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Peanut Butter Christmas Mice Recipe

Peanut Butter Christmas Mice Recipe

With their red licorice tails, candy noses and peanut ears, these chewy "mice" were always a hit at classroom parties. My children are in their teens now, but they still ask me to make these cookies for the holidays. -Nancy Rowse Bella Vista, Arkansas
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 30 min. Bake: 10 min./batch + cooling YIELD:30 servings


  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup peanut halves
  • 2 tablespoons green and red M&M's minis
  • 4 teaspoons miniature semisweet chocolate chips
  • Cake decorator holly leaf and berry candies
  • 60 to 66 pieces red shoestring licorice (2 inches each)


  • 1. In a large bowl, cream peanut butter, butter, and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. Combine flour and baking soda; gradually add to the creamed mixture and mix well. (Dough will be soft). Refrigerate for 1 hour or until easy to handle.
  • 2. Roll into 1-in. balls. Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Pinch each ball at one end to taper. Insert two peanut halves in center of each ball for ears. Add one M&M mini for nose and two chocolate chips for eyes. Arrange holly and berry candies in front of one ear.
  • 3. Bake at 350° for 8-10 minutes or until set. Gently insert one licorice piece into each warm cookie for tail. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. Yield: about 5 dozen.
Editor's Note: Reduced-fat peanut butter is not recommended for this recipe.

Reviews for Peanut Butter Christmas Mice

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Reviewed Jun. 24, 2013

"Very fun to make with kids. Kids love them!"

Reviewed Dec. 16, 2012

"These mice are absolutely adorable and taste delicious. They are relatively easy to make, but I have had issues with the decorations staying put."

Reviewed Dec. 10, 2011

"I've been making these for years. My children often help. Thanks for the wonderful family tradition!"

Reviewed Dec. 9, 2011

"great for a different type of cookie for your Christmas cookie exchange. Easy to make too,get the kids involved for those special Christmas memories that they will remember long after the cookies are gone."

Reviewed Dec. 7, 2011

"The appearance far out weighs the taste - because I am a peanut butter cookie fanatic. A little tedious with the holly around the ears but totally worth it. Kiddos LOVE this and will eat it even if it's not so tasty. Not sweet enough. Also, be sure to insert the tails fresh out of the oven or you can't get them to go in. If you delay, you must repeatedly explain that a cat ate their tail..."

Reviewed Feb. 5, 2011

"These are easy to make and surprisingly good. One year I found little red kissy-lip sprinkles for the faces. What a fun addition to a Christams cookie plate!"

Reviewed Dec. 27, 2010

"The Best,fun to eat kids love them"

Reviewed Nov. 27, 2010

"Make sure you use real butter, not margerine, and they will not flatten."

Reviewed Dec. 6, 2009

"I've been making these mice cookies since the recipe was first published. They are always a HUGE hit!!!"

Reviewed Dec. 5, 2009

"Cookies are light and tasty and so cute!"

Reviewed Dec. 4, 2009

"We have been making these mice cookies for years (since they appeared in my Taste of Home Magazine). My kids love making them and eating them. The kids insist on taking photos of the group, of them in their hands, and of them half in their mouth with the tail hanging out. What can be more fun for a kid, than pretending!

They turn out just like the photo here.
We also do with out the holly and berry, but they still look cute."

Reviewed Dec. 16, 2008

"i made these and they didn't flatten out at all. they were just like the picture.  I remember however, that i warmed the dough in my hand so the dough would stick together and not fall apart, made a tight ball and then tapered the end. i didn't know that the dough rose , so the first batch my mice came out big, so i made them smaller and the second batch was perfect. i couldn't find the holly and berry decorations, so i omitted them. i served them on paper doillies, they were so cute. yogi"

Reviewed Dec. 15, 2008

"I also had a problem with them turning out much flatter than the photo. (Still looked like mice, but not like the picture) Even making the balls round and large, they still flattened out. I'm guessing the test kitchen uses a convection oven and that might have helped with the ones in the picture.

Some of the peanuts fall out when the cookies flatten.
I was able to freeze these with licorice and candies in.
I used green and red sprinkles rather than the cake decorator holly and berries. Still looked fine."

Reviewed Dec. 13, 2008

"You may need to add just a bit more flour."

Reviewed Dec. 12, 2008

"I can not get my mice to retain thier shape, they flatten out. Help?"

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