Loaded Oatmeal Cookies

Soft-baked, ultra chewy, and simple oatmeal cookie recipe. Only 30 minutes to chill, you’ll have oatmeal cookies in no time. Load them with your favorites! 

Soft & chewy Loaded Oatmeal Cookies. Sweetened with brown sugar and loaded with butterscotch, M&Ms, and chocolate chunks!

A lot of readers ask me… what’s your favorite basic cookie recipe? Well, I have a few.

For super soft & thick, try my chocolate chip cookies and add in whatever you like! For extra chewy, try my chewy chocolate chunk cookies. For sugar cookies – bake these, for chocolate cookies – I suggest these, for peanut butter cookies – use this recipe, and for snickerdoodles – bake these in only 20 minutes.

But for oatmeal cookies? You’re looking at them.

Soft & chewy Loaded Oatmeal Cookies. Sweetened with brown sugar and loaded with butterscotch, M&Ms, and chocolate chunks!

My favorite oatmeal cookie couldn’t be any more straightforward and simple. They’re soft, they’re chewy, kissed with molasses flavor, and ready for any add-ins your tastebuds desire. I typically make them with raisins and/or M&Ms – published here.

Those photos were updated recently – that’s how often I make these oatmeal cookies!

☆ Cookie science talk ahead. ☆ Aka nerd alert.

My oatmeal cookie dough starts with creamed butter, brown sugar, and granulated (white) sugar. It’s important to know that sugar is used to not only sweeten the cookies, but to give them structure, texture, tenderness, and volume. In most of my cookie recipes, I prefer to use more brown sugar than white sugar. This is because brown sugar holds more moisture than white sugar and thus will produce a softer, moister final baked good. I like to use dark brown sugar since it has a slightly higher amount of molasses. However, if you’re in a pinch and only have light brown sugar – that’s ok!

I recently began adding a Tablespoon of dark molasses into my oatmeal cookie dough. It’s a little something I picked up from one of my cookbook cookie recipes (recipe on page 109!). 1 Tablespoon doesn’t sound like much. And you’re right! It’s not that much. But it’s just enough to give a subtle amount of extra molasses flavor. However, don’t go buy a bottle just for this recipe. They’re fine without it.

I played around with the oats to flour ratio a lot when I first published this oatmeal cookie recipe. I’ve found that more oats to flour is what I like best. I want my oatmeal cookies to taste, for lack of better words, oat-y! Oats provide a fabulously chewy texture and soak up moisture from the cookie dough and hold onto it while the cookies bake in the oven. Similar to how oats soak up all the moisture when you are making oatmeal for breakfast. This is a good thing!

There is always the question of which type of oats to use in recipes. For these? I use old-fashioned whole oats in this recipe, as opposed to quick oats. Quick oats, which are more powdery than whole oats, may dry out your cookies. You could certainly try using them, but I prefer whole oats. They give more texture: hearty, chewy, thick.

Soft & chewy Loaded Oatmeal Cookies. Sweetened with brown sugar and loaded with butterscotch, M&Ms, and chocolate chunks!

I’ve learned over the past year how important it is to use room temperature eggs when using room temperature or melted butter in cookie recipes. Room temperature eggs incorporate evenly into your cookie dough – guaranteeing a uniform structure among every cookie in your batch. That’s why you use eggs in cookies – for structure.

Tip: When I need room temperature butter for creaming, I set out the egg(s) with the butter about 1 hour before beginning. If you forget to set out your egg, no worries. Place it into a bowl of warm water for 5 minutes, then use.

Soft & chewy Loaded Oatmeal Cookies. Sweetened with brown sugar and loaded with butterscotch, M&Ms, and chocolate chunks!

This thick cookie dough can hold a lot of add-ins. I chose peanut butter M&Ms, butterscotch morsels, and chocolate chunks. I couldn’t think of a better combination! If you have it in your pantry, throw it in. I was going to add a few pecans, but I know many people aren’t as “nuts” about nuts in their cookies as I am. Whatever goodies you choose, try to stick to about 1 and 1/2 cups total add-ins.

The cookie dough is only slightly sticky. And you know what I always do with sticky cookie dough right? I chill it. Sticky cookie dough = spreading. You’ll want these cookies to spread, but not overspread into flat discs on your baking sheet. So, chill the dough for about 30 minutes. Just enough time for you to clean up and pre-heat the oven.

I like to use a cookie scoop for oatmeal cookies. It grabs onto the textured cookie dough better than my hands can. Here is the cookie scoop I use (I own it in sizes medium and large – I used size medium for these cookies).

Scoop/roll 1.5 Tablespoons of dough per cookie. Press a few extra add-ins directly into the tops of the cookie dough balls. Why do I suggest that? It guarantees you’ll have a few pretty chunks on top of your baked cookies. Here a few cookie dough balls… you can see I pressed some broken peanut butter M&Ms into the tops.

Soft & chewy Loaded Oatmeal Cookies. Sweetened with brown sugar and loaded with butterscotch, M&Ms, and chocolate chunks!

Bake the cookies until they are lightly browned on the edges. This could be 10 minutes in your oven or 12 minutes in your oven. It’s about 11 minutes in my oven. The centers are slightly underbaked, but will set up as you let the cookie cool.

If your self control allows that… 😉

Dunk them in milk, crumble them on ice cream, bring them to friends, bake them for the kids, whatever you do with them – I know they’ll soon be a cookie jar favorite. Who doesn’t love an old-fashioned, super soft and chewy oatmeal cookie?

Soft & chewy Loaded Oatmeal Cookies. Sweetened with brown sugar and loaded with butterscotch, M&Ms, and chocolate chunks!

I hope you love my favorite loaded oatmeal cookies! And that you learned a few things along the way today. Let me know what goodies you throw into them!

A few suggestions:

  • Peanut butter M&Ms + butterscotch + chocolate chips/chunks (pictured today)
  • Raisins + chopped pecans/walnuts + dark chocolate chunks
  • Peanut butter chips + chocolate chips
  • Chopped Snickers + peanuts
  • Pretzel pieces + chopped peanut butter cups
  • Dried cranberries + white chocolate

Go ahead, let your creativity run wild!

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make! 

Here are more delicious oatmeal-filled cookies!

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Loaded Oatmeal Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 18 cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Soft-baked, ultra chewy, and simple oatmeal cookie recipe. Load them with your favorites!


Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (150g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup  (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon (20g) dark molasses
  • 1 and 2/3 cups (140g) old-fashioned whole rolled oats
  • 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/2 cups add-ins (I used butterscotch morsels, chopped peanut butter M&Ms, and chocolate chunks)

Instructions

  1. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream the softened butter and both sugars together on medium speed until smooth. Add the egg and mix on high until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the vanilla and molasses and mix on high until combined. Set aside.
  2. In a separate bowl, toss the oats, flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt together. Add to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. Fold in the add-ins. Dough will be thick. Chill the dough for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
  3. Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C). Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  4. Roll balls of dough (about 1.5 tablespoons of dough per cookie) and place 2 inches apart on the baking sheets. I pressed a few extra M&Ms into the tops of the cookies for looks. Bake for 10-11 minutes until very lightly browned on the sides. The centers will look very soft. Remove from the oven and let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week. You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Allow to come to room temperature and continue with step 3. Baked cookies freeze well – up to three months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well – up to three months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw.
  2. Be sure to check out my top 5 cookie baking tips AND these are my 10 must-have cookie baking tools.

Keywords: loaded oatmeal cookies, oatmeal cookies

Soft, chewy, simple oatmeal cookies that are perfect for your favorite add-ins like butterscotch, candies, nuts, and more!
Soft and chewy Loaded Oatmeal Cookies-- fill with your favorite chips, chunks, and candies!

152 Comments

  1. Nosh Garcia-Castillo says:

    Hello,
    I’d like to add mashed bananas. Is there any alteration in the recipe that I should consider since I’ll be adding a wet ingredient?

    Thanks!

    Nosh

    1. I do not suggest adding bananas to this cookie recipe. How about these banana oat cookies instead? https://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2014/01/28/banana-chocolate-chip-breakfast-cookies/

      1. Nosh Garcia-Castillo says:

        Will this recipe yield soft, chewy ones like the soft baked type?

  2. I made these a couple days ago (GREAT by the way) and my dough wasn’s sticky at all. If this happens again, should I still chill the dough in the fridge?

    1. Yep! Chilling is always a good idea.

  3. Hey Sally,

    I’ve made a WHOLE BUNCH of your recipes and they’re ALWAYS a hit. I’ve made these before but this time, I’ll be pressed for time. Can I chill them for longer than 30 minutes? Thinking I’m going to make them tonight and then bake tomorrow, will that be fine?

    Cheers!

    1. Hi Ashley. Yes, you may chill this cookie dough for longer. Take it out of the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before rolling and baking.

  4. Hi Sally,

    Can your trick of adding an extra egg yolk, using melted butter, and corn starch be used to add extra chewiness to the oatmeal cookies in the same way as in your extra chewey chocolate chip cookies?

    PS: i tried the recipe for the snickers chocolate chip cheese cake bars last weekend…awesome 🙂

    brgrds
    Per J. (Norway)

    1. Definitely! These cookies are already ultra chewy. With an extra egg yolk here, I recommend chilling the cookie dough for closer to 1 hour since the dough will be a little more moist.

      1. Tried it and it worked out as I’d hpoed for, they became ultra chewey. I added so much goodies inside that they became a tad rich, but noone complained. For the chewey hocolate chip cookies I substituted 125 grams of the choccolate chips with salted pistacchios….it’ a winner with the salty crunchy addition.
        I’d like to add that I had to experiment with cooking time, as three tablespoon size cookies didn’t finish in 10 or 12 minutes for that matter, because they didn’ completely “melt” down. 325 F turned out to be insufficient in my oven. It equates to ca 163 degrees centigrade (as european ovens are scaled to), but I found upping the temp to 180 C or 356 F for 12 minutes did the trick for the bigger size cookies. I also found it easier to size the cookies evenly by rolling the dough into a “salami thick sausage” shape in cling wrap, and then to cut it in even sizes with a sharp knife, since trying to use a spoon on the chilled cookiedough was nigh on impossible…

        brgrds
        Per J.

  5. Carrie Kayaani says:

    Sally, you make the most delicious and best cookies out there! I add cranberries and walnuts into the oatmeal dough and they have become a favorite in my house. These are my dad’s favorite cookies. 🙂

  6. I made these today with raisins, walnuts, butterscotch and white choc chips. Delicious! Love theadded molasses. It gives the cookie sometin sometin! Thanks!

  7. H Sally!
    I am wondering if I am able to use FANCY molasses for this recipe? (There were so many different types in the store but I ended up going for fancy..then I just saw that you specified ‘dark’)

    Thanks!!

    1. yep, that’s fine

      1. Wow! thanks so much for the quick reply! 🙂

  8. So yummy!! I am obsessed with your cookie recipes because they’re always prefectly chewy. You definitely take the time to perfect each recipe and I greatly appreciate it because I know nothing about cooking!!! Also, I added butterscotch and coconut. Coconut makes it extra chewy mmm!

  9. Heather Steele says:

    Good Gracious, these are AMAZING! I know you disrecommended any alterations but I’m vegan. . . so. . . I went all Post Punk Kitchen on this recipe and substituted ground flax seed for the eggs (which, btw, lent an absolutely extraordinary slightly nutty flavor), and Earth Balance Vegan Buttery Baking Sticks for the butter. Man oh man did they ever knock our socks off! Just the chewy deliciousness I was hoping for. Thank you!

    1. Heather – How much flax seed do you use to replace the eggs and do you add anything else also? I would love to make these for an egg-intolerant friend. Thanks. And thanks to you Sally for ALL YOU DO! Love your recipes!

      1. Heather Steele says:

        I ground 1 tablespoon flax seed in a spice grinder (buy the whole flax seeds; the pre-ground flax meal doesn’t work) and let it soak in three tablespoons warm water for about five minutes. This will substitute one egg.

  10. How many cookies does this recipe make?

    1. yield: 18 COOKIES

  11. Hi,
    Accidentally stumbled upon your web site. This is fantastic. I love the science/comments/etc. not just the recipes. I love to experiment and this is just the site to help in that endeavor.

    Thanks so much….I’m spreading the word!
    Best Regards,
    Roy Niemann
    Norristown, PA

  12. This is my second night in a row making these cookies.. I took the advice of one of your followers and added the extra egg yolk, melted the butter and added the cornstarch.. OMG!! SO DELICIOUS.. SO GLAD I STUMBLED UPON YOUR PAGE.. Making the cinnamon roll cake tomorrow.. Can’t wait!!

  13. Hi Sally, how many cookies do you get out of this recipe?

    I think I will try them with cranberries and dark chocolate since I don’t like white chocolate.

    1. Yield: 18 COOKIES

  14. I decided to make then last night with cranberries and dark chocolate and took them to work with me this morning. My co workers loved them. Got aksed for the recipe, so will direct them to your site.

    To be honest , I don’t find making cookies that easy. It is always such a balance to get them perfectly cooked. You can”t overcook them because they turn rockhard and to much undercooking isn’t good either. Even with the same recipe and oven it is always exciting to see if I can get them right.

  15. These were exactly what I was looking for, I used butterscotch chips, chocolate chips, pecans, and coconut. I’m making my second batch this afternoon a little less sweet with raisins, coconut and pecans! I like a little crunch with my chew 🙂

    Thanks!!!

    1. mmm your version with the coconut and butterscotch sounds so good!

    2. That sounds so good!! I LOVE coconut and butterscotch. 🙂

  16. Thanks for another awesome recipe! I originally started with a batch of chocolate chips and walnuts and they were delicious. Then with the next baking sheet I decided to experiment a bit by stuffing the choco chip/walnut cookies with half a Kraft caramel, and topping with a few cut up caramel pieces and sea salt. These were even better than the first sheet! 
    Soooo good. I will definitely make these again. I think next time I’ll try a combo of Snickers and pretzels

  17. Hands down the best oatmeal cookies I have ever made.  My add ins were mini M&Ms and peanut butter chips.  I delivered half the batch to a friend recovering from the flu along with some of your yogurt and blueberry swirl popsicles.

  18. aislinn @ cakes and chaos says:

    oh wow… these look incredible! I wasn’t at all hungry before I read this post but now all I want to do is eat cookies!

  19. What can I use in place of molasses or can I drop it out ? Thank you

  20. Made these over the weekend and they are delicious!
    I added in macadamia nuts, bits of toffee, and white chocolate chips (all a 1/2 cup each)! 
    My husband cannot stop raving about them! 
    I did find when baking, the balls of dough were not spreading out into cookie shape, so I lightly pushed them down with the back of my spatula. The bake time had to be adjusted a few minutes longer because I had the door open a bit too long while I smashed, but I followed everything else to the T, and they came out wonderfully!
    Thanks for the yummy recipe!

  21. These are my favorite cookies out of all your recipes I have tried! I’ve tried the chewy chocolate chip cookies, THE chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal raisinett cookies, monster cookies, soft peanut butter M&M cookies, and more! But these take the cake. I used chopped bittersweet chocolate chunks with almonds (from a Trader Joe’s pound plus bar), milk chocolate chips and cinnamon chips! I refrigerated for over 3 hours prior to scooping. 
    Heaven!

  22. I cannot use old fashioned oats personally speaking. So I use quick oats. You mention quick oats can dry out oatmeal cookies. So I now know why oatmeal cookies dry out. Ive read recipes with high a ratio of oatmeal to flour and even ratios of equal amounts of oats and flour. So my goal is to avoid dry oatmeal cookies using quick oats. What are your suggestions please? More brown sugar? Baking powder? A long chill time to let the oats get absorbed in the dough? Water or milk? Im not a huge fan of puffy cakey cookies. I like a little crisp and the centers chewy. Thank you Sally!

    1. I would say less flour– unsure of exactly how much. Test things out and have fun! Enjoy.

  23. This recipe is so versatile, wholesome, and so delicious: a great tip is to pour the dough into a baking tray and cook them as bars! Even easier than making drop cookies. Takes about 15 mins when you do so. You can use literally any add-ins you might have in the pantry from nuts to dates to m&ms. Thanks for this great recipe! 😀

  24. I baked these cookies last night and I love how most of your cookie recipes remain soft. I added the butterscotch and chocolate chips and omitted the molasses. The cookies have a  wonderful texture and were not too sweet. Its so hard not to eat ALL of these! 

    1. I also used old fashioned quick oats without any issues. 

  25. Why is your recipe on my home computer different than the one on my Iphone?

    1. The blog post and recipe should be the same on all devices– is it the same URL?

  26. This recipe looks perfect but I want to bake them at a higher temperature for caramelization to occur. Do you think these will turn out well baked at 375 or 400?

  27. Hey Sally ! My name is Sharvani and I am from India ! I LOVE baking and I found your blog extremely helpful ! The tips you gave on Baking Basics are really good ! Also I tried Oatmeal loaded recipe now and it’s tastes amazing ! Thank you so much 🙂 

  28. Hello, I am making oatmeal cookies with butterscotch chips. Should I use this ‘loaded oatmeal cookies’ recipe? Or the ‘soft and chewy oatmeal cookies’ recipe. I noticed the ingredients are different.

    1. Either works! The recipes are pretty similar yielding similar results in taste and texture.

  29. Quick question – I made these and they are FANTASTIC, however, I had problems chopping the peanut m&ms. Wondering how you did it – thinking next time I may throw them in a bag and crush with a rolling pin (or throw in the cuisinart? Thanks! 

    1. Peanut butter M&Ms (what I use) are easier to chop than peanut. But you can absolutely try placing in a bag and lightly crushing with a rolling pin. Enjoy!

  30. William ondra says:

    Can these be made with Splenda instead of  the sugars?

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