I don't often call recipes perfect, but these oatmeal cookies are soft, chewy, and warmly spiced - everything a good oatmeal raisin cookie should be.
Happy Friday! I’m so excited to share these oatmeal cookies with you today because they truly are the best. A few weeks ago, I got an intense craving for a good oatmeal raisin cookie. I ran to the kitchen and hastily threw together ingredients that I happened to have on hand and, without really measuring, I made some ok oat-ball kind of cookies. They halfway hit the spot, but my craving continued. So when I flipped through Sarah Copeland’s beautiful new book Every Day is Saturday, her oatmeal cookie recipe grabbed my attention.
Sarah writes, “there are three kinds of oatmeal cookie: over-sugared and raisin-laden; too wholesome (a hippie cookie in disguise); and then these little nuggets of joy you can’t stop eating – that just right kind of cookie. These live in the third camp: sugar under control, but present, and no skimping on the butter (although I used coconut oil and they were still perfect). Cinnamon and vanilla give these big flavor. And for the sweet-toothed, a sprinkling of raisins, and buttery pecans (I used walnuts) do the trick.”
My personal verdict? These cookies totally hit the spot! They were exactly what I was craving, the only problem is that they disappeared too quickly!
Sarah is the author of some of my favorite cookbooks including the Newlywed Cookbook and Feast. Her newest book, Every Day is Saturday, is a gorgeous book full of recipes that are easy and doable for weekdays but that will infuse a dreamy weekend vibe into your everyday.
Oatmeal Cookie Recipe Ingredients
The ingredients to this recipe are simple – you likely already have them in your pantry!
- All-purpose flour and whole rolled oats are the base of the dough.
- Baking powder and baking soda make them nice & puffy.
- Brown sugar adds the perfect caramelized sweetness.
- Sea salt offsets the sweet sugar and raisins.
- Cinnamon and vanilla extract give them that delicious warm, spiced oatmeal cookie flavor.
- Coconut oil or melted butter adds moisture and richness. I used coconut oil, and these tasted wonderfully buttery just the same!
- 1 large egg + an extra egg yolk give them a rich, thick dough and a moist, light final texture.
- Raisins dot them with chewy pops of sweetness.
- And walnuts add nuttiness and crunch.
How to Make Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Making this oatmeal raisin cookie recipe couldn’t be easier. Here’s what you need to do:
- In separate bowls, whisk together the dry and wet ingredients.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
- Fold in the oats, raisins, and walnuts. The mixture will be thick!
- Let the dough rest for 20 minutes. Then, roll it into balls.
- Bake the balls at 350 degrees for 10-11 minutes, until nicely golden brown.
- When you take the cookies out of the oven, they should look slightly under-baked. Don’t worry, though – leave them on the hot baking sheets for 5 minutes out of the oven, and they’ll be delectably soft and chewy.
- After 5 minutes, transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely, and enjoy!
Oatmeal Cookie Recipe Tips
Sarah has a few excellent pointers in her book. These are her tips for making the best oatmeal raisin cookies:
- Use brown sugar. Instead of using a mix of brown sugar and granulated sugar, Sarah opts for all brown sugar. It gives these oatmeal raisin cookies a delicious caramelized sweetness.
- Go for melted, not creamed, butter. According to Sarah, creamed butter cookies are unpredictable: they can easily spread too much or be too firm. With melted butter, though, you’ll get moist, chewy cookies every time.
- Let the dough rest 20 minutes before baking. Those 20 minutes will make your dough easier to roll into balls, so the cookies will keep their shape and develop a yummy chewy texture in the oven.
- Allow the cookies to cool completely for the best texture and flavor. It may be agony, but letting these oatmeal raisin cookies cool completely only makes them better. They’ll be chewier and fully infused with brown sugar flavor. Sarah likes these best a few hours to 1 day after baking. (Though I can attest that they’re still good if you can’t wait that long.)
My Favorite Variations for Oatmeal Cookies
If you follow this recipe as written, you absolutely will not be disappointed: these oatmeal cookies are buttery, nutty, and perfectly spiced. If you want to step outside the traditional oatmeal raisin cookie box, though, here are a few suggestions to change them up:
- Substitute chocolate chips for the raisins to make oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, or use a mix of both.
- Try using pecans instead of walnuts.
- Swap the raisins for dried cherries or cranberries.
- Add a dash of cardamom or ginger to the dough.
- Skip the raisins and use butterscotch chips or a mix of chocolate and butterscotch chips for extra-buttery flavor.
What’s your favorite way to make oatmeal cookies? Let me know in the comments!
Make-Ahead Oatmeal Cookies
If you’re someone who likes to keep cookie dough on hand in the fridge or freezer, this oatmeal cookie recipe is for you. You can mix up the dough and keep it in the fridge for 7-10 days or freeze it for up to a month.
To store the dough, roll it into balls and freeze them briefly. Then, transfer them to airtight plastic containers or Ziploc bags and refrigerate or freeze. You can also roll the dough into a log, using an 8×12-inch piece of parchment paper as a guide. Wrap the log tightly in parchment to refrigerate or freeze, and slice the cookies into rounds before baking.
Bake your cookie dough straight from the fridge. If it’s frozen, allow it to rest for 15 minutes at room temperature before putting it in the oven.
If you love this oatmeal raisin cookie recipe…
Perfect Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup coconut oil or butter, melted
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 1/2 cup whole rolled oats
- 3/4 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, optional
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the melted coconut oil, sugar, whole egg, egg yolk, and vanilla, whisking vigorously.
- Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Stir in the oats, raisins, and walnuts, if using, folding into a tight batter. Set the dough aside for 20 minutes while the oven preheats. (Note: if your dough seems too wet to become scoop-able, chill it in the fridge for this 20 minutes and it'll firm up).
- Scoop into 20 tablespoon-sized balls and roll lightly in barely damp hands to make them round. Spread out onto the prepared baking sheets and bake until puffed, golden, and a touch underbaked-looking, 10 to 11 minutes. Let cool on the pans for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.