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No-Bake Cookies

These delicious classic no-bake cookies are incredibly easy to make with only a few ingredients. Loaded with the perfect combination of cocoa powder, peanut butter, and oats, you'll find yourself reaching for seconds...or thirds.
Course cookies
Servings 24 Cookies

Ingredients

  • cups sugar
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup butter
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup chunky peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 cups quick-cooking oats or old-fashioned whole oats **See notes

Instructions

  • Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set them aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, over medium heat, combine sugar, milk, butter, salt, and cocoa. Stir until the butter has melted. Bring the mixture to a full boil and allow to boil for 1½ minutes, stirring constantly. Immediately remove the pan from the heat.
  • Add the peanut butter and vanilla and stir until the peanut butter is melted and fully incorporated.
  • Add the oats and stir to combine. Allow the mixture to cool for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring a few times. This allows the oats to absorb some of the moisture so the cookies don't spread out too much.
  • Using a 1.5 tablespoon cookie scoop or a spoon, drop cookies onto the prepared baking sheets. If desired, flatten the cookies slightly with the bottom of a glass or measuring cup.
  • Allow to cool completely. The cookies will firm up as they cool.
    *To cool quicker, place the pan of cookies in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  • Store in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Notes

Freezing Instructions: Once the cookies have cooled completely, store them in a large freezer bag or freezer-friendly storage container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw the cookies to room temperature before serving. After they have thawed, keep them in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
 
Quick-Cooking Oats Vs. Old-Fashioned oats:
I have made these No-Bakes using both types of oats. With the old-fashioned oats, you will get a slightly chewier cookie, but not so much that they are unenjoyable. They take a little longer to set up as the oats take longer to soften and absorb the moisture in the no-bake mixture. But you will still have a delicious cookie that's hard to resist.
Using the quick-cooking oats will yield a less chewy cookie. The oats soften more quickly, which creates a softer cookie. The cookies also set up a little quicker as the quick-cooking oats absorb the moister more readily. 
Overall, either type of oats works well and yields a delicious cookie. I lean a little more to the quick-cooking oats because of the softer, less chewy texture, but if all I had on hand were old-fashioned oats, I would use those and still be happy with the results.