The day after I made cowboy cookies, eating two of them at my desk in the afternoon, I told my coworkers that I wasn’t very impressed.
They were fine, good maybe, but they weren’t anything that special. A chewy chocolate chip cookie at heart, they include crunchy extras like coconut, pecans, and old fashioned oats, something a little more complicated than the norm, and yet fairly simple at the same time.
I scarfed down both of them, though, commenting aloud that they really were just okay – all while looking down at my plastic baggie, sadder than I’d admit that it was empty.
That was just the first batch of the week.
After eating those cookies, I felt something… a sense of emptiness, a sense of animalistic craving.
The second time I made them was just a day later.
This time, I baked enough to bring some to my coworkers. They all raved about them.
The more I baked, the more I grew to really love them. Maybe they had grown on me, or maybe they had changed.
It should also be noted, for the record, that the second batch was gone within seconds.
The final batch I made, just two days later, I kept all for myself. And maybe one to spare, for the hubby.
This third batch really was the best. Third time’s the charm, as they say. It was the confirmation I needed to completely and irrevocably convince myself that these cookies aren’t just okay…
They’re amazing, with each and every crunchy-chewy-sweet-salty-nutty-chocolaty-hearty mouthful!
I got into the habit, unfortunately, of grabbing one every time I would walk through the kitchen. And truthfully, this started to happen more and more frequently.
They’re not especially beautiful or especially hard to make. At first bite, you’ll might think: meh, ho-hum.
But wait for the after effects. A few days into snacking on these, I swear you’ll wish you still had some left.Print
These crunchy cowboy cookies are simple to make, with an addictive mix of coconut, pecans, oats, and chocolate chips.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup gently packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
- 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup pecan halves
- 3/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
- Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or with a hand mixer, beat together the butter and both sugars on medium-high speed until thick and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Reduce speed to medium. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract.
- Reduce speed to low, and slowly add the flour mixture, beating until just incorporated without overmixing. Add the oats, chocolate, pecans, and coconut and mix until combined.
- Using a large cookie scoop, drop dough onto the baking sheets, spacing a couple inches away from each other. Refrigerate the shaped dough for 10 minutes.
- Bake until the edges begin to brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to wire cooling racks to cool completely.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 12 minues
- Category: Cookies
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Dessert
Keywords: oats, chocolate chips, coconut, pecan, cookie
Cooking by the Numbers…
Step 1 – Prep
Step 2 – Mix Dry Ingredients Together
Step 3 – Cream Butter and Sugar
In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or with a hand mixer, beat together the unsalted butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar on medium-high speed until thick and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Is your brown sugar hard and brittle? Learn our techniques to soften brown sugar!
Step 4 – Add Eggs and Vanilla
Reduce the speed to medium. Add eggs one at a time, and beat well after each addition.
It helps to crack the eggs in a separate bowl before adding them to the mixing bowl – that way, you can easily remove any pieces of egg shell.
Beat in the vanilla extract.
Step 5 – Add Dry Ingredients
Reduce speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture, beating until just incorporated without overmixing.
We can never stress this enough – do not overbeat the dough! It will end up too tough and chewy, because of how much gluten has developed. Remember to mix only until incorporated.
Step 6 – Add Remaining Ingredients
Add the oats, chocolate, pecans, and shredded coconut. Mix until combined. Again, mix just until combined!
Step 7 – Scoop
Using a large cookie scoop, drop dough onto the two baking sheets, spacing them a couple inches away from one another.
Step 8 – Bake
Bake until the edges begin to brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. They will still look slightly underbaked in the center, but don’t worry – the cookies will continue to set as they cool.
Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Transfer to wire cooling racks to cool completely.
A Crunch That’s Easily Versatile
While the combo of chocolate chips, pecans, shredded coconut, and oats is totally addictive, embody that cowboy spirit – roam free on the range of baking ingredients!
Use any variety of chocolate chips, nuts, and coconut. For a few different ideas, try butterscotch or milk chocolate chips, use chopped walnuts or cashews, or toast large flakes of coconut before adding them to the dough.
What will you choose? I wouldn’t mind making this recipe again (and again, and again, and again) if you want to share your delicious ideas in the comment section below!
Love the heartiness of this recipe? Eat more cookies! We have a few more oat-based favorites to share:
Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on November 19, 2008. Last updated: October 26, 2020 at 21:09 pm. With additional writing and editing by Nikki Cervone.
Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Shanna Mallon
Shanna Mallon is a freelance writer who holds an MA in writing from DePaul University. Her work has been featured in a variety of media outlets, including The Kitchn, Better Homes & Gardens, Taste of Home, Houzz.com, Foodista, Entrepreneur, and Ragan PR. In 2014, she co-authored The Einkorn Cookbook with her husband, Tim. Today, you can find her digging into food topics and celebrating the everyday grace of eating on her blog, Go Eat Your Bread with Joy. Shanna lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with Tim and their two small kids.