Rocks Cookies
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Rocks Cookies

This vintage cookie recipe dates back to the 1930s. Vintage Rocks Cookies are fast and easy to make and don’t require any special equipment. A large bowl and a spoon will work wonderfully well. After all, if it was good enough for grandma…

An oval platter of rocks cookies.

One bowl, one spoon, and one simple recipe. These rocks cookies are like taking a flavorful step back in time.

This is a recipe re-do from one I shared back in 2011. While the photos may have changed, the recipe has remained the same. I do hope you’ll enjoy the flavor of friendship, and of a simpler time.

**Please Note – The printable recipe card with detailed instructions and complete ingredient measurements for making 1930’s Vintage Rocks Cookies is available near the end of this post. OR click on the “jump to recipe” tab below to be taken directly to the recipe. 

Jump to Recipe

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Vertical title text photo collage of rocks cookies.

The ingredient list for making 1930’s Vintage Rocks Cookies;

  • butter
  • brown sugar
  • eggs
  • vanilla
  • all-purpose flour
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • salt
  • ground cinnamon
  • raisins
  • walnuts

Below is one of my original photos from 2011. I think that you’ll agree, it wasn’t the best, but at the time I thought I was “rockin’ it!” LOL! Pun intended!

Retro feel photo of a plate of vintage rocks cookies on a Christmas tablecloth.
Jump to Recipe

A step back in time about this recipe for vintage rocks cookies;

A while ago a dear twitter friend of mine, Michele of Funky Chunks Soap, sent me a fabulous vintage cookbook from her collection after she’d heard that I was starting my own vintage cookbook collection.  It was such a kind gesture that I sincerely hope she understands what her surprise gift in the mail meant to me.

Upon paging through the book, I ran across a small, warn slip of paper with a handwritten recipe that simply said “Rocks”.  The directions were sparse as were the list of ingredients.  I immediately knew I had to make these cookies as my tribute to this unknown woman whose spirit is now welcomed into my kitchen with open arms and our shared love of baking.

1930's Vintage Rocks Cookies - kudoskitchenbyrenee.com

I’m going to assume that my new/old found friend is Ruth B. Maxwell of Miniwa, Ohio and this cookbook had been lovingly given to her by Grandma Leyda.  It’s hard to see these names as they’re written in faint pencil on the inside cover of the book, but they’re there.

These two women, whom I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting, are now a part of my heart and home.  I am grateful to have them grace my kitchen as I share with you their recipe for “Rocks”.

I felt it only appropriate that I did it the old-fashioned way so I opted to use a large bowl and a wooden spoon instead of my modern Kitchenaid mixer. I think Ruth and Grandma Leyda would have been pleased.

Having a decent knowledge of cookie baking, the fact that the recipe seemed to be missing a considerable amount of directions wasn’t a deterrent for me at all so I forged ahead. 

The only thing I did change however to the list of ingredients (if you know me, then you know I can’t be stopped even if it means messing with history). To the original recipe, I added a pinch of salt, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Is it so wrong?

Want to know the health benefits of walnuts? Check out this article at Healthy Line.

A closeup photo of a hand holding a vintage rocks cookie with raisins.

More Kudos Kitchen Cookie Recipes

Want more delicious cookie recipes? I've got them for you! Click on the following titles and then get ready to bake yourself happy!

Below is the printable recipe card along with the nutritional information for today’s 1930’s Vintage Rocks Cookies.

4.27 from 19 votes
Vintage Rocks Cookies
1930’s Vintage Rocks Cookies
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
30 mins
 
This vintage cookie recipe dates back to the 1930’s. Vintage Rocks Cookies are fast and easy to make and don’t require any special equipment. A large bowl and a spoon will work wonderfully well. After all, if it was good enough for grandma…
Course: Dessert, Dessert – Cookies
Cuisine: American
Keyword: vintage cookies, vintage rocks cookies
Servings: 48 cookies
Calories: 117 kcal
Renee – Kudos Kitchen: Renee – Kudos Kitchen
Ingredients
  • cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 cup walnuts
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the softened butter and the brown sugar.
  3. Add the eggs and vanilla to the butter and sugar mixture and stir to combine.

  4. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon to the mixing bowl and stir well to incorporate all the ingredients.

  5. Add the walnuts and raisins and mix well.

  6. Drop the batter by tablespoons onto a parchment lined baking sheet, and bake in a preheated oven for 15-17 minutes.

  7. Remove to a wire rack to cool.

Recipe Notes

Tools and equipment;

large bowl, wooden spoon, OR stand mixer or hand mixer, baking sheets, parchment paper (optional), measuring cups, measuring spoons.

Nutrition Facts
1930's Vintage Rocks Cookies
Amount Per Serving (1 cookie)
Calories 117 Calories from Fat 45
% Daily Value*
Fat 5g8%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Cholesterol 20mg7%
Sodium 100mg4%
Potassium 74mg2%
Carbohydrates 15g5%
Sugar 6g7%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 135IU3%
Vitamin C 0.2mg0%
Calcium 20mg2%
Iron 0.6mg3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Thank you so much for visiting me here today in my Kudos Kitchen!

Overhead photo of a broken rocks cookie with raisins and walnuts.

I sincerely hope you’ve enjoyed today’s updated recipe post for Rocks Cookies as much as I’ve enjoyed bringing it to you!

Closeup photo of a pile of rocks cookies on a plate.

Should you have any questions or comments regarding this recipe or anything else you’ve seen on my site, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. It is always my distinct pleasure to get back with a reply just as soon as I possibly can!

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Hi! I’m Renée! Thanks so much for visiting me here in my Kudos Kitchen, where I like to inspire you with delicious family-friendly dishes which are easy to prepare as well as being a feast for your eyes, and your taste buds!

33 Comments

  1. Awww I love the story behind these 🙂 Now I wish I could eat walnuts lol

  2. oo those cookies look wonderful and oo that cookbook! I'd be in cookbook heaven with that! I love vintage cookbooks, and have quite a little collection that I started by shopping at our goodwill store. what a treasure! both the cookies and book!

  3. awwww, this was so sweet(pun intended) the cookies looked delicious. i am going to try then veganized, I'll let know how they turn out.

    cheers terri

  4. There's something extra special about hand mixed cookies – – it's almost like there's a little extra love in them 🙂 – – these look delicious. What a great recipe

  5. I love that these came from a vintage cookbook! They look so yummy! So glad you participated in the cookie swap. 😀

  6. What a lovely post for a great cookie recipe and a great cookie swap. I've read a lot of posts on the swap today and yours is the first that provided the link to register for notices for the swap next year. Thank you for that. I hope to be able to participate next year so I signed up.

    Lucky the ladies who are getting your cookies this year 🙂

  7. Oh my goodness I know EXACTLY what cookies you are talking about! My grandmother makes these cookies every year, a tradition that started way back in the 60's when her oldest two boys were in vietnam. She sent the rock cookies in the mail because they were the only cookies with enough hair on their chest to withstand the long voyage overseas. I have no clue why they're called rock cookies though, maybe because they're so hard to break?

  8. that is just perfect for christmas. i would like to receive it.. as a gift.. 🙂 (heeee..heee….)

  9. Ahh, I love the thoughtful Heirloom Cookies you sent! Nothing beats an old cook book recipe!

  10. 5 stars
    I’m all about that brown butter and cinnamon! Cannot wait to dive into the kitchen and make up a batch of these – awesome!

  11. Nellie Tracy

    5 stars
    I am in love with Brown Butter flavor. These cookies will be a great hit at my house!

  12. 3 stars
    Hi , my mother who was irish lovedto bake Xmas Rocks back in 50’s – 70’s! I loved them ! But they always
    had cloves ,dates and walnuts . Thanks John upstate NY

    • Hi, John!
      I’m sure there are many variations for this recipe, just as there are many variations to many recipes.
      Feel free to add cloves, dates, and walnuts. I’ll never tell!
      Happy Holidays!
      Renee

  13. Kelley Smythe

    I have been looking for this recipe for yrs. My Nana made them and they were my favorite. I thought she called them rock cookies but no one else did. So I thought the recipe died with her. I made them and was so excite to find they tasted as I remembered. The one thing I changed was instead of raisins I put in currents.
    Thank for the happy memory
    Kelley

    • I’m so glad this recipe brought back wonderful memories for you. Currents are a wonderful option. I’ll have to try that next time.
      Thanks for the idea, and thanks for your kind comment, Kelley! I appreciate it!!
      Renee

  14. Wonderful memories. I remember my mom boiling the raisins with just enough water to cover raisins. Reserving a small amount of liquid; drain; cool. Then add raisins and liquid to batter. They were the softest cookies ever. Delicious

    • That trick of rehydrating the raisins is great. I’ll bet it makes these cookies even more plump and delicious. I’ll have to try that next time. Thanks, Renee!

  15. 5 stars
    Recipes with a fun story are my favorite thing!! These look so delicious, then & now!

  16. Jennifer Farley

    5 stars
    Delicious cookies! My husband couldn’t get enough of them!

  17. Antoinette Vitrano

    So many memories. I have been eating these since I was a child and I still make them every Christmas. Only one change in my recipe. My grandmother and mother always used dates instead of raisins. Thanks for the memories.

  18. 5 stars
    What a pleasure to find this recipe. My mother and grandmother also used dates and walnuts and put half a maraschino cherry on top. Now I have a request of you/readers. I found a recipe for French cookies that my father made in the 1960’s. They were made with butter, eggs, confectioners sugar, flour and whiskey. I tried making them but they spread and flattened, whereas my dad’s were round and slightly elevated. They melted in your mouth like Mexican Wedding Cakes. Something must be missing from the recipe, but I can’t imagine what. Has anyone else heard of these? I’d love to bring back those happy memories and tastes. Thanks!

    • Hi, Mary Elizabeth! Dates and walnuts sound like the perfect addition to these rocks cookies. I also like the cherry on top.
      I’m intrigued by the French cookies you’re speaking of. I wonder if (by chance) your butter was too soft (or even melted)?
      This can cause a cookie to flatten during baking. I’d also love to know if any of my readers know of such a cookie. Maybe I’ll put the question out on my Facebook page (https://facebook.com/kudoskitchen) to see if anyone there knows of such a recipe. The whiskey in the cookie sounds delightful. I’ll let you know if I find anything out.
      Thanks for being a reader of my blog. I appreciate it! Happy New Year!!
      Renee

    • Hi, Mary Elizabeth! Dates and walnuts sound like the perfect addition to these rocks cookies. I also like the cherry on top.
      I’m intrigued by the French cookies you’re speaking of. I wonder if (by chance) your butter was too soft (or even melted)?
      This can cause a cookie to flatten during baking. I’d also love to know if any of my readers know of such a cookie. Maybe I’ll put the question out on my Facebook page (https://facebook.com/kudoskitchen) to see if anyone there knows of such a recipe. The whiskey in the cookie sounds delightful. I’ll let you know if I find anything out.
      Thanks for being a reader of my blog. I appreciate it! Happy New Year!!
      Renee

  19. Gail Giddings

    5 stars
    Thank you for posting this! I loved these cookies and I remember my grandmother making them. I loved that you hand mixed them. Maybe they’re called rocks because of the fact that they kind of look like rocks, i.e., not uniform in shape and brownish? God bless.

    • Thank you so much for taking the time to comment and rate this recipe, Gail. I’m thrilled that they brought back memories for you.
      And I agree…they do look like rocks. LOL. Tasty rocks for sure! 🙂
      God bless you as well!
      Take care,
      Renee

  20. 3 stars
    I have a few suggestions for these cookies. I think they need some salt and maybe something to make them more buttery…Some chocolate chips and cloves or some other spice might be good too. I liked that these weren’t overly sweet. If I did put chocolate chips, I wouldn’t put a whole lot. I imagine back in those days, they had fewer ingredients to use. Wish we could all go back to simpler times. Thank you for this recipe. It took my mind off the coronavirus for a little while. 🙂

  21. 5 stars
    Oh my goodness! I’m am such an airhead! Just realized that it was my fault that they weren’t very buttery. I only put 1/2 cup of butter..hahahahha In that case, I will have to make these again the right way. I bet they are phenominal. 🙂

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