Peanut butter cookies are classics for a reason.  My hubby and I love them soft and chewy with just a bit of crispiness on the edges.  This is an old-fashioned version of peanut butter cookies, which means it uses less sugar and peanut butter than most modern recipes.  More is not always better, as these cookies prove!  And hello – less sugar and peanut butter means fewer calories, but not less flavor!

This recipe is my variation on the classic recipe found in the 1950 version of the Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook.  The recipes in that cookbook were developed during the wartime rationing of the 1940’s.  Consequently, most of the recipes for cakes, cookies and other baked treats use modest amounts of things that were rationed during the war, like butter and sugar.  Now that we are all trying to limit sugars and fats for health reasons, these old-fashioned recipes deserve to be brought out of retirement!

I’m certainly not saying these cookies are health food, but whenever I bake a batch they do wonders for the health of my marriage.  ; )

Enjoy!

PS – Love old fashioned classic cookies?

Try my Updated Snickerdoodles – sweet, buttery and perfectly spicy!

 

Pin this Peanut Butter Cookie recipe for later!

Pin for Peanut Butter Cookies

Here’s What You Need to Make Old Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies:

  • 1/4 cup shortening*
  • 1/4 cup butter*
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

*You can substitute 1/2 cup margarine for the shortening and butter combo – or you can use all butter.  However, using all butter will result in cookies that will be a bit crisper and go stale faster.  This happens because butter contains some water, while shortening and margarine do not.

 

Here’s What to Do:

In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt; set aside.  In an electric mixer, cream together the shortening, butter, peanut butter and sugars, 1-2 minutes.  Beat in the egg and vanilla till well blended.  Add flour mixture and blend on low just until combined.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat liner.  Using a spoon, cookie scoop, or #50 disher, scoop out small balls of dough (depending on the size of your scoop, you should get 20-30 cookies) and place all on one sheet.  Place sheet with dough balls in freezer for 20 minutes to firm up.

While dough chills, preheat oven to 375.  Line a second baking sheet with parchment or a silpat.  Divide dough between the two sheets, spacing 2″ apart.  Using a fork, a cookie stamp or the bottom of a glass, press dough balls into 1/2″ thick rounds.  Dip your tool in flour between pressing each cookie to prevent sticking.

Bake cookies 10-12 minutes or until cookies are very lightly browned on the edges and they are set but not hard.  If you prefer your peanut butter cookies crunchy, bake a few minutes more.  Cool cookies on sheets a few minutes, then remove to cooling racks to cool completely.

Baking Tips for Peanut Butter Cookies

Scoops, or dishers, of various sizes make quick work of forming cookies, truffles, and even filling muffin cups.

various dishers for portioning doughs and batters

Think outside the box when you need to flatten cookie dough.  Of course you can use the tried-and-true floured fork, but anything flat with a decorative pattern will work, like this meat tenderizing mallet!

meat mallet for printing peanut butter cookies

 

Old-Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies

Old-fashioned, chewy peanut butter cookies, with the perfect balance of sweet, salty and peanutty goodness.  The perfect companion to a glass of cold milk!
Keyword Classic Cookies, Peanut Butter
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 42 minutes
Author Elizabeth at thewildolive.org

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

Instructions

  • In a small bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt; set aside.  In an electric mixer, cream together the shortening, butter, peanut butter and sugars, 1-2 minutes.  Beat in the egg and vanilla till well blended.  Add flour mixture and blend on low just until combined.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat liner.  Using a spoon, cookie scoop, or #50 disher, scoop out small balls of dough (depending on the size of your scoop, you should get 20-30 cookies) and place all on one sheet.  Place sheet with dough balls in freezer for 20 minutes to firm up.
  • While dough chills, preheat oven to 375.  Line a second baking sheet with parchment or a silpat.  Divide dough between the two sheets, spacing 2" apart.  Using a fork, a cookie stamp or the bottom of a glass press dough balls into 1/2" thick rounds.  Dip your tool in flour between pressing each cookie to prevent sticking.
  • Bake cookies 10-12 minutes or until cookies are very lightly browned on the edges and they are set but not hard.  If you prefer your peanut butter cookies crunchy, bake a few minutes more.  Cool cookies on sheets a few minutes, then remove to cooling racks to cool completely.