The Prudent Pantry: Save Money with this Trader Joes Cookie Recipe Knock-off

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Trader Joe’s sells these ridiculously good cookies called Sutter’s Formula Peanut Chocolate Cookies. They’re a tiny bit dry–but the balance of chocolate chunks and peanut butter is perfect. The trouble is they cost nearly $4 for a small bag.

Not in the budget! Right around the time that I discovered Sutter’s cookies (Sutter, incidentally, is John Sutter who discovered the gold that sparked the gold rush), I noticed that TJ’s was carrying something called peanut flour–which is exactly what it sounds like. I had an idea, and I bought a bag.

I used my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, adding the peanut flour in place of the walnuts and some of the regular flour. They came out so good that I have to share them. And since I don’t want to share the actual cookies, I’ve written out the recipe.

Annika’s Peanut Chocolate Cookies

Butter – 2 sticks, softened
Brown sugar – 1 cup
Sugar – 1/2 cup
Vanilla – 1 tsp.
Eggs – 2 large
Flour – 2 cups
Peanut flour – 1/2 cup
Salt – 1/2 tsp.
Baking powder – 1 tsp.
Chocolate chips – 1 – 2 cups

Prepare two cookie sheets. You can grease them, or cover them with tin foil or parchment paper.

Preheat the oven to 350.

  • Combine two sticks of butter, one-cup brown sugar, and ½ cup granulated sugar in a mixing bowl (I used my KitchenAid stand mixer).
  • The butter should be room temperature–but if you don’t have time to take it out and let it sit, 15 seconds in the microwave should do the trick.
  • Beat until combined, then add one teaspoon vanilla and two large eggs.
  • Once everything is combined and smooth, add two cups flour, ½ cup peanut flour, ½ teaspoon salt, and 1-teaspoon baking powder.
  • Mix together thoroughly, then add in 1-2 cups chocolate chips and stir in by hand (I used a wooden spoon).
  • Take large spoonfuls of dough, roll into a ball, and place on cookie sheet about two inches apart. Bake for 10-15 minutes (depending on the size of the cookies and your oven’s temperament) until light golden in color.
  • Let cool.

Delicious, and I saved a ton of money!

Annika Barranti is a writer living in Los Angeles and blogging at Through the Looking Glass . She and her husband are raising two children and trying to eat well on a tiny budget.

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  1. ShoppinHolly

    4 years ago

    Annika, this recipe looks completely irresistible. As much as I try to avoid keeping cookies around the house (since they always find their way into my mouth), this post leaves me no choice but to bake a batch.

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  2. annika.barranti

    4 years ago

    I’ve made them twice this week! I over-baked them once (not so nice) and under-baked them the other time, and I highly recommend under-baking them!

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  3. Scribble10

    4 years ago

    How much does this work out per serving? Home cooking will always trump store-bought, if you’re baking for more than one or two. How well does this dough freeze?

    Is it easy to cut this recipe in half?

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  4. annika.barranti

    4 years ago

    The number of servings depends on how big you make your cookies, but you’ll get an absolute minimum of two dozen, I think. The dough should freeze beautifully, but I haven’t tried. I have cut it in half though–in fact, this recipe is double the original chocolate chip cookie recipe I used. To cut in half, your measurements will be: 1 stick butter, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1 egg, 1 cup flour, 1/4 cup peanut flour, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, and 1/2-1 cup chocolate chips.

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