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No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

These no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies are incredibly easy, but they deliver loads of chocolate and peanut butter flavor! You’ll love the chewy, hearty texture from the oats, too.

Pile of no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies on plate

With a delightful combination of chocolate and peanut butter flavors and a crisp yet chewy texture, these no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies are simply irresistible. They’re also a convenient treat, perfect for those times when you crave something sweet but don’t have the ambition to fire up the oven. (Even as a food blogger, I have those days!) 

  • No baking needed. That’s a big selling point, not only because it makes these cookies easy, it also makes them different! They’re more of a candy than traditional cookies, and they don’t require heating up the house with the oven. (Like Chocolate Chip Pecan No-Bake Cookies, this is a great recipe to keep on hand for summer!)
  • Quick and easy to make. With just a handful of ingredients and only a small amount of cooking time on the stovetop, you can whip up these no-bake treats in no time!
  • Perfect for chocolate lovers. With rich chocolate flavor from the cocoa powder, these no-bake oatmeal cookies deliver all the chocolate goodness you crave.
Overhead view of ingredients for no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies

What You’ll Need

Scroll down to the recipe card to find the ingredient quantities and recipe instructions.

  • Unsalted butter – Learn more: Unsalted or Salted Butter: Which is Better for Baking?
  • Granulated sugar
  • Milk – Any kind of milk you have on hand (even plant-based milk) will work.
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder – You can use either natural cocoa powder or Dutch process.
  • Vanilla extract – Use homemade vanilla extract or store-bought.
  • Salt
  • Quick oats – Or old-fashioned oats for a heartier texture.
  • Creamy peanut butter – I recommend the shelf stable regular peanut butter that doesn’t need to be stirred before using, not natural peanut butter.

Are These No-Bake Cookies Gluten-Free?

If you use gluten-free certified oats, this no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookie recipe is gluten-free. Other oats may be processed with wheat, which is why they may not be free of gluten.

How to Make No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

  • Prepare. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, silicone liners, or waxed paper.
  • Cook the binding mixture. Combine the butter, sugar, milk, and cocoa powder in a large saucepan set over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring often, then continue cooking until the mixture reaches 230°F.
  • Finish the cookie mixture. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla and salt, followed by the oats and peanut butter.
  • Form the cookies. Drop the “dough” onto the prepared pans in 2 tablespoon portions. Cool completely before serving.
Overhead view of no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies on sheet pan

Tips for Success

  • Let the cookies fully set before eating. These cookies will firm up as they cool, so be patient and let them fully set before digging in.
  • Make sure the oats are evenly coated. You don’t want any dry spots in your cookies, so be sure to mix the oats and peanut butter into the chocolate mixture thoroughly.
  • Use a candy thermometer. For the cookies to hold together but also not be too hard or dry, you want to cook until the sugar mixture reaches 230ºF. A candy thermometer or instant read thermometer is key! Remember that these are more candy than cookie.
  • Press to shape. For perfectly shaped cookies, I recommend using a spoon or your hands to shape them into rounds after placing the oat mixture onto the pans. Or leave them just as they are if you want. They’re delicious either way!
Chewy no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies on cake stand

Variations

  • Swap out the peanut butter. If you’re not a fan of peanut butter, you can easily swap it out for another nut butter like almond or cashew. Have a nut allergy? Sunflower seed butter also works for no-bake cookies without peanut butter.
  • Add in other flavors. Sprinkle some flaky sea salt on top for a sweet and salty combination, or fold in dried cherries, chopped nuts, or chocolate chips.
  • Give them a mocha twist. Add a bit of espresso powder or instant coffee for a mocha flavor.
  • Add some spice. Add a pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg for a warm spice flavor.
  • Drizzle with melted chocolate. Take these cookies to the next level by drizzling melted white or dark chocolate over the tops for an extra decadent touch.

How to Store

These no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies are best stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 to 4 days, but they can also be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. Just let them come to room temperature before serving if storing in the fridge. If you’re storing them in layers, place a sheet of parchment paper or wax paper between the layers.

Stack of 3 no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies on plate

Can I Freeze This Recipe?

Yes, you can freeze no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies. Place them in an airtight container or freezer-safe bag and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let them thaw at room temperature before serving.

More No-Bake Treats

Hand holding no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookie

No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Yield about 30 cookies
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 minutes
Total Time 17 minutes

Chewy and hearty no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies are incredibly easy to make, but they deliver loads of chocolate and peanut butter flavor!

Overhead view of no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies on plate

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (113g) unsalted butter
  • 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (118ml) milk
  • 1/4 cup (21g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups (240g) quick oats (or old-fashioned oats)
  • 1 cup (255g) creamy peanut butter

Instructions

  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, silicone liners, or waxed paper.
  2. Place the butter, sugar, milk, and cocoa powder in a large saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring often. Bring to a boil, and continue cooking until the mixture reaches 230°F. (About 60 to 90 seconds.)
  3. Remove the pan from the heat, and stir in the vanilla and salt. Then stir in the oats and peanut butter until thoroughly combined.
  4. Drop onto the prepared pans by 2 tablespoon portions. (A #30 scoop works well.) Allow to cool completely before serving.

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    3 Comments on “No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies”

  1. Recipe is a little different from what I have made for the past 55 years. Basically the same, though. My family has always called them Chocolate Quickies, because you can make them so fast. No bake chocolate cookies is jus5 boring.

  2. Thank you for providing the temperature for the binding! I have have made theses for probably 60 years. While they are always tasty, as you point out, the texture can be tricky. Again, thanks for the game changing details!

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