Pantry Peanut Butter Oat Cookies

Sometimes the last minute urge to bake strikes, and you’ve got to make do with what’s in your pantry. Which is how these delicious and decadent cookies were born.

I refuse to go to the grocery store in the days leading up to Christmas, it’s entirely too hectic. So when I learned a last-minute Dungeons & Dragons game was happening this week, I decided to bake cookies for our crew without running to the store for anything extra.

These simple cookies are based on ingredients that should all be staples in your vegan (or even non-vegan) pantry. Chewy oats give a hearty base, while crunchy peanut butter adds great texture, and gooey chocolate chips contribute richness. Plus with no need for the dough to rest, you can whip these cookies out in just over half an hour, making them perfect for last minute baking whims.

Pantry Peanut Butter Oat Cookies

Makes 30 cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup agave nectar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup processed crunchy peanut butter (not natural, it will be too oily)
  • 1 cup vegan chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together oats, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Pour in the remaining ingredients and stir well until a sticky dough forms.
  4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and using a tablespoon (which is easier if you spray it with oil), measure out 15 cookies with about 1-inch of space in between each. You’ll need to bake two batches to use all the dough.
  5. Bake cookies until golden brown, about 7-9 minutes. Check these frequently, because agave nectar easily browns and can burn quickly.
  6. Let cookies rest for 5 minutes before removing from the parchment paper with a spatula. They will be extremely soft but will firm up as they cool.

Nutrition per serving (1 cookie):
Calories: 127 Fat: 6g Saturated Fat: 2.3g Protein: 2.5g Carbohydrates: 17g Sugars: 10g

Cardiff

My time in Cardiff, Wales was very short — only one full day — but it was a lovely city with less hustle and bustle after coming straight from Liverpool.

The first place I visited was Cardiff Market, which was great because I got there early enough to avoid a big crowd. There was a wide variety of interesting stalls selling things like Indian spices, vintage records, palm readings, fresh produce, and (my personal favorite) the yarn shop. It was called the Wool Pack, but she had a massive collection of acrylic yarn (all of the shelves on the left side), from which I purchased a beautiful teal skein.

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After getting lost (thanks, Google Maps) and having to ask for directions at a craft beer shop, my first food stop was at Crumbs Kitchen. It was worth the hassle though, because I had a very good lunch there. The first floor of the restaurant is a bit chaotic, due to that being where the orders take place, but there is a second story with extra seating away from the main crowd. I got the chili over brown rice, with rose lemonade and chocolate cake. The chili and rice was filling and just what I needed for keeping me warm on that dreary wet afternoon. The serving was huge though, and I ended up taking half away for my dinner later.

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I gotta admit, part of the appeal of Cardiff was being a Torchwood fan. I never managed to get into Doctor Who (though I still find Weeping Angels terrifying), but I was addicted to Torchwood when I found it in Netflix. Because of this, I decided to brave the rain and wind and march two miles from my hotel to the area where they shot the show. It was odd to look at all these buildings in real life when before I’ve only seen them in panoramic filmed shots. Definitely worth a trip if you’re a fan.

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A place you must visit in Cardiff is Cinnamon Sticks, an almost painfully adorable tea room shop. Everything ranging from the wallpaper to the servers’ outfits is either floral, pink, or dainty. I’m not a huge tea fan (unless it’s cold, sweet, and Southern), but I did partake in their cake, which is beyond amazing. I got a piece of their chocolate peanut butter masterpiece and can say that it was probably the best piece of cake I’ve ever had. The peanut butter frosting was the perfect amount of sweet and fluffy, and the chocolate cake was a rich spongy texture. I was sad I didn’t have time or the stomach space to try their savory vegan options, but I’ll just have to get them next time I go to Cardiff, since I will definitely be visiting Cinnamon Sticks again.

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