Old Fashion Refrigerator Cookie are sometimes called sliced cookies or icebox cookies because the dough is chilled until firm. Then the dough cut into thin slices and baked. This is a great cookie to prepare to have on hand in case of last minute company, or housewarming gift. The dough can be made in advance and frozen until you are ready to use.
During the late 1920’s and 1930’s, my Grandma Myers used this very recipe to bake these delicious Old Fashioned Refrigerator Cookies in the oven of her wood stove. My mother tells me that they used to test the heat by sticking their hand in the oven until the temperature felt right, and then they put the cookies in. Do not worry – these cookies have been adapted for use in our modern ovens. This century old recipe is still delicious!!
Photo was shared with me by my sister, Carol Arroyo, and her baking website called The Baking Pan
Old Fashion Refrigerator Cookies Recipe – Icebox Cookies:
Old Fashion Refrigerator Cookies Recipe
1 cup vegetable shortening*
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly-packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup coarsely-chopped walnuts (or your choice of nut)
* Butter may be substituted for the vegetable shortening.
In a large bowl, cream vegetable shortening, butter, sugar, and brown sugar until light and fluffy; stir in eggs and vanilla extract. Add flour, salt, and baking soda; stir until well blended.
In a small bowl, combine dates and nuts until dates are coated with nuts; stir into cookie dough.
Shape cookie dough into a 2-inch wide logs, wrap in wax paper or plastic wrap, and refrigerate at least overnight. When it is rolled up, twist the ends tightly. Dough may be stored in the refrigerator for several days before using.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease cookie sheets.
When ready to bake, remove dough from the refrigerator. Using a sharp knife, cut cookie dough into 1/8-inch slices; place 1-inch apart onto prepared cookie sheets. Slice only what is to be baked, return remainder to refrigerator for baking as needed. Dough will last approximately 1 week in the refrigerator. Any longer storage, store in the freezer.
Bake 10 minutes or until light brown. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks.
Coconut Refrigerator Cookies: Omit vanilla extract and nuts. Add 1 teaspoon grated orange rind (zest), 1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind (zest), and 1 tablespoon orange juice in first mixing stage. Stir 1 cup finely-cut coconut into dough.
Chocolate Refrigerator Cookies: Add 2 ounces melted chocolate in first mixing stage. Add 1/2 of flour mixture, then 2 tablespoons milk, mixing thoroughly. Add the remaining flour and mix well. Stir in nuts.
Holiday Cookies: Use granulated sugar instead of brown sugar. Add 1/2 cup finely-cut candied cherries and 2 tablespoons finely-cut citron. Use very finely-chopped toasted almonds instead of walnuts.
Lemon Walnut Cookies: Use granulated sugar instead of brown sugar. Omit vanilla extract and add 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind (zest) and 2 teaspoons lemon juice in first mixing stage.
Orange Pecan Refrigerator Cookies: Omit vanilla extract. Add 2 teaspoons grated orange rind (zest) and 1 teaspoon orange juice in first mixing stage. Use 1/2 cup finely-chopped pecans instead of walnuts.
Peanut Cookies: Use 1/2 cup very finely-chopped, salted peanuts instead of walnuts.
Toasted Almond Cookies: Add 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon in first mixing step. Use 1/2 cup very finely-chopped toasted almonds instead of walnuts.
Comments from Readers:
Thank you so much for sharing your Grandma Myers’ cookie recipe. I have made a bunch for my Myers Family Christmas Eve. My Grandma Myers was Allie Beatrice Myers. We will enjoy the cookies and the wonderful story. Merry Christmas to You and Your Family! – John Myers (12/21/15)