Magic 5 Cookies, Holiday Edition

Soft-baked and ultra chewy holiday magic 5 cookies are loaded with white chocolate chips, dried cranberries, pecans, coconut, and cinnamon. They’re essentially white chocolate cranberry coconut pecan oatmeal cookies. Wow, say that 3x fast! They’re just like my magic 5 cookies, but with a festive holiday twist.

overhead image of white chocolate cranberry coconut pecan oatmeal cookies

Today we’re kicking it old-school with a classic favorite: oatmeal cookies! Not just any oatmeal cookies, but magic 5 oatmeal cookies– extra chunky, packed with flavor, lots of texture, and remind me of my oatmeal scotchies but with extra goodies packed inside.

What Are Magic 5 Cookies?

Magic 5 cookies get their name from 7 layer bars, aka magic bars or hello dollies. I typically call them 7 layer bars or magic bars, but what’s in a name? No matter what they’re called, you’ll get a bar piled high with any combination of sweet, crunchy, nutty, sticky, and chocolate-y that you can imagine. One of my favorite versions is my recipe for ultimate magic cookie bars. I also have a cookie variation with 5 add-ins known as my magic 5 cookies.

It’s time for a holiday rendition of magic 5 cookies, including sweet-tangy dried cranberries, creamy white chocolate chips, crunchy pecans, oats, cinnamon, and shredded coconut. With so many little pockets of flavor and texture, it’s practically impossible to eat just one.

white chocolate cranberry coconut pecan oatmeal cookies on a white plate

We’re Using My Favorite Oatmeal Cookie Base Recipe

Oatmeal cookies will always be my favorite. Between my family’s recipes, my cookbooks, and my website, I have about 30 oatmeal cookie recipes under my belt. Today we’re using my favorite oatmeal cookie base recipe and adding lots of goodies. Here are some of my other recipes that begin with the same oatmeal cookie base recipe: oatmeal cream piesoatmeal scotchies, oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, iced oatmeal cookies, and oatmeal raisin cookies. It’s the very best base oatmeal cookie recipe and here’s why:

  • Ultra buttery
  • Unbelievable texture
  • Sweetened with brown sugar
  • Loaded with chewy oats
  • Cinnamon spiced
  • Flavored with molasses
  • Taste just like grandma’s
  • Pretty quick– only 30 minute chill time

overhead image of bowls of white chocolate chips, shredded coconut, pecans, and dried cranberries

Ingredients in Magic 5 Cookies

  1. Flour: All-purpose flour is the structure of the cookies.
  2. Baking Soda: Baking soda helps the cookies rise.
  3. Cinnamon: Can you even have oatmeal cookies without cinnamon? It pairs wonderfully with all of the add-ins, too!
  4. Salt & Pure Vanilla Extract: Both provide flavor.
  5. Oats: Oats provide a fabulously chewy texture and we’re using 3 whopping cups here. Use thick old-fashioned whole rolled oats, not quick oats. Quick oats are thinner and more powdery, so you’ll miss out on a lot of texture.
  6. Butter: Make sure you’re using proper room temperature butter, which is cooler than most think. Warmer butter is actually the first mistake that bakers can make, which results in cookies that over-spread.
  7. Brown Sugar + Granulated Sugar: Sugar is not only used for sweetness, but also for providing structure and tenderness. I like to use more brown sugar than white sugar because (1) brown sugar has incredible flavor and (2) brown sugar contains more moisture than white. This promises a softer oatmeal cookie.
  8. Eggs: 2 eggs help bind everything together.
  9. Molasses: Molasses is my secret ingredient in oatmeal cookies. 1 scant Tablespoon enhances all the wonderful flavors– just like how Grandma used to make them.
  10. White Chocolate Chips, Dried Cranberries, Coconut, & Pecans: These are what make today’s magic 5 cookies taste like the holidays. All of our favorite flavors of the season in one cookie! You can sub chopped pistachios for the pecans, semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips for the white chocolate, raisins for the cranberries, and/or leave out the coconut if you’re not a fan.

white chocolate cranberry coconut pecan oatmeal cookie dough in a glass bowl

Today’s cookies are slow bend cookies. These jam-packed magic 5 cookies have slightly crisp edges with soft centers and enough chew that they won’t immediately break when broken in half– aka a “slow bend cookie” as I like to call them. They’re super dense and hearty with that distinct nutty, toasty oatmeal cookie taste. I love these!

If you’re the kind of cookie lover who just wants to get the job done and move onto the next project (more cookies, I’m sure) then these are for you. There’s no royal icing or piping tips– just a mixer, a baking sheet, and a truckload of holiday flavor.

white chocolate cranberry coconut pecan oatmeal cookies on a white plate

overhead image of white chocolate cranberry coconut pecan oatmeal cookies

More Favorite Cookie Recipes

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white chocolate cranberry coconut pecan oatmeal cookies on a white plate

Magic 5 Cookies, Holiday Edition

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 11 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 36 cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Soft-baked white chocolate cranberry and pecan oatmeal cookies have the most unbelievable flavor and chew!


  • 1 and 1/2 cups (188g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups (240g) old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon molasses (optional, see post above)
  • 1/2 cup each: white chocolate chips (90g), dried cranberries (60g), sweetened shredded coconut (40g), chopped pecans (64g)


  1. Whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and oats together. Set aside.
  2. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs and beat 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.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. With the mixer running on low speed, add the white chocolate, dried cranberries, coconut, and pecans. Dough will be thick, yet very sticky. Chill the dough for 1 hour in the refrigerator (and up to 2-3 days). If chilling for longer than a few hours, though, allow to sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before rolling and baking because the dough will be quite hard and the cookies may not spread.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. (Always recommended for cookies.) Set aside.
  5. Roll balls of dough (about 1.5 tablespoons of dough per cookie) and place 2 inches apart on the baking sheets. Bake for 10-11 minutes until very lightly browned on the sides. The centers will look very soft.
  6. Remove from the oven and let cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. While the cookies are still warm, I like to press a few more white chocolate chips into the tops– this is only for looks!


  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 2-3 days. Allow to come to room temperature then continue with step 4. Baked cookies freeze well for up to 3 months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well for up to 3 months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw. Click here for my tips and tricks on freezing cookie dough.
  2. Special Tools: KitchenAid Stand Mixer, 5-qt Tilt Head Glass Measuring Bowl, Silpat Baking MatBaking Sheet, and White Plate

Keywords: magic 5 cookies, oatmeal cookies


  1. heather (delicious not gorgeous) says:

    my favorite cookies are all slow bend (i thought of limbo-ing at first lol) cookies! and i’ve long since embrace my grandma-like cookie preferences, so all the oats in here sound perfect (:

  2. Jennifer @ swtnsalty says:

    I love the term slow bend – never heard it before! Can’t wait to try these, probably with cranberry and pistachio add-ins to make them look like the holidays. And I love that your plate has a reddish outline to match the cranberries. Oh, the little details!

    1. Pistachios would be so good!

  3. All my favorite things!!!! (Except citrus, haha) But I looooooove oatmeal cookies, craisins, and white chocolate! These look so good I can hardly stand it…maybe I should skip my test today and make these instead 😉

  4. Kelly | Maverick Baking says:

    Ok, these are about to get pinned so hard, white chocolate, cranberries, coconut AND pecans?? So much yes. I’m not usually allowed to put up the Christmas decorations until the second week of December (boo!), but these cookies are looking like a likely festive bake this week!

  5. Sophie Stewart says:

    These sound delicious! I’ll defintiley be trying these! Sophie x

  6. Patricia @Sweet and Strong says:

    I love a cookie with a little crunch on the outside but chewy on the inside.  And white chocolate and cranberries is one of my favorite combos!  I am making these this weekend!

  7. Marina @ A Dancer's Live-It says:

    “Slow bend” is the perfect way to describe a perfect oatmeal cookie! I agree! 🙂 I LOVE a loaded cookie like this. The more add-ins, the better!

  8. Tori// says:

    Oh man, these cookies look awesome! I love the flavor combo you’ve got going on here!

  9. On my to do list for today!!!

  10. Thanks so much for the recipes, i have the browned butter chocolate chips cookies chilling in the fridge,your browned butter pumpkin oat cookies  in the oven. Can’t wait to add these but What can i use instead of the molasses i cant find any were i’m froom? Is maple syrup good substitute or will it destroy the tastes and hold 

    1. Hi Salwa! The molasses is optional. Enjoy the cookies!

  11. Michelle @ Brown Butter and Biscuits says:

    Oh yum! Looks like the perfect holiday makeover for these cookies 🙂 So festive!

  12. I love oatmeal cookies; m&ms and butterscotch chip versions are my favourite. I made your other magic 5 cookies before (leaving out the coconut oh no…) and they were a huge hit. Loved the double chip flavours pairing up; this version feels even more like Fall and the holidays and Christmas. I’m sure your Christmas tree is stunning, Sally! Do you ever decorating it with baking supplies? My mom got me a cupcake ornament last year and a whisk ornament the year before. It’s so fun to personalize your Christmas tree with fun things about yourself 🙂 Anyways, can’t wait for the weekend when I’m starting in on all my Christmas baking! So far, I’ve decided I’m making your chocolate sugar cookies & brown sugar cookies for the holidays.

    1. I add some cookie cutters to the Christmas tree. Is that weird? I hope to someday have a small “baking Christmas tree” where it’s full of all my cupcake and baking ornaments!

      I don’t think anything beats oatmeal butterscotch cookies by the way… YUM.

      1. Sally: That is so funny–great minds think alike! I do have a small “baking” tree in my kitchen. I decorate it with antique aluminum cookie cutters (with the red handles) small red beaded garland, and peppermint sticks & peppermint candy ornaments. It is one of those white trees, so the red really pops. I love it! With that gorgeous new kitchen of yours, I bet you could find a sweet spot for that tree!! (no pun intended!!)

  13. Tori Huddleston says:

    Wow Sally this is so exciting!!! Over the summer I made your magic 5 cookies at least four times (in like one month) because they were such a hit! This recipe just moved to the top of my baking list, they look and sound amazing… I can not wait!

    1. I love hearing when readers make a recipe many times in a row. And now I’m inspired to create MORE versions!

  14. These look amazing, I can’t wait to try them! Any oatmeal-based cookies are my favorite because of their chewiness and the toastiness of the oats, plus I love cranberries, especially around the holidays!

  15. I have made several batches of the cookies you posted several months ago and can attest that they are unbelievable. I wouldn’t have thought about switching out the mix ins to make them more festive. Hmmm….so many ideas now!

    1. I know, I don’t want to stop thinking of new variations! I’m thinking a peanut butter variation…

  16. Jessica @ Citrus Blossom Bliss says:

    I’m going to have to tell my mom to replace her usual (plain/boring) oatmeal cookies with these. I’m sure they’ll disappear much faster than the plain kind 🙂

  17. Sara @ Last Night's Feast says:


  18. Sally, it looks like the note for the 1\2c. each white chocolate, etc. is missing below the recipe!! Just wanted to let you know!! Love every cookie in your cookie palooza. This is truly the most wonderful time of the year!¡!!

    1. Whoops! Thanks for catching that. That’s what I get for typing up this recipe at 11:30pm! There’s no special note to go with it, actually 🙂

  19. The red and white is so festive!

  20. Ah, now I have an issue – can one have more than 1 type of cookie with cranberries and white chocolate in them on their cookie tray? 😉 It’s just such a delicious combination that I use very often in my baking.
    These sound so great!
    But, please, Sally, let us know your secret for the white chocolate chips! How do you prevent them from loosing their shape and changing colour? Mine always change a bit during baking and yours look so appetizing! Curious greetings! Sina

    1. Really? Do yours brown a little? The ones you see on top of these cookies were placed AFTER the oven. I do that for looks 🙂 We eat with our eyes, right?!

      1. We do! And it works – I love the look of this white dots 🙂
        Mine don’t really brown though, they just change a bit during baking – and they are more incorporated into the cookie, coated in the batter etc. I’m thinking about placing some on top of each cookie as a final step before they go into the oven. That could work, right?

      2. I made them yesterday with my kid and they were as easy and fun to make as they were delicious! We love them 🙂
        Thank you for another wonderful cookie recipe, Sally!

  21. Molasses in oatmeal cookies!  Who knew!  What a great idea for both the flavor and texture:)  I am a chewy cookie person all the way, so love seeing lots of brown sugar in these!  They look deee-lish and festive with the red and white! 

  22. Whitney Smith says:

    I have been enjoying a similar recipe like this for years!  But I use almond extract and vanilla! So delicious. I cannot wait to bake these.

  23. Do you happen to do any gluten free cookies?  Thanks

    1. I was also wondering the best GF flour option for these cookies!

    2. Hi Ginger and Taylor! So I have an entire GF section on my site with a few naturally GF cookie recipes. I’ve never tried these GF, but I’m sure a cup for cup GF flour blend would work just fine!

  24. Oh. Yeah. That’s all I have to say! And ladies, I have a small tree in my kitchen with only kitchen theme ornaments and a cookie cutter or two. It makes me happy while I’m doing my Christmas baking!

    1. I’m definitely doing one next year!

  25. Jessie | Kitschen Cat says:

    YUMMMM. These have literally everything I need in a cookie. Pinning now!!

  26. I made these this afternoon with my 3 year old and they were just the right recipe to follow with a short attention span helper. She spent most of the time asking when we would add the chocolate chips, mostly because she just wanted to eat some! But they really are a delicious cookie with so many interesting textures and a fabulous “chew.” Even my sugar-cookie addicted husband loved them and he usually doesn’t care for this kind of cookie as much. I left out the coconut because I didn’t have any and we didn’t miss it. Thanks for another great recipe! 

    1. Thank you for taking the time to report back about the oatmeal cookies, Danielle! So happy to hear your family enjoyed them.

  27. Years ago someone had brought cookies to a pot luck. When you ate it you tasted a little bit of oatmeal cookie peanut butter cookie and choclate chip cookie dough. Could you try something like this? I don’t even know where to begin to attempt it. They cookies where soft and chewy

  28. Laura | Tutti Dolci says:

    A slow bend cookie sounds just right to me! These are gorgeous – love all the mix-ins!

  29. Made these this weekend for a party – semi sweet chocolate chips instead of coconut though since that’s what was in my pantry – everyone LOVED them! I wish there had been leftovers…guess I’ll just have to make another batch! 🙂

  30. I just made this dough last night. I don’t know that it’s going to live to see cookie form…the dough is SOOOO ridiculously good!!!

    1. Ha, that is always a test of willpower! Enjoy!

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I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally