Perfect Oatmeal Cookies

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.

Oatmeal cookies

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

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.

Pouring wet ingredients into a bowl of dry ingredients

How to Make Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Making this oatmeal raisin cookie recipe couldn’t be easier. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. In separate bowls, whisk together the dry and wet ingredients.
  2. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  3. Fold in the oats, raisins, and walnuts. The mixture will be thick!
  4. Let the dough rest for 20 minutes. Then, roll it into balls.
  5. Bake the balls at 350 degrees for 10-11 minutes, until nicely golden brown.
  6. 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.
  7. After 5 minutes, transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely, and enjoy!

Spatula folding together wet and dry ingredients in a mixing bowl How to make oatmeal raisin cookies Cookie dough in a mixing bowl with spatula

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.)

How to make oatmeal cookies

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!

Folding raisins, nuts, and oats into oatmeal cookie recipe dough

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.

Balls of oatmeal cookie dough on a baking sheet

More Favorite Cookie Recipes

If you love these oatmeal cookies, try one of these yummy cookie recipes next:

Oatmeal cookies in a pan

Perfect Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

rate this recipe:
4.93 from 134 votes
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 45 mins
Serves 20
These soft and chewy oatmeal cookies are the perfect afternoon treat! Try stirring in chocolate or butterscotch chips for a fun variation. From Every Day is Saturday by Sarah Copeland.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour,

    spooned and leveled

  • 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

Instructions

  • 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). If your dough is too crumbly, stir in 2 to 3 tablespoons water.
  • 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.

 

176 comments

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Rate this recipe (after making it)




  1. Melissa
    10.03.2022

    5 stars
    I baked these cookies for the first time yesterday and was very pleased. They taste super! I used chocolate chips this time. Next time I’ll use both chocolate chips and raisins. Also of note, I used gluten free flour. Some bakes do better than others with this substitution but these cookies came out perfect. Question: how long will the cookies last on the counter in a sealed plastic container? And can the cookies be stored in the freezer?

  2. Lisa
    10.02.2022

    I loved your best brownie recipe–it is the only recipe I use. Now, I am going to make your perfect oatmeal raisin cookies. I have one question: should I soak the raisins before adding them to the oatmeal raisin dough? Thanks.

  3. Mary
    09.26.2022

    4 stars
    These are my favorite oatmeal cookies – they’re addictive! – but I so wish they were vegan now that I’m trying to follow that lifestyle. Do you have any tips on making these vegan or plans to make a vegan oatmeal cookie recipe?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      09.27.2022

      Hi Mary, here’s how we’ve made these vegan:

      sub the eggs for 2 tablespoons ground flax + 5 tablespoons water. Stir and set aside to thicken for 5 minutes. Add the mixture in place of the eggs, and use coconut oil instead of butter.

      I hope that helps!

  4. Katy
    08.10.2022

    I dont like raisins – am I able to just leave these out?

  5. Wendy Calvert
    07.26.2022

    💯❤🍪

  6. Leslie
    06.28.2022

    If I don’t have parchment paper, should I lightly oil my baking sheet, or leave it undressed?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      06.29.2022

      Hi Leslie, you could lightly oil your baking sheet.

  7. Inge
    06.25.2022

    5 stars
    Omg these cookies are delious
    Definitely going to be a favourite bake in my house

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      06.26.2022

      I’m so glad you loved them!

  8. Happy Hoosier
    06.21.2022

    5 stars
    Realized while assembly the wet ingredients that I was out of vanilla. Rolled the dice and substituted maple extract for the vanilla in the same amount. Was a success.

    OMG, they are soooo good!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      06.22.2022

      I’m so glad you loved them!

  9. Brooklyn
    06.21.2022

    5 stars
    Cookies were amazing!! I used smaller balls this time so I could get more cookies. Brown sugar was a great substitute but if you follow the instructions they come out great!! Thanks!! 💕😊

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      06.22.2022

      I’m so glad you loved them!

  10. Gayle
    06.12.2022

    5 stars
    These oatmeal cookies are perfect! I made them with golden raisins, and they were so yummy. “Were” because they disappeared in two days.

    I also appreciate the useful cooking tips.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      06.18.2022

      Ha ha, I’m glad you enjoyed them.

  11. Alicia
    05.02.2022

    Are they chewy? I don’t seem to be able to get a chewy cookie with butter. TY

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      05.04.2022

      Hi Alicia, if you make them with coconut oil they’re very chewy.

  12. CC
    03.30.2022

    5 stars
    I added raisins and cranberries, they were a huge hit with all my family! They kept asking for more, I even did a gluten free version of this and they turned out delicious as well 😋 Thank you!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      04.02.2022

      I’m glad you loved them!

  13. Deanna
    03.19.2022

    5 stars
    These are delicious.! Thank you Jeanine, and Sarah Copeland!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      03.21.2022

      I’m so glad you loved them!

  14. Kay Bertholdt
    03.14.2022

    5 stars
    Fabulous. I was skeptical about the melted butter but so easy–no mess. Perfect rounds. I used chocolate chips. These cookies are being shipped off to my college grandson! I am going to check Sarah Copeland’s “Every Day is Saturday”

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      03.14.2022

      I’m so glad you loved them!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.