Awesome No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

This is a recipe handed down to me by my mom. It’s been in my family since I was a kid (back when dirt was new). I’ve tweaked it slightly to my own satisfaction, but will also provide the original specs. I’ve yet to come across a store-bought cookie that equals them.

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/3 cup cocoa
  • 3 cups oatmeal (1 minute ONLY)
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter (creamy)
  • 1/2 cup milk (or 1/2 & 1/2)
  • 1 stick butter (1/4 lb)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract  

Place 2 cups sugar in a bowl, add 1/3 cup (loose, NOT packed) of unsweetened cocoa. Mix until thoroughly blended. Set aside. In a separate bowl, measure out three ( I prefer 2 1/2) cups of (VERY important) 1 minute (quick oats) oatmeal, and set aside.

If you have 2 measuring cups (you probably do, but I only have one, so I have to wash it out after adding the 1/2 & 1/2 to the butter), set aside 1/2 cup peanut butter (creamy only).

Melt one stick of butter, slowly, (NEVER use margarine, or you WILL be sorry you did) in a pan (I think it’s a five quart pan that I use, but I’m not positive). You don’t want the butter bubbling too much, I don’t know why, but it does something weird to the mixture.

Once it’s completely melted, add 1/2 cup milk (I use only half & half, because it makes them richer tasting, but since it’s thicker than milk, I go between 1/8 and 1/4 of an inch over 1/2 cup).

Heat to just before the boiling point, (just barely starting to bubble), then add the sugar/cocoa mix. Turn the heat up as high as it will go, (I hope you have a gas stove, electric can be a real problem here), mix until completely blended, and bring the mixture to a FULL roiling boil.

Here is where it can be tricky. If it’s not brought to a full roiling boil before you start to time it, the sugar won’t melt completely, and the cookies will have a gritty texture. Not good. On the flip side, if you boil the mixture too long, the mixture will tend to stiffen up when you go to drop them on the sheet of wax paper, and the cookies will come out on the dry side, and crumble more easily. But if you mess it up, it’s definitely better to overcook than to undercook.

Once you reach the full roiling boil point, start timer, time for one minute, then turn off the heat (you actually have about a 10 – 15 second window of leeway, as long as it’s more, and not less than 1 minute)

Add one teaspoon vanilla extract (real, not imitation – another no-no) blend in quickly, then add the peanut butter.

Here is the other point at which it can be tricky. You need to blend the peanut butter as quickly as possible, because it will cool the mixture down some, and you need it to stay as hot as possible, so when you add the oatmeal, it will absorb the mixture as much as possible. Then add the oatmeal, stir in, and drop on wax paper with a spoon.

Allow to cool for 1 1/2 – 2 hours, until completely hardened, then flip over on the wax paper for 5 – 10 minutes to let any slight moisture there may be underneath to dry

Note # 1 – try not to stir excessively at any point, as too much stirring tends to cause the mixture to stiffen up more. In fact, once it’s boiling, I only stir it a couple of times before turning off the heat, just enough to keep it from scorching on the sides of the pan. Once it’s ready to go on the wax paper, you should be able to tilt the pan to one side, and the mixture should easily flow to the top of the pan.

Note # 2  I would highly recommend using only Reynold’s wax paper, I used a cheaper store brand once, because they were out of Reynolds, and I regretted it. The cookies were much more difficult to remove from it, and I ended up throwing the rest of the roll of wax paper in the trash.

Note # 3  Perfectionism has always been a curse of mine, so these directions are as precise as I can make them for the PERFECT cookies. Having never tasted mine, you have nothing to compare yours to, so if you mess them up only nominally, you’ll never know the difference. Enjoy!

# 1 NWO Hatr

p.s. I’ll bet you all thought I didn’t know how to make anything besides trouble (for the NWO that is, in my own limited way)  🙂

7 thoughts on “Awesome No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

  1. Thanks so much for this recipe! My
    dear mother made these for us when
    we were children back in the 40’s.
    In these dangerous, uncertain times
    we face today it is nice to have
    something familiar that reminds us
    of our youth, a time when America had
    a future. God help us now is my prayer!!

  2. Thanks #1. My son called me about a week ago asking for this recipe, can’t find it (Not sure if I ever wrote it down ), it sounds like mine.
    I used milk, & still yummy 🙂 Had to laugh about allow 1 1/2-2 hrs. to cool! The boys grabbed spoons and dug in as soon as they were on the paper hehe! A few times I was out of wax paper and the boys were hungry for them, I made them and put them on plates. A knife will get them off and it’s a bit of a mess after they are gone, but works in a pinch for hungry boys 🙂 Thanks again!

  3. Oh I remember making these for my daughter back in the ’70’s when she was just a little girl. What a nice reminder. Thanks for sharing!!

    . . .

  4. I actually wrote this recipe down for Angel a few days ago, after she saw me mention it in a comment and asked me for the recipe. I’ve never had it written down anywhere, just kept it in my head. I figured as long as I had it on my computer now, I’d share it with all my friends at FTT. I make them for all the family gatherings on holidays, and with Easter being this Sunday, I’ll be making a couple of batches tomorrow ( I ALWAYS make two at a time , one is NEVER enough).

    A blessed and happy Easter to all my friends here at FTT, and especially to Henry and Laura, our most gracious hosts. 🙂

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