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.
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.
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.
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
- 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 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
- 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.