The following recipe is from the award-winning book, How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman, IDG Books, 1998. In addition to being a cookbook author, Mark Bittman writes "The Minimalist", a weekly column in the New York Times.

oatmeal cookies

"These can be made with raisins, chopped dried fruit (cranberries and cherries are good), chocolate chips, or coconut - the batter can handle up to 1 1/2 cups of any of these, or a combination. Stir them into the batter along with the dry ingredients."

yield: 3 to 4 dozen


  • 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups (about 7 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups rolled oats (not the instant kind)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
Preheat the oven to 375°

Use an electric mixer to cream together the butter and sugars; add the eggs one at a time and beat until well blended.

Combine the flour, oats, cinnamon, salt, and baking powder in a bowl. Alternating with the milk, add the dry ingredients to the batter by hand, a little a time, stirring to blend. Stir in the vanilla or almond extract.

Drop by teaspoons or tablespoons onto ungreased baking sheets and bake until lightly browned, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool for about 2 minutes on the sheets before using a spatula to transfer the cookies to a rack to finish cooling. Store in a covered container at room temperature for no more than a day or two.

Lacy Oatmeal Cookies: Melt the butter and combine it with the sugars, oats, and salt; beat in the eggs. Omit the flour, baking powder, milk, and vanilla; add the cinnamon if you like. Bake at 350° on greased baking sheets for 8 to 10 minutes; let rest a minute before removing with a thin-bladed spatula. Cool on a rack.

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