Reese’s Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies

Reese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | RevamperateReese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | RevamperateLast weekend, Andrew took the LSAT exam for law school. If you’re not familiar, the LSAT is a pretty intense exam best known for it’s very difficult “mind games.” Studying for the test really took a toll on him these last few months, and now he’s preparing his applications while he waits for his final score. In an effort to make him feel a little better afterward, I did what any reasonable person would do – I made cookies!

Peanut butter and chocolate are Andrew’s favorite combination, so that was a must. Reese’s are his favorite candy, so I incorporated them into these very soft and peanut butter chip loaded peanut butter thumbprint cookies. And ohmygod did they come out good?! Between the two of us, we ate most of them because they were just too delicious. Trust me on this.

The softness of the cookies, in my opinion, is the best part. I can’t stand overly crunchy cookies (except in cases like Oreos, etc. when they’re supposed to be crunchy). Follow these steps and you’ll make the best soft cookies EVER. Stay tuned – I plan on revamping this recipe for a few different cookies down the line.

Reese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | Revamperate

You’ll need:

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¼ cup flour
  • ½ cup peanut butter chips

First, cream together the butter and sugars. Then beat in the peanut butter, egg and vanilla, beating well between each one (and yes, that order works best). Mix in the flour, salt and baking soda. The dough should be creamy but thick. Stir in the peanut butter chips with a spoon or spatula and chill for 20-30 minutes.

Reese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | RevamperateReese's Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies | Revamperate

Take the dough out of the fridge and let sit until it’s soft enough to work with. Roll it into 1-inch balls and place several inches apart on a cookie sheet (I use a cookie scoop to get the right amount of dough). Bake on 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes but no more than that. Even though they will look doughy and undone, they are exactly like you want them – soft but fully cooked. Immediately after you remove them from the oven, push unwrapped mini Reese’s peanut butter cups into the centers of the soft cookies and move them to the fridge to cool. This will prevent the Reese’s chocolate from melting too much. After about 10 minutes in the fridge, they’re ready to eat.

Offer these too anyone, and you’ll probably make a friend forever. Just sayin’. Plus these are perfect for a cookie swap. That was one of my favorite Christmas activities with my old coworkers. Now get baking and enjoy!

Christmas Pinwheel Sugar Cookies

Christmas Pinwheel Sugar Cookies | Revamperate Christmas Pinwheel Sugar Cookies | RevamperateWhat treats come to mind when you think of Christmas? Eggnog? Peppermint? Pie? Well, I just think of cookies. Sometimes even pie cookies and cookies with peppermint or eggnog. Yeah, those are real things I’m planning. I’m actually really excited because this is the only time of year it’s social acceptable to share eggnog recipes.

Anyway, this cookie is a classic one with a Christmas spin – pinwheel sugar cookies. These classic sugar cookies feature red and green spirals (aka pinwheel cookies) to get you in the holiday mood. You can also see how I used this recipe to make autumn themed sugar cookies with royal icing a while back.

To make 20-25 cookies, you’ll need:

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 cups of flour
  • 1 egg
  • Red and green food coloring

First, beat together the softened butter and sugar until creamy. Add in the vanilla and egg and beat until combined. In a separate bowl, combine flour and baking powder, and slowly add to the wet mixture. It will become very thick and difficult to mix. If that happens, pull the dough onto a piece of wax paper and continue to massage with your hands until the flour is completely mixed.

Separate the dough into two large balls and use your knuckle to push a small hole in each piece. In one, add about 4 drops of red food coloring, and in the other add about 4 drops of green (note, this can get messy so wear gloves if you prefer). Use your hands to close the opening and, one at a time, massage the food coloring into the dough until it is not longer streaky. Add more food coloring until you reach you desired color. I kind of looked like I’d beat someone after I finished kneading the red dough because my hands were covered in red coloring…but luckily it’s washable!

Sprinkle some flour on the waxed paper and on a rolling pin, and roll out each piece of dough separately until it is about 1/4 inch thick. If you can, try to maintain the same shape between the two colors. Then peel one piece off of the paper and place it on top of the other, evening it out as much as you can. If needed, use the rolling pin to gently roll over the dough to maintain shape. Christmas Pinwheel Sugar Cookies | Revamperate Christmas Pinwheel Sugar Cookies | RevamperateStarting at one end, roll the dough into a log as tightly as you can without tearing it. Leave it on a cookie sheet and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. Once chilled, it should be a little stiffer and easier to cut. Using a sharp non-cerated knife, cut off a 1/2 wide slide at the end of the dough (set aside if the dough didn’t match up). Reshape into a circle with your hands if needed and continue to cut until you have used the entire log. Christmas Pinwheel Sugar Cookies | Revamperate Christmas Pinwheel Sugar Cookies | RevamperateBake on 350 degrees for 12-16 minutes until the edges begin to lightly brown. Baking times will vary depending on the thickness of the cookies. Let them cool on a cooling rack before devouring, and enjoy! These holiday pinwheel sugar cookies make a nice holiday party item for your friends, family or coworkers. For an added touch, you can also roll the sides in sprinkles before baking if you’re a sprinkle fanatic (yeah, that’s totally a thing). Now get baking!

Autumn Sugar Cookies with Royal Icing

DSC_1017 DSC_0991Autumn in Southern California isn’t really autumn at all, but the weather gets a little cooler and the leaves begin to fall. Unfortunately, they don’t change colors, but it still feels like autumn to us locals. Most of all, I feel the seasons change when I can finally bake without feeling guilty for heating up the house. With that, here are some autumn-themed sugar cookies to brighten up your day!

To make 18-24 cookies, you’ll need:

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 cups of flour
  • 1 egg

I use this royal icing recipe from Wilton because it’s proven the best for me. You’ll need meringue powder for the recipe. You can also make royal icing with egg whites or other ingredients, but I’ve found that meringue powder makes the icing easiest to work with and hardens quickly. This recipe is for piping the edges – you’ll want to add water for flooding. DSC_0937First, beat together the softened butter and sugar until creamy. Add in the vanilla and egg and beat until combined. In a separate bowl, combine flour and baking powder, and slowly add to the wet mixture. It will become very thick and difficult to mix. If that happens, pull the dough onto a piece of wax paper and continue to massage with your hands until the flour is completely mixed.

Spread a little bit of flour onto a rolling pin, and roll out the dough until it is about 1/4 of an inch thick if not thicker. Personally, I like my cookies soft, so I try to keep them thicker. Use cookie cutters (like these autumn cookie cutters that I used) to cut shapes out of the dough and move to a foil covered cookie sheet. Continue until all of the dough is cut. Bake on 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes, checking them often so they don’t overcook. Remove when they begin the brown on the edges and cool on a cooling rack.DSC_0961 DSC_0935In the meantime, mix your royal frosting. Separate into multiple bowls and mix in your desired food coloring with a spoon. Individually scoop a little of each color into its own piping bag and pipe around the edges of your design. Once done, add a little water, one teaspoon at a time, to the royal icing until it drips easily off of a spoon. Carefully use the spoon (or a squeeze bottle) to flood the area within your piping boundaries. It’s easiest to do this a little at a time because flooding too much icing too quickly can overflow your borders. Set the cookies on the cooling rack to harden before storing in an airtight container. They’ll keep for a few days and still taste like freshly baked sugar cookies!

If you don’t feel like fussing with icing, they also taste great on their own – soft and sweet. I’m looking forward to making lots of themed cookies over the next few months. Enjoy!