Classic No Bake Cookies filled with peanut butter, oats, and cocoa powder, for an ooey gooey dessert that’s the best Summer treat! This healthier recipe is gluten-free, easily dairy-free and vegan, and made with less sugar than the traditional no bake cookie recipe!
Have you ever cut back on sugar when you’ve baked before?
I know I do, quite often. That’s one of the main reasons why so many of my recipes are “healthier.” They’re just cut back down to a more simple recipe, with less sugar (and usually a few other easy and healthy tweaks!).
And I know I’ve received several comments from all of you that you cut back the sugar in my recipes sometimes even more!
In my gluten-free Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe you’ll find a little less sugar than other recipes, but you’ll still be left with soft and thick cookies that have rave reviews.
Don’t get me wrong, sugar is delicious, and I think it makes a lot of recipes better. But a little goes a long way in my book, especially for breakfast and snack recipes.
I’ve been wanting to share more no bake treats this Summer, and one of my absolute favorite childhood treats is the Classic No Bake Cookie. Filled with peanut butter and chocolate flavor, those cookies always hit the spot!
If you like chocolate and peanut butter, oats, easy desserts, not baking, and treats with less sugar, then these are the cookies for you! 🙂
A few important notes, first…
To keep these No Bake Cookies gluten-free, be sure to use certified gluten-free quick-cooking oats. If that’s unnecessary for you, then don’t worry about it.
You could use old-fashioned oats, but the cookies may not set as well (which is an easy fix, then just throw them in the fridge and they should harden right up!).
AND if you only have old-fashioned oats, you can go ahead and throw them in a blender or food processor and pulse them till they more closely resemble quick-cooking oats. After all, quick-cooking oats are just rolled oats that have been broken down more!
Next, let’s talk sugar some more. You can go ahead and use white sugar in this recipe, or coconut sugar if you prefer it. I haven’t tried this recipe yet with maple syrup or honey so I’m not sure how it would turn out.
You’ll need to use either coconut oil or a dairy-free butter alternative and almond milk to keep this recipe dairy-free and vegan.
But, if you do not need it to be dairy-free and/or vegan, then go ahead and use butter and your favorite milk in this recipe (I’d recommend 2%).
And, PEANUT BUTTER!
You’ll want to be sure to use a thick peanut butter, or you’ll be adding extra oil to the recipe and these cookies won’t be able to hold their shape as well. Which means you can use a more natural peanut butter if it’s a thicker peanut butter still.
Now, for the most important steps to making these cookies a sweet success.
First, be sure to boil the ingredients in your pot for one minute. Much longer than that and your cookies won’t have the same texture (think a littler harder), and less than that and your cookies won’t set!
So, set a timer for one minute exactly and use it.
Second, have your peanut butter measured out and ready to go, and your vanilla and teaspoon close by. This recipe has to go quickly or your wet ingredients will cool too much and won’t “cook” your oats enough for them to set.
So, if you pre-measure everything out, when you move your pot off the hot burner you can quickly add your peanut butter and vanilla and stir them quickly till the mixture is smooth. Then immediately add your oats and cocoa powder.
Those are the two most important steps to making sure these cookies turn out. And, if all else fails, and they don’t set for you somehow, just throw them in the fridge to harden! Not ideal, but still an easy fix.
And hey, this recipe can easily be doubled in case you need to feed a crowd, or you just want to have plenty of leftovers 😉
- 1 1/2 cup quick-cooking oats (certified gluten-free)
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup sugar (or coconut sugar)
- 1/4 cup coconut oil (or butter)
- 1/4 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 1/2 cup peanut butter (thick, not too oily)
- 1 tsp vanilla
Prepare by lining a pan with parchment paper.
In a small mixing bowl, add your oats and cocoa powder and mix them together. Prepare 1/2 cup of peanut butter in your measuring cup, and have your teaspoon and vanilla close by.
In a medium sized pot, add your sugar, coconut oil, and almond milk on medium high heat. Bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat and quickly add in your peanut butter and vanilla, and stir till smooth.
Pour your oats into your pot and stir till well combined. Using a small cookie scoop, scoop your cookies onto your pan. This recipe makes 12 small cookies (or 9 large). If necessary, use a spatula to gently flatten our the tops of your cookies.
Let cool for 30 minutes, then devour!
Stored in an airtight container in the fridge, these cookies last about a week.