Manila Wafers

Today is the big day! Austin Bakes for Bastrop!

With seven sales around town and over a hundred volunteer bakers and organizers, we should be able to raise a ton of money to help people who had their lives wrecked by the wildfires that ran rampant over Texas a couple weeks back.

Stop by any one location between 10am and 2 pm today and buy some homemade goodness to help your fellow man. I’ll have vanilla wafers waiting for you!

Homemade Vanilla Wafers (aka “Manila Wafers”)

This recipe is lifted directly from Peg Bracken’s “I Hate To Cook Almanac”. I love Peg Bracken and almost every day I wish she wasn’t dead already so that I could meet her. Honk if you love Peg Bracken! Leave a comment if you’ve heard of her.


Manila Wafers

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  • 1/4 pound butter (1 stick)
  • 1 1/8 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Cream the butter with the sugar.
  3. Add the egg and vanilla and combine.
  4. Add the dry ingredients and combine.
  5. Grease a cookie sheet (better yet, slap some parchment paper down.)
  6. Drop the dough by teaspoon-fulls, 1 1/2″ apart (on an 11×17″ pan I fit 20 cookies)
  7. Bake for 7 or 8 minutes and watch carefully. “When they start to brown, they brown.”

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These will keep well for up to a week in a tight container. I find they get more crispy with time. These are delightful with ice cream, fruit compote, or homemade banana pudding!


  1. Libby on October 9, 2011 at 9:12 am

    If I only have a stick of margarine and not a stick of butter, can I go ahead and try this recipe? I think I’m going to because I won’t be out much and because I don’t really wanna wait for someone to get back to me on this.
    I never ever ever have margarine and so I don’t know how it does in baking. I don’t even know how this ended up in my fridge in the first place.
    That’s what happens when you party, I guess.

    • Hilah on October 9, 2011 at 9:43 am

      Hi Libby!
      I think it would work fine. I never ever have margarine either, but my grandma used it instead of butter in everything and she turned out some good cookies.
      Have fun!

    • Gerri on January 15, 2017 at 11:31 am

      did you know that heart disease was way lower in this country before fake butter aka Margarine was invented

      • Hilah on January 15, 2017 at 1:10 pm

        I hadn’t heard that, Gerri, but I believe it!

  2. Luanne Brooks on June 27, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Are you using self rising flour? These look great!! I love a crispy cookie with ice cream.

    • Hilah on June 28, 2012 at 8:53 am

      Hi Luanne!
      If you want a crispy cookie, these are perfect! I used all purpose flour – the baking powder in the recipe is all the leavening you need. Enjoy!

  3. TheirMom on December 22, 2012 at 6:25 pm

    6 THUMBS UP!!!!
    huh? 3 kids, 6 thumbs. Just fininshed a batch and I must say they are the tastiest.
    I’m working on the banana pudding part but I hope I have some cookies left to assemble.
    Thanks a bunch

  4. Virginia Roy on June 18, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    How many cookies does recipe make? 1 cookie sheet full?

    • Hilah on June 18, 2013 at 2:51 pm

      It makes about 20.

  5. Moz on December 21, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    I wanna use these for your Bourbon Balls… Any idea how many cups this batch size will yield? We’re thinking of using chocolate nibs for an extra bit of yum

    • Hilah on December 22, 2014 at 11:54 am

      Oh gosh, Moz, always with the tricky questions! 😉
      I’d guess about 3 cups of cookie crumbs? Chocolate nibs sound super yum. Let me know if you do it and how they turn out!

  6. Sunny on December 17, 2020 at 3:16 am

    How would i adjust this to use self rising flour?

    • Hilah on December 17, 2020 at 5:49 am

      Just omit the baking powder and use 1 1/4 cups SR flour

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