Oatmeal Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies

Everyone needs a solid peanut butter cookie recipe in their baking arsenal and this is my favourite. The inspiration for these sandwich cookies are those delicious-looking Little Debbie Oatmeal Creme Pies my mom would never let us get at the grocery store when we were kids. We weren’t allowed to have Kool-Aid either. To create these cookies, I took my oatmeal cookie recipe and rejigged it to include peanut butter. The result is a dense, chewy cookie that’s packed with peanut butter flavour. These cookies taste great on their own; but if you want to get fancy, you can turn them into sandwich cookies stuffed with a creamy peanut butter filling.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 1 1/4 cups oats

Filling:

  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and spray baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and soda.
  3. Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  4. Add eggs, vanilla and peanut butter. Mix until fully combined.
  5. Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add in the flour mixture.
  6. Add in the oats and mix until fully incoprorated.
  7. Use an ice cream scoop to shape dough into equal sized balls and place on prepared cookie sheet.
  8. Bake for 15 minutes. Cool cookies completely before adding filling.
  9. For the filling: Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip the butter and peanut butter until light and fluffy.  This should take about 5 minutes.
  10. Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add in the powdered sugar. Mix until fully incorporated and smooth.
  11. Using an offset spatula, spread about 2 tbsps filling onto a cookie and top with a second cookie.

*Yield: 10 sandwich cookies or 20 cookies

 

 

 

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Fig, Walnut & Dark Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

This is a classed-up version of my  Big and Chewy Oatmeal Cookies. The chopped up figs practically melt into these cookies as they bake, creating a sticky sweetness that pairs beautifully with the smoky molasses. The addition of dark chocolate adds even more sophistication to an otherwise humble cookie, while the walnuts add texture and crunch.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 1/2 cups oats
  • 1 cup dried figs, chopped
  • 3/4 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chunks or chips

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and spray baking sheets with non-stick spray.
  2. In a bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, corn starch and salt.
  3. Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar.
  4. Add the eggs, vanilla and molasses. Mix until combined.
  5. Turn the mixer to low and slowly add the flour mixture. Beat until fully incorporated.
  6. Add the oats, figs, walnuts and chocolate.
  7. Roll generous 1/4 cup measures of dough into balls (you can use a medium- sized ice cream scoop for this.) Place two inches apart on prepared baking sheets. You can press a few chocolate chunks into the tops of the cookies before baking — it makes them look prettier.
  8. Bake for 18-20 minutes.

*Yield: Approximately 18 large cookies

 


Big & Chewy Oatmeal Cookies

These are the oatmeal cookies you daydream about on rainy Sunday afternoons when there’s nothing good on TV…or maybe that’s just me.  In any case, these cookies are real good. The addition of cornstarch ensures the cookies remain perfectly chewy on the inside, and a little crispy on the outside. A touch of molasses adds depth of flavour to an otherwise simple treat.  I also like to add some shredded coconut to my oatmeal cookies — this is more for texture than flavour.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp molasses
  •  2 1/2 cups oats
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 1 cup raisins (optional)

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F and spray baking sheets with non-stick spray.
  2. In a bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, corn starch and salt.
  3. Using an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar.
  4. Add the eggs, vanilla and molasses.  Mix until combined.
  5. Turn the mixer to low and slowly add the flour mixture.  Beat until fully incorporated.
  6. Add the oats, coconut and raisins (if using.)
  7. Roll generous 1/4 cup measures of dough into balls (you can use a medium sized ice cream scoop for this.) Place two inches apart on prepared baking sheets.
  8. Bake for 18-20 minutes.

*Yield: Approximately 18 large cookies


Homemade Granola

I love to eat granola for breakfast.  But, once I started reading the labels on the boxes of most commercial granolas, I realized that they were filled with a crazy amount of sugar and fat.  Now, I have no problem with sugar and fat when they come in the form of a brownie, but not when it comes to something that’s marketed as a “healthy” cereal.  So, I started making my own granola a few years ago.  Granola is super easy to make and the great thing about making your own is you have total control over the amount of sugar and fat in the recipe.  You can also use almost any combination of grains, nuts and add-ins that you like.  I prefer a granola that’s super crunchy, not too sweet and loaded with nuts and dried fruit.  I use maple syrup to sweeten my granola, but you can also use honey or brown sugar.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups oat flakes
  • 2 cups multigrain flakes  (such as barley, rye, spelt, kamut)
  • 1/3 cup ground flax seeds
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 cup slivered almonds
  • 1 cup currants
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 300F.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the oat flakes, multigrain flakes, flax seeds, coconut and almonds.
  3. In a small bowl, stir together the coconut oil, maple syrup, cinnamon, salt and vanilla.
  4. Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and stir until completely coated.
  5. Spread mixture in an even layer onto a large baking sheet.
  6. Bake granola for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.
  7. Once the granola has cooled, mix in the currants.
  8. Store granola in an air tight container for up to two weeks.

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Monster Cookies

Monster cookies are basically peanut butter oatmeal cookies with M&Ms and chocolate chips.  There are hundreds of recipes for this type of cookie out there.  Some are heavier on the peanut butter, some incorporate nuts into the mix; my version has just half a cup of peanut butter and it’s pretty heavy on the M&Ms and chocolate chips.  It’s important to use a creamy peanut butter in this recipe.  If you use natural peanut butter you’ll end up with an oily cookie that spreads too much.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup mini M&Ms
  • 2/3 cup chocolate chips

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.  Grease cookie sheets with non stick spray.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy.
  4. Add the peanut butter, egg and vanilla.
  5. Slowly add the flour until fully incorporated.
  6. Add the oats and mix until just combined.
  7. Mix in the M&Ms and chocolate chips.
  8. Roll spoonfuls of the dough into balls and place at least two inches apart on baking sheets.  You can also press some M&Ms and chocolate chips into the tops of the cookies.  It just makes them look prettier.
  9. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

*Yield: About 30 cookies

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Soft-baked Oatmeal Currant Cookies

I think oatmeal cookies are like the chicken soup of cookies; they’re simple, comforting and so homey.  Some people like crunchy oatmeal cookies, but I prefer mine to be soft and chewy.  This recipe makes super tender cookies loaded with currants.  If you’re not into currants, you can easily replace them with raisins, cranberries or chocolate chips. Remember to soak your dried fruit in a cup of hot water for about 10 minutes before adding them to your dough, otherwise the dried fruit will suck up a lot of the moisture from your cookie and dry them out as they bake.  Drain the dried fruit well before incorporating into your cookie dough.

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup currants, soaked and drained

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 325F.
  2. Grease a cookie sheet with cooking spray
  3. In a large bowl, cream the butter and brown sugar.  Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until smooth.
  4. In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, oats, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.
  5. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.  Add the currants.
  6. Roll dough into balls and place about 2 inches apart on cookie sheet.  Bake for 10-12 minutes.

*Yield: 20-22 cookies.