Since we don’t have a whole slew of sugar or processed foods at our house I like to have something I can whip up on a whim…especially when we have a houseful of kids.

This recipe is the best one to make while all the neighborhood kids are gathered around the kitchen island because of two things:
1) they are quick-as-a-wink to make and you never know how long those kids are going to stick around
2) I love to hear what those said kids say as they sit around the counter waiting for the deliciousness to become available
Ok, and here are my other reasons I like these things:
1) I think oatmeal is the best thing in the world…especially in cookies
2) These make me nostalgic for my family because my brother taught me to make them probably before we were even teenagers and we’ve made them ever since, and they are my sister Charity and my special thing we always, always always have to make when we get together.
Whoa, that’s quite an introduction.  Don’t get your hopes up too high.  But I figured I’d share since a few people asked for the recipe after I posted a picture back in THIS post.

Here you go.
Mix in saucepan over medium heat:
2 c. sugar
1/4 c. cocoa
1/2 c. milk
1 stick (1/2 c.) butter
As soon as that mixture comes to a boil, turn down heat to low and let simmer for exactly four minutes.
The timing on this is important.  If you cook them too long, they are all dry and crumbly.  If you cook for too little time they are mushy and gooey and you can hardly pry them from the pan.
As soon as those four minutes are up, take the saucepan off the heat and add:

1 tsp. vanilla
3 c. oatmeal

Mix together and drop by heaping spoonfuls onto a wax paper lined cookie sheet.

Let sit on the counter to set, or in fridge, or in a hiding place so everyone doesn’t chow down on them before they’re ready.

That’s all there is to it.


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  1. Thanks for sharing this! I've always seen this recipe with Peanut Butter, which I have a child with an allergy to. I will have to give this a try.

  2. yummy!!!

    Shawni, I have a question!

    I have a daughter mentioning NO names ( she has the same name as your daughter ๐Ÿ˜‰ she's turning 8… and HATES PIANO… I MEAN HATES IT… I have one daughter whos 10, who whines, but I don't let it get to me… but this 8 yr old.. I am talking weeping, wailing, gnashing of teeth. I talked to her piano teacher, who said, she does have a hard time with it in lessons,and that they were trying to make it fun for her. she's a great teacher, and I love her. So what do I do. every day, there is a huge melt down, every single day. I don't play LOL

  3. We add coconut too, and call them Chocolate haystacks. It looks like lots of people have their own name and twist on this classic recipe!! Its a keeper!

  4. We used to make "no bake cookies" all the time when I was younger. We also added P&B, but instead of cocoa powder, we used an equal amount of hot chocolate mix. It gives a lighter chocolate taste, and mixed with the P&B, they are delicious!!
    I think I'll make some for my kids today! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. @dresselfamily:

    Don`t force your daughter to play the piano if she hates it that much. I have been taking piano and violine lessons for many years, and I started as a kid. Of course I HAD to practice, but I liked it, and that`s essential. So don`t pressure your kid. Ask her what she would like to do instead. Give her a pause of a few weeks or months if she wants to before starting something new. Maybe she wants to play an other instrument, or she`s just not that much into music and wants to take art lessons, or play in a theatre group or whatever. If you keep forcing her to make music although she hates it that much she will never enjoy it. Just my two cents. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Suggestion for DresselFamily… my 7 year old daughter wasn't wild about piano either (or at least about practicing, she actually kind of enjoys the lesson), but a few months back a made a simple change that has made all the difference. I used to require 30 minutes a day, 5 days of a week of practice. She still practices 5 times a week (with me right next to her coaching and encouraging), but instead of a certain amount of time, she just has to play each assignment 3x each. The first few practice sessions after a lesson are lengthy when she's unfamiliar with the material, but by the time the next lesson rolls along, she's finishing in 10 minutes or less. It's been great for her. As she gets older, I might require more practice time, but for now this is working.

  7. Funny that your recipe doesn't call for peanut butter! Anyway, I remember these being served at school lunch and they were my favorite. Sadly, my kids don't like them. I love that you don't have to bake them. Great for hot weather!

  8. We also add pb! And we call these "Tish on the Counter cookies" haha! My husband's grandpa walked in one day while his wife was making these and said it looked like Tish, the family dog, had been on the counter pooping everywhere! ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. I love that you don't put in peanut butter! My roommates always thought I was nuts to not put in any peanut butter. Fun to see another family's recipe without it, too. Thanks for sharing!

  10. Chocolate chews, boiled cookies, cow patties. So many names. So delicious. We have always used peanut butter but I will have to try without.

  11. Thanks so much for this recipe– I've been making No-Bake cookies for years and they've often turned out crumbly and I couldn't figure out why. But your recommended 4-minute simmering time made them turn out perfect when I made them today!! I don't like to add peanut butter, but I do like a little shredded coconut added in because that's just what I grew up with.

    I wanted to ask you– You've mentioned how you guys don't eat lots of processed or sugary things in your house. I want to do this, but I don't quite know how! What do you feed them for specifically for breakfast, after-school snacks, lunches that they take to school, etc.? I'd love ideas for nutritious snacks that your kids actually eat and love. Thank you so much.

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