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This recipe for Cowboy Cookies is for people like me who love cookies that are loaded with textures and flavors. These are chewy, bumpy, crunchy, sweet and tangy – made with whole grain flower, dark chocolate, dried cranberries, old-fashioned oats, coconut and walnuts.

Cowboy Cookies served on a marble platter

Line up a dozen cookies in front of me. Give me a choice of every texture and flavor, but tell me to choose just one and I’ll choose the lumpiest, bumpiest one every time.

I’m a cowboy cookies kind of girl. Which is funny because it’s one of the few places where my husband and I differ in food tastes. Once, at at his request, I made a batch of chocolate chip cookies without the chocolate chips. And though I love chocolate in my cookies, I agree that many cookies have so many chocolate chips that the other flavors and textures are lost.

Cowboy-Cookies in a stack

Usually, I’m all about improvisation in recipes, but when it comes to cookies I’m a stickler. For example, this version from the New York Times has six times as many chocolate chips as this recipe! And another version from Quaker Oats suggests using shortening (no way – butter is better!) and quick oats (nope). I think cowboy cookies should have maximum texture and flavor: white whole wheat flour, old-fashioned oats, deep dark chocolate and extra nuts, coconut and dried cranberries.

These cookies are crispy at the edges and chewy in the middle. And every bite is different: a chocolate chip in this bite, a walnut and dried cranberry in another. The shredded coconut is surprisingly subtle, adding richness, but not overpowering the other flavors. The’re made with only whole grain flour, but I promise you won’t mind – I bet you won’t even notice. I find that it adds better texture to many cookie recipes and tames sweetness.

Frozen Cowboy Cookie dough balls

I love to scoop all of the dough, cook what we’ll eat that day and freeze the rest in ready portions. Then whenever you have a need for fresh-from-the-oven cookies, they’re just minutes away. Bake them frozen and add a minute or two to the cooking time.

Cowboy Cookies Recipe VIdeo

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Cowboy Cookies

4.80 from 5 votes
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 12 minutes
Total: 32 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Calories: 111
Servings: 60 cookies
This recipe for Cowboy Cookies is for people like me who love cookies that are loaded with textures and flavors. These are chewy, bumpy, crunchy, sweet and tangy – made with whole grain flour, dark chocolate, dried cranberries, old-fashioned oats, coconut and walnuts.

Ingredients  

  • 2 cups white whole wheat flour 240g
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups rolled oats 196g, I like extra thick!
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut 88g
  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dried cranberries 120g, or dried cherries
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts 117g
  • 1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate chips 88g

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Stir in oats and coconut. Set aside.
  • Add butter and sugars to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes, scraping down the bowl as needed.
  • Reduce mixer speed to medium-low and add eggs, one at a time, until combined. Scrape down bowl and add vanilla extract; mix until combined. Add dry ingredients in 2 or 3 additions; then cranberries, walnuts and chocolate chips and mix until just combined.
  • Remove bowl from mixer and scrape down sides with a rubber spatula, being sure to incorporate any dry ingredients still in the bottom.
  • Scoop dough into about two tablespoon balls (a 2-tablespoon scoop makes this easy!) of dough and place 12 to 15 cookies on prepared baking sheet (number depending on the size of your sheet). Take care to leave an inch or more of space on all sides of each cookie as cookies will spread during baking.
  • Bake until golden around the edges and slightly pale in the middle, 12-14 minutes, rotating pan halfway through the cooking time. Transfer cookies on parchment to cooling rack. Repeat with remaining dough.

Notes

If you like to have cookies fresh and warm from the oven, only cook the number of cookies you need for that day. Portion the remaining dough in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze. Once frozen, transfer to a freezer bag marked with baking temperature and cook time. Bake frozen dough balls frozen adding a minute or two to the cooking time.

Nutrition

Calories: 111kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 14mg | Sodium: 63mg | Potassium: 50mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 104IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 0.4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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60 Comments

  1. Lisa says:

    4 stars
    You had me at “loaded with textures and flavors.” Loved the cookie but it didn’t spread out as much as your cookies appeared to in the picture–not sure why. They were more like large nuggets. Should I have flattened them on the cookie sheet?

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      Hi Lisa! So glad you enjoyed these. On them not spreading, it could be a bit too much flour. I have the most consistent results when I weigh the ingredients. If you want them to spread more, you can certainly reduce the flour slightly or scoop the dough into balls on a baking sheet, but let them warm to room temperature before baking. I hope that helps!

  2. Laura says:

    I have made almost this exact recipe , but I used white chocolate chips and I do about half the cookie dough part but all the add in at a cup each of the oats , coconut, cranberries , whit cho. Chips , walnuts , this is what I call my 1 cup recipe as from the flour and all the add ins is all 1 cup each . But this is an excellent recipe either way it’s made !!! Luv it !!!! 💜💜 I also do the same with the unused portions of cookie dough all the time ! And it has always worked the best I just put it all into a Ziploc bag in a rectangle and when I want fresh cookies I take it out and cut with a knife the size cookies I want or need and put the rest back into the freezer . I just wanted to say this is the closest recipe that I have ever seen out here as to what I make for my family favorites !!! And I know that they are wonderful !!!

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      Hi Laura! Thank you for your kind words and cooking notes.

  3. Paula | Vintage Kitchen says:

    5 stars
    I agree with looking for the bumpiest cookie, haha! The most irregular ones have the best edges in my opinion. The way of freezing the uncooked portions (I do the same with gnocchi, but it never occurred to do it with cookie dough) is genius Marissa!

    1. Marissa says:

      oooh! I’ve never considered freezing gnocchi – definitely going to do that next time.

  4. Azinro says:

    can i don’t use baking soda in recipe? or substitute with any healthy things?

    1. Marissa says:

      Hi Azinro. You’ll need a leavening agent so that the cookies will rise – I’m sorry, I don’t have a substitution to suggest.

  5. David @ Spiced says:

    What a great idea to freeze the cookie dough so you can just bake up a couple at a time. Totally going to start doing that…and these cookies sound like they are calling my name! I love texture in cookies, too!

    1. Marissa says:

      Thanks so much, David!