Everything About Amazing Peanut Butter Cookies, Blossoms and Protecting Elephants
Peanut butter cookies are such a wonderful and obvious creation that one wonders why they didn’t come about sooner. The rich taste of peanut butter combined with the chewy texture of cookie dough is a match made in heaven. Add chocolate chips, nuts and other goodies, and you’ve got yourself an A-grade snack experience. But do you know all their types, including the peanut butter blossoms? Read on to learn everything about them, as well as who invented peanut butter (PB), and more!
Types of Peanut Butter Cookies
We want you to get acquainted with several variations of these cookies. Here are some popular types:
Original PB cookies (Automne Boulangerie)
Classic Peanut Butter Cookies: The traditional PB cookie is a simple combination of peanut butter, flour, sugar, eggs, and butter or shortening. These cookies often have the classic crisscross pattern made with a fork on top.
Peanut butter blossoms (Allrecipes)
Peanut Butter Blossoms: These cookies feature a Hershey’s Kiss or other chocolate candy pressed into the centre of each cookie while they are still warm from the oven.
Soft PB oatmeal chocolate chip cookies (Butternut Bakery)
Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies: These cookies blend peanut butter with oats, providing a chewy and hearty texture.
Chunky peanut cookie (Life Made Simple)
Chunky Peanut Butter Cookies: These cookies contain pieces of chopped peanuts, adding extra texture and nuttiness to the cookie.
PB sandwich cookies with peanut buttercream (CBC)
Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies: Two cookies are joined together with a layer of frosting or jam in between, creating a delightful sandwich-like treat.
Reese’s double PB cookie (Hershey’s)
- Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies: Combining the delicious flavours of peanut butter and chocolate, these cookies include chocolate chips in the dough along with the peanut butter.
Now that you got this far in this blog, we assume you are not allergic to peanuts. If you’re following a specific diet or prefer some healthier alternatives for your snacks, have no worries! Dietary peanut butter cookies are just as delicious, regardless of their preparation method. Here are different options for you:
Gluten-Free PB Nanaimo Bar (Sweets from the Earth)
Gluten-Free Version: These cookies use alternative gluten-free flours like almond flour or flaxseed flour to cater to those with gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease.
3-ingredient no-bake peanut butter cookie (Kirbie’s Cravings)
No-Bake Version: A quick and easy version that doesn’t require baking. These cookies are made with ingredients like peanut butter, oats, and sugar, and they firm up in the refrigerator.
Flourless peanut butter cookies (The Roasted Root)
- Flourless Variations: Perfect for those looking for gluten-free options, these cookies are made without any flour, relying solely on peanut butter, sugar, and eggs.
Low-Sugar Options: A healthier version that reduces the amount of sugar used while maintaining the delicious peanut butter flavour.
Vegan Types: For those following a vegan diet, these cookies are made without any animal products, using substitutes like plant-based butter and egg replacements.
These are just a few examples. Creative bakers often come up with their own variations to suit their taste preferences. Peanut butter cookies are versatile and can be adapted to various dietary needs and flavour combinations. Enjoy exploring the different types and find your favourite!
Who Invented Peanut Butter?
It’s clear that these cookies are wonderful and that you can choose between a wide variety of them. But what about peanut butter itself? Where did it come from, and when did it become a household favourite, leading to peanut butter snacks?
Believe it or not, the earliest iterations of peanut butter can be traced back to the Aztec and the Inca civilizations, who pioneered a technique to ground roasted peanuts into a paste. That being said, the inventor of modern peanut butter as we know it isn’t so easy to find. Several people can be credited for this invention and the processes involved in making it.
For starters, one inventor who is closer to home than you think: Marcellus Gilmore Edson of Montreal, Quebec, obtained the first patent for a method of peanut butter production in 1884 based on roasting peanuts using heated surfaces. Once cooled, Edson’s product had “a consistency like that of butter, lard, or ointment”, according to his patent application. The process consisted of milling roasted peanuts until the peanuts reached “a fluid or semi-fluid state”. After that, he mixed sugar into the paste to harden its consistency, yielding a peanut butter similar to the one in your pantry.
Later on, the idea came up to package peanut butter as a snack. An American businessman named George Bayle created a peanut butter snack bar in 1894. By 1917, in the middle of World War I, American consumers turned to peanut products during periods of meat rationing. Peanut butter became a favoured choice when the government promoted “meatless Mondays” due to conserving rations for troops fighting overseas.
Peanut butter label from 1934 (Buyenlarge / Getty Images)
Later on, during the Great Depression, peanut butter soared in popularity, as it was a cheaper alternative to meat, which still contained protein. From this moment on, it became a household staple in America. On top of that, during World War II, meat rationing made a third comeback in America, and this time, peanut butter was shipped to service members overseas. It was then safe to say that peanut butter cemented its position in the American diet thanks to these conditions, and its popularity has only grown afterwards.
Do Elephants Really Love Peanuts?
When you think of elephants, chances are you will also think of how much they love peanuts and imagine them outstretching their trunk to grab a handful out of your hand. However (and sorry for being a party pooper), this is a common misconception. Elephants don’t eat peanuts in the wild. This nut doesn’t grow in their native regions. It’s not even a typical diet for captive elephants, as they don’t seem to really like them. The myth of the peanut-loving elephant came from early 20th-century circus imagery, with elephants balancing themselves on giant balls and spectators carrying bags of peanuts around to feed the animals. In reality, elephants are herbivores, and while their diet varies depending on their region, they generally eat grass, fruits, vegetables, leaves, bark and bamboo.
African elephants (National Geographic)
A Few Facts About Elephant Poaching
While we’re on the subject of elephants, let’s talk about a threat that has been hanging over these gentle giants for decades: poaching.
According to WWF, about 15,000 African elephants are illegally killed for their tusks each year. This is due to a decade-long resurgence in demand for elephant ivory, particularly in Asia. The elephant ivory trade not only threatens the survival of this beloved species, but it also causes broader ecological consequences and endangers the lives and livelihoods of local people.
Thankfully, measures are being taken to stop the African elephant poaching crisis. Various governments initiated concerted action to address this issue. The US implemented a near-total ban on elephant ivory trade in 2016, and the UK, Singapore, Hong Kong, and other elephant ivory markets followed suit. Most significantly, China took considerable action in closing its legal domestic ivory market in 2017. Other Asian countries with open elephant ivory trade are under much pressure to take action. The WWF has reported the demand for ivory in China since the ban came into effect and reported in 2020 that the demand has since decreased by over 50%, which is great news.
Their strategy is to address the root of the problem by engaging directly with elephant ivory consumers and working with other governments to ensure the imminent closure of open elephant ivory markets, as well as working to understand the underlying motivations of elephant ivory buyers to develop strategies to influence them. Their goal is to create a new social norm that buying illegal elephant ivory products is unacceptable.
While this is good news, illegal ivory markets in other countries are still going on, and there is still room for improvement in this situation. Thankfully, many organizations are working on ending this trade and protecting elephants’ lives.
We hope this blog has put you in the mood for decadent peanut butter cookies! With all the types out there, you can’t go wrong. Why not try a new kind, such as the peanut butter blossoms? Whatever you’re looking for, Dessert Advisor will help you find them!