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

These oatmeal cookies are truly the best! From Sarah Copeland’s cookbook Every Day Is Saturday, they’re soft and chewy, warmly spiced, and flecked with raisins and nuts. Perfect, if you ask me.

A few weeks ago, I got an intense craving for good oatmeal raisin cookies and hastily threw together ingredients that I had on hand. I ended up with oat-ball-type cookies that were…just ok, and my craving continued. So when I flipped through Every Day Is Saturday this week, Sarah’s oatmeal cookie recipe grabbed my attention.

She writes, “these [oatmeal cookies are] little nuggets of joy you can’t stop eating—that just-right kind of cookie.” I completely agree. These oatmeal cookies were exactly what I was craving. The only problem was that they disappeared too quickly!

Oatmeal cookie recipe ingredients

Oatmeal Cookie Recipe Ingredients

This recipe has simple ingredients. You likely have them in your pantry already! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • All-purpose flour and whole rolled oats form the base of the dough. Old fashioned oats give these cookies the best chewy texture. I don’t recommend using quick oats instead!
  • Baking powder and baking soda make them nice and 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.

Find the complete recipe with measurements below.

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. No stand mixer (or even hand mixer) required! Here’s what you need to do:

First, make the dough. Whisk together the wet ingredients in one mixing bowl and the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in another.

Spatula folding together wet and dry ingredients in a mixing bowl

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Then, fold in the walnuts, oats, and raisins. The mixture will be thick!

How to make oatmeal raisin cookies

Next, let the dough rest for 20 minutes. This time gives the wet ingredients a chance to hydrate the flour and oats, making it easier to work with the dough. The cookies come out chewier, too!

Cookie dough in a mixing bowl with spatula

Then, shape and bake the cookies. Roll the dough into balls and place them on parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake at 350°F for 10 to 11 minutes, or until golden brown.

How to make oatmeal cookies

Let the cookies cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely. Enjoy!

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

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 for 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.)

Balls of oatmeal cookie dough on a baking sheet

Oatmeal Cookies Variations

If you follow this recipe as written, you won’t be disappointed. These oatmeal cookies are buttery, nutty, and perfectly spiced. But if you want to step outside the traditional oatmeal raisin cookie box, feel free. Here are a few great ways to change up this recipe:

  • Substitute chocolate chips for the raisins to make oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, or use a mix of both. White chocolate chips are a fun option too.
  • Use pecans instead of walnuts.
  • Swap the raisins for dried cherries or cranberries.
  • Add a dash of cardamom or ginger to the dough.
  • Replace the raisins with butterscotch chips to give the cookies an extra-buttery taste.

How do you like to make oatmeal cookies? Let me know in the comments!

How to Store Oatmeal Cookies

To keep these oatmeal cookies soft and chewy, store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. They also freeze well for up to 3 months.

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 store the cookie dough in the fridge for 7 to 10 days or freeze it for up to a month.

To store the dough, roll it into balls and freeze them briefly. Then, transfer the cookie dough balls to airtight 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.

Oatmeal cookies in a pan

More Favorite Cookie Recipes

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

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Perfect Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

rate this recipe:
4.92 from 375 votes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Serves 20
Studded with raisins and walnuts, these soft and chewy oatmeal cookies are the perfect afternoon treat! Replace the raisins with chocolate chips for a fun variation. From Every Day Is Saturday by Sarah Copeland.

Ingredients

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.
  • Use a cookie scoop to divide the dough into 20 tablespoon-sized balls. 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.

 

392 comments

4.92 from 375 votes (239 ratings without comment)

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Rate this recipe (after making it)




  1. Roberta
    07.15.2024

    5 stars
    These Oatmeal Cookies are delicious! I doubled the recipe and used cranrasins and walnuts. The helpful hints were in fact very helpful. The cookies definitely get softer after they cool down. I made them two days ago and they are very tasty!

  2. RJ S.
    07.10.2024

    4 stars
    Followed recipe to a T. But my cookies did not fall or spread out. They’re really good tasting oatmeal balls, though.

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      07.12.2024

      Hi, so glad you enjoyed the cookies! If you want them to spread more next time, I’d recommend spooning and leveling your flour or weighing it (125g). It sounds like you may have had a little extra flour in your dough, which would have caused the cookies to spread less.

  3. Linda
    07.06.2024

    5 stars
    These really are perfect. I like the way they are puffy and not flat like some other recipes. I followed the recipe and doubled it, they are very good and I received many compliments. Thanks for sharing. This one is a keeper.

    • Phoebe Moore (L&L Recipe Developer)
      07.12.2024

      Hi Linda, I’m so glad you loved the cookies!

  4. Lauren
    07.03.2024

    Hey there,
    I have 2 questions:
    1. Is a cup 250 m”l?
    2. Can I use canola oil insted of cocunot oil (or part canola part cocunot, and if so, what is the ratio)?

    • Janis
      07.05.2024

      118.29 ml are in 1/2 cup

      Yes. You can add whichever oil(s) you like in any ratio you like (50-50; 60-40; 75-25, etc.)

      • Janis
        07.05.2024

        2.36.59 ml in 1 cup

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