What Is Cookie Butter, Really? (Spoiler: There’s No Butter in It!)

I’ll never forget stepping into a little corner market near my apartment in Chicago and wandering over to the refrigerated dessert area to discover cookie dough that was made, explicitly, to be eaten raw. Sure, I’d encountered cookie dough ice cream before, and I was no stranger to a fingerful of batter taken from a mixer, but the thought of a company releasing dough just for snacking was truly revolutionary. Needless to say, I bought a carton and enjoyed it. 

The point is this—cookies are good, but sometimes you don’t want fully baked cookies or you don’t want to wait for them to bake. That’s edible cookie dough comes in. But that’s not the only way to enjoy the flavor of cookies without baking cookies. Meet cookie butter. What is cookie butter? What does it taste like? What is its use? Let’s see how the cookie (butter) crumbles.

Cookie butter is a sweet, spreadable, edible paste that is made from spice cookies, along with sugar and oil or some other kind of fat. Lotus Biscoff spread is probably the most familiar brand of cookie butter.

The taste of cookie butter will be familiar to anyone who’s ever had a Biscoff cookie, as that is its primary ingredient. For those who haven’t (and I highly recommend you do try one) it’s creamy, slightly spicy in a gingerbread sort of way, sweet, and very slightly peanut butter-y. 

Not trying to blow any minds here, but cookie butter is made of cookies. Specifically, it’s made from a spice cookie also known as a speculoos cookie. So far so good. But let’s take a look at the ingredients list of Lotus Biscoff Spread to get into the nitty gritty. Here’s what’s listed on a jar of Lotus Biscoff Spread: original caramelized biscuits (wheat flour, sugar, vegetable oils [palm oil from sustainable and certified plantations, rapeseed oil], candy sugar syrup, raising agent [sodium hydrogen carbonate], soya flour, salt, cinnamon), rapeseed oil, sugar, emulsifier (soya lecithin), and acid (citric acid). So, it’s essentially cookies, oil, and sugar—there’s no actual butter. 

Even though it does taste a little bit nutty, cookie butter typically does not contain nuts. Though as ever, it’s best to double check the label to be absolutely positive. 

Now that you know what the stuff is, you might want to know what to do with cookie butter, presumably apart from just eating spoonfuls of it directly from the jar. There’s no wrong answer, really, but it can be thought of in a similar category to nut butters and spreads like Nutella. That is to say, putting it on bread, using it in pastries, and mixing it into pudding are all great ideas. And, again, directly from the jar is always an acceptable method of enjoying cookie butter. Really, any place you want to add some delicious spiced cookie flavor is a good place for cookie butter. 

About the Author

Matt Crowley

Matt Crowley is a comedy writer living in Los Angeles. He likes maple-flavored snacks, loves every kind of cheese, and is slowly learning to accept mushrooms.

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