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Auntie Crae’s Plantation Chews

Auntie Crae’s Plantation Chews. Soft, chewy, crispy, nutty, caramel-y delicious! These flourless cookies are also easy to make gluten free!

Auntie Crae's Plantation Chews close up of a stack of cookies on a white plate.

Auntie Crae’s Plantation Chews

These Plantation Chews look quite innocent, don’t they? They look very plain and uninteresting just sitting there on the plate. Trust me, they are anything but plain and uninteresting; they are, in a word, amazing.

This is probably my favourite cookie of all time. I have loved them ever since that first crispy, chewy, caramel-y bite decades ago at Auntie Crae’s Bakery in Churchill Square.

Auntie Crae's Plantation Chews ready for the oven

Auntie Crae’s Plantation Chews

The owner, Janet Kelly, later moved the store to Water Street here in St. John’s. Sadly for so many folks, she closed the business upon her retirement in 2010.

Finding the Plantation Chews recipe.

Fast forward to last week when a reader emailed me asking if I had a copy of the recipe for Plantation Chews. She had heard it was being given out freely in the final days of the bakery’s operation. 

I got excited at the prospect of being able to make batches of my favourite cookie at home. When I immediately posed the question on our Facebook page, within minutes the recipe was in my inbox!

Spouse whipped up this batch a couple of days later and they were perfect! They were exactly as I remember them as created by the very capable bakers at Auntie Crae’s.

I think I ate 6 in the first hour! I don’t ever remember being so happy to receive any recipe. You just have to try these.

Some possible ingredient substitutions for Plantation Chews.

The recipe below is exactly as I received it but I have successfully used butter instead of margarine, which I never use in baking. I often use pecans instead of walnuts too.

I’ve also made a gluten free version simply by substituting gluten-free corn flakes. Since there’s no flour in the recipe anyway, this is a very easy way to make cookies that simply EVERYONE will love!

Auntie Crae's Plantation Chews photo with title text for Pinterest

2019 Plantation Chews Update.

In corresponding with Janet, she kindly let me add this recipe to my new Rock Recipes Cookies Cookbook. She also confirmed that she now uses butter at home when baking these. 

Changes in the rules regarding margarine formulation, leave these a bit risky to try with margarine nowadays, she advises. Having used butter successfully myself on many occasions, that is what I now recommend as well.

The recipe has been changed to reflect the update.

If you like this recipe, be sure to check out out collection of Favourite After School Cookies!

After School Cookies Collection

You might also like our recipe for Auntie Crae’s Ginger Sugar Cookies:

Auntie Crae's Ginger Sugar Cookies

Auntie Crae’s Ginger Sugar Cookies

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Auntie Crae's Plantation Chews photo with title text for Pinterest

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Auntie Crae's Plantation Chews close up of a stack of cookies on a white plate.
Yield: 36 cookies

Auntie Crae’s Plantation Chews

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 32 minutes

These flourless cookies look quite innocent but they are anything but! Crunchy and chewy at the same time with an irresistible caramel flavour. It is impossible to eat just one.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup butter
  • 2 ¼ cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 4 cups cornflakes, NOT crushed (Use only GLUTEN FREE cornflakes for the gluten free version of this recipe.)
  • 1 ¼ cups sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1 ½ cups walnut crumbs

Instructions

  1. Cream butter and sugar until very fluffy.
  2. Add eggs and vanilla and mix until incorporated.
  3. Add dry ingredients and beat on high speed in mixer for 12 - 14 minutes. Scrape bowl often.
  4. Scoop out cookies (a little smaller than a ping pong ball) and place on cookie sheet that is either Teflon coated or lined with parchment paper. Parchment (silicone) paper is your best choice. Do not grease pan.
  5. Flatten cookies with finger tips that are slightly moistened. The moisture will prevent your fingers from sticking to dough as you flatten the cookie dough.
  6. Bake at about 350 F for 6 minutes. Rotate pan (front to back) to distribute heat and then bake a further 6 minutes. Remove from oven and leave on pan until stiff enough to handle. They will be very soft when they first come out of the oven.
  7. You may need to alter the baking time and temperature of your oven if you do not get a satisfactory result. No two ovens bake the same, even if you have clones.

Notes

A gluten free version is possible if you use gluten free corn flakes.

Finely ground pecans instead of walnuts are also excellent in this recipe.

Recommended Products

Rock Recipes a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Our product recommendations are almost exclusively for those we currently use or have used in the past.

Nutrition Information

Yield

36

Serving Size

cookie

Amount Per Serving Calories 126Total Fat 6gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 17mgSodium 64mgCarbohydrates 17gFiber 1gSugar 13gProtein 1g

The nutritional information provided is automatically calculated by third party software and is meant as a guideline only. Exact accuracy is not guaranteed. For recipes where all ingredients may not be used entirely, such as those with coatings on meats, or with sauces or dressings for example, calorie & nutritional values per serving will likely be somewhat lower than indicated.

 
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Danette

Tuesday 15th of December 2020

Hi Barry, I am eager to try this recipe. Could you clarify a couple things for me? Brown sugar: light or dark and is the 2 1/4 cups packed or lightly spooned in? Also, are the walnut crumbs very finely chopped as in almost to a powder? Thanks!

Cathy

Monday 16th of November 2020

My brown sugar and butter never got fluffy. The cookies turned out very thin and flat. Don’t know what I did wrong!

Lisa

Thursday 31st of October 2019

I just tried making these and they were out of this world! But...unfortunately, they didn't have the wrinkly bits like in the picture above. I did make a few changes though, first, I cut the sugar down to 1/4 cup because the shredded coconut was already really sweet, and cut the walnuts down to 1 cup because they are so expensive here! Other than the non-wrinkly top, it was out of this world. I'll definitely be making it again.

Allison

Thursday 26th of September 2019

Love these cookies! I pleaded for this recipe back in 2006 as I moved away (still needed my fix), the owner kindly gave it to me via email! <3 I made these cookies with the recipe you posted here; using butter instead of margarine. They turned into flat, crunch/chewy discs! Holy cow! I have made these cookies many time and they are wonderful. The taste is still the same though, they just turned out ugly! Does it sound like it was the butter? Could it be over mixed? the measurement of corn flakes (uncrushed) could be the culprit... not sure. Any support would be appreciated! thanks

Barry C. Parsons

Saturday 5th of October 2019

Try a different brand of butter. Could be the water content. Beating them for sufficient time is crucial.

Marlys

Monday 11th of June 2018

Thank you so very much for this amazing recipe. My oldest son (26 yrs old) fell in love with Plantation Chewsfrom our favorite Family owned and run Bakery. He asked me if I could fin the Recipe since they wouldn’t give me the recipe. They came out wonderful tasting and looking like the ones from the Bakery ❣️My one question is can you freeze them? I noticed that the Bakery keeps them in the refrigerator or freezer until they sell out the ones in the display. Since my son lives over 5 miles away, I was hoping I could freeze them either until we can go see him again or send him a Care package. Thank you again for putting this anazing cookie recipe. I look forward to seeing your reply. Marlys

Barry C. Parsons

Monday 2nd of July 2018

I've honestly never frozen this cookie! They don't last long enough to make it to the freezer with my kids around. I don't see how it would be an issue though. Glad you are enjoying the recipes!

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