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Cowboy Cookies have a fantastic chew from oatmeal and coconut plus whatever mix-ins you choose. Try my classic combination of chocolate chips and walnuts!

Before she became the first lady to George W. Bush on November 7, 2000, Laura Bush went head-to-head with her rival Tipper Gore in a baking contest sponsored by Family Circle.

Tipper entered a delicious recipe for Gingersnaps, but Laura took home the prize with her delicious Cowboy Cookies. Studded with chocolate chips, nuts, oats, and lots of coconut, the judges had an easy choice!

A stack of cowboy cookies on a cooling rack.

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How to Make Cowboy Cookies

While I followed Laura’s example with chocolate chips and nuts, you could add other ingredients to up the ante on your Cowboy Cookies.

White chocolate chips, dried fruit (such as dried cranberries or raisins), and M&M’s all make fantastic mix-ins for these cookies.

If you want to get even crazier, try stirring corn flakes, rice krispies, or a spoonful of peanut butter.

The fantastic chew of Cowboy Cookies comes from the combination of oats and coconut, so be sure to always include those!

Cowboy cookies on a cooling rack.

A stack of cowboy cookies on a cooling rack.

Cowboy Cookies

Cowboy Cookies have a fantastic chew from oatmeal and coconut plus whatever mix-ins you choose. Try my classic combination of chocolate chips and walnuts!
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Servings 24 cookies
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 215


  • 3/4 cup walnuts or pecans, toasted
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup butter softened (2 sticks)
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 heaping cup semi-sweet chocolate chips or white chocolate, butter scotch, or peanut butter chips
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut (see notes)


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. 
  • In a standing mixer fit with the paddle attachment on medium speed, or with an electric mixer, beat butter, white sugar and brown sugar together. Add eggs and vanilla. 
  • Reduce speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture. Add oats, chocolate chips, shredded coconut, and pecans and beat until just combined.
  • Drop heaping tablespoons of cookie dough at least 2 inches apart on an prepared baking sheets. 
  • Bake until the edges are lightly browned, about 12 to 15 minutes. Cool 5 minutes on baking sheet before transferring to a rack to cool completely.


  1. To toast the walnuts or pecans, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange pecans in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until darkened and fragrant, stirring frequently to prevent scorching, about 10 to 12 minutes.Β 
  2. Both sweetened and unsweetened shredded coconut taste great in this recipe. Use whichever you prefer!
  3. This recipe is adapted from Laura's recipe.


Calories: 215kcalCarbohydrates: 26gProtein: 3gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 36mgSodium: 232mgPotassium: 70mgFiber: 1gSugar: 14gVitamin A: 260IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 23mgIron: 1mg
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Executive Chef and CEO at | Website | + posts

Meggan Hill is the Executive Chef and CEO of Culinary Hill, a popular digital publication in the food space. She loves to combine her Midwestern food memories with her culinary school education to create her own delicious take on modern family fare. Millions of readers visit Culinary Hill each month for meticulously-tested recipes as well as skills and tricks for ingredient prep, cooking ahead, menu planning, and entertaining. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the iCUE Culinary Arts program at College of the Canyons.

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  1. Oh My Gosh!!! So yummy 🀀 I was amazed how easy it was to toast the pecans in the microwave. This will be the cookie I give as gifts for now on!!5 stars

  2. The walnut/chocolate chip combo was freaking delicious! Did the pecans turn out as well for you? may try those next5 stars