could be crisper but I also wasn’t dedicating any more minutes to adjusting them 😉

  26. 12.14.2008

    My “standby cookie” tends to be chocolate-chip, but I seem to keep forgetting how delicious and easy peanut butter cookies are to bake. I think I’ll be baking some of these soon!

    Anali’s last blog post..Winter Morning Cinnamon Rolls

    I’m with you on the chocolate chips…coming Friday!

  27. Shebella

    Your pictures are so fun and pretty. What is your secret?

    Thanks Mary! I think the most important thing is natural light. With composition, my advice is to copy photos you like–you may not be able to put into words why you like them, but if you mimic the set-up, you’re more likely to end up with a good photo too. And for close-ups, don’t be afraid of your macro setting!

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