I had such a baking-ful week! In addition to making these cookies, I also made pumpkin bread (which I’ll post next week), sourdough bread (which I’ll post at some point), and Trout Farm Apple Pie! Having this blog, I don’t often get to make a recipe more than once, since I always need something new for the weekend and a girl can only make so many recipes in a week. But when some friends invited us over for dinner, and I’d already made plenty of new stuff, I realized I had a chance to make one of my favorite recipes of all time. It was given to my by the wonderful Sandy Ford, who happens to be celebrating her birthday today (Happy Birthday, Sandy!!), and is basically the part of apple pie you actually want to eat.
But enough about recipes from the past – you can go back and read that one if you want to make it. Pro tip, though: make it in a cast iron skillet. Strongly improves the presentation.
However, apple picking isn’t really a thing in Alaska, so when I was choosing a recipe to send in to work with Erik this week, I had to look elsewhere for fall baking inspiration. Also, there doesn’t seem to be quite the same pumpkin fever as you get in the lower 48, which I find upsetting, but is probably for the best. The grocery store, though, is fully stocked for Halloween, and it was the piles of Halloween Candy that formed this idea in my head.
I’ve done M&M cookies in the past, and I didn’t want to just repeat those with Reese’s Pieces. I also had been having a craving for the processed, always the right amount of chewy, taste of Keebler Chips Deluxe cookies, which I don’t even know when I ate them last, but that was the texture I wanted to recreate in these cookies.
And I succeeded. With a soft peanut butter base, supplemented with a vanilla pudding packet, and chunks of chocolate and Reese’s Pieces, I made the perfect homemade version of the store-bought cookies I remembered. So if you’re at the store and happen to see some Halloween candy you can’t walk away from, these cookies will give you something to do with it.
First, in a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and pudding mix. I really think it’s the pudding mix that creates the texture here – I plan to experiment with other doughs in the future and see if that holds true. I also plan to now have vanilla pudding mix in my pantry at all times. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, peanut butter, sugar, and brown sugar until light and creamy. Add the eggs, honey, and vanilla extract and beat in to combine. Add the dry ingredients and stir until just combined, being careful not to overmix. Finally, stir in the chocolate chips and Reese’s Pieces to distribute evenly. Drop the dough by the rounded tablespoon on a baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes, until dry on top and browned at edges. Leave on pan to cool for 4 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Store these in an airtight container, and they’ll stay just the right amount of chewy/crunchy. Dip them in milk or eat them plain – whatever you would do with the Keebler variety.
Reese’s Pieces Cookies
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3.4-ounce box instant vanilla pudding mix
- 3/4 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- 1 cup Reese’s Pieces
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and pudding mix to combine. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, cream the butter, peanut butter, sugar, and light brown sugar until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs, vanilla extract, and honey until smooth.
- Add the dry ingredients and stir until just combined, making sure not to overmix.
- Stir in the chocolate chips and Reese’s Pieces to distribute evenly.
- Drop dough by the rounded tablespoon on a baking sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes, until browned at the edges and dry on top.
- Allow to cool about 5 minutes on the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.