Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies (No Bake)

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These chocolate oatmeal cookies are so easy and simple to make! Rolled oats are mixed in a chocolatey sauce made using cocoa powder, nut butter milk and unsalted butter. All the ingredients are mostly available in your pantry and the cookies are no bake! Everything is mixed together then cookies are refrigerated for an easy delicious snack.

We’re big fans of easy cookie recipes that use simple wholesome ingredients. It makes it easy for the kids to get involved and learn the love of baking!

Chocolate oatmeal cookies sitting on wrinkled parchment paper.

Easiest No-Bake Cookies

I’m a huge fan of no-bake cookies and energy balls! They create delicious snacks that are usually high in protein from nut butter that is needed to make the cookies stick together. Just like our bird’s nest cookies, the chocolate sauce is first melted in a pot on the stove and then mixed with the oats to create the easiest cookies.

Grab one of these cookies any time you’re craving sweets. They’re perfect for after-school snacks, pack them in lunches, tuck one in your bag for an afternoon pick me up, or a quick dessert after a meal.

Recipe ingredients on the counter including bowls of coconut sugar, milk, butter, oats, cocoa powder, nut butter, salt, and vanilla extract.

Recipe Ingredients

You might be surprised at how many of the ingredients are already in your pantry, making this recipe budget friendly.

OATS – I used old-fashioned rolled oats. These are bigger flakes and are more noticeable in these unbaked cookies. If you prefer, you can use unflavored quick oats (not the flavored ones that come with other ingredients). Quick oats are smaller flakes and are preferred by some.

SUGAR – For the sweetener, I chose coconut sugar. It has a caramel-like flavor and tastes nothing like coconuts! It’s dark brown which is why my cookies are darker in color. You can also choose brown sugar, granulated sugar, maple syrup, honey, or monk fruit (it’s sugar-free) in replacement.

COCOA POWDER – This will add the chocolate flavor. Choose an unsweetened cocoa powder. Sometimes it can be called cacao powder as well.

NUT BUTTER – Peanut butter, almond butter, or sunflower seed butter will hold these cookies together. I used sunflower seed butter, but any nut or seed butter will work for this recipe.

BUTTER – Unsalted butter will be melted to create the chocolate sauce.

MILK – Used to create the chocolate sauce that is mixed with the oats.

VANILLA EXTRACT – Added for flavor.

Ingredient Additions

These cookies are versatile and additional ingredients can easily be added. For each ingredient, you could add 1 cup worth. For example, add 1 cup of chocolate chips. If choosing two ingredients, add 1/2 cup of each instead.

CHOPPED NUTS – Chopped nuts would add a crunchy texture. Choose nuts that are often found in cookies like slivered almonds, chopped walnuts or pecans.

SEEDS – Try adding sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds for extra crunch. These can be roasted or raw, just make sure the shells have been removed.

SHREDDED COCONUT – Adding shredded coconut would make these no-bake cookies similar to haystacks. It’ll add a nice texture as it pairs well with the rolled oats.

CHOCOLATE CHIPS – A handful of chocolate chips added to the batter will make these cookies extra chocolatey. White chocolate chips would work great too!

DRIED FRUIT – For anyone that enjoys dried fruit, consider adding dried cranberries, raisins, chopped dried pineapple or mango.

Four images grouped together. First is a white pot with melted chocolate and peanut butter with a spatula. Second is a white bowl with oats and chocolate sauce poured in. Third is chocolate oat mixture in a white bowl with spatula. Fourth is cookies on a baking sheet with parchment paper.

How To Make No-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Simple recipes like this one are perfect to make with kids! Just melt the chocolate sauce ingredients on the stove, then mix with oats, let chill and eat! Here’s an overview with full instructions at the bottom of this post in the recipe card:

  1. MELT IN POT – Melt the unsalted butter, milk, brown sugar (or coconut sugar), and cocoa powder in a saucepan on the stove over medium-high heat. Stir often so that the sugar doesn’t burn.
  2. ADD IN – As soon as the ingredients are melted and mixed you can remove them from the heat and stir in the peanut butter and vanilla extract. The peanut butter will turn a runnier consistency as it mixes in with the melted chocolate ingredients. Set this aside for a minute to prep the oats.
  3. MIX WITH OATS – Add the oats and salt to a large bowl and mix. Next, pour in the chocolate liquid on top of the oats. Use a spatula to stir everything together until all the oats are evenly coated.
  4. MAKE COOKIES – Add some parchment paper to two baking sheets. Use 1 Tbsp or 2 Tbsp of the mix (depending on how big you want the cookies) and drop it onto the parchment paper. Repeat with the rest of the cookie mix then place these in the fridge or freezer for 1 hour to chill.

Pro Tip: You can flatten the cookies just a bit by dipping your fingers or a spoon into a bit of water and then gently pushing the cookies down into the desired shape. The cookie dough is very sticky so the water helps to make it easier.

How To Store Cookies

This recipe makes about 36 cookies so there will definitely be leftovers! These cookies need to be stored cold because they are no-bake. You can store them either in the fridge or freezer depending on your preference.

REFRIGERATE – Store the cookies in an airtight container, or tightly wrapped in plastic for up to 5 days.

TO FREEZE – You can flash freeze the cookies right on the baking sheet! Add the whole baking sheet with cookies straight to the freezer and let them stay that way for 2-3 hours. Then remove them and add them to a freezer container or bag removing as much air as possible. This method prevents them from sticking together.

TO SERVE – These cookies can be eaten cold. Frozen cookies only need about 10-15 minutes to thaw before serving.

A pile of cookies on wrinkled white paper, one cookie with a bite taken out. And a glass of milk.

Common Questions

Can you melt the ingredients in the microwave instead of the stove?

Yes! Just add the butter, milk, sugar, and cocoa powder to a microwave-safe dish and heat for 30-second increments, stirring each time. I don’t recommend heating longer than 30 seconds because the sugar could burn.

Be sure to keep an eye on the ingredients the whole time! Remove from the microwave, then stir in the peanut butter and vanilla extract.

Can I make these cookies nut-free?

Yes, you can use sunflower seed butter or tahini (made with sesame seeds) in replacement.

Can I use less sugar?

Absolutely. I used 1 cup of coconut sugar but you could certainly use 1/2 cup of sugar instead. Feel free to use brown sugar, granulated white sugar, maple syrup, honey, or monk fruit sweetener.

My oats felt too chewy for me, how do I fix this?

Whole rolled oats will create a chewier texture, while instant oats will not as much. I used rolled oats and my family loved them, but it isn’t for everyone. Go with what you prefer.

Is the cookie mixture supposed to be sticky?

Yes! The stickier the better, this is how the cookies will stay together. I recommend using a cookie scoop or spoon and spatula to drop the cookie mix onto the parchment paper so you don’t get your hands too sticky. Dip your hands in a bit of water if you need to touch the cookies.

Can I add these to kids’ lunches without chilling?

Yes, they should be fine for a few hours out of the fridge before eating.

A stack of cookies on top of eachother.

This is one of the easiest cookies you could ever make. With no baking required, these cookies have a soft fudgy consistency that’s totally addictive. We love these cookies because they’re healthier and the sugar quantity can easily be adjusted to your personal tastes.

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A pile of no bake chocolate oatmeal cookies

No Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Delicious soft and fudgy no-bake cookies made using simple ingredients. Only 10 minutes to make!
Print Pin Recipe
Prep Time: 12 minutes
Chill Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 12 minutes
Servings: 36 cookies

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Add the butter, sugar, milk, and cocoa powder to a saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir often until all ingredients melt. Note: Keep an eye during this step and stir often as sugar can burn when heated.
    Two images side-by-side of a white pot with chocolate liquid ingredients and a spatula.
  • Remove the pot from the heat, then stir in the vanilla extract and the nut butter. Set aside.
    Two images side-by-side of a white pot with nut butter dumped on top of chocolate sauce then mixed in with spatula.
  • Add the oats and salt to a large bowl and mix together.
  • Pour the melted chocolate mixture over the oats and stir together until the oats are evenly coated.
    Two images side-by-side of a white bowl with chocolate sauce poured over top of rolled oats, second is chocolate mixed in the bowl.
  • Drop 1 Tbsp or 2 Tbsp of cookie mixture onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. You can gently flatten the tops by dipping your fingers into a bit of water (this is an optional step and is not needed).
    Place the full baking sheet in the fridge to chill for 1 hour before serving.
    Two images of a baking sheet with parchment paper and dropped chocolate cookies.

Recipe Notes:

Note: these are soft cookies and are best when stored cold.
How To Store The Cookies:
  • Refrigerate – Store the cookies in an airtight container, or tightly wrapped in plastic for up to 5 days.
  • Freeze – You can flash-freeze the cookies right on the baking sheet! Add the whole baking sheet with cookies straight to the freezer and let them stay that way for 2-3 hours. Then remove them and add them to a freezer container or bag removing as much air as possible. This method prevents them from sticking together.
  • To Serve – These cookies can be eaten cold. Frozen cookies only need about 10-15 minutes to thaw before serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 109kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 28mg | Potassium: 91mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 84IU | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 1mg
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