No Bake Oatmeal Cookies with Peanut Butter and Chocolate

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‘Memba these from back in the day?  There isn’t one particular memory associated with these oatmeal, chocolate, and peanut butter cookies but they give me a general sense of nostalgia for the seemingly endless summer nights that were some of the most carefree days imaginable.  My best friend’s mom used to make these and they were SO GOOD that I don’t even think I realized they had healthy oats in them until I was much older.  (And let’s not get it twisted — these are very much an indulgent dessert, complete with butter and chocolate — but also healthy oats and peanut butter, so I think those two things cancel each other out (and, I’m not math person, but does that mean zero calories?!).    That’s another great joy of having kids.  You get to remember what those fun summer nights are like through the eyes of your children.  C doesn’t necessarily have a sense of what “summer” is per se — but he knows it’s fun to eat dinner outside, go to the pool, and stay up a little bit later than normal.

Did I mention that these also take no more than 10 minutes to make?

I made them a few days ago and every time I walk by the refrigerator I have to grab one.  They’re little.  There’s also only EIGHT ingredients, too, all of which you probably have in your pantry right now.

Y’all.  You got this.

Some words to the wise: I’d get some good oats.  I like McCann’s quick cooking oats because they taste like actual oats rather than cardboard.  And they keep forever.   And oats are so versatile.  They’re good in pancakes, other fun desserts, and regular ‘ole oatmeal.

The worst part is putting them on the parchment paper and having to leave them there until they harden up a bit.  You could eat them right away, but they would fall apart.  This step is hard but necessary.

And you can’t really eat just one.  Just a heads up.

Total Time: 10 minutes, plus about 30 minutes in the refrigerator to harden up a bit

Yields: about 20-24 cookies

Ingredients

  •  1 1/2 cups sugar
  •  1/2 cup milk
  •  1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  •  1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  •  pinch of salt
  •  2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  •  2/3 cup creamy peanut butter (don’t use the natural kind because it’s too greasy)
  •  3 cups quick cooking oats (I prefer McCann’s quick cooking oats)

Directions

  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Place the oats in a big bowl to be used in a few minutes
  3. In a medium saucepan combine sugar, milk, butter, cocoa powder, and salt, over medium heat, until butter has melted. Bring to a boil, and boil for 1 minute.  Remove from the heat and add vanilla extract and peanut butter.  Mix until combined.  Pour the chocolate/peanut butter mixture over the oats and stir until combined.
  4. Using a spoon or cookie scoop (I use this one to make them all uniform), drop cookies onto the prepared parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
  5. Refrigerate until firm.

The cookies will stay fresh in an air-tight container in the fridge for about a week!

Tell me how you like them…and, as always, enjoy!

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