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The Best Chewy Cowboy Cookies Recipe


Classic chewy Cowboy Cookies are full of flavor with oats, pecans, coconut, peanut butter chips and chocolate chips. Watch out- these huge cookies are addictive!

Stacked cowboy cookies on a wire rack.
Table of Contents

This Cowboy Cookies Recipe is full of flavor and bursting with texture. These Cowboy Cookies are huge! Using a quarter cup of dough in each cookie gives you a generous portion.

Filled with oats, pecans, coconut, peanut butter chips and chocolate chips, every single bite is the ultimate hearty cookie and pure bliss. These hearty loaded oatmeal cookies are massive, gorgeous, and totally addictive. They are also the perfect dessert when you serve Cowboy Cornbread Casserole.

Making cookies with cold butter is awesome for a number of reasons. First of all, you don’t have to remember to soften the butter. That allows you to bake cookies anytime.

Using cold butter also eliminates the need to chill the cookie dough because the dough is chilled from the butter. It saves an extra step and gives you a nice thick cookie.

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What goes into this Recipe

The ingredients needed to make Cowboy Cookies.
  • Cold Butter-This recipe is awesome because you don’t have to soften butter.
  • Dark Brown Sugar-The rich flavor of dark brown sugar is something I love about this Cowboy Cookie recipe but light brown sugar can be used.
  • Granulated Sugar-Added for sweetness, white sugar works perfectly with the brown sugar.
  • Eggs-Two eggs are used in this recipe to help the dough come together.
  • Vanilla Extract-For the underlying but wonderful vanilla flavor you know and love.
  • All Purpose Flour-Added for structure in this Cowboy Cookie and almost all cookie recipes.
  • Corn Starch-A small amount is added to the dry ingredients to help soften the cookies.
  • Baking Soda-A leavening agent that works great to give you a thick cookie.
  • Salt-Adding salt to sweet recipes is important to balance flavors.
  • Old Fashioned Oats-Using old-fashioned oats and not quick oats is important because the quick cooked oats have a different texture.
The add-in ingredients for cowboy cookies.
  • Pecans-For crunch and flavor. If you prefer walnuts or if walnuts are all you have on hand then go ahead and substitute them for the pecans in the same amount.
  • Sweetened Shredded Coconut-Adding shredded coconut flakes to the dough helps give a little added sweetness and texture without being too much.
  • Peanut Butter Chips-Chips that look like chocolate chips but are made of peanut butter.
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips-Milk chocolate chips could be used in place of the semi-sweet chocolate chips but I prefer the semi-sweet.

See recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.


These delicious cookies have so many flavors that it is super easy to customize them to fit your tastes.

You can add extra coconut if you want to leave out the oats or vice versa.

Try using all peanut butter chips or all semi-sweet chocolate chips if you want. You could even substitute one or all of the chips for white chocolate chips, dark chocolate chips, or butterscotch chips.

For the nuts, switch out the pecans for walnuts, peanuts, almonds, or any other nut you prefer.

How to Make Cowboy Cookies

  1. Cut the two sticks of cold butter into small cubes. Add the cold butter cubes, dark brown sugar and granulated sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer (or use a hand mixer). Cream butter and sugars together with the paddle attachment on medium speed for about 4 minutes. After 4 minutes the mixture should be creamy and smooth but still a bit cold.
  2. Add the eggs and vanilla extract to the butter and sugars. Mix until incorporated.
Making the cookie dough with cold butter.
  1. In a medium bowl combine the dry ingredients like flour, cornstarch, baking soda, salt and oats. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.
  2. In a separate bowl combine the pecans, coconut, peanut butter chips and chocolate chips. Gently fold into the cookie dough mixture.
Finishing the cookie dough with dry ingredients and add ins.
  1. Use a 1/4 cup measuring cup or a large cookie scoop to scoop cookie dough balls. Shape the cookie dough into a thick round cookie dough mound and place them on a silicone mat {or parchment paper} covered baking sheet.
  2. Bake the cookies in a 410 degrees oven for 10-12 minutes or until the cookies are set and golden brown. Remove the baked cookies from the oven and place extra pecans and chips into the top of each cookie. Allow the chewy cookies to cool completely on the baking sheet before moving to a wire rack or serving tray.
Scooping the cookie dough and baking the cookies.

Expert Tips

  • Cut the cold butter into small cubes. Do this so that it can easily be creamed into the sugars.
  • Add all of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients at one time but don’t over mix. Over mixing the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients will incorporate too much air and leave you with flat cookies.
  • Don’t over bake the cookies. To get a nice and thick cookie that is still soft in the center it is important to not over bake them. This step is important for this Macadamia Nut Cookies recipe too.
  • Allow the cookies to cool completely on the baking sheet. The residual heat from the baking sheet will continue to bake the cookies and help them set up perfectly.
  • Add extra pecans and chips to the top of each cookie when you remove them from the oven. This will give you a beautiful cookie.

Storage and Freezing

Store- Store the Cowboy Cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.

Freeze- Cowboy cookies can be frozen for up to 3 months. It is important that the cookies are covered tightly with plastic wrap or in an airtight container.

Recipe FAQs

Why are they called cowboy cookies?

Cowboy Cookies are said to have gotten their name when cowboys enjoyed these hearty cookies {or similar} on the trail.

Packed with oats and other goodies, they were considered to be the first “power bar”. Cowboy Cookies were an easy way to give cowboys nutrients on the long treks that they made. They are also sometimes called ranger cookies!

Do I need a stand mixer to make this recipe?

You do need a stand mixer to make these cookies. The reason is because we are using cold butter.

Using cold butter requires creaming it into the sugars for 4 minutes which is a long time. It is also a hard job but not when you use a stand mixer.

It is also a large batch of cookies which means when you add the dry ingredients it will be too hard for a hand mixer to mix the ingredients together.

What kind of oats should I use?

I used old fashioned oats because I wanted the texture but you could use quick cooked oats if you prefer.

The difference is that quick cooked oats are in smaller pieces and will give you a bit less of an oat texture in the Cowboy Cookies. It will be equally as wonderful though.

Cowboy cookies on a wire rack.

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Stacked cowboy cookies on a wire rack.

Cowboy Cookies

Classic Cowboy Cookies are made even better when they start with cold butter. These hearty cookies are full of flavor with oats, pecans, coconut, peanut butter chips and chocolate chips.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 12 cookies
Calories: 557kcal
3.84 from 6 votes
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  • 1 cup butter {cold and cut into cubes}
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar {packed}
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup pecans {roughly chopped, plus a few for the top}
  • ¼ cup sweetened coconut
  • ¾ cup peanut butter chips {plus a few for the top}
  • ¾ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips {plus a few for the top}


  • Preheat the oven to 410°.
  • In a large bowl from your mixer, combine the cold cubed butter and both sugars. Fitted with the paddle attachment, mix ingredients on a medium speed for about 4 minutes or until creamy.
  • Add eggs and vanilla extract, continue to mix until combined.
  • In a separate bowl combine flour, oats, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Whisk ingredients together and then add to the butter and sugar mixture all at once. Mix until just combined. You do not want to over mix {this will heat up your butter}.
  • Add pecans, coconut, peanut butter chips and semi sweet chocolate chips and mix until evenly distributed.
  • Use a ⅓ measuring cup to measure out cookies. Shape each mound of dough into a thick and round mound. Place 6 onto a silicone mat {or parchment} lined baking sheet.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes {mine took 12 minutes} or until the cookies begin to turn golden brown and are set. Let the cookies cool completely on the cookie sheet. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days or freeze for up to 3 months.


  • Cut the butter into cubes to be sure that it mixes into the sugars easily.
  • Change up the add-in ingredients according to what you love.
  • Add additional pecans and chocolate chips to the top of the cookie after it is baked for a great finished look.
Store- Store the Cowboy Cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
Freeze- Cowboy cookies can be frozen for up to 3 months. It is important that the cookies are covered tightly with plastic wrap or in an airtight container.


Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 557kcal | Carbohydrates: 65g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 71mg | Sodium: 428mg | Potassium: 196mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 36g | Vitamin A: 523IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 3mg
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