Tagalongs are one of the most popular Girl Scout cookies. The Girl Scout cookie recipe for Tagalongs marries the buttery shortbread cookie with basically a peanut butter ball – peanut butter mixture covered in chocolate. While the Girl Scout Tagalongs are good, these Ultimate Homemade Tagalongs are out of this world extraordinary!
Tagalongs versus Peanut Butter Patties
In a lot of ways, Tagalongs and peanut butter patties are the same Girl Scout cookie flavor. However, the names are dependent upon the bakery that makes them.
Little Brownie Bakers calls its cookies Tagalongs while ABC Smart Cookies calls its cookies Peanut Butter Patties. The reason for the differences is that these bakeries have different distribution deals with the Girl Scout organization.
One of the main differences between Tagalongs and peanut butter patties is that Tagalongs have more peanut butter inside the cookies than Peanut Butter Patties.
Another major difference is that Peanut Butter Patties are vegan whereas Tagalongs contain milk products. Both however, are a favorite Girl Scout cookie.
It’s generally at this time of the year that the Girl Scout cookies go on sale, but they are super expensive. Therefore, I decided to make my own!
Here’s What I Used for the Shortbread Base
For the shortbread cookies, I used unsalted butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, and all-purpose flour.
Here’s How I Made The Shortbread Cookies
- First, I creamed the butter, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla in a large bowl on medium speed.
I only beat the mixture for about a minute until it was creamy. The reason was that I didn’t want to incorporate a lot of air into the dough.
- Next, I added the flour and beat the dough on low just until everything was combined.
- After that, I transferred the dough to a gallon-size Ziploc bag.
I placed the bag on a flat surface. Leaving the top open, I rolled the dough into a thick rectangle that completely filled the bag.
I sealed the bag and placed it in the freezer overnight.
- The next day, I slit open the Ziploc bag and turned the firm dough onto a piece of parchment paper that I had sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar.
I cut the dough into round cookies using a 2-inch cutter, making sure to cut the cookies as close together as possible. By keeping the cutouts close, I was able to get 25 cookies on the initial cut.
- Then, I transferred the cut cookies to parchment lined baking sheets. I gathered up the scraps and continued cutting 2-inch cookies until I had used up all of the dough.
- I baked the cookies in a preheated 325°F oven for 23 minutes, just until they started to show some color around the edges. When the cookies were done, I removed them from the oven and transferred them to a wire rack to cool.
About the Peanut Butter Filling
When I tasted the Girl Scout Tagalongs, I thought that the peanut butter filling tasted pretty much like plain peanut butter. In fact, the list of ingredients suggests just that.
I asked Susan whether she thought that the filling for the Ultimate Homemade Tagalongs should more closely resemble plain peanut butter or the filling for the peanut butter balls. She chose the latter.
Therefore, I used the basic filling for my peanut butter balls, but with creamy peanut butter as opposed to extra crunchy. I really prefer the extra crunchy peanut butter for the peanut butter balls. However, I didn’t think that it would work that well for the Tagalongs.
Here’s What I Used for the Rest of the Recipe
For the rest of the recipe, I needed the peanut butter filling and the chocolate coating.
- Peanut Butter Filling: The peanut butter filling was nothing more than a combination of unsalted butter, confectioners’s sugar and creamy peanut butter.
- Chocolate Coating: My go-to ingredient for chocolate coating is Ghirardelli Dark Melting Wafers.
Here’s How I Made the Peanut Butter Filling
Making the peanut butter filling was super simple.
First, I beat together the peanut butter and butter until it was smooth and creamy.
Then, I added the confectioners’ sugar and beat the mixture until everything was well combined.
Here’s How I Finished the Tagalongs
With the cookie base and the peanut butter filling made, it was time to put everything together.
- Being the nerd that I am, I weighed the peanut butter mixture, and used ½ an ounce for each cookie.
I rolled the mixture into a ball about the size of a quarter and flattened each ball onto the cooked shortbread cookies.
Then, I refrigerated the cookies for 20 minutes.
- While the cookies were in the refrigerator, I melted the chocolate in a double boiler over simmering water.
- When the chocolate was melted, I dropped one of the cookies into it. I used a fork to turn the cookies to the other side. Then lifted the coated cookie out with the fork, letting the excess chocolate drip off.
- I transferred the dipped cookies to a piece of parchment for the chocolate to harden. Then, as a finishing touch, I drizzled some of the melted chocolate over the Tagalongs.
I ended up with 33 totally incredible Ultimate Homemade Tagalongs. No offense, but they made the Girl Scout Tagalongs taste a bit blah.
So, next time you have a craving for Tagalongs, you should definitely try these amazing Ultimate Homemade Tagalongs. Yum!
I first posted the Ultimate Homemade Tagalong recipe almost three years ago on March 31, 2019. With Girl Scout Cookies about to go on sale, I thought that it was time to update the post.
This update contains enhanced text and photographs, but the same great recipe!
I hope you liked this recipe for Ultimate Homemade Tagalongs as much as I do. If so, please consider rating it and leaving a comment. Also, if you’d like to receive notifications of new posts by email, enter your email address in the Subscribe box.
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Ultimate Homemade Tagalongs
- 1 cup (2 sticks, 8-ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
- ¾ cup (3-ounces) confectioners' sugar
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups (10-ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
Peanut Butter Mixture
- 1 cup (9.5-ounces) creamy peanut butter (See Tip 1)
- ¼ cup (2-ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 cups (8-ounces) confectioners’ sugar
- 3 cups (18-ounces) Chocolate melting wafers (See Tip 2)
- Place butter, confectioners' sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl. Beat together on medium speed until the mixture is very smooth, about 1 minute. Do not beat until light and fluffy. (See Tip 3)
- Add the flour and mix on low speed only until the flour disappears into the dough, about 1 minute. Don't work the dough much once the flour is incorporated. (See Tip 4)
- Using the spoon or spatula, transfer the dough to a gallon-size Ziploc bag. Put the bag on a flat surface. Leaving the top open, roll the dough into a ¼-inch thick rectangle that completely fills the bag. As you roll, turn the bag occasionally and lift the plastic from the dough so that it doesn’t cause creases. Seal the bag, and place in refrigerator or freezer for at least 2 hours, or for up to 2 days.
- Preheat the oven to 325° F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.
- Put the Ziploc bag on a cutting board and slit it open. Turn the firm dough onto a parchment lined board or counter; discard the bag. Cut into round cookies using 2-inch cutter. Transfer the cookies to the baking sheets leaving 1-inch between cookies. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. (See Tip 5)
- Bake at 325° F for 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool. Yield: 33 cookies. (See Tip 6)
Peanut Butter Mixture
- Beat together the peanut butter and butter in a bowl on high speed until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes.
- Add confectioners' sugar; beat on medium speed until well combined. If mixture is crumbly, knead with hands until the consistency of Play-Doh. Form into ½-ounce balls (about the size of a quarter) and place on cooked cookies. Flatten with hand. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. (See Tip 7)
- Melt chocolate wafers in a double boiler over simmering water. Dip cookie into melted chocolate; turn to coat on all sides. Remove with a fork allowing excess chocolate to drip off; place on parchment paper to harden.
- Drizzle excess chocolate over cookies. Yield: 33 Ultimate Tagalongs.
Chula’s Expert Tips
- I used Jif Creamy Peanut Butter. While I generally use extra crunchy peanut butter when I make peanut butter balls, I don’t think that extra crunchy would work here.
- I used Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Melting Wafers.
- The reason for not beating the butter/sugar mixture until light and fluffy is that the incorporated air will tend to make the cookies spread more than you would want them to.
- The reason that you don’t want to over-beat the dough once the flour is added is that the gluten formation will tend to make the cookies tough.
- The cookies will spread just a bit when they cook, so be sure to leave around an inch between them.
- The cookies will be pale with just a hint of brown around the edges.
- If you have any peanut butter mixture leftover, use it to make peanut butter balls!