These old fashioned peanut butter cookies are soft and chewy with a hint of peanut crunch. Just like Grandma used to make!
When my Grandma made cookies, there were always a few regulars on the cookie plate. They included butter cookies, sugar cookies, and these -- old fashioned peanut butter cookies with a criss-cross pattern on top!
People seem to either love peanut butter or hate it. But if you love it, then you will love these cookies! They have a soft and chewy texture, a creamy peanut butter taste, and just a little bit of crunch from the ground peanuts. Yum!
An American Original
Peanut butter cookies first appeared in cookbooks in the 1930's, and mid century children quickly fell in love them. Washington Carver (1864-1943), famed agricultural scientist, inventor, and professor at the Tuskegee Institute, invented them. He was promoting peanuts to farmers as an alternative crop to cotton when beetles were destroying cotton crops. Carver came up with many uses for peanuts, his most famous being cookies!
Why The Criss Cross on Top?
The signature criss-cross design on the peanut butter cookie is not only decorative, it actually serves a purpose. Pressing the cookies down flattens them so that they can bake evenly. The cookie packed with peanut butter is so dense that if it were not pressed down, it would not bake thoroughly.
Hints For Peanut Butter Cookie Success
You probably keep all the ingredients for peanut butter cookies in your cupboard, except maybe the peanuts. I bought a jar of roasted, salted peanuts from the grocery store and then used a handy nut grinder on the "fine grind" setting to get the small, even pieces I needed.
Keep the following things in mind when making these tasty cookies:
- Use a good quality, non-greasy peanut butter. I use Jiff creamy peanut butter.
- Chill the dough before baking. It's tempting to skip this step, but the cookies are easier to form and to make the criss-crosses in when the dough is cold.
- Use a food processor or blender and pulse the peanuts to a fine grind if you don't have a nut grinder.
Kids still name peanut butter as one of their favorite cookies, but big kids (me!) like them, too! These are the best ones I've ever had. Give them a try and let me know what you think.
If you love cookies, try our favorite Chocolate Frosted Pecan Cookies while you're in the mood for baking!
Old Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies
- 1 cup butter room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 cup creamy peanut butter
- 2 ½ cups flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup roasted salted peanuts finely ground
- Set aside a small plate with granulated sugar (about 3 tablespoons.)
- In a large bowl, mix butter, sugar and brown sugar with an electric mixer until consistency is fluffy.
- Mix in eggs and vanilla until thoroughly combined.
- Using a spatula, mix in peanut butter, then add flour, baking soda, and baking powder, stirring by hand.
- Fold in ground peanuts.
- Chill dough for one hour.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Using a cookie scooper or tablespoon, roll cookies into evenly sized balls roughly 2-inches in diameter, then roll the balls in granulated sugar.
- Place on a non-stick cookie sheet or a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Using the back of a fork, press down on the cookie to flatten it and make a criss cross design.
- Bake 10-12 minutes or until edges begin to turn a light golden brown.