It is my personal belief that all cookies are better when they are super soft. There is nothing more disappointing than picking up a cookie and discovering it’s crunchy. This summer I was in charge of baking a dessert for a family reunion. Cole’s family reunion is a very active event, with people grabbing snacks between games of volleyball and bean bag toss. For this reason, cookies were an appealing choice since they are easy to grab on the go. I knew I wanted to make my great grandma’s peanut butter blossoms, but I wanted to put my own spin on them and change the recipe up to my own preferences. It took a couple of rounds of trial and error to find the exact taste and texture that I was hoping for, but with this recipe, I finally found what I consider to be a perfect peanut butter blossom.
1 cup Softened Butter
½ cup Peanut Butter
½ cup Sugar plus extra for coating the cookies.
½ cup Brown Sugar
1 tsp Maple Syrup
1 ¾ cups flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
½ tsp Salt
½ tsp Cinnamon
5 Special Dark Hershey Bars
1. Use a mixer to cream butter, peanut butter, sugar, brown sugar, and maple syrup together.
Kitchen Tip: I prefer to use dark brown sugar in recipes because it deepens the flavor profile. I also use natural maple syrup instead of the standard stickier syrups that can be found in most stores. The natural maple syrup mimics the texture of vanilla better, which is the ingredient I was replacing when working on this recipe.
2. Whisk the egg, then combine it with the butter mixture.
3. In a separate bowl mix the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon together until they are blended.
4. Add the dry ingredients to the creamy mixture until they are combined and have reached a cookie batter texture.
5. Pour a mound of extra sugar onto a plate, then use a small scoop or tablespoon to create cookie sized balls. Roll the balls through the sugary plate until the exterior of the balls are completely coated in a layer of sugar. This recipe should make about 50 to 60 cookies if you are creating balls this small.
Kitchen Tip: Rolling the cookies through the sugary plate is the perfect task to involve your child in the baking experience. I can remember many weekend mornings helping my mom to make these cookies. She would always scoop out the perfect amount of dough and it was my job to roll them into a ball and roll the balls through the sugar.
6. Use either baking stones or cookie sheets covered in parchment paper. Set each of the cookie balls at least an inch and a half apart from each other.
7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and bake the cookies for 9 minutes.
8. While the cookies are baking, open the special dark bars and break them apart so all 12 pieces of the bars are separated and ready to top the cookies.
9. Take the cookies out after 9 minutes and press the special dark pieces into them until the cookie begins to show cracks. Do this process as quickly as possible, then bake the cookies an additional 3 minutes to allow the chocolate to melt into and stick to the cookie.
10. Remove the pans from the oven and allow the cookies to sit on the pan for at least 12 minutes before trying to remove them. The low baking temperature causes these cookies to be softer, but it also means they would break apart if they were removed from the pans too quickly after coming out of the oven. It is always better to be safe than sorry.
To me, this recipe is the perfect dessert to bring to any gathering. A single batch makes over four dozen cookies, so it is very easy to serve a crowd. And who doesn’t love an extra soft peanut butter cookie? By keeping the cookies on the smaller side, it also ensures that each bite of cookie also gets a bite of the chocolate bar on the top; however, if you prefer a larger cookie, you can definitely adjust your cookie size accordingly, you may have to bake the cookies a little longer though!
Special Recipe Notes
1. I use a standing mixer to combine all of my ingredients together. This helps to make the process a little easier, but this recipe can definitely be done without a standing mixer too.
2. I always use baking stones when making cookies. These can be purchased from Pampered Chef or Amazon. I have found that baking stones cause the bottoms of the cookies to brown less. If you are using a pan and parchment paper instead you may want to decrease your cooking time by a minute since pans typically bake cookies faster than stones.
3. I have a convection oven in my kitchen which speeds up cooking time. If you do not have a convection oven you may need to increase the baking time by a minute to ensure that your cookies are done, or you may want to let them sit longer than 12 minutes before trying to remove them from the pans.
4. If 50-60 cookies seems like way too many cookies, don’t panic! These cookies can be frozen and taken out at a different date to enjoy. Simply let the chocolate harden before putting them in a freezer-safe ziploc bag and storing them in the freezer for up to 3 months.