Peanut butter cookies were the first cookie I ever made. They weren't very good. They came out hard, crumbly, and without a lot of flavor. My peanut butter cookies have vastly improved since then, and I have a couple tried and true recipes now (yes, there are a couple things I can bake without it coming out like hell).
So of course, once I've got something down, I have to try to screw it up! What do you think, Helpful Baby?
Yeah! Woo hoo! Cookies! (His enthusiasm is so infectious.)
It's very nearly Christmas (editor's note: it's May is totally almost Christmas, okay??), and I haven't gotten to use my Christmas cookie cutters yet this year. Instead of doing my usual, predictable (but lovely) peanut butter cookies smushed down by a fork, I thought I would adapt this recipe to make rolled peanut butter cookies without sugar. My sister can't eat sugary crap, so I am a kind soul who will happily make her sugarless crap instead.
I often like to bake as healthy as possible. This is not one of those times. Holidays are tough for people trying to eat healthy, but that doesn't mean you can skimp on the cookies! They have to be fatty and sweet. They're cookies! Just stick to one. Maybe two. Don't cheat, I'm watching you.
So this is the kind of stuff you want to get together.
Except, uh, leave out the milk. And grab your whole wheat pastry flour. And scrub your counter before putting everything on it, because it's a lot harder to do after. You know what, just don't pay attention to that photo, I don't know what I was doing. Here are the ingredients:
- 1/2 cup fat (I forgot to ask my husband for butter at the store, so I'm still using shortening, bleh)* Optional as always, but highly recommended.
- 1 cup peanut butter
- 3/4 cup Splenda
- 3/4 cup sugar-free maple syrup
- 2 eggs
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 2 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 helpful baby*
Splenda, as chronic dieters and diabetics know, is a non-nutritive sweetener called sucralose. Your body doesn't digest it, so it has no impact on your blood sugar. It's also disgusting. But putting anything in cookies makes it edible, so there you go.
I substituted sugar-free maple syrup for brown sugar. Maple syrup has a lovely flavor that nicely complements peanut butter. So lovely, in fact, my husband will smear peanut butter on his pancakes, drizzle syrup on top, and then mash it all together. Deranged. But I love him.
Anyhoo, dump your peanut butter, Splenda, syrup, and fat (preferably butter, sigh) in one bowl and cream it together.
Once you get that together, mix in your vanilla and eggs.
In another bowl, combine your flour with your salt, baking soda, and baking powder. I use whole wheat pastry flour instead of that all-purpose white junk. It doesn't taste quite the same, but it's slightly better for you. I think whole wheat tastes better with peanut butter and/or oatmeal cookies anyway, but it does take some getting used to. If you don't usually bake with whole wheat, you might want to split it half whole wheat, half all-purpose.
See? I used two separate bowls! It's almost like I know what I'm doing!
Honestly, I usually don't separate it out like this. I know it's a baking faux pas, but I'll cream my fat and sugar together, then add the baking soda/powder and/or salt, and then mix in the flour. Then there's one less bowl to wash! Yeah, I'm that lazy. You can be lazy too. Don't worry, I won't tell anyone.
For the purposes of the blog, I actually did things The Right Way. If you did it, too, now is the time you want to start slowly mixing your wet and dry ingredients. And if you did it the lazy way, no one will hear about it from me.
Take off your rings and get your hands all up in that. We're forming a fairly stiff dough here. Ooh yeah baby.
Once everything is all mixed up in a nice ball, cover it up and chill for a couple hours.
I took this opportunity to break out the food processor and destroy some candy canes for another cookie recipe, which threw the Helpful Baby into a screaming fit because apparently the noise is scary even when he's in his distractingly fun Jumperoo. Oh well. So much for the candy cane cookies.
After a couple hours of consoling an offended baby, I pulled the dough out and rolled it one-handed (ergo the lack of pictures) while cuddling my once-Helpful, now-Dubious Baby with the other arm. You probably want the dough about a half inch thick. I got 36 cookies out of it; your mileage may vary.
Bake for as long as you feel like it. I dunno. Ten minutes is good.
Yeah I'm baking on aluminum foil again. You got a problem with it? Haters gonna hate.
They should be easy to get off the sheet when they're done. Set those suckers to cool on a baking rack. Mmm, smells good. They're soft and delicious on their own, but you can decorate them with sugar-free icing if you want to make them even better.
Is it a gingerbread man, or a reindeer face? I'll let you decide.