cartoon by marc johns.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Cowboy Cookies

Everything but the kitchen sink.
Cowboy cookies.  I have seen many different variations of recipes for these bad boys.  The things they all seem to have in common: they are big, chewy, halfway between regular cookies and oatmeal cookies, and are loaded with all kinds of delicious morsels.  I have seen recipes that have peanut butter chips, pretzel pieces, and chocolate chips; dried cranberries, white chocolate, and walnuts; cinnamon chips, dark chocolate chips, and marshmallows; the different combinations go on and on.  The base for the cookie dough seems to be the same in all of the recipes I have seen.  These particular cookies have chocolate chips, pecans, and sweetened flaked coconut and they are CRAZY good.  I am not the biggest fan of coconut; I don't hate it, but I don't normally seek it out.  The thing is this: with these cookies, the coconut is what makes them.  You don't really taste the coconut because of all the other flavors going on, but the coconut offers moisture and this wonderful chewy texture to the cookies, and it really does make all the difference.  MAKE THESE COOKIES.  That is all.

My friend Kat introduced me to this recipe and we had a fun time baking them together.  Interestingly enough, this recipe is from Laura Bush.  Back when Al Gore and George W. Bush were running for President, some family magazine had a cookie competition where Laura Bush and Tipper Gore each submitted a cookie recipe and the readers voted for the winner.  Apparently Laura Bush won with this recipe by a landslide.  

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
3 large eggs
1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup dark chocolate chips
3 cups old-fashioned oats
2 cups sweetened, flaked coconut
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans

1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Lightly grease baking sheets or line with silicone baking mats.

2.  In a medium bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.  Set aside.

Dry Ingredients.
3.  In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth.  Gradually beat in the sugars (both the white and brown) until light and fluffy.

Creaming the butter and sugars.
4.  Add the eggs one at a time and then beat in the vanilla extract.  Then, with the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture.  Mix until just combined.

Gradually adding the flour mixture.
5.  Add the chocolate chips, oats, coconut, and pecans and mix by hand until evenly distributed.

Not quite evenly distributed yet.
6.  For each cookie, drop about 1 tablespoon of dough onto the cookie sheet about 1 1/2 inches apart.  This recipe should make a lot of cookies - like 35-40.

Ready to be baked.
7.  Bake about 12-15 minutes, rotating the trays about halfway through.  The cookies should be lightly browned on the edges but still light in the center.  Enjoy with a tall glass of cold milk.

Pile of cookies.
Melty chocolate.
Recipe adapted from Laura Bush and Brown Eyed Baker.


  1. Oh, my those cookies look delicious I've been looking around your blog and I thinks its brilliant, you are such a good blogger and I find your posts really interesting :) it would mean the world to me if you could come over and have a look around my blog, if you like what you see feel free to leave a comment :) Thanks

    1. Thanks so much Rachel! I just had a look through your blog too and it is very creative and fun. Those Halloween-inspired foods are awesome! Let me know if you make these cookies and if you like them as much as I do. :o)


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