Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies

Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

If I was a truly clever individual, I’d come up with some way to make cookies into a profound metaphor for life. I am not clever. Life is hard. Cookies are tasty. I guess life is always changing, but cookies always stay the same, and that’s a good thing. No matter what kind of day you’ve had, what kind of bad news has been dropped in your lap, or how spiteful your uterus might be, cookies are always delicious.

Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Normally I’m a chewy cookie kind of girl, but these peanut butter cookies are both crunchy and delicious. I love their intense peanut butteriness. My I think the average was about six cookies for everybody who tried these. It’s really hard not to go back for another taste.

Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

There’s nothing tricky or flashy here. Just pure peanut butter goodness. Sometimes simple is awesome.

Classic Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies
Yields 50
Straight up peanut butter cookies with a satisfying crunch
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
17 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
17 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
  2. 1 cup sugar
  3. 1 cup (189 grams) brown sugar
  4. 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  5. 1-1/3 cups (378 grams) peanut butter, creamy or chunky, your choice
  6. 2 eggs
  7. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  8. 1-3/4 cups (340 grams) all-purpose flour
  9. 1-1/3 teaspoons baking soda
  10. 1/2 teaspoon salt
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, combine flour,baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat together butter, sugar, and brown sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed. Let it mix for about three minutes.
  3. Turn the mixer to low and mix in the vegetable oil and peanut butter, then add the eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla.
  4. Finally, mix in the dry ingredients until combined.
  5. Place the dough in the refrigerator to chill for half an hour.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350 and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  7. Scoop out the cookie dough in ping pong ball scoops leaving a couple of inches between each one. Gently flatten the cookie dough with a fork in a criss cross pattern and bake for about 17 minutes.
  8. Allow the cookies to cool for three minutes on the cookie sheet then transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Adapted from I'm Just Here for More Food by Alton Brown
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Cookies

Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

When I step into the kitchen around Christmas time, I can’t help but think about my mom. Between her job and running my brother and me all over town for our eighty bajillion different activities, I have no idea how she managed to churn out so many amazing treats for the holidays. Her peanut butter fudge was legendary, and it’s by far the most popular recipe on my site. She made dozens upon dozens of peanut butter cookies, then took them to the next level by dipping them in chocolate. Did she ever sleep?

Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

I couldn’t resist following in her footsteps once again. I simply had to have these cookies. Peanut butter and chocolate is like heaven. And shock of all shocks, they’re actually easy to make. The cookies themselves are chewy and sweet, and the dark chocolate provides the perfect deep contrast. Also sprinkles. Because Christmas.

All I did was bake up a batch of my favorite peanut butter cookies, melt some dark chocolate with a drizzle of vegetable oil in the microwave, then dip and sprinkle to my heart’s content. This project could definitely benefit from some extra hands. It didn’t take me terribly long, but it would have been more fun to have some other dippers to play along. Can’t hurt.

Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Cookies | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Please please please make these chocolate-dipped peanut butter cookies. They’re so awesome. They need to become one of your holiday traditions.

Chocolate-Dipped Peanut Butter Cookies
Yields 30
Chewy peanut butter cookies get dipped in dark chocolate then sprinkled with joy for an awesome holiday tradition
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Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
9 min
Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
9 min
Ingredients
  1. 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  2. 1/2 cup butter, softened
  3. 1-1/4 cup brown sugar
  4. 3 tablespoons milk
  5. 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  6. 1 large egg
  7. 1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  8. 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  9. 3/4 teaspoon salt
  10. 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  11. 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat together peanut butter, butter, brown sugar, milk, and vanilla until well combined. Add the egg and continue beating until everything is smooth.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir together for 30 seconds.
  4. With your mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture and beat until everything just comes together.
  5. Scoop out your dough about a tablespoon at a time, leaving space for the cookies to spread. Gently press two fingers into the center of each dough ball to help flatten it.
  6. Bake for 8 to 9 minutes or until the cookies just barely start to brown around the edges. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for about 3 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  7. When the cookies are cooled, melt your chocolate with the vegetable oil in the narrowest container you have that you can still fit a cookie and your hand inside. I used the microwave. Just stop and stir your chocolate every 30 seconds until it's smooth.
  8. Dip each peanut butter cookie into the chocolate and allow the excess to drip back into the bowl. Place your cookie on wax paper and add the sprinkles while the chocolate is still melty. I had to put my cookies in the fridge to soften, but my kitchen is very warm. Still, it couldn't hurt. If your kitchen is quite cool, you may be able to leave them on the counter.
  9. Once the chocolate is set, you can serve these to your friends and family any chance you get.
Adapted from Jif Peanut Butter
Adapted from Jif Peanut Butter
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
 Be sure to check out all of the other great recipes from today’s Christmas Cookie Party hosted by Amber at Rick A Bam Boo!


Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Butter Cake | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Butter Cake

Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Butter Cake | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

Have I told you about the tragic years of my life where I lived in a country that didn’t sell Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups? What about my crazy environmentalist phase in middle school where I boycotted them because they had too much packaging? The moral of the story is, any day without Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups is not as good as it could be. Do you hear that Taiwan? Get on board. Also, England, I’m side eyeing you right now. Unacceptable.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Butter Cake | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

This chocolate peanut butter gooey butter cake is pretty much a peanut butter cup in cake form. It follows exactly the same principle as our pumpkin spice gooey butter cake, we just change up the cast a bit. We’re using a chocolaty devil’s food cake mix in place of the spice cake, and peanut butter in place of the pumpkin.

The bottom layer is dense and crumbly and intensely chocolatey, and the top layer is soft and well, gooey. The peanut butter chocolate combo is unstoppable. My coworkers devoured it in a matter of hours. I even heard a couple of people just went at it with a fork during a director’s meeting. It’s really that good.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Butter Cake | How to be Awesome on $20 a Day

I realize every culture has its favorite flavors and that diversity is beautiful, but I think the entire planet needs to get on board with the chocolate peanut butter combo. Let’s all make chocolate peanut butter gooey butter cake and get to work on world peace.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Butter Cake
Serves 12
Chocolate Peanut Butter Gooey Butter Cake is like a peanut butter cup in cake form. Just try to stop eating it.
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
40 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
40 min
For the cake layer
  1. 1 package devil's food cake mix
  2. 1 egg
  3. 1 stick (4 ounces) butter, melted
For the filling
  1. 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  2. 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  3. 3 eggs
  4. 1 teaspoon vanilla
  5. 1 stick (4 ounces) butter, melted
  6. 16 ounces powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Beat together cake mix, egg, and melted butter for the cake layer in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer. Mix briefly until everything is moistened and starts to stick together.
  3. Press the cake layer into the bottom of a 13x9 inch baking pan. Set aside.
  4. For the filling, beat together cream cheese and peanut butter in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla. Scrape the sides of the bowl and mix again until smooth.
  5. Mix in the melted butter until smooth, and then turn your mixer down to low and slowly add the powdered sugar. Mix until smooth.
  6. Pour the filling over the cake layer. Bake for 40 minutes. The center should still be a little wiggly.
  7. Allow the cake to cool and then stand back and watch your cake disappear.
Adapted from Paula Deen
Adapted from Paula Deen
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/
Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcakes from Awesome on 20

Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes

Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcakes from Awesome on 20

It’s peanut butter and jelly day, so naturally, I made you cupcakes. When I saw this day on the food holiday calendar, I knew I had to celebrate. I probably only survived my childhood because of peanut butter and jelly. I owe this classic combo my life.

Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcakes from Awesome on 20

I was astonished to learn that peanut butter and jelly is not as beloved in the UK as it is here in the states. My husband had never eaten a PB&J before we moved in together. I’m proud to say I converted him. Given the fact that I ate them at an alarming rate, and still enjoy them to this day, I couldn’t very well spend my life with someone who didn’t appreciate this genius combination.

These cupcakes start with a lovely vanilla cake. Imagine they’re playing the part of that squishy white bread of your childhood in this PB&J drama. They get filled with your favorite jelly. I went with classic grape. My dad worked for Welch’s when I was growing up, so I was raised on grape jelly. You can use whatever you love. The star of this show is the peanut butter cream cheese frosting. It’s definitely at the top of my list for best thing I’ve ever eaten. Oh, and sprinkles because fun.

Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcakes from Awesome on 20

I hope you enjoy my ode to peanut butter and jelly and that you partake in a cupcake or a sandwich very soon. It’s pure happiness.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Cupcakes
Yields 12
A cupcake to celebrate the world's best sandwich, peanut butter and jelly!
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
20 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
20 min
For the cupcakes
  1. 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  2. 1 cup sugar
  3. 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  4. 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  5. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  6. 1/2 cup sour cream
  7. 2 eggs
  8. 1 egg yolk
  9. 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the filling and frosting
  1. 1/2 cup grape jelly or your favorite flavor
  2. 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  3. 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  4. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  5. 1/2 cup peanut butter
  6. 1 cup powdered sugar
For the cupcakes
  1. Preheat oven to 350 and put your favorite cupcake papers into 12 cups.
  2. In a large mixing bow, beat butter and sugar together on medium speed until pale and fluffy. This can take up to five minutes.
  3. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt together into a small bowl. If you have a stand mixer, you can do this while your butter and sugar are mixing. Set aside.
  4. With the mixer still running, add sour cream and mix until combined. Next add the eggs and egg yolk one at a time, mixing until combined after each one. Finally, mix in the vanilla.
  5. Turn your mixer down to low and slowly add in the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined.
  6. Divide your batter evenly into your twelve cups and bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  7. Allow to cool completely before filling and frosting.
For the filling and frosting
  1. In your mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together until combined. Add vanilla and then peanut butter, and mix until smooth.
  2. Turn your mixer down to low and add the powdered sugar. Once its mixed in and not threatening to dust your entire kitchen, you can turn the mixer up to medium for about 30 seconds to lighten the frosting.
  3. I used a decorating tip to pull the guts out of my cupcake. Press and twist the large end of the tip into your cupcake, then pull straight up to remove a bit of the cake. I then widened the hole a bit further with a chopstick. Press it right down to the bottom and move it in a circular motion.
  4. Fill a piping bag or zip top bag with your favorite jelly. I like to use a small round tip because I feel like it gives me a bit more control, but you can just snip a corner off your bag if you prefer. Put the tip right down into the hole you created your chopstick and fill your cavity with jelly.
  5. Frost your cupcakes with a generous amount of peanut butter frosting. I used a Wilton 1M tip and held it straight over the jelly with a slight upward motion. Do yours however you want. And throw some sprinkles on there for fun. If you can't act like a kid when eating a peanut butter and jelly cupcake, what's the point of life?
Adapted from The Neelys
Adapted from The Neelys
How to be Awesome on $20 a day http://awesomeon20.com/

A Dozen Awesome Recipes for Peanut Butter Lovers

peanut butter collage

It’s National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day! Dude, you can definitely count me in. I don’t think I could have survived into my mid-twenties without peanut butter. I would have starved to death long ago. Here are a dozen super awesome recipes to get your peanut butter fix.

Peanut Butter Fudge — This stuff is dangerous to peanut butter lovers. It calls to me like an illicit substance. Just one more bite of peanut butter perfection. . . You know you want it!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel No Bake Cookies — Short of a peanut butter sandwich, this might be one of the best ways to get your sweet and salty fix in without an oven. Throw in whatever extra bits you like.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake — Put your peanut butter in a cheesecake, top it with a layer of chocolate, and just try not to die of happiness.

Chocofied Peanut Butter Cookies — Take a classic peanut butter cookie, add a hit of dark chocolate, and fall in love.

No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie — This is the ultimate decadent dessert. Peanut butter mousse on a chocolate cookie crust makes me dance for joy. 

These are the ones I’ve made and know are super awesome! Now for the stuff I can’t wait to sink my peanut butter loving teeth in to.

Soft Batch Peanut Butter Double Fudge Brownie Cookies from Kevin & Amanda. . . I mean, that combination of words right there is just magical. 

Peanut Butter & Jelly Bars from Julia’s Eats & Treats are pretty much the dessert version of my entire childhood.

Chocolate Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup S’mores Brownies from Nutmeg Nanny. . . I wish it was a pool, and I could swim in it.

Heaven and Hell Cake from Whisk Kid looks super fancy and super good.

Peanut Butter Cheesecake Ice Cream from Crazy for Crust could definitely become a new favorite. 

Buckeye Cupcakes from Lemons for Lulu remind me of Christmas and deliciousness and perfection.

Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Pretzel Tart from Hot Polka Dot sounds like a sweet, salty dream.

I sincerely feel sorry for people with peanut allergies. Peanut butter is pretty much the greatest, and I sorta wish I could put it in everything. Enjoy!

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