No Bake Cookies

By Maria Lichty

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Quick Summary

These classic No Bake Cookies are jam-packed with chocolate, peanut butter, and oatmeal, and are surprisingly easy to make. You don’t even have to turn on the oven! They are a family favorite!

Five no bake cookies on a piece of parchment paper, next to a bowl of peanut butter and a spoonful of peanut butter

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I love cookies. Who doesn’t? They are fun to make and eat, but sometimes I just need a super EASY cookie recipe. That is when I turn to my favorite No Bake Cookie recipe!

They have all the benefits of traditional cookies, but they’re quicker and easier … which means you can satisfy your cookie craving that much faster! 

These aren’t raw cookies, as the dough gets cooked on the stovetop. That helps create a richer flavor, and a more authentic cookie texture, while still being a lot more convenient than using the oven.

The cookies are made with peanut butter, cocoa powder, vanilla, and oats, this no bake dessert recipe is full of all your favorite cookie flavors. You can’t go wrong with peanut butter and chocolate! Seriously, the BEST combo!

Four no bake cookies stacked on top of each other, with a saucepan in the background

Ingredients

I also love this cookie recipe because the ingredients are simple. You probably have the ingredients in your pantry and fridge right now.

Check out the recipe card at the bottom of the article to see the specific quantities for each ingredient.

  • Unsalted butter– I like to use unsalted butter so I can control the amount of salt in the recipe.
  • Granulated sugar 
  • Milk – You can use dairy-free milk if you prefer, just make sure that it’s unsweetened and unflavored.
  • Cocoa powder – Make sure that this is unsweetened. 
  • Creamy peanut butter– I prefer creamy peanut butter, but crunchy will work too if you want a little crunch to your cookie.
  • Vanilla extract – Be sure to only use 100% pure vanilla extract. 
  • Kosher salt
  • Quick oats

Can You Use Old Fashioned Oats?

This recipe calls for quick oats, which barely take any time to cook. And because they’re smaller than traditional oats, they help hold the cookies together. If you substitute them with old fashioned oats, you’ll have raw oats in your no bake cookies, and that’s an unpleasant flavor and texture. However, you can pulse old fashioned oats in a food processor for a few seconds, and end up with something similar to quick oats. 

A no bake cookie with a bite taken out of it, with a saucepan in the background

How to Make No Bake Cookies

This recipe is a lot of fun to make, and it comes together very quickly. Here’s how to make the cookies.

  • Prep. Line two baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper.
  • Heat the mixture. Put the milk, butter, sugar, and cocoa powder in a saucepan on medium heat. Stir occasionally, and bring the mixture to a boil. Once it reaches a rolling boil, cook for 1 minute, then remove from the heat. 
  • Finish the dough. Stir in the peanut butter, vanilla extract, and salt, and mix until the cookie dough is smooth. Then stir in the oats. 
  • Make the cookies. Drop spoonfuls of cookie dough onto the prepared baking sheets. Let the cookies sit at room temperature until they firm up, which should take 20-30 minutes.

Tips for Success

Here are some ways to make sure that your no bake cookies are perfect.

  • Set a timer. The minute of boiling the cookie dough is vital. To ensure that your cookies are a good texture, set a timer so that you boil the mixture for exactly 1 minute. If you boil it much longer than that, the cookies will be dry and crumbly. If you boil it for less than that, they’ll be wet and won’t set up correctly. 
  • Scoop the dough immediately. Once you’ve finished making the dough, it will begin to set up. Because of that, you have limited time to make the cookies. Make sure you have everything in place before you start cooking, so that you can scoop the cookies onto the prepared baking sheets as soon as the dough is finished.
  • Use a scoop. If you have a cookie scoop, use it when scooping the cookies. That way your cookies will be nice circles, and they’ll all be a consistent size.
Three no bake cookies on a piece of parchment paper, next to a spoonful of peanut butter

Variations

Here are a few changes and additions that you can make to these no bake cookies if you want to try something new. 

  • Use chunky butter. This recipe calls for creamy peanut butter, which makes for a smooth cookie. However, if you like some different textures in your cookies, chunky peanut butter is a good way to add some crunch. 
  • Try a different nut butter. Peanut butter is a pretty traditional cookie flavor, but you can also use other nut butters in this recipe. Swap out the peanut butter in favor of almond butter or cashew butter and you’ll have a very different – but equally tasty – no bake cookie. 
  • Add dried fruit. These cookies aren’t lacking for flavor, but you can dial it up a notch by adding some dried fruit when you add the oats. I think these cookies taste amazing with dried cherries. 
  • Sea Salt– sprinkle the cookies with a little flaky sea salt!

How to Store No Bake Cookies

These cookies will last for 3 days at room temperature, or for 7 days in the fridge. Just make sure that you store them in an airtight container or bag, and don’t leave them in direct sunlight. 

Can This Recipe Be Frozen?

You can absolutely freeze these cookies. Store them in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 6 months. For best results, individually wrap them in plastic wrap to prevent freezer burn. Thaw in the fridge or at room temperature.  

Four no bake cookies stacked on top of each other, with cookies and a saucepan in the background, and a plate of cookies and a spoonful of peanut butter in the foreground

If you enjoyed eating these chewy no bake cookies, then check out some of my other favorite cookie recipes to try. 

Find all of my cookie recipes HERE! There are LOTS to choose from!

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Five no bake cookies on a piece of parchment paper, next to a bowl of peanut butter and a spoonful of peanut butter

No Bake Cookies

These classic No Bake Cookies are jam-packed with chocolate, peanut butter, and oatmeal, and are surprisingly easy to make. You don't even have to turn on the oven! They are a family favorite!
4.42 from 336 votes

Equipment

Ingredients
  

Instructions
 

  • Place the butter, granulated sugar, milk, and cocoa powder in a medium saucepan. Over medium heat, bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Once the mixture is at a rolling boil, boiling around the edges and in the middle, boil for one minute.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the peanut butter, vanilla, and salt. Stir until peanut butter is melted and smooth. Stir in the oats.
  • Drop spoonfuls of the mixture (about 2 tablespoons per cookie) onto the prepared baking sheets, and let sit at room temperature until cooled and hardened, about 20 to 30 minutes.

Notes

Store the cookies in an airtight container for up to 3 to 4 days on the counter or in the fridge.

Nutrition

Serving: 24g, Calories: 173kcal, Carbohydrates: 25g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 8g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 11mg, Sodium: 75mg, Potassium: 89mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 18g, Vitamin A: 126IU, Calcium: 16mg, Iron: 1mg
Keywords easy cookie recipes, no bake oatmeal cookies, peanut butter cookies, peanut butter no bake cookies

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Maria

I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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4.42 from 336 votes (281 ratings without comment)

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Comments

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  1. 2 stars
    I followed the recipe exactly and mine turned out so dry that by the time I finished spooning them out on paper, they were nothing but crumbles To the trash this batch goes.

    1. I am sorry you struggled with the recipe. It sounds like you overcooked the mixture, which made the cookies dry. Try cooking for a little less time. It could be a climate factor too.

    2. Bring to boil and only let boil 1 minute – remove from heat add PB & vanilla stir y till melted then add oatmeal

    3. This is my first time using your recipe- mine did not harden there still gooey. What did I do? Could I add some flour or something? And then bake them? Any suggestions

    4. NOT A TOTAL FAIL 🙂 … I would not have trashed them it might be crumbles but they are yummy crumbles.. use them as a topping for your yogurt or spread them into a pie pan to use as a yummy crust for cheesecake or banana pudding 🙂 soooo…. good… as Bob Ross would say “Happy Accidents”

  2. 5 stars
    Simple and tasty!

    When I was a child, we called these cookies ” Preacher cookies.” Still the same great cookie I recall from over 60 years ago! Taste great. Freeze great. I love them!

    1. 5 stars
      I’ve been making these cookies/candy by a recipe exactly like this for over 40 years. It’s the first thing I learned to cook from memory. May have been the first thing I ever cooked! If you follow this recipe exactly, and they don’t turn out right, it’s the humidity. They are one of the most sensetive cookies I’ve ever made. It’s not the recipe.

  3. 5 stars
    I have never made no bake cookies. Amazing as I have baked cookies all of my life. These were not only easy, but delicious. They set up nicely. I got 2 dozen plus 2 cookies. Thank you for a great recipe!

  4. 5 stars
    My picky granddaughter gives her thumbs up! The last few when scooping were a little crumbly but 99% set up easily. Maybe I didn’t mix it up enough or I’m slow at scooping lol. These were Super easy and fast to make. Taste great.

  5. I always had trouble making these until I followed your directions exactly. These turned out amazing !!
    Thank you!!

  6. The method and result is great. Quick, and a nice form Cookie once it’s cooled. However I feel like they’re too sweet, without much of a peanut butter taste, for my preference.

  7. These cookies are delicious! Not sure how someone said that they are dry, definitely must have boiled them too long. Very easy to make too. Thanks!

    1. I usually use Skippy but if you want to use a natural peanut butter make sure you stir the peanut butter really well before using.

    2. I always make mine with natural peanut butter and soy milk. They turn out perfectly!

  8. 5 stars
    I tried the dried fruit variation and I would do it all over again! so delicious and fun to make. Kids loved it.

  9. Can you add flaxseed or chia seed or any extra little hidden healthy gems? When would you add that? Thanks.

  10. 4 stars
    Hi
    First of all Thank you for the recipe,
    I followed your recipe and made it twice two different times!
    Do you have a trick to have them come out to dry?? Mine did and broke apart

  11. I accidentally used regular oats and I can definitely see the difference between those and quick cook oats. The taste is fine, but the texture is not They are big and chewy. Not what I am used to! ‍♀️ So I will make another batch!
    I did substitute butter with coconut oil and golden sugar, for white, granulated sugar. No different than the original, in my opinion.
    Thank you for the recipe!

  12. 5 stars
    Have baked many cookies but had never made no bake cookies and these turned out I think pretty good. They set up and got hard like they should. Just not crazy about oats or oatmeal but these are pretty tasty. Would leave a picture but don’t see an option for that.

  13. 5 stars
    They are absolutely delicious! This is what my husband wanted instead of a birthday cake, so I obliged him with a double batch!

  14. Do you have a recipe that includes graham crackers and marshmallows mixed into the chocolate mix?My mother used to make these and they were a wonderful variation of this recipe.

  15. Proper weights needed in gm or oz – cups don’t exist in Europe & far too inaccurate anyhow (or conversion button)

  16. 5 stars
    So glad to have found this recipe. Begged my mother for years for my grandmother’s recipe for no bake cookies and she would never give it to me. I have been craving these so bad. Made a batch today and so excited to try them. Thank you for sharing.

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