IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

We took a stab at Reddit's criminally good 'murder cookies'

As a lover of true crime and cookies, I knew I had to give these "murder cookies" a try.
Reddit's famed "murder cookies" are a molasses-flavored delight.
Reddit's famed "murder cookies" are a molasses-flavored delight.Terri Peters / TODAY
/ Source: TODAY

It's a cookie recipe served with a side of true crime.

Redditor NearKilroy, who asked to remain anonymous, was researching the previous owners of their Maine home when they came across some surprising news: The woman who lived in the home in the 1930s had been murdered.

"We kept having weird things happen — things missing from the fridge, things going off shelves — and we thought maybe it was a ghost," NearKilroy told TODAY Food. "So we looked up who lived there and lo and behold a lady died in the house."

After looking at the census data from the time of the murder, it was discovered that the next-door neighbor's occupation was listed as "baker."

"We looked into his bakery and the 'murder cookie' recipe was their recipe of the year," said NearKilroy. "We basically just fell down a rabbit hole and kept going deeper and deeper."

NearKilroy shared the recipe in the Old_Recipes subreddit, telling the story to the old-recipe enthusiasts in the group.

"Was looking into a murder that took place in my house," the original post explains. "In short, a woman was murdered by someone. Her husband moved to another state with their children two days later and married another woman two days after that. Her husband was a suspect but never went to court."

The recipe, from Cushman's Bakery, was titled Scotch Cookies, but after another Redditor commented, "Mmm, murder cookies," the cookies got a new name.

The "murder cookies" are made with simple ingredients, including mace, a spice derived from the skin of the nutmeg seed.Terri Peters/TODAY

Since the recipe was initially shared last year, the cookies have developed a cult following within the Old_Recipes subreddit. A spin-off subreddit, MurderCookie, has more than 600 members who are dedicated to baking the sweet treats.

As a lover of true crime and cookies, I knew I had to give these "murder cookies" a try.

The recipe is simple: Shortening, molasses, eggs, flour, sugar, milk and a few spices. One spice, mace, a less-common spice derived from the skin of the nutmeg seed, can be a bit hard to find, so I grabbed a bottle online. Once it arrived, I was ready to bake.

Redditors recommend letting the dough set in the refrigerator for a few hours before baking.Terri Peters/TODAY

After reading through comments in the subreddit, I decided to take the advice of those who insist upon refrigerating the dough for a few hours after mixing. (Those who used room-temperature dough found their cookies became too spread out and thin.)

And, while the recipe says simply, "bake, but do not over bake," I again turned to the murder cookie experts for some guidance, baking my cookies on 350°F for around 10-12 minutes.

I found the cookies were the perfect doneness after baking at 350°F for 10-12 minutes.Terri Peters/TODAY

The cookies came out smelling amazing, a mix between gingerbread and maple-y Demerara sugar.

Molasses was definitely the star of the show in the cookies: The syrupy taste overpowered everything else — in a good way.

Reddit's "murder cookies" are so popular, they have their own subreddit.Terri Peters/TODAY

I'd probably make the cookies again, and NearKilroy says they've done just that.

"When I posted them to the Old Recipes sub, I just thought it was a good recipe and a funny story, but they really took off," they said. "I really do love the recipe, I’ve made them 30 or so times since I posted it."