Peanut Butter Cookies (Gluten-free)

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For a recent family get-together, I made this flour-free version of old-fashioned peanut butter cookies.  They got rave reviews, so I’m sharing the recipe with you.  The gluten-free eaters loved them, and the peanut butter lovers loved them too, so it was win-win 🙂  Next time I make a batch, I’m going to try and reduce the granulated sugar to one cup.  I’ll let you know if the quality suffers at all.

Peanut Butter Cookies
2 cups creamy peanut butter
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pre-heat oven to 350° F. Using an electric mixer, beat the peanut butter and sugars on medium-high speed until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low and beat in the eggs, baking soda, vanilla, and salt. Mix until all ingredients are well combined. Roll heaping tablespoonfuls of the dough into balls and place on parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing them 2″ apart. With a fork dipped in a bit of cornstarch, flatten cookies slightly, making a crisscross pattern on top of each cookie.  Bake, rotating the baking sheets halfway through, until the edges are set, 9 to 11 minutes, being careful not to overbake. Cool slightly on the baking sheets, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.  Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

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Christmas Treats

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It feels like the right time for a few sweet Christmas treats. I’ve got a double batch of these Peanut Butter Chocolate Spirals cooling in the fridge. After I run a few errands, the dough will be ready to roll. We’ll have fresh cookies in time for coffee break 🙂

PB Chocolate Spirals

Peanut Butter dough

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
3 tbsp peanut butter
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 2/3 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
Cream together butter, sugar and peanut butter until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and mix well. Stir together flour, baking powder and salt. Add slowly to peanut butter mixture, mixing until well combined. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for 2 hours.

Chocolate dough (in the same bowl as the PB dough)
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 ounce semi-sweet chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
1 egg
1 1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup cocoa
1/4 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in egg. Add melted chocolate, mixing thoroughly. Stir together flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt. Add slowly to chocolate mixture, mixing until well combined. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill for 2 hours.

Once the dough is chilled, take half of each amount of dough and roll into 1/4″ thick rectangles. Layer the chocolate dough on top of the peanut butter dough. Beginning at the long end of the rectangle, roll doughs together to form a tightly rolled log. Re-wrap the roll and chill for about an hour (or up to 3 days). Repeat with remaining dough. For a more marbled effect in the baked cookies, fold the rectangle into thirds and roll dough into a rectangle again before forming the final log.

When ready to bake, slice the rolls of dough into desired thickness of slices (about 1/4″). Place slices on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake at 350° F for about 12 minutes, until the centers of the cookies are firm and bottom is golden brown. Baking time will depend on thickness of slices. Cool on pan for a couple of minutes, then remove to wire rack to cool completely.

Double Chocolate Marshmallow Krispy Bars

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I tried a new recipe today.  Although it’s not generating rave reviews with the fellows, I like it, so am sharing it with you.  It cuts into squares very nicely and would look great on a tray of assorted baking.

Double Chocolate Marshmallow Krispy Bars

 1/2 cup butter, softened

3/4 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

3/4 cup flour

2 tbsp cocoa

1/4 tsp baking powder

2 1/2 – 3 cups mini marshmallows

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 cup peanut butter

1 ½ cups rice krispies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray a 9” x 13” pan with cooking spray and set aside.  Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.  Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla and stir to combine. In a small bowl mix together flour, cocoa and baking powder.  Spread batter into prepared pan and bake for 10 minutes. Do not over bake. Remove from oven and sprinkle marshmallows evenly over the top. Return to oven and bake 3-4 minutes longer, until marshmallows are puffy and melting. Cool completely.  Meanwhile, melt the chocolate chips and peanut butter, stirring to combine. Pour in the rice krispies and stir to coat.  Spread mixture evenly over the marshmallow layer.  Refrigerate to cool.  Cut into squares to serve.

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Peanut Butter Chocolate Spirals

This cookie is a nicely flavored crisp cookie, perfect for dunking in your hot chocolate.  The spirals are a bit more work initially, what with the two doughs and rolling and chilling, but the great thing is that you can make a double batch, clean up the kitchen and then slice and bake at your leisure.

PB Chocolate Spirals

Peanut Butter dough:

1/2 cup butter, softened

1/2 sugar

3 tbsp peanut butter

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 2/3 cup flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

pinch of salt

Cream together butter, sugar and peanut butter until light and fluffy.  Add egg and vanilla.  Stir together flour, baking powder and salt.  Add slowly to peanut butter mixture, mixing until well combined.  Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for 2 hours.

Chocolate dough (in the same bowl as the PB dough):

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup sugar

1 ounce semi-sweet chocolate, melted and slightly cooled

1 egg

1 1/4 cup flour

1/4 cup cocoa

1/4 tsp baking powder

pinch of salt

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Mix in egg.  Add melted chocolate, mixing thoroughly.  Stir together flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt.  Add slowly to chocolate mixture, mixing until well combined.  Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill for 2 hours.

Once the dough is chilled, take half of each amount of dough and roll into 1/4″ thick rectangles.  Layer the chocolate dough on top of the peanut butter dough.  Beginning at the long end of the rectangle, roll doughs together to form a tightly rolled log.  Re-wrap the roll and chill for about an hour (or up to 3 days).  Repeat with remaining dough.  For a more marbled effect in the baked cookies, fold the rectangle into thirds and roll dough into a rectangle again before forming the final log (which is what I did).

When ready to bake,  slice the rolls of dough into desired thickness of slices (about 1/4″).  Place slices on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees F for about 12 minutes, until the centers of the cookies are firm and bottom is golden brown.  Baking time will depend of thickness of slices.  Cool on pan for a couple of minutes, then remove to wire rack to cool completely.

Cookie Break – Nut Butter Cookies

What goes with cookies?  Milk, coffee, tea, hot chocolate, chocolate milk, take your pick!  These little crackle tops are just the ticket for a sweet treat  with your favorite beverage.

Nut Butter Cookies

1 cup butter or margarine, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 cups  almond butter OR smooth peanut butter

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla OR 1/2 tsp almond flavoring

2 1/2 cups flour

1 1/4 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

extra sugar for rolling

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Cream together butter and sugars until light and fluffy.  Add almond butter and mix thoroughly.  Beat in eggs one at a time.  Stir in vanilla.  Combine flour, baking powder and baking soda.  Add to butter mixture in three additions, mixing well after each addition.  Form dough into small balls (about an inch or so), roll in sugar and place on parchment-lined baking sheets (resist the urge to flatten them!).  Bake for about 11 minutes, until edges are just beginning to brown.   Be careful not to overbake.  Remove from oven, allowing cookies to cool slightly before removing to wire rack.  Makes about four dozen cookies.

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