My Dad’s been asking for Oatmeal Cookies for longer than I care to admit. And the folks had three, yes, three cartons of Old Fashioned Oats in the cupboard and I had this recipe for Big Chewy Oatmeal Cookies in my book of recipes.
I hardly had any excuse, except it just seemed like there is never any time! But when your folks are in their late 80’s (which is why I so often call them my fave octogenarians) you never want to put things off for too long. And so here they are, the best Oatmeal Cookies, ever! And my Da thinks so, too!! 🙂 It always tickles me pink to get a thumbs up from my Pops!
About Big Chewy Oatmeal Cookies:
First of all, please excuse the awful photos! I’m going to have to remake these before I can get better ones, but I hope you’ll have a little faith when I say how insanely good these cookies are. I’d hate to have anyone miss out on these fab oatmeal cookies just because they look a bit “ugg” in my pics. I’ve tried many oatmeal cookies in the decades I’ve been baking but these are still, hands down, my favorite.
One thing I love about these cookies is how easy they are to customize. I made them with raisins this time (what can I say, the folks love raisins) but they’re even better with chocolate chips (try a mix of milk and dark chocolate – it’s to die for) and you could use butterscotch chips, toffee bits or M&Ms.
As far as dried fruit, beyond raisins, dates are fabulous and I think dried apricots or cherries if you lean that way would be great. The thing is, this cookie can take just about anything you can throw at it – just as long as you keep your total add-ins to roughly 1 1/2 cups you can pretty much mix or match as much as you’d like.
Making Big Chewy Oatmeal Cookies:
Here’s another example of me not noting where the original recipe came from! Over the years, I’ve actually gotten to the point where I can pretty much recognize a Cook’s Illustrated/America’s Test Kitchen and/or a Cook’s Country recipe, mostly by the amount of detail in the instructions. So I’m guessing this recipe came from them.
As a matter of fact, the instructions are so precise, there’s really no need for me to give any helps or hints. The one thing II do differently is if I use dried fruit or make the cookies just plain oatmeal, I always include the teensy bit of nutmeg in the cookies. When I use something other than fruit, say chocolate, I omit it.
You can manipulate the texture just a bit with these cookies, too. Use Old Fashioned (Regular) Oats and they’re a bit chewier but they’ll be a little bit softer if you use Quick Cooking Oats. Bake these cookies a little less for softer, chewier cookies, just until the edges brown – they will look a little underdone but will set up as they cool. If you’d like a crisper cookie with a little crunchy caramelized bottom and a still soft & chewy (but not quite as chewy) center, bake until they are golden brown. You can’t go wrong either way.
Saving Money on Big Chewy Oatmeal Cookies:
Oats are always inexpensive, but there are usually coupons and sales in the fall. Makes sense – being seasonal. They want to move product coz the warehouses are full. Watch your butter sales, especially around holidays, stock up & freeze. Always look for sales and coupons on dried fruits (and nuts) during the fall and winter holidays.
As far as brown sugar goes, I never buy it any longer. You can easily make it by adding molasses to plain old white granulated sugar but in a recipe like this, there is no need to actually “make” it. Just add in a tablespoon of molasses for light brown sugar and 2 tablespoons for dark. You can see my post on Homemade Light or Dark Brown Sugar if you want more information.Print
Big Chewy Oatmeal Cookies
- Total Time: about 1 hour
- Yield: 20 large 1x
- Category: Cookies
- Cuisine: American
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened but still firm
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 3 cups rolled oats
- 1 1/2 cups raisins (optional or substitute)
When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Adjust oven racks to lower and middle.
In your mixer bowl, add butter and using a whisk attachment, cream until light and fluffy, stopping to scrape down as needed. Add the sugars and continue to cream, scraping as necessary, until fully incorporated. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well between each addition and scraping as necessary.
Switch to paddle attachment.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking powder & nutmeg and whisk together. Add to the butter mixture at low-speed and beat until just combined. Add the oats, slowly mixing and scraping until fully incorporated. Stir in the raisins and/or optional ingredients by hand.
Divide dough (a 1/3 cup scoop works well for this) into 20 or so large balls, about 2″ in diameter. Line your cookie sheets with parchment or a silicone baking mat. If desired, refrigerate for one hour and up to several days, well covered.
Place cookies, about six on a sheet (do not press down on them) and bake from 18 to 25 minutes, turning and rotating sheet pans about halfway through. Cookies are done when they’re browned around the edges, are slightly golden and look just a little under done in the center.
Pull the cookies off the cookie sheet, parchment and all and let set up for about 10 minutes before moving them to a cooking rack to cool completely.
- Dough may be frozen and baked from the frozen state. Increase time by a minute or two.
- Keep the baked cookies in a cool dry place for up to 10 days.
Keywords: Chocolate Chips, Cook's Illustrated, Cookies, Desserts, Dried Fruit, Oatmeal, Raisins
I’ll be bringing this recipe to Fiesta Friday, hosted this week by Anugya @ Indian Curry Shack and Margy @ La Petite Casserole. If you haven’t clicked over to Fiesta Friday and looked over the weekly post, you’re missing out!