Coconut Washboards Recipe
Coconut Washboards Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Coconut Washboards Recipe

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3.5 8 11
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This simple yet satisfying coconut cookie recipe has been around for generations. Pressing a fork into the top gives the look of an old-fashioned washboard. —Tommie Sue Shaw, McAlester, Oklahoma
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. + chilling Bake: 10 min./batch
MAKES:54 servings
Contest Winning Test Kitchen Approved
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. + chilling Bake: 10 min./batch
MAKES: 54 servings


  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup flaked coconut

Nutritional Facts

1 serving (2 each) equals 107 calories, 4 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 12 mg cholesterol, 61 mg sodium, 16 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 1 g protein.


  1. In a large bowl, cream butter, shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs. Gradually add water and vanilla; mix well. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Fold in coconut. Cover and refrigerate for 2-4 hours.
  2. Shape into 1-in. balls. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking
  3. sheets; flatten with fingers into 2-1/2-in. x 1-in. rectangles. Press lengthwise with a floured fork. Bake at 400° for 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool 2 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Yield: 9 dozen.
Originally published as Coconut Washboards in Taste of Home October/November 1995, p25

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Reviewed Nov. 22, 2015

"Very good flavor. Had trouble with the shape. Overall it is a great cookie."

Reviewed Aug. 24, 2015

"This is a very old recipe-- from a time when cookies weren't very sweet. The name should let you know that it's an old cookie. My mom used to make these in the Depression. I think her mom made them too. My dad always liked them, but I always found them too dry unless I dunked them in milk. My mom's recipe is exactly the same. . Mom always had to watch them so they wouldn't burn. I'm going t try making them today, but I think they need more liquid. The pineapple juice or orange juice concentrate might be a good addition."

Reviewed Jun. 12, 2014

"I was able to make my cookies look like the picture. Rolled dough like a tootsie.roll. Not too thick and then mashed slightly before scoring with a fork. I liked the texture. These are not a sweet cookie. They are more of a dunk in your milk cookie. I did roll mine in sugar before baking. If I had not then I do not think I would like them. Going to make again but use the suggestions from other comments about different extract and either pineapple juice or coconut water."

Reviewed Feb. 22, 2014

"The batter didn't need to be refrigerated. 1"balls made for tiny cookies hard to shape into a rectangle. So I used twice as much and got a better size. They baked up nicely but had NO coconut flavor. I would suggest coconut flavoring. I actually threw away the whole batch:("

Reviewed Mar. 11, 2013

"I made these exactly as directed except for one thing. I had some coconut flavoring here from another recipe, so I used half vanilla and half coconut flavoring and the cookies turned out so delicious. This is definitely a keeper. I make about 40 - 50 dozen cookies each Christmas for gifts and entertaining. I've already earmarked this one for next Christmas."

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