Potato Chip Cookies – A Vintage Recipe Test

Posted on Mar 13 2013 - 6:42am by RetroRuth

Hooray for cookies!

This week we are making a little recipe I found in a community cookbook from 1970 called, “Cooking in Circles.” Tom is a big fan of cookies, even more so than pie and much more so than cake. He also loves potato chips, so when I saw this recipe for Potato Chip Cookies I thought we would have a total winner.


And when I say this is a little recipe, I actually mean “little”.  I have found that it is very common for these community or church cookbooks to skimp on the instructions. I am not sure if it is because they assumed everyone knew how to make cookies or if it is just because they didn’t want to write or type out the whole thing. Either way, this is what you get:

2.0 from 1 reviews
Potato Chip Cookies - 1970
  • 1 c. margarine
  • ¾ cup crushed potato chips
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 cups flour less 2 Tbsp.
  • ½ cup nutmeats
  • ½ tsp. soda or 1 tsp. baking powder
  1. Make into small balls and flatten down. Bake at 350 degrees 12 to 15 minutes.


For the instructions, I just made them the same way I would make Toll House chocolate chip cookies; so creaming sugar and fat, then adding the dry ingredients and folding in the chips and the pecans at the end. It seemed to work out okay and this is what I ended up with.


In a sort of hilarious side-note, Tom had a great time crushing up the potato chips. When he “accidentally” crushed too many, he just poured the extra down his throat. No fuss, no muss. He really likes potato chips.


He also really likes cookies.

Tom TastingIMG_1165

“How are they?”

“Meh. Pretty bland. And the chips taste a little weird.”

“Weird like how?”

“I don’t think I crushed them small enough.”

The Verdict: Weird

From the Tasting Notes:

The cookies themselves tasted like pecan sandies (or snowballs, depending on what time of year you make them), except not as sweet. Unfortunately, the potato chips in this cookie were a little overwhelming, both in the salt and grease factor. If you want to make these, I would recommend substituting butter for the margarine, adding a teaspoon of vanilla and cutting the potato chips back to a half of a cup. And maybe adding some chocolate. Chocolate makes everything taste better.

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I love everything retro, vintage, mid-century, kitsch and all things atomic! A 21st century housewife just trying to fit in...to the 50's. I have a passion for vintage recipes and an enormous vintage cookbook collection that I keep testing, even though by now I should know better. Creator of Mid-Century Menu (www.midcenturymenu.com), No Pattern Required (www.nopatternrequired.com), and I Ate The 80's (www.iatethe80s.com).

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10 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Tut March 13, 2013 at 9:18 am - Reply

    My Mom used to make something similar, but without nuts (putting nuts in cookies is evil and wrong). So yeah, basically chocolate chip cookies with tater chips in ’em. I was never a fan because a chocolate chip cookie should be chewy and soft. Any crunchy additives feel foreign.

  2. Melissa "Melicious" Joulwan March 13, 2013 at 9:59 am - Reply

    My family makes a version of Potato Chip Cookies almost every year at Christmas, but the recipe is slightly different than the one you used. Ours come out much thinner — very light and luscious with just a hint of the salt from the chips.

    A few years ago, I added bacon on a whim. It was AWESOME

  3. veg-o-matic March 13, 2013 at 11:31 am - Reply

    I love the way Tom looks like he really, really wants to like these cookies but just can’t.
    Agree with Melissa that the addition of bacon could only improve these.

    On a completely unrelated note, I wanted to let you know that this site has had a profound effect on me. Now, whenever I add sour cream to a recipe, I have to wave an imaginary magic wand and say “Bing!”

  4. Erica Retrochef March 13, 2013 at 9:13 pm - Reply

    Hmm, yeah, chocolate and bacon sound like winning additions!

    Too bad these didn’t pan out, it’s always harder to get all excited about a recipe that ends up failing. (The scary-but-delicious are more rewarding!)

  5. Miss Whisk March 14, 2013 at 11:22 am - Reply

    I’ve made and eaten potato chip cookies before! Never had the kind with nuts. Also, I seem to remember the recipe I have calls for them to be rolled in powdered sugar (before baking?) or dusted with powdered sugar, which gave them a salty/sweet taste. I also remember it being a very ‘short’ (bread) cookie. So it’s good people who don’t like really sweet cookies.

  6. Bibliophile March 14, 2013 at 4:42 pm - Reply

    “Chocolate makes everything taste better.”
    I think I will have a t-shirt made with these words of wisdom.

    Thanks for the entertainment.

  7. EWSTX March 14, 2013 at 6:18 pm - Reply

    This recipe was designed to use up stale potato chips. You might try waiting and using a bag of chips which has gone stale. It might change the texture. The women cooking when I was growing up were constantly looking for ways to use stale items in recipes so as not to waste food.

  8. Natalie March 18, 2013 at 6:38 pm - Reply

    I tried potato chip cookies over the holidays. They were delish!

  9. Roseanne April 3, 2013 at 6:13 pm - Reply

    This isn’t exactly like the recipe I have; see Marcia Adams’ Heirloom Recipes , Clarkson/Potter Publishers NY, Page 242. I had this cookie as a child back in 1967. My best friend’s mom used to make them all the time but I have no idea where she got her recipe. I’ve always thought this version tasted more like a salty sweet version of shortbread. Try a few different versions of the recipe or try different brands of potato chips–some are saltier than others and have a more pronounced taste. As a food historian I’ve been trying without luck to find the origins of this recipe. Any clues?

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