Another day, another cookie. I think if I was forced to choose my favorite Holiday cookie - these would be it. I don't think it's a secret that I have a love for all things peanut butter and chocolate (see here, here, here, and here...), so when I was deciding on my list of cookies to make for my Christmas Cookie Party - these were on the top of the list! These were always a childhood favorite of mine. Every Christmas when I would go over to my Grandparents house, the air would be filled with freshly baked Christmas cookies and I knew I could always find a plate of my Grandma's Peanut Butter Blossoms.
When I went Vegan though, my days of eating Peanut Butter Blossoms were done. Or so I thought! When I was chosen by Foodbuzz to throw a Christmas Cookie Party - I went digging through my Grandma's recipes and stumbled upon this childhood favorite. I knew I couldn't use Hershey's kisses - so I had to improvise. It may look and sound a little daunting to make your own chocolate kisses, but it's actually really simple! If you're a peanut butter and chocoholic like me - you're gonna love this cookie!
- 1/4 cup shortening
- 1/4 cup peanut butter (I used Earth Balance Creamy Peanut Butter)
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/8 cup applesauce
- 1 tbsp non-dairy milk (I used So Delicious Unsweetened Coconut Milk)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- a small bowl of sugar to roll the dough in
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Cream together the shortening, peanut butter, brown sugar, sugar and applesauce. Add non-dairy milk and vanilla and beat well.
Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. Add to the wet ingredients. Beat on low speed until well combined.
Shape the dough into 1-inch balls and then roll in the small bowl of sugar. Place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. I used parchment paper on my cookies sheets to ensure that they didn't stick. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and immediately top with your homemade chocolate kisses. Cool on wire racks before serving.
I made my chocolate kisses by using one of my favorite kitchen tools - my dessert decorator. It's basically just a fancy tool I use instead of using a piping bag. I usually use it to frost my cakes and cupcakes, but it works really well here. Just fill with melted chocolate and pipe your kisses onto a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Be sure to give your kisses that classic swirl on the top (or at least try like I did!). Refrigerate while the cookies are baking to ensure they set well.
This recipe also makes a really delicious plain peanut butter cookie. Just make the balls of dough a little bit larger and press down on them slightly before baking. Follow the rest of the directions exactly.