No Bake Cookies

No bake cookies are one of the easiest cookie recipes you can make. They’re a blend of 7 simple ingredients and no flour or eggs are needed! Just boil everything in a pot, scoop it out into portions on a baking sheet, and let it cool. That’s it!

No bake cookies on a marble counter top.

With Christmas just around the corner, dessert season is officially in full swing. In previous years, I would always bake a cake such as my flourless chocolate cake, paleo chocolate cake, or vegan caramel cheesecake. But this year, I decided to partake in the Christmas cookie tradition and whip up no bake cookies!

No bake cookies are a classic and while they should be easy and foolproof, it seems many still run into issues when making them (i.e. too soft and gooey or too hard and crumbly). So today I’m not only sharing my delicious recipe, I’m sharing heaps of tips so that your cookies are NO FAIL and turn out perfectly. Let’s dive in!

What’s In These Classic No Bake Cookies?

Just 7 basic ingredients! But keep on reading for a few variations – the recipe is quite adaptable!

  • Butter: I’m using unsalted butter, but you can also use ghee or vegan butter.
  • Milk: I’m using my homemade almond milk, but feel free to use any type of milk, dairy or dairy-free.
  • Sugar: Coconut sugar is my favorite for dessert recipes, but you could use any granulated sugar. Just don’t use honey or maple syrup.
  • Cacao Powder: I always use raw cacao powder, but you can use unsweetened cocoa powder as well.
  • Almond Butter: I only stock my pantry with almond butter (due to my nephew’s peanut allergy), but any nut butter will work.
  • Vanilla Extract: A splash of vanilla extract adds that sweet depth of flavor.
  • Oats: You can use old fashioned rolled oats or quick cooking oats (see more in the tips below). Just don’t use steel cuts oats.

Find the printable recipe with measurements below.

No bake cookies stacked on top of each other on a plate.

Why Use Coconut Sugar?

While most no bake cookie recipes use white granulated sugar, I personally like to use coconut sugar (as I do in many of my dessert recipes) for a few reasons.

First, it’s an unprocessed sugar made naturally from coconut palm sap. There’s no bleaching or chemicals involved. Once the liquid sap is collected from the palm, it’s left out to dry. The result is the granulated brown coconut sugar you see in the market.

And second, coconut sugar has a butterscotch, almost caramel-like taste to it. On the sweetness scale, it actually tastes less sweet that cane sugar, but has more depth. This gives the cookies a richer, more delectable flavor.

No bake cookie ingredients in a saucepan on the stove.
Making no bake cookies on the stove and dolloping them onto parchment paper.

How To Make Easy, No Bake Oatmeal Cookies

Yes, this recipe only takes 10 minutes to make. And while it’s easy, it always helps to watch a quick tutorial video. So make sure to watch the video below! 

  • Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • Add the butter, milk, coconut sugar, and cacao powder to a saucepan on medium heat. Stir it all together and bring to a boil. Let the mixture boil for 2 minutes then remove from the heat.
  • Add in the almond butter, oats, and vanilla and stir until everything is mixed together.
  • Scoop the cookies onto the baking sheets using a medium sized cookie scooper. Slightly flatten the cookies using a spoon to desired thickness.
  • Let the cookies cool at room temperature for about 30 minutes, or you can pop them in the fridge to cool for about 20 minutes.
No bake cookie half eaten and held in hand.

A Few Tips…

After making this recipe numerous times with fails and successes, I’ve learned a few tricks. Let me share some tips:

  • Use old-fashioned rolled oats or quick cooking oats. When it comes to these cookies, it’s all about which texture you prefer. Old fashioned rolled oats will produce a thicker, heartier cookie. And quick cooking oats will produce a finer textured, chewier cookie. Either works! Or do what I do and use a 50/50 mix of both!
  • Watch your boiling time. To get the perfect consistency, you’ll need to keep an eye on your butter and sugar mixture. Once the mixture starts to fully boil (not just simmer on the edges), let it boil for 2 minutes. Set a timer! This will allow the sugar to get close to 230°F (just below the soft ball stage), allowing them to set-up properly when cooled.
  • Cookies too soft or too hard? Most recipes online say to cook for 1 minute, but this always produced overly soft, sticky, gooey cookies for me that never firmed up. You really need to cook the sugar mixture at least 2 minutes. Humidity can also affect the boil time. So, if your cookies are too soft, boil the sugar an extra 15-20 seconds next time. And if they’re too hard (almost like candy) and crumbly, boil the sugar for less time.
  • Still too soft? The cookies will be naturally softer with quick cooking oats. Old fashioned rolled oats will absorb a little more moisture and help them firm up. That’s why I love to use a 50/50 combination of quick cooking and rolled oats. It makes for the perfect texture.
  • Still too soft? Let the cookies sit out overnight uncovered. They’ll naturally firm up as the moisture inside the cookies evaporates.

Get Creative With Flavors!

  • Switch up the nut butters: Feel free to use any other nut-butters such as peanut, cashew, macadamia or even sunflower seed butter.
  • Add shredded coconut: If you want to add extra coconut flavoring and texture, reduce the almond butter to 1/4 cup and add 1/4 cup shredded coconut.
  • Add chocolate chips: If you want it extra chocolatey, add 1/4 cup chocolate chips. They’ll melt when you stir them in and help to harden the cookies when cooled.
  • Add espresso powder: Espresso powder always amplifies chocolate desserts, just add 1/4 teaspoon.
  • Add sea salt: For a sweet and salty combo, just sprinkle flaked sea salt on top when they’re drying.

How To Store No Bake Cookies

The best part about these cookies is that they can last for quite awhile – up to 2 weeks. If stored in the freezer, they’ll be good for 2 months (perfect for keeping a post-holiday stash).

Just make sure to store them in airtight containers or stasher bags. You can also use parchment paper to divide the layers so that the cookies don’t stick to each other.

No Bake Cookies Recipe Video

See how easy these no bake cookies are to whip up in the video below!

Cookies are always a good idea, no matter the season. Here’s a few more delicious recipes to try next time!

These no bake cookies get devoured fast during the holidays. So if I were you, I’d make an extra batch (or two). Once you do, let me know how they turned out! I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below.

No bake cookies on a marble counter top.

No Bake Cookies Recipe (Foolproof!)

4.92 from 35 votes
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Resting Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 20 mins
Servings: 20 cookies
Author: Lisa Bryan
No bake cookies are one of the easiest cookie recipes you can make. They're a blend of 7 simple ingredients and no flour or eggs are needed! Just boil everything in a pot, scoop it out onto a baking sheet, and let it cool.


No Bake Oatmeal Cookies

  • ½ cup butter, unsalted
  • ½ cup milk, dairy or dairy-free
  • 2 cups coconut sugar
  • ¼ cup cacao powder, or cocoa powder
  • ½ cup almond butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups quick cooking or rolled oats


  • Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the milk, sugar, and cacao powder and stir until it starts to boil. Set a timer and let the mixture boil for 2 minutes. Then, turn off the heat.
  • Add in the vanilla, almond butter, and oats, and stir until everything is combined.
  • Using a medium sized cookie scooper, scoop the cookies onto the baking sheet. Then flatten the cookies using a spoon to desired thickness.
  • Let the cookies cool at room temperature for about 30 minutes, or chill in the fridge for about 20 minutes until firm.

Lisa’s Tips

  • If you’re gluten-free, make sure to use gluten-free certified oats.
  • The cookies will need the full 30 minutes to set, so be patient.
  • Make sure to boil for 2 minutes so that the sugar starts to caramelize. If you don’t boil the mixture enough, the cookies will stay soft, and if you over-boil, they might turn out too crumbly.
  • And if you want to make your life easy, buy these pre-cut parchment paper sheets (I’m obsessed).


Calories: 171kcal, Carbohydrates: 21g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 9g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 13mg, Sodium: 68mg, Potassium: 115mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 9g, Vitamin A: 152IU, Calcium: 38mg, Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: no bake cookies, no bake cookies recipe
©Downshiftology. Content and photographs are copyright protected. Sharing of this recipe is both encouraged and appreciated. Copying and/or pasting full recipes to any social media is strictly prohibited.
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122 comments on “No Bake Cookies”

  1. These cookies were so easy to make. Will be taking them to my ladies brunch today. Will let you know if they’re 👍 or 👎 with the girls. They look/smell like they’re going to be a hit! I might try them with 1/2 peanut butter & 1/2 almond butter next time….. who doesn’t like chocolate & peanut butter together?

  2. Tasted great, but they didn’t really harden even after one hour. Also, I used less sugar and it was still too sweet for my liking. Next time I’ll use even less sugar 3 stars

  3. can yo ucut the sugar out and still have good cookies, I am diabetic so need to cut sugar out but love these cookies

  4. This was soooo good. I was just going to use regular sugar but last minute so got the brown coconut sugar. Made such a difference!! I opted for peanut butter and vegan butter. I also added a pinch of Himalayan salt and a teaspoon of espresso powder to bring the cocoa forward. Did a double batch. Will make again!!5 stars

  5. Followed recipe using store bought almond milk & almond butter, good earth vegan butter.
    This flopped for sure milky liquid didn’t mix in all the way. Think it was the vegan butter. Also needed salt.

  6. Can i make these with a sugar substitute, like truvia? 

  7. These are insanely good!! Mine turned out a little gooey, but no problem, just layered them on parchment in the freezer and they are PERFECT!!5 stars

  8. So yummy and easy to make!5 stars

  9. Hi Lisa,

    My sister made these cookies for my dad and I had one too many when I went to visit him today. They were absolutely delicious.

    Can you please verify that the 171 calories mentioned under nutrition applies to how many cookies? Thank you kindly :) 5 stars

  10. I am dairy free. Can I sub coconut oil for butter?

  11. I came to this recipe from the directions on how to make oat milk. So my question is how to use the leftover oats in this recipe? As almond butter? Or in place of some of the oats?
    I’ve been upset during the covid shutdown when I heard that there are alot of kids in my city who don’t have access to food, so I’m looking at recipes that will fill their tummies and not allow them to go hungry for any length of time. If their parents can’t afford to buy milk? Maybe they’ll use these recipe ideas to prevent hunger in their families. I know when I was a kid that I didn’t have alot of food to eat, and lost half of my body weight between 4th and 5th grades, I refuse to allow this to happen to kids who live around me now.

    • Hi Kristina – I haven’t created any recipes yet with the leftover pulp, but if you happen to make anything, please let me know! I’m always looking for ways to use leftovers and eliminate waste :)

  12. Little late to discover this receipe,but oh they are the easiest and best cookies. I love how they are so simple to make yet so yummy. I ate too many of them and my family loved them too. Thankyou for this recipe and a very happy christmas! 😘5 stars

  13. I made these today for a cookie exchange.  So delicious :) Really like splitting the almond butter with 1/4 cup coconut.  5 stars

  14. These are yummy!! I could easily eat the whole batch!! Super easy to make! 5 stars

  15. Delicious! And oh so easy.5 stars

  16. Do you think I can leave the cacao/cocoa out? My daughter has chocolate/peanut/nut allergies…was going to use allergy friendly white chips in place of the chocolate and sunbutter?

  17. Delicious cookies!!! I user the quick oats and added a quarter cup of chocolate chips, the kids could not wait the 30 min….5 stars

  18. I like this recipe! If I add pulp from making oat milk do the ingredients and instructions stay the same? And how much pulp could I add to the recipe?

    • Hi Veronica – I am not sure as I haven’t tried using the pulp yet to cook with. But if you do try, please let me now how it goes!

  19. Made these for me and my fiancé. LOVED them. We have a major sweet tooth and these hit the spot and are still healthy. 5 stars

  20. Made these no bake cookies last night for my husband’s chocolate sweet tooth and we both loved them! Great recipe and a keeper for sure.5 stars

  21. I’ve never been able to make no bake cookies that turn out-but these!!! At first I didn’t think they would set up,but I let them sit out overnight&they were PERFECT!!! Looked&tasted amazing! Thanks so much!5 stars

  22. Mine turn out dry every. Single. Time! Grr!

  23. These are so good. I made them today and the cookies set perfectly ( I made sure I followed your tips). Although, I reduced the amount of sugar.

    I discovered your blog in April this year, and I love so many recipes on it. With the lockdown, your recipes have helped bring in that special something to the day.

    Thank you for that!5 stars

    • Hi Judith- I’m so glad you discovered my channel last year! Glad to hear you’ve been enjoying all the recipes as well :)

  24. Can you use coconut oil instead of butter?

  25. I made these for the first time in a very humid environment. I will need to cook the sugar for about 15-30 seconds longer next time. Like you suggested. I really enjoy the richness that the coconut sugar added. I made these growing up and into adulthood, but never in a super humid environment. THANK YOU for having metric conversions on your recipes! I go to your site quite often because of the solid content. Best regards from the Pacific Coast of México.5 stars

    • Hi there! I’m happy to hear these cookies still came together in very humid weather! These are definitely a childhood type cookie.

  26. Made these for a get together of friends and they loved them.  I love how you are very detailed in your recipes and how well they turn out.  Easy peasy cookies!  5 stars

  27. These are the best no bake cookies I have ever had!!! I made mine with cashew milk and peanut butter. I was a teeny bit short on coconut sugar, so I made up the difference with regular sugar. it was probably only 2 tablespoons or so. I keep telling my husband he needs to come home from work asap before I eat them all! 5 stars

    • Hi Sasha – These cookies are definitely addictive! I love how you used cashew butter too – I will definitely need to try that next time :) But, happy you enjoyed these cookies overall!

  28. I made these no bake oat cookies and my kids and I love them. So easy to throw together, and delicious to keep in the fridge as a sweet snack to grab throughout the school week. Lisa you are my favourite influencer. I love your videos, posts, recipes, ideas and just everything you stand for. The effort you put into your brand and content is so remarkable. I can see your hard work. You are outstanding at what you do. Thank you!5 stars

  29. I’m curious from a scientific baking point if I used dairy-free milk, how would the cookies differ from using cow milk. Thoughts?

  30. I learned to make these cookies in my 70s high school home ec class. They were the rage back then. So it’s nice to see them make a comeback. However, I don’t recall using 2 cups of sugar. So I only used 1 cup plus a few chocolate chips and they were plenty sweet. So if we’re trying to be healthy, not sure why she added so much sugar. Even coconut sugar contains calories and can be bad for the blood sugar.4 stars

    • Hi Kendra – yes, these are definitely a splurge and I wouldn’t consider this a healthy recipe. It’s definitely a dessert (no matter which type of sugar you use). ;) The recipe you remember from your childhood may have had different ratios altogether, so it’s hard to know. But this is the traditional amount of sugar that’s used in no bake cookies.

  31. Disheartening to see that you eat oats. For many celiacs, oats have the same reaction as gluten, even if they’re labeled GF. Both because their protein, avenin, is very similar to gluten (and some immune systems overreact), and because nearly all “GF” oats are actually contaminated. Two Canadian studies a few years ago proved that.

    • Hi Eugenia – Each person’s body is different and while some celiacs may respond poorly to oats, many others do not. My body does not have any issues with oats. Just as some celiacs cross-react with corn, or coffee or other foods, others do not. There is no one-size fits all as we all have different genetics, microbiome and epigenetics. Each person should do what’s best for their own body.

  32. This recipe is so easy to make. I love it it was so good that they only lasted a day 😞. Gotta make it one more time.5 stars

  33. Delish! These are great if you have kids, there easy to make and are super yummy!5 stars

  34. These were delicious and suuuper easy to make. My husband that claims he doesn’t like no bake cookies liked these cookies!5 stars

  35. Love that these are made with natural clean ingredients. I always ate these as a kid growing up and now as an adult I am constantly trying to make classic recipes with better ingredients – especially now that I have two little ones!

  36. I’ve never made no bake cookies before and, to be honest, I didn’t even know there was such a thing! I love the use of coconut sugar here too. Thanks so much for sharing – I am bookmarking this recipe. Happy New Year!

  37. I’ve been making similar cookies for over 40 years now.  My grandma had a recipe for it (we call them haystacks) and we would make them together at Christmas.  It’s a Christmas staple.  I don’t time my boil, just bring it to a full boil and take it off the stove – I’ve had it burn.  We also don’t put any nut butter or vanilla in (just sugar, butter, cream, coco powder, oats and coconut – same measurements for everything else + 1/2cup unsweetened coconut). I’ll have to try with the nut butter.

  38. I made these for our Christmas party and they are AMAZING! I did half with almond butter and half with peanut butter! Thank you!!! 5 stars

  39. So, I just made these and I’m finding it difficult not to eat them before they’ve even set. I guess these are my new favorites. Thanks, once again, Lisa, for another keeper recipe. Next week I’ll be making your Paleo Chocolate Cake fro NYE. Wishing you a very merry Christmas.5 stars

    • Hi Alan – I completely know what you mean. I ate 4 cookies immediately after they had chilled in the fridge for about 20 minutes! I’m happy you enjoyed these cookies and can’t wait for you to make the Paleo Chocolate Cake next :) Merry Christmas to you too!

  40. I’ve been craving homemade peanut butter cookies for several weeks, but was too busy to make them. So, I don’t really know how I ended up making your no-bake cookies (with peanut butter though) this weekend instead 😂. These no-bake cookies are def a keeper. Soooooo good.

    And just to let you know how much I trust your recipes: I’ve never made similar cookies before, but I’ve made a tripple batch at once 🙃 Thank you so much Lisa😘5 stars

  41. Delicious!! Did holiday baking and these cookies were the first ones I made. I did alter the recipe just a bit. I had organic natural peanut butter so I used that instead of almond butter. I did use the coconut sugar and I am glad I did I really enjoy how the cookie has the caramel taste to them.5 stars

  42. Omg! These cookies are nothing short of amazing! I added a little bit of almond extract and about an 1/8 more oats and they are simply out of sight!5 stars

  43. The recipe calls for 1/2 cup of regular butter and 1/2 cup of almond butter… can the regular butter be switched out with coconut butter or alternative?

  44. Aww sweet! This recipe is from Stop and Shop “Savory”magazine isn’t it? 

  45. Actually a question. Can these cookies be made with Monk Fruit or Stevia instead of Coconut sugar for diabetics? Has anyone made these sugar free and how much substitutes was used?

  46. I am so keen to rebuild that cookie tower that you have in one of those shots. It looks absolutely amazing! :-)5 stars

  47. Ooh I’ve never made this sort of cookie before! They’re awesome.5 stars

  48. These no-bake cookies were to die for. I will be making them for the holidays! The family loved them. Bookmarking.5 stars

  49. These are the BEST!! I love spreading peanut butter over the top. Yum!5 stars

  50. These cookies look great. And it will be a great option for summer (no bake!), or for when the oven calls quits. :)5 stars