Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Best Oatmeal Cookies Ever

Monster Cookies
Originally uploaded by Marni Molina
It was my friend Jonah's birthday this past weekend and I was blessed to have him over for good conversation and dinner. Of-course, I wanted to bake him a birthday cake, but his less than exuberant replies to my queries as to his favorite cake left me confused. Upon further poking, turns out Jonah's not a cake man. He's a cookie man instead.

So, I told him I'd make him birthday cookies. Oatmeal is Jonah's favorite cookie, so I began searching through my recipes for oatmeal cookies. However, none of them seemed special enough to warrant birthday cookie status. So, I hopped online and began poking around.

Nearly immediately, I ran into a Donna Haney recipe that had been adapted by Paula Deen for something she was calling Monster Cookies. That sounded intriguing, so I read on.

These babies called for candies, chocolate chips, raisins, and peanut butter. No wonder they're called monster cookies! After seeing literally hundreds of rave reviews, I decided to adapt the recipe myself and give it a try.

What emerged from my oven has got to be the best, most naughty, over-the-top oatmeal cookies I've ever tasted. Jonah heartily agreed. What else would you expect from Paula Deen, right? Best of all, the recipe was easy to adapt and made 4 dozen cookies, half of which went home with Jonah. Happy birthday!

So here's my version of monster cookies with some additional notes at the end.

Vegan Monster Cookies
  • 3 tablespoons ground flax seeds
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon water 
  • 1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups organic, creamy peanut butter
  • 1 stick (4 oz., 115 g, or 1/2 cup) vegan margarine, softened
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 4 1/2 cups rolled oats (I like Bob's Red Mill Organic Rolled Oats)
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or nonstick baking mats.
  2. Combine ground flax seeds and water in a food processor and whirl until the liquid becomes viscous and thick, about 1 minute.
  3. In a very large mixing bowl, combine the flax mixture and sugars. Mix well. Add the vanilla, peanut butter, and margarine. Mix well. Stir in the chocolate chips, raisins, baking soda, and rolled oats. Drop by tablespoons 2 inches apart onto the prepared cookie sheets.
  4. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Do not overbake. Let stand for about 3 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool. When cool, store in large resealable plastic bags.
  • That "let stand for about 3 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool," part is important. Don't try to remove them from the baking sheet before then or they'll just mush up on you.
  • Instead of 3/4 cup chocolate chips and 1/2 cup raisins, the original recipe called for 1/2 cup multi-colored chocolate candies, 1/2 cup chocolate chips, and 1/4 cup raisins. I couldn't find a vegan substitute for the multi-colored chocolate candies, however, so I split the difference between the chocolate chips and the raisins. But if you know where to get vegan multi-colored chocolate candies, give it a try. And let me know where to get them, too!
  • I think this recipe would be fun to experiment with. I'd like to try using other nut butters, adding nuts, using vegan white chocolate chips, swapping the raisins out for a different dried fruit, and maybe even trying other rolled grains like quinoa to replace the oats.


jessy said...

holy batman, Marni! i do not doubt that those are the best oatmeal cookies ever. holy sh*t those sound AMAZING!!!!!!! totally printing off the recipe and making a trader joe's run next week for chocolate chips. mmmmmmmmmm! damn that's awesome! thank you so so so so much for the recipe, too!

allularpunk said...

those sound completely amazing! and my brother's name is jonah. thanks for the killer recipe!

Hannah said...

I'm totally willing to believe that those are the best oatmeal cookies out there- They really do look it!

Amey said...

oh yum! I am always on the look out for good oatmeal raisin cookies... they're my grandpa's favorites. Thanks for the recipe! I'll definitely give these a try.

Sal said...

yumyum those look like some seriously awesome cookies!

Jeni Treehugger said...

Crap on a cracker those look and sound awesome Marni! definitely worthy of a birthday. can I ask one teeny tiny question - what's the weight of a stick of butter?
I don't have sticks over here - I have to weigh things out the old fashioned way.

Marni said...

Thanks everyone! I you all like them as much as we did.

Jeni Treehugger: Thanks for reminding me to translate for the rest of the world! :) One stick of margarine = 1/2 cup = 4 ounces = 115 g). I updated the original post to reflect the conversions. Have fun with this recipe!

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Dudes LOVE cookies & those look so good.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for my bday cookies, Marni. They really were the BEST ever. I'm drooling just looking at your post about them...


Anonymous said...

Hey thank you so much for the recipe! I discovered monster cookies before becoming vegan and lately my friends have been worried about the state of my special cookies.

I used 1/3 c olive oil instead of vegan margarine and way too many chocolate chips so that the cookies didn't stick together very well. I also added some walnut pieces, pecan pieces, almond slices and coconut flakes. Delicious. Happy baking!

Anonymous said...

I love you deeply. Just made the change and was wondering if I could still make my favorite treat, those cookies get rave reviews for a reason. =]