Hope you’re not the indecisive sort, ’cause this best oatmeal cookies recipe requires some big decisions, and we don’t just mean semisweet or milk chocolate chips. The recipe is actually a brilliant blueprint that entrusts you with some serious choices in terms of what type of fat, flour, flavoring, sugar, spice, and stir-ins you like. It’s sorta like those choose-your-own-adventure books we had ages ago as kids. (Remember those? Ah, good times…) Let the baking hijinks begin.–Renee Schettler Rossi
LC The Choice Is Yours Note
Researchers have recently begun to assert that too much choice can be a bad thing. That the human brain isn’t designed to be confronted with the countless options we’re confronted with on a daily basis in contemporary times. (You know the feeling of overwhelm we’re talking about—just think back to the last time you stood in front of a slew of olive oils, breakfast cereals, toothpastes, or the like.) But we assert that there’s also beauty and brilliance in choice. That it’s simply a matter of selectively allocating your attention to the really important decisions like, gosh, let’s see, what ingredients you want in your oatmeal cookies. So here is quite possibly the world’s best oatmeal cookie recipe, for the simple reason that it puts you in charge.
Best Oatmeal Cookies Recipe
- Quick Glance
- 30 M
- 1 H
- Servings vary
- Fat (see below)
- Sugar (see below)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- Spice (see below)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- Flavoring (see below)
- Flour (see below)
- 3 cups regular or quick rolled oats
- 1 cup Stir-Ins (see below; optional)
- 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C).
- 2. In a large mixing bowl, beat the Fat with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the Sugar, baking soda, Spice, and salt. Beat until combined, scraping the sides of the bowl occasionally. Beat in the eggs and Flavoring. Beat in as much of the Flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining Flour and the oats. If desired, add the Stir-Ins.
- 3. Drop the dough by rounded teaspoons, tablespoons, 1/4 cups, or cookie scoops on unbuttered baking sheets, spacing them 2 to 3 inches apart.
- 4. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes for rounded teaspoons or tablespoons or 12 to 14 minutes for 1/4-cup or cookie-scoop portions, or until cookies are lightly browned and centers appear set. Cool on cookie sheets for 2 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; cool to room temperature.
- Fat Choices (Choose Just One)
- 2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature (Note: Cookies made with all butter tend to be thin and crisp.)
1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature, and 1/2 cup shortening
1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature, and 1/2 cup peanut butter
- Sugar Choices (Choose Just One)
- 1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
1 cup packed light brown sugar and 1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 cup molasses (add 1/4 cup additional all-purpose flour)
1 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 cup honey
- Spice Choices (Choose Just One)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon apple pie spice
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
- Flavoring Choices (Choose Just One)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
1/2 teaspoon maple extract
- Flour Choices (Choose Just One)
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour or gluten-free flour blend
3/4 cup all-purpose flour and 3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour and 1/2 cup oat bran
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour and 1/4 cup toasted wheat germ
- Stir-In Choices (Choose 1/2 to 1 cup any of the following)
- Raisins or snipped dried apricots or dried red cherries or other mixed dried fruit
Semisweet or milk chocolate, chips or chopped
White chocolate, chips or chopped
Peanut butter-flavor baking pieces
Chopped toasted pecans, walnuts, or other nuts
Hungry for more? Chow down on these:
- Chewy Chocolate Chunk Coconut Oatmeal Cookies from Ambitious Kitchen
- Chewy Oatmeal Cookies with Dried Blueberries and Crystallized Ginger from Eat the Love
- Oatmeal Raisin Cookies from Leite's Culinaria
- Monster Peanut Butter-Oatmeal-Chocolate Chip Cookies from Leite's Culinaria
Testers ChoiceTesters Choice
Mar 21, 2014
I REALLY love the whole idea of using what you either like or have on hand to make these best oatmeal cookies. I chose to use butter and shortening, brown sugar and granulated sugar, apple pie spice, vanilla, and coconut. Using a 1/4-cup measuring cup, this recipe produced 18 HUGE firm cookies. BRILLIANT idea, BRILLIANT cookie!
Mar 21, 2014
My family and co-workers loved my version of best oatmeal cookies. I can't wait to try this recipe with other options. I love that you can make these so many ways. If you enjoy oatmeal cookies like I do, then you'll have fun with this recipe. Here's how I made mine:
Fat: Butter and peanut butter
Sugar: Brown and granulated
Flour: All-purpose and whole wheat
Measuring device: Cookie scoop (this yielded 38 cookies which were perfectly baked at 14 minutes).
Mar 21, 2014
In the world of baking, there are few recipes that offer freedom of choice when it comes to ingredients and their quantities. Baking is such a precise science, people often feel intimidated substituting one ingredient for another. This foolproof cookie recipe, however, instills confidence in the home baker, allowing him or her to feel like they’ve created something amazing to call their own.
Below are the choices that I made to customize my “Make-It-Mine” Best Oatmeal Cookies.
Fat: 1 stick unsalted butter and 1/2 cup peanut butter
Sugar: 1 cup packed brown sugar and 1/2 cup granulated sugar
Spice: 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Flavoring: 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Flour: 3/4 cup all-purpose flour and 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
Stir-In: Chopped toasted pecans
Yield: I used a 1/2-inch scoop and the recipe made 34 cookies
These cookies were unbelievable, and they barely made it a day past the day they were baked! The texture was to die for—crunchy on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. I loved them! You can clearly identify the peanut butter in the cookies, though it’s not the predominant flavor and it definitely doesn’t overpower the cookie. The oatmeal offers a chewy bite that is pure heaven and the flavors of the oatmeal and peanut butter balance each other perfectly. I’m looking forward to playing with this recipe again and again and customizing it differently each time. I might however, find it hard to stray from the amazing combination that I created.
Mar 21, 2014
This recipe for best oatmeal cookies is the Choose-Your-Own Adventure books of the cookie world—except you’ll end up with a delicious cookie each time instead of an abrupt ending forcing you to backtrack to get the ending you really wanted. I went simple with my first go-round of this recipe. I used butter and shortening, brown sugar and granulated sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour, and skipped the stir-in (I couldn’t decide between walnuts, chocolate, or coconut). I was feeling rather grandiose, so I used my big 3-tablespoon cookie scoop, resulting in 22 huge cookies. Using a scoop that big, I should have put only 9 cookies on each baking sheet instead of 12, so they ran together just a bit. Baking time was closer to 16 or 17 minutes with cookies that big. To me, oatmeal cookies should be big, chewy, and not too sweet, and these are perfect! And what’s even better is that I can make choices based on my “needs” and what’s in my pantry. I predict a monster-type cookie in my future!
Mar 21, 2014
There is nothing better than a recipe that allows me to use what I already have in my pantry. After searching the cupboards, I found butter, maple extract, brown and granulated sugars, unbleached flour, and chocolate chips. I used a medium-sized cookie scoop (about 2 tablespoons per scoop.) Choosing my own cookie scoop size did require I watch the baking time. This scoop size took 12 minutes to bake a delightful, golden-brown oatmeal cookie. The yield for this size cookie scoop was 38 cookies.
Mar 21, 2014
These were fun to assemble and tasted delicious--they are indeed the best oatmeal cookies. I chose butter and shortening; brown sugar and white sugar; cinnamon; vanilla; all-purpose flour; and a mixture of chocolate chips and coconut. I also used regular rolled oats, because we love that nuttiness in cookies. Mine spread out some when baked because of the butter. I made them in 1-tablespoon sizes that yielded 42 to 44 and were baked 10 to 12 minutes. The cookies were delightfully chewy and crispy at the same time. I baked 1 sheet of cookies on an unbuttered baking sheet and another on parchment paper. The batch on parchment came off so much easier and none of the cookies broke when removed. I would use parchment paper in the future. The recipe for these quick and simple cookies will stay close at hand for future batches! I think the grandchildren will enjoy making their own choices for their "personalized oatmeal cookies."
Mar 21, 2014
These best oatmeal cookies were fun to make. I chose the peanut butter/butter option for the fat, molasses and granulated sugar option, the whole wheat and all-purpose flour, cinnamon, vanilla, and some chocolate chips. My testing friends thought the cookies were delicious. The molasses did overpower the peanut butter taste and the cinnamon was more of a scent than a distinguishable taste. I ended up using a small cookie scoop, about a teaspoon and a half in size and ended up with 59 cookies. I did eat some of the batter so the recipe would have yielded at least one or two more cookies. I needed to press the cookies down a bit as they didn't spread--possibly because I used homemade peanut butter or maybe because the cookies didn't need the additional 1/4 cup flour specified in the sugar/molasses combo. I think that it would be fun to try different combinations (and maybe even use some that aren't listed...such as coconut oil, candied ginger, or whatever strikes your fancy and is in the pantry at a given time).
Mar 21, 2014
For me, this merits a Testers Choice for the simple reason that three members of my family, all at different times, took a bite of a cookie and said, "These cookies are so-o-o-o darn good. You need to make them more often!" I found it enjoyable to customize the cookies to my taste and to my family's taste. I chose to use all butter for my fat portion because, for me, there's nothing better than the flavor of butter. I used 1 cup brown sugar and 1/2 cup granulated, which I guess is pretty standard for most cookies. For spice, I used Vietnamese cinnamon, but added a little pumpkin pie spice. I used vanilla extract. And for flour, I chose 1 cup AP and 1/2 cup oat bran. The Stir-ins I chose to use are mixed dried fruit—some currants, chopped dates, and dried cranberries, but not too much, maybe 1/2 to 3/4 cup total. I used a cookie scoop to make my cookies and the recipe yielded 3 dozen. (Of course, there was a little dough tasting going on, so I suppose I could have had a couple more.)
Mar 21, 2014
Oatmeal cookies happen to be my most favorite cookie ever. I love the texture, the raisins, the spices. I went through the lists and chose my ultimate cookie—butter, 2:1 brown: white sugar, allspice, coconut flavoring and all-purpose flour. I must say that the end result was pretty darn good. I used the small squeeze scoop (approximately 1 tablespoon) and baked the cookies for 10 full minutes. They were still shiny at 9 minutes and not cooked enough, even for me (I tend to underbake items for added moistness). The yield was 69 cookies. They were chewy goodness, even when cooled. I tried one fresh out of the oven, slightly warm and then again when completely cooled and was very pleased. Next time, I want to try pumpkin pie or apple pie spice, as I usually put cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg in my old recipe. They will make these wonderful cookies absolutely awesome.
Mar 21, 2014
What I like most about this best oatmeal cookies recipe are the many easy substitution options it provides. Based on what I had in the pantry, I "made it mine" with butter and shortening, brown sugar and white sugar, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla extract, and butterscotch chips. I used a tablespoon cookie scoop and baked them for 9 minutes. The recipe made 50 cookies. The first batch went in the oven right after mixing, and they spread a LOT, resulting in a thin, slightly chewy cookie. I decided to put the dough in the fridge for a few hours, and while it did help a little, the dough still spread quite a bit. Although I usually prefer a thicker cookie, these managed to find a way to disappear in our house!
Mar 21, 2014
This recipe does turn out the best oatmeal cookies. How fun it is to follow a recipe—but not! Freedom, at last. It's educational as well. We were given options for fat, sugar, spices and stir-ins. I would've liked even more options and will venture back into the kitchen to try a few other ideas. But for our purposes with this particular recipe, I chose 2 sticks of butter, softened to 65 to 67 degrees, 1 cup dark brown sugar and 1/2 cup white sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, flour, 3/4 cup whole wheat flour and 3/4 cup AP unbleached flour (Gold Medal brand), 1 cup toasted chopped pecans, and, of course, the 3 cups oatmeal. I used a rounded tablespoon for the size of the cookies (about 1 ounce each), and it yielded 42 cookies. The cookies took 11 minutes to bake, and I turned the trays around and switched positions after 6 minutes. I left them on the tray for 2 minutes, as suggested by the recipe, then transferred the quite soft cookies to the cooling rack. They never crisped. FYI, if I had melted the butter, which would've evaporated some of the water from the butter, then the cookies would have been crisp. Leaving the cookies on the warm cookie tray for a couple of minutes tends to make them softer as well. They were deliciously chewy and flavorful. I took the cookies to the Lakers game (I was in the chairman's room, which is the pre-game area for VIPs), and I gave a bunch to the staff that works in our apartment building. Everyone rated the cookies 8+. And when I asked what would make these cookies a 10, the answers were all over the place: "oatmeal cookies need raisins"; "chocolate"; "crispier"; "sweeter"; "more oatmeal!". The next time I make these, I'm going to try 1/2 butter with 1/2 coconut oil, which may make it crisper but keep them chewy. I'll also add chopped dried apricots and coconut flakes to make them sweeter. And then the next time, I'll change it all up again. You just can't go wrong whichever way you want to make these. What a great recipe to make with kids. And what a delicious way to experiment with different ingredients to see how they work in a recipe and the varying results you will get. Make this recipe and you'll become a better, more experienced cook!
Mar 21, 2014
Best Oatmeal Cookies Recipe © 2013 Editors of Better Homes & Gardens. Photo © 2013 BH&G Photography. All rights reserved.