These easy no-bake cookies are loaded with goodness and they’re even a little bit of healthy. Old-fashioned oats, cocoa, and the surprise addition of coconut make these classic no-bake cookies (without the peanut butter!) the very best.
No-bake cookies are a starter-cook-in-the-kitchen classic recipe that’s oh so easy to make.
That’s the good part.
So what’s the bad part?
It’s just that they’re so dang easy to make you can whip up a batch whenever the craving strikes. And then eat the whole bowl. By yourself. In one sitting.
Just ask my husband. That was his M.O. when back in the day after high school football practice he would make no-bake oatmeal cookies at least once a week. As all big brothers do (or more aptly don’t), he refused to share any of the batch with his siblings. Brotherly love. It’s real.
But here’s the best part…
Once you make these no-bake beauties yourself, you’ll see why he was so selfish. And you won’t blame him one bit for keeping them all to himself.
What’s in These No-Bake Cookies?
If I made these cookies once I’ve been I’ve made them 1,000 times. It’s likely that after my award-winning snickerdoodles, no bake chocolate oatmeal cookies were one of the first cookies I made all on my own as a kid.
No bake cookies are always popular in the summer when no one wants to turn on the oven, but for some reason fall is when I crave them most. Maybe it’s my baking cravings for comfort rearing it’s sweet toothed head.
The ingredient list for these chocolate no-bake cookies is short and simple, and it’s likely you have all the ingredients sitting within arms reach right in your pantry.
- Old-fashioned oats (side note: why does everyone call old-fashioned oats oatmeal?)
- Shredded coconut
- Milk or almond milk
- Cocoa powder
- Kosher salt
One thing you won’t see in the ingredient list is peanut butter, because when I made them as a kid that was never in the recipe, so you won’t see it here now, either.
How to Make No-Bake Cookies
Okay, you ready for this?
In a saucepan, bring the butter, sugar, milk, cocoa powder, vanilla, and salt to a boil. Cook for a minute, then remove from the heat and stir in the oats and coconut.
Scoop the “batter” into balls and let them cool completely before diving in.
Seriously, that’s all it takes to make this easy no-bake cookie recipe.
Can I Omit the Coconut?
No-bake cookies with coconut not your thing? No worries, feel free to leave it out and make up the difference with ½ cup additional oats instead.
Can I Use Instant Oats?
Absolutely not. Instant oats are much more powdery than old-fashioned oats, and the texture of these chocolate no-bake cookies will be way off.
Tips for Making the Best No-Bake Cookies
While there’s no baking involved with this recipe, there is one step on the stove top for melting the butter and the milk together. But you can easily do this in the microwave too. Or take these guys camping and make them over the coals.
The “batter” will be pretty loose until the cookies cool and come together. I use this 56 mm or 4 ounce (¼ cup) stainless steel scoop for these cookies. That makes 12-14 cookies, depending on how much you eat before you get to the cookie portioning part of the recipe :)
I use sweetened coconut in my recipe, but you could use unsweetened if you prefer.
More Easy Cookie Recipes You’ll Love
- Milk Bar’s Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies
- Chocolate-Dipped Coconut Macarons
- Currant Cookies
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment below or take a photo and tag me on Instagram or Twitter with #foodiecrusheats.
The Best No-Bake Cookies—with Coconut!
- 8 tablespoons butter (1 stick)
- 1 ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup milk
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 cups old-fashioned oats
- 1 cup shredded coconut
- In a medium saucepan, bring butter, sugar, milk, cocoa powder, vanilla and salt to a boil and cook for 1 minute, stirring continuously, then remove from the heat.
- Stir in the oatmeal and coconut and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Spoon 1-inch balls onto a parchment paper. Cool for 20 minutes. Store in an airtight container.
More No-Bake Desserts You’ll Want to Make Too
- Nutella No-Bake Cookies
- No-Bake Dulce de Leche Pie
- 4-Ingredient Pretzel Turtles Treats
- No-Bake Cookie Bars with Chocolate, Cherries and Chia Seeds
- Peppermint Truffles Recipe
- 4-Ingredient Ice Cream Pie with Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Crust
- Salted Chocolate Peanut Butter Rice Krispies Treats
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OMG these are so easy – 30 minutes tops, and soooo good. I love the texture of the oats and coconut. Plus they are very chocolatey. Yum Yum. I took them to friends and work friends and they all loved them. I put them in the fridge so they would firm up good. I’ve made them twice. The second time I used monk fruit instead of the sugar. Delish!
I’m glad you all enjoyed Jan!
Followed the recipe to the letter and they did NOT stick together whatsoever. Could not make anything even closely resembling cookies. Fell all apart. Tried stainless steel scoop, plastic scoop, hands… nothing worked.
Ashley @ Foodie Crush
So sorry! I hope you’ll give it another shot!
Thank you for this recipe! I’ve been trying to find it for years. My mother, who passed away 2 years ago, used to make these back in the late 50’s, early 60’s & called them “Buffalo Patties”. She’d just scooped them off of the spoon she used for cooking & flattened them a bit.
Two changes I’ll make is to let it boil long enough to make sure the sugar is dissolved, probably another minute or 2, & wait until it’s taken off the stove to stir in the vanilla, just before adding the oats & coconut.
I can’t remember for sure but I think she used Eagle Brand milk but I don’t see the need so will use regular milk for the 1st batch.
Thanks again for this great recipe!
Ashley @ Foodie Crush
Thank you so much!
For some reason I remember mom using sweetend condenced milk? Do you think I can replace the sugar and milk with condenced milk?
Ashley @ Foodie Crush
What could I use instead of sugar? Would Maple syrup work?
Ashley @ Foodie Crush
You could use a coconut sugar or Stevia.
Maple syrup probably would work. I made some macaroons with honey and they were tasty.
Awww, thank you!!! You’ve taken me back 38 YEARS!! As 12 year old THIS was our “treat” in the house as my (single) mom had these ingredients in the house!!
My hog’s head (with apple in the mouth sculpting worked so well for my own daughter’s std. 5 mother and child school tea that I thought of also doing some kind of a sculpting for today….
My sister-in-law turns 40 today and she is a “black freak” so I wished I could remember the ratio of ingredients (as I am attempting at making her a -black- sculpted “cake” for her birthday) then I REMEMBERED GTS ;-) I typed in, oats, sugar, water, cacao, coconut no bake cookie recipe and voila!!!!!!!!! THANK YOU Heidi for lighting up my day!!!
So glad you loved them too, and your search was found. The old recipes are sometimes the best :)
These are delicious cookies, but for some reason mine didn’t set and ended up with a pool of gooey goodness at the base. Placing the cookies in the fridge helped a bit.
I make these exact cookies. It is trial and error on the amount of time you cook them. Everyone starts the time at a different idea of what they think is boiling. Your batch wasn’t cooked long enough. You can also cook them too long and then they are dry and hard. Once you get it, you are set. Don’t give up!
Ashley @ Foodie Crush
Exactly! Thanks Mary <3
Thanks for sharing, a informative article and also its very useful for me and also i agree with that , thanks a lot…………..
These are super popular in Sweden although we didn’t use milk. But you can also add in some leftover morning coffee in them that gives them a little extra flavor. They were called “cocoa balls” or “chocolate balls.”
I love the idea of coffee addition! Thanks for that, Mindy! I hope you enjoy my version.
OMG! Dipping these in coffee sounds like a great idea! lmao
Thank you for sharing this recipe! My mom made these when I was growing up, but instead of coconut, she added raisins. She passed away in July and I’ve tried to find a similar recipe (without peanut butter). Can’t wait to make these. Memory lane!
I am so glad that these brought back memories for you! I hope you enjoy this version and that it tastes just like your Mom’s!