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An American classic: Chunky (or creamy) natural peanut butter cookies

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Need a peanut butter fix? What about a cookie fix? Or, how about both! Thanks to Food & Wine's April 2014 issue, you'll get a sweet and salty crunch with this simple and scrumptious cookie recipe. With spring showers currently happening, baking cookies seem to be the perfect activity on a rainy day.

Although this recipe initially calls for natural chunky peanut butter, natural creamy peanut butter was used as a substitute (but don't worry, it's just as good)! So grab whatever peanut butter you prefer and let's get baking!

Ingredients (makes 3 dozen cookies):

  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup chunky (or creamy) natural peanut butter
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and position racks in the upper and lower thirds. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the salt, baking soda and baking powder. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter, peanut butter and both sugars at high speed until pale and fluffy, 2 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla. At low speed, gradually beat in the dry ingredients until just incorporated.

2. Form half of the dough into 1-inch balls and arrange them 2 inches apart on two large baking sheets. Using a fork, gently press the tops of the cookies to form a crosshatch pattern. Bake the cookies for 12 to 15 minutes, until lightly browned; shift the baking sheets from top to bottom and front to back halfway through baking. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 2 minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool completely. Let the baking sheets cool slightly, then repeat with the remaining dough.

PS: If you like a little chocolate with your crunch, add some chocolate chips! Enjoy!

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