oatmeal-chocolate-chip-and-pecan-cookies Recipes

oatmeal, chocolate chip and pecan cookies

Someone asked me yesterday how I manage the day job, this site, cooking, hobbies and attempting some semblance of a social life, but I didn’t answer because the gritty truth is that I don’t. I’m horrible at time management, not because I’m a slacker so much as I lack an attention span of more than 12 minutes. Take tonight. I swore I’d leave work at 5:30, but left at 6:20 instead (still earlier than last night), I had planned to give you guys a pie crust how-to but instead flitted from one thing (side project) to another (Thanksgiving thumbnails in sidebar) and as usual it’s 11 p.m. and oh right! I haven’t updated yet today.

oatsorange zest

It’s not a complaint, mind you. Somehow it almost always works out in the end, so who cares if the path meanders? But I do have one rule only, and that is that I am not allowed to complain about being busy. Yes, I have done it before, but I try to shut down that line of thinking as soon as it happens, because I think it leads to revving motors in place/stressing about stressing/getting caught up in the act of being and not doing, oh, and also, it’s really boring to hear about. I mean, have you ever met a person not busy? Yeah, me neither.

 oatmeal cookies  oatmeal cookies

Why go on about this today? Well, I was going to say that I’ve been meaning to share an oatmeal cookie recipe with you for some time but I’ve been too busy, but then I remembered I’m not allowed to say that. So instead I’ll admit that I haven’t shared one because oatmeal cookies range so widely from the thin and lacy to the thick and cakey and it seems impossible to make one that meets every single person’s expectations. And I hate being unable to please everyone.

 oatmeal cookies  oatmeal cookies

Yet, somehow this one does. It’s not too thin and not too thick, soft in the middle but crisp on the outside. That’s not all the divides it straddles elegantly; it manages to be both grown-up–with orange zest, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves–but young at heart–with chocolate chips instead of the traditional raisins. It also distinctly reminded me of that season that has been all but canceled this year. Maybe if we all bake some, we can lure it back.

oatmeal, chocolate chip and pecan cookies

One year ago: No-Knead Bread

Oatmeal, Chocolate Chip and Pecan Cookies
Adapted from Katy Sparks and Andrea Strong

I found the orange zest a little strong, as did many of the commenters on Epicurious, but Alex and the three friends I shared them with last week loved them just the way they were. I’d consider your own personal taste when making these, perhaps start with just a microplane or two of zest, and adding the rest if the batter tastes like it could use more. What, you don’t eat raw cookie batter? I’m sorry, we can’t be friends anymore.

Makes about 3 dozen cookies

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground clove
1 cup quick-cooking oats
2 cups chopped pecans
2 teaspoons freshly grated orange zest
12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a large cookie sheet with parchment or a Silpat (nonstick baking mat). Using an electric mixer, beat the butter in a bowl until light and fluffy. Add both sugars, salt, and vanilla, and beat until well mixed, about three minutes. Stir in eggs, one at a time. Sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove in a separate bowl. Add half of the flour mixture to the butter with the mixer on low speed. Once the flour has been incorporated, add the second half. Stir in the oats, pecans, orange zest, and chocolate chips. Drop the dough, by the tablespoon, onto the cookie sheet and bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden. Remove from the oven and cool the cookies on a rack. Store at room temperature in a cookie jar or other airtight container.

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219 comments on oatmeal, chocolate chip and pecan cookies

  1. tams

    yum! this will be a perfect treat for my family on christmas morning as my father LOVES oatmeal cookies!
    i have a question for you! when you started this blog, did you have any idea that it would be where it is at today – did you hope you might get to this point. it truly is quite amazing and a great accomplishment. you should be quite proud of yourself!
    cheers – off to chicago to enjoy some amazing cuisine and a lovely wine, cheese, and chocolate bar – it’s called eno – A-MAZ-ING!!! no charlie trotters this time though :0(

  2. Celeste

    In “Cookwise”, Shirley O. Corriher has a description of how to alter cookie recipes to get them thick, thin, or in between. It’s a subtle tinkering and nobody else has ever made it make sense to me before. Highly recommend.

    I love oatmeal cookies but for me it’s about the raisins. Baked-in raisins….mmmmm. They make any cookie rise to sublime for me. Although lately I’m really liking dried cherries in baked goods and chicken salads (either grilled or mayo’d). I’m rambling now!!!!

  3. yummy yummy

    I love all the photography, and great job with blogging every day!! I don’t know how you do it – I still haven’t updated my “promise you folks a new recipe in a few days” for almost a month!

  4. haha, yeah, honestly I don’t know how I manage all of my daily activities/time either – but regardless, baking/cooking always takes priority :0)

    I love the addition of pecans in the oatmeal cookies – have you ever tried them with carob chips? it’s quite scrumptious.

  5. deb

    Hey people–Sorry for all the downtime today! Basically, my host has moved smittenkitchen.com to a private/bigger server which as you can see, is barely functioning, so there are a lot of kinks to be worked out, much to our frustration.

    We are way overdue to move to a better/more reliable host as well as make a few other site upgrades, however, so if any of you know any top-notch WordPress gurus that want to work for a hopefully fair fee, tons of glory and possibly even baked goods, have them drop me an email. thesmitten [at] gmail [dot] com

    And now, back to our regularly scheduled cookies. Mm, chocolate chips….

  6. I’ve always put pecans in my chocolate-chip cookies because it’s how my dad likes them best. And if those bags aren’t the cutest things YET I just don’t know what is. Martha?

  7. Orange zest, YUM! I like a little something tart to offset all that sweetness, I usually use tart cherries.
    By the way, I have SUCH pixel envy, your photos are gorgeous.

  8. AddE

    tams – enjoy Chicago! Its my favorite :) eno is great but Bin 36 is my favorite Chitown wine spot. If you haven’t already, you must check it out. Sit at the bar and order a flight…or two!

  9. I have to tell you how much I love your site. I wish I had had this recipe for oatmeal cookies a few days ago when I was busy baking for a bake sale. Your writing is so entertaining and engrossing, and I especially enjoyed your recent post on food photography. The photos on smitten kitchen are always quite lovely and their quality speaks for itself. Bravo!

  10. If you’ll believe it, Deb, I just came online in desperate search for an oatmeal cookie recipe and thought to myself:

    “Where am I going to look? Deb’s never posted one, and she’s my go to for recipes that I trust to turn out”

    So I checked. And this post was here. I’m going to buy ingredients now ;)

  11. deb

    Hi Radish — When I do, I will tell the world. I have increased my bandwidth availability by 1000% today (yes, 10 times) and its still on the fritz. We will be changing hosts very shortly.

  12. You know that’s a mighty big promise to fulfill! If those cookies are as perfect as you say (and I love nearly ALL kinds of oatmeal cookies) then you may be proof that angels walk among us. If they don’t–well then, I probably did something wrong while making them and you might want to send me a bag immediately so that I don’t go on a rant. You wouldn’t want that, right?

  13. well, I use Yahoo for my host.. so far so good.. and my site is using a ton on storage.

    I made these cookies monday night.. o-m-g. Tasty.

    Glad youre back, i was worried. I was gonna offer to be your back up nablamopoyoyohoho for a day.

  14. joylynn

    These cookies look delicious, I love oatmeal/chocolate chip combinations! I was just planning to make your blondies & adding choc. chips, coconut & some oatmeal & cinnamon but I think I’ll make the cookies instead.

    Also, i’m coming to NYC next weekend to visit my sis and wondered if you had any restaurant recommendations for casual dining & yummy food. Ethnic suggestions (Thai/Indian etc.) are great too.
    Thanks!

  15. I recently received a plethora of wonderful things from Martha Stewart crafts, like those bags. Aren’t they the best? I, too, could spend many an hour looking at them! Oh, the cookies look good, too. ;-)

  16. Cheng

    Love your blog. I come on almost everyday to check out the lovely photos and your recipes. Hope you have time for a question. Your oatmeal cookie recipe calls for quick cooking oats. Is there a difference if I use rolled oats instead?

  17. deb

    Cheng, lj — I actually think both will work. The old-fashioned ones might have a slightly more noticeable texture, but in my mind at least, that’s not a bad thing. Good luck!

  18. M

    Deb, you could seriously start a business selling the desserts you make. Just look at those gift bags!! I know you have a pretty great day job, but it’s a nice back up option just in case. :)

  19. Maya

    I went to the Design*Sponge Biz-Lady meetup last night in Chicago and someone had brought along these cookies to share. Other than hearing Grace of Design*Sponge talk about PR, the highlight of the evening was definitely this cookie. What a fabulous recipe. Can’t wait to try it myself.

  20. Rebecca

    So, I don’t even particularly care for oatmeal cookies. In fact, I’d probably never pick up an oatmeal cookie given the choice between that and any other kind of cookie. That being said, I knew I had to try this recipe the moment I read it. I made them tonight, omitting the orange zest (because I forgot to buy an orange) and substituting walnuts for pecans (because the store was out of bulk pecans)…and they are loooovely!

    Also…I just got a KitchenAid mixer from, clearly, the best friends I’ll ever have, and this was my christening recipe…I’ve named him Duncan…and I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship (since I don’t think I can legally marry a mixer). Sorry, I know that was off-topic, but I also knew you’d appreciate my love of Duncan more than anybody else I know.

  21. Brooke

    This is my first comment to your blog after a few months of lurking and drooling over recipes. I made a batch of these cookies this evening, and they are quite possibly the most perfect oatmeal cookie! Grown-up taste, crispy outside, soft inside, and delicious. I used fresh Louisiana pecans and navel oranges for the zest, which made them even more perfect. My recipe made almost 4 dozen regular-sized cookies. Thank you!

  22. Did anyone else’s turn out rock hard? I can’t figure out what I did wrong. Maybe I made them too big, because I had to bake them for 15-20 minutes to get them brown. I’d appreciate any suggestions–the taste is great!

  23. amanda

    i saw a link to this recipe on flickr and just made it. these are amazing! i think i might love you (in a non-skeevy way, of course). just added you to my blogroll and as a flickr contact so i can keep up with what you’re whippin’ up. thank you :)

  24. Oh my!!! I just made these today. I knew they were going to be good when I couldn’t stop eating the batter. Now I can’t stop eating the cookies. I love the orange flavor with the chocolate. Great recipe!

  25. This recipe is amazing! I made some changes and was able to create a 7-grain cookie without losing any of the texture! I swapped nuts for coconut and sprinked them with glittery purple sugar for my prospective little nieces.
    You are a true wordsmith and recipe diva.. thank you so much for sharing these fantastic recipes!
    :)

  26. Amy

    Oh my God! These cookies are amazing! I thought I’d tried them all but your recipe really makes the kind of cookies I like! I used 1 and 3/4 cups of brown sugar (didn’t use any white) and I didn’t have any oranges so I used the zest of one clementine. Used steel cut oats since that’s what I had on hand -I also had no nuts so I omitted those as well. I baked a bit longer too – I guess mine were a bit big. AMAZING! I LOVE THEM! Thanks for what you do!

  27. Amy

    Jennifer…….when the cookies are done they won’t “look done” (advice from Alton Brown). They should just be brown around the edges I think. Mine were chewy and crispy at the same time I think due to so much brown sugar……YUM!

  28. Melody

    Wowza!
    I just recently found your blog and I am somewhat obsessed. You truly inspire… Honestly, when I read what you’re cooking, it makes me want to do it too!
    And my husband thanks you for these cookies. :) They might be the best I’ve had/made. Just to change it up a little, I omitted the orange peel (didn’t have em) & added dried cranberries & chocolate chips. Ridiculous.
    Thanks for sharing your culinary brain with the world!!

  29. deirdre

    I made these without the orange and without the nuts and let me tell you they really are the perfect oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. I refrigerated the dough over night (key!) and took them out of the oven looking “not done” and they just magically brown up just as you start to put them onto the cooling rack. Perfection.

  30. Jenny

    Thank you Deb! These cookies are delightful. I made them for hockey night at my house and they disappeared. Vanished into thin air. All that was left of them was a few crumbs and some friends with chocolate around their mouths.

  31. Phyllis

    This is my first time on your website, found it through a search for brownies. Been here a long time, copying a few recipes by hand because my printer’s on the fritz. Really enjoyed my first visit, the recipes sound great and I had a good time reading your comments. I’ll be back!! Thanks!!!

  32. Agent Orange

    I made this both with and without the orange zest. With the orange flavor, they’re an interesting twist on the classic chocolate chip cookie. I’ve been known to devour dozens (!) of chocolate chip cookies in one day, but I think after two of these cookies I would be sated. That may be a good thing.

    When I made these cookies without the zest, I found that the cinnamon and clove were getting in the way of my enjoying the chocolate and nuts. I quite liked the texture, though. I baked for about 14 minutes, and the cookies have a nice balance of slightly crisp exterior and a soft, almost cakey interior. Not too cakey, mind you. I quite liked the generous amount of pecans used here, and the more sparing use of oatmeal (my standby choc-chip oatmeal cookie uses ~ 2:1 ratio oatmeal to flour). I will make these again without the zest and without the spices.

  33. Claire Traas

    I tried out this recipe today and substituted dried cranberries for the chocolate chips–delicious and the cranberries go really nicely with the flavor of the orange zest and the pecans. They were a hit with my husband, too!

  34. Deb I LOVE oatmeal cookies. However as tasty as these cookies are… and even though there is oatmeal in them… they are not oatmeal cookies. They’re missing the texture of the kind of oatmeal cookie that I truly enjoy. They are most certainly DELICIOUS with an excellent taste and texture. Thanks for continuing to post the most amazing recipes.

  35. deb

    I am not sure that I’d say that they’re “not” oatmeal cookies. In fact, I think I said that “oatmeal cookies range so widely from the thin and lacy to the thick and cakey and it seems impossible to make one that meets every single person’s expectations.”

    That said, I am due to put up a softer, chewier one. Look out for that in the next month.

  36. deb

    You can freeze the dough. I always prefer to freeze the dough scooped and unbaked (can flash-freeze them on a tray, so they won’t stick together in a freezer bag) rather than baked cookies. That way, they always taste fresh.

  37. Hi Deb, Just baked these again swapping the amount of flour and oats. 1 1/2 cups oats and 1 cup flour. This changes the texture more towards what I think of as an oatmeal cookie while maintaining the balance of tastes and textures that make this such an outstanding recipe.

  38. joanna

    i just made these and they came out totally different. i think the reason is that i don’t have an electric beater so was unable to properly cream/fluff the butter. mine are super flat and chewy with crisp edges. still good though! i think they are a little bit too sweet, though, and would reduce the brown sugar content if i made them again. nevertheless, very yummy!

  39. I’ve made these twice now, but with dried cranberries instead of pecans. They are, to my mind, the most perfect oatmeal cookie, in both texture and taste. I’ve handed out the recipe to just about everyone who ate them. Yum!

  40. Deb, I made these cookies for the third time tonight and they are just SO good. I experimented and added about 3 planes of zest – truly yummy. Thanks for pointing us to this recipe!

  41. Meredith

    these were pretty fantastic cookies,they would be a tasty fall cookie,with the orange zest and cloves and nutmeg,…really good cookie and blog! Thank You!

  42. wjb

    Oh my. These are the best oatmeal cookies I’ve ever made. I did use less orange zest, and I omitted the cloves (just don’t like ’em). The texture is sheer perfection. Thanks, Deb!

  43. Risch

    Just had to say that these have become my *standard* chocolate chip cookie. I omit the orange zest, cinnamon, and cloves. But the ratio of fat, sugar, flour and nuts is fantastic. I do add a dusting of fresh nutmeg, although I don’t know if it’s enough to make a difference. I’ve got a batch in the oven right now!

  44. marion

    these were good but i think the chocolate overpowered the oatmeal and spices. maybe i did my metric conversion wrong? i put in just over 300g of chocolate. i might try them again without the chocolate with just a few raisins instead

  45. Hi there,
    I just started reading and I am hooked. I made these cookies last night to take on cabin trip. They turned out wonderfully. I used dark chocolate chips and omitted the zest. They were a dream!

  46. Hing Ting

    I made these without the orange zest (forgot to buy oranges) and they were still delicious. Everyone at the office liked them and my husband asked me to bake a separate batch for himself. I found your site by searching for a bread salad recipe (with roasted chicken ala Zuni Cafe) which was also fantastic. I am a loyal reader.

  47. Nora

    These were incredible. I VEGANIZED them with vegan buttery sticks, flax egg replacer and vegan semi sweet chips (which I think they are anyway). No one was the wiser! Absolutely love your site!!!!!!!

  48. allie

    wow looks delicious. going to bake these today to give to a friend on wed. i was wondering if i should just freeze the dough and bake on tuesday evening to make them more fresh? sorry i’m kind of new to cookie baking.. :(

  49. Kelly

    Hands down, the most delicious cookies I have ever made! Never will I go back to Toll House. I personally thought the orange zest was crucial to making these what they are…heavenly. It’s like a nutty Jaffa-Cake oaty experience. It was hard to not eat all the batter before baking these cookies. Thank you for this incredible web site! It’s very user friendly for a new baker.

  50. I just made these and they are the most amazingly delicious cookies I have ever baked! I bake often – I bake cookies often. These are by far the most perfectly flavored cookie I have ever experienced!

    Thanks for such a great blog! I consult it regularly for my baking and cooking needs!

  51. gigi

    These cookies are delicious! I’ve substituted the chocolate chips with 1 cup of dried cranberries. I think next time I’ll add another 1/2 cup of oats also. But it was definitely scrumptious as-is!

    I’ve been a fan of your blog for quite some time now, but this is the first time i’ve ever posted a comment. I LOVE to cook, but the most annoying thing is following a recipe to have your expectations fall flat. The reason why I absolutely LOVE your site is because you actually made these dishes and take away the guesswork for readers of your blog. I don’t have to wonder if it’s going to be good. i KNOW its going to good. I love this site, because i TRUST your judgment.

    You’re site is the first one I search when I’m in the mood for cooking something specific. If by chance it’s not on here, THEN i do a google search and go through the pain staking task of determining which recipe has potential. You keep the cook in all of us motivated! Cheers!

  52. Makirio

    After a failed attempt at making one of making the thick, oatmeal cookies, I was a bit wary of trying this. This recipe is amazing! I replaced white chocolate chips with regular and added cranberrys and omitted the nuts (allergic). The final touch was using sea salt. Amazing! I felt like I did something right for someone who’s not much of a baker. Thank you!!

  53. Kristen

    Smelled and tasted delicious!
    I halved the butter and sugar in this recipe (I live in Germany, and I think the butter is different here or something, anyway, it works better with less butter and it is plenty sweet with half the sugar.) I also only put in 1 cup of chopped pecans, because 2 cups seemed like a ton to me (and I am a newbie with nuts in my cookies.) And I threw in about 2 handfuls of raisins to the mix. Tasty outcome! Thanks for the recipe. :)

  54. rose

    yum – just yum. i didn’t use the orange zest…didn’t have an orange on hand and i decided to make these on a whim. but delish! thanks deb!!

  55. eenie

    Thanks for the recipe… I spent a while looking around for a good oatmeal-chocolate chip recipe and this is great. I add some chopped dried apricots to the mix, which I highly recommend if you’re an apricot lover.

  56. Hayley

    Wow, these oatmeal cookies are stunning! I had been searching for a few days for a solid oatmeal cookie, and I knew I had found it when I had to wipe the drool off the side of my chin (j/k!). Anyhow, I just made these this morning and had the following substitutions: I added a little less sugar, a little less chocolate chips and only 1 cup pecans & walnuts due to underestimating what I had on hand. Next time I will add a little more oatmeal, and use the 2 cups nuts. Delicious!

  57. a

    hi Deb :) These cookies are great. I’ve made them 4 times now since I first found this recipe on your site. i’ve baked them with and without the orange zest, both very tasty but i think the zest tastes AWESOME in these cookies!
    I wanted to ask you if you knew anything about shipping cookies…internationally. i’ve never shipped cookies before and i have no idea how to package or what the best method is so that they will stay fresh. If you have any advice, i would love to hear it! thank you!

  58. Laura Lee

    I made these today with my kids…we all LOVED them. My four year old even liked the nuts and orange zest in the cookies.

  59. I’m Nate’s Mom

    I have made this recipe twice in the last week, and it is fantastic. I left out the cloves and I toasted and ground the pecans (to fool the family). I used about 1 tsp of the orange zest, which was perfect — just a hint of flavor w/o being overpowering. My family loved them, and the kids usually won’t eat oatmeal cookies. No one suspected the nuts, though you can taste them.

  60. Sanna

    Made the cookies this afternoon. Didn’t have pecan nut and semi sweet chco chips so just used 5 oz unsweetened Hersheys baking chocolate chopped up and some raisins. Also used just 1.5 cup of sugar total. Still came out delicious. Best aotmeal cookies I ever made and so easy. Thank you!

  61. This is the second time ive made these cookies and its now my ‘go-to’ recipe! We were out of pecans so i broke up half a cup of almonds and used that instead. Ive also added raisins to the last batch which, when baked, get extra sweet and chewy.

  62. meagan

    I just made these and they look nothing like yours. I followed everything exactly (except using 1/2 the chocolate chips) and they spread like crazy. I use an oven thermometer too. The edges were very golden and the centers very raw. I put the rest of the shaped dough in the freezer for an hour which helped a bit but still were not as thick looking as yours. They taste wonderful and even when cooled are nicely chewy with crisp edges. I think they just have too much butter or not even oats/flour. They were quite greasy on the bottoms and since freezing didn’t help the spreading I think next time I would add 1/2 cup more oats.

  63. Maria

    I woke up this morning and it was dreary and raining outside, more fit for fall than for almost May. I needed to make cookies for a friend and figured I could rely on your trusy site, and it worked out great! I had bittersweet chocolate, and I added a little orange extract and a little orange zest. They came out flat and chewy, with crispy edges. I think it might be my fault, I think my baking soda is a little old- but these cookies taste AMAZING. I had walnuts instead of pecans, and I have to say… it makes this dull morning pop!

  64. Sophia

    Just made this to distract myself from finals. I used dark brown sugar (which made them a little more carmelly – delicious!) and left out the orange zest. A really pleasant surprise! Thanks, Deb!!

  65. Lynnie

    I just made these tonight, exactly as the recipe was written, and they were delicious! I ate 5 of them, if that is any indication of their deliciousness! The combination of spice and chocolate is perfect!! Thanks for the recipe.

  66. Kori

    Meagan, I had the same result. They still tasted amazing, but were very brittle and spread like crazy. I think I’ll add more oats next time as well.

  67. Marguerite

    I made these last night with a few modifications: I omitted the orange rind and the spices, I replaced 1/2 cup of the flour with whole wheat flour, I used chocolate chunks instead of chips, and I used 1 cup of pecans and 1 cup of dried cherries. They are beautiful and delicate and delicious!

  68. The best chocolate chip cookies! The spices and zest are key, and really make all the difference. I omitted the nuts and was worried they wouldn’t have enough body to hold together, but with just an extra half cup of oats they were perfect.

  69. Moriah

    tried these with white chocolate chips and raisins instead of pecans and they were fantastic! the dough is amazing.

  70. pauhana

    I’m not usually a fan of orange zest, but I do like the combination of orange and dark chocolate, so I used just a pinch or so and it was lovely. That mild hint of orange somewhere in all that nutty, crispy cookie was just right. Thanks!

  71. YUM! These cookies are fantastic!! I didn’t have any pecans so I had to go with walnuts, but they still taste delicious! I used just a touch of orange zest and it kept it from being too overwhelming and the cookies seem to be a hit! I’m loving all the recipes that I get from your site and Friday we’re having the mango slaw you added last week! Thank you so much for all your wonderful recipes!

  72. Kristen

    I have mixed feelings about these cookies. First of all, I didn’t want to deal with digging out some pecans, toasting, and chopping them (lazy much?), so I substituted with what was right at the front of my pantry: craisins. I’m not crazy for craisins, but with chocolate, I’ll eat them, so I went for it. I used 2 cups of chocolate chips (1 semi, 1 bitter) and 1 cup of craisins. I followed the rest of the recipe exactly–except I ommitted the orange zest. I considered replacing it with lemon zest, but in the end, I didn’t go for it. Anyway, the dough’s texture seemed a little off (a little too wet, but I figured that’s what two eggs do for you), and overall, there seemed to be very little to hold together the chips and craisins, but despite my concerns, I popped the first dozen into my oven. I can only describe the end result as devastatingly ugly, but very tasty. Deb’s pictures show pleasantly lumpy cookies, but mine were less pleasant and more aggressively malformed: puddles of baked oatmeal with chunks of chocolate lumped across the top. I’m going to attempt these again in the fall, when the temperature is less steaming hot and I can give it a try with nuts. That time, I’ll also use only 1 cup of chips and 1 cup of nuts, and maybe 1/2 a cup more oats, as others have suggested.

  73. Mary

    Delicious cookie, but mine were flat as can be. Any thoughts as to why? I only baked one batch at a time. Rotated half way through. But the goodies were lumped together near the center and the rest of the batter spread a bit thin, and much more than I expected. But, as I said, taste = fabulous. Love the touch of clove and nutmeg.

  74. Jennie

    I was craving an oatmeal, chocolate and pecan cookie. I looked on Epicurious and this was the recipe I thought I would try, but first I wanted to see if you had a recipe since I’ve never made anything of yours that I haven’t liked. And here was the same recipe so I took this as a sign. They were fabulous! My oven runs cooler so the first batch I baked them at 365 for close to 20 mins, then the second and third batches I bumped the temp up to 375 and they were baked in about 12 mins. They turned out just like your pictures. I did have to make one alteration and that was that I didn’t have enough pecans on hand so I used half toasted cashews. Also love that the recipe actually makes closer to 4 dozen. I’d like to try these at some point without the chocolate and just a mix of nuts, like pecans, hazelnuts, walnuts, and cashews.

  75. annelise

    These cookies were great! I didn’t use the orange zest. The cinnamon was a nice subtle flavor…it was noticed by a few people but not too strong at all, it was a nice subtle addition. Just a heads up–the cookies made about 4 dozen medium sized (2 inch or so) cookies. I made them as instructed, so the recipe just makes a lot more than it says.

  76. DanielleS

    This is THE oatmeal chcolate-chip recipe I’ve been looking for! I loved the balance of the spices, the meatiness of the pecans and the orange zest was such a pleasant surprise! Thanks so much, Deb and I cannot wait to pass this recipe along to friends and family!

  77. I was craving an oatmeal cookie packed with lots of extra ingredients, and this one was a major success. These were some of the most beautiful cookies I’ve ever made. I did decrease the brown sugar a bit, used slivered almonds because that’s what I had on hand, dried cranberries, and dark chocolate chips. Just packed full of goodness. They shipped to east coast perfectly. Thank you for sharing!

  78. Laura

    My mother came home with a GIANT Costco sized bag of chocolate chips which I’m expected to turn into cookies. These were a great choice. I didn’t have any issues with the batter being wet, in fact I was worried it was a little too firm. They are chunky, and delicious. I did reduce the amount of orange zest to about 1/8th of a tsp, and even that is super strong. I would also reduce the amount of sugar if I made them again. I ended up with 3 dozen cookies, so half are frozen, hopefully they come out of the freezer okay.
    Thanks for another great recipe!

  79. puretexantravis

    Great recipe. I included the orange zest, but for a traditionalist it was a bit off putting. A very clever take on an old classic.

  80. Maggie

    I just made these last night–with a few changes–and they were excellent!
    1. I used about three “pinches” of orange zest, and it was the perfect amount.
    2. I only had a cup of pecans, so I used a cup of shredded coconut to make up for it: YUM.
    3. I followed the suggestion of others and used 1 c. of flour, and 1 1/2 c. oats, and the consistency was great.

    Thanks for this AMAZING recipe! My batch, too, made about 4 dozen, so I flash froze 2 dozen so we can enjoy them through the holidays!

  81. Di

    just made these last night and they were awesome!!

    they remind me of Orange Milanos (which i love). I used tangerine zest so it tastes extra orangey!!

  82. Mmm, delicious. I think for the next panful I will add a little more orange (clementine, actually) zest and maybe a few more chips — I went light on those. Used a little less sugar than called for and a small proportion of whole wheat, just to enrich the taste (but I’m not sure you can taste it at all).

  83. kara

    used walnuts instead of pecans…added craisins….scaled back on the nuts, chocolate, and zest…used 1 cup flour and 1.5 cups oats: all of which made 4 dozen of some of the best oatmeal cookies i’ve ever eaten! thanks, again, for adding another favorite recipe to my collection!

  84. Debra

    I followed the recipe exactly, except I used old fashioned rather than quick oats. These cookies are fantastic! I made a different oatmeal/choco cookies a few days ago and find this one superior. I liked the teaspoon of orange zest. With a 6 day old balanced in the crock of my arm while baking, this recipe hit my hormone enraged craving.

  85. The first thing someone said to me was, “there’s something in there… I can’t put my finger on it, but I can tell you that I like it!”. After I told her about the orange zest, she was sure that what was so great about them.

    Awesome cookies!

  86. Amy

    These are insanely delicious! I made them without the orange zest since I was making them for my kids, too — but I’d like to try them with the orange sometime. I used mini chocolate chips since that’s what we had on hand, and they melted into one gooey, yummy chocolate core. I can’t stop eating these.

  87. Patti

    I’ve been making these for the past three years. Everyone loves them. I think it’s the combination of flavors. They are not your typical oatmeal cookie. The only changes I made was, I used old-fashioned oats and added 1/2 c. Mariana brand dried cherries. Thanks for sharing this wonderful cookie recipe.

  88. Robin

    I just made these tonight – delicious!! I only put in a scrape or two of the zest but you can definitely taste the essence. A new favorite!

  89. susandox

    I’m not quite sure where I went wrong, but for me they turned out v e r y thin and not very appetizing (although the toddler who made them with me loved them regardless). Perhaps I accidentally left out some flour, because when I mixed some more in they turn out more thick and chocolate chip cookie-like.

  90. Keren

    Delicious! I’m so glad I had a beautiful orange at home too, as I’d usually skip the zest part which – no more – was a great addition!
    Deb, I discovered your blog just a few months ago and everything I’ve ever tried from it has been delicious. That sounds like one of those things people just say… but I really mean it, it’s just wonderful.

  91. Hi Deb,

    I loved this recipe! Made some and froze half the cookie dough balls. My husband was impressed that he could have a homemade cookie in 10 minutes whenever he feels like it.

    I would like to use this recipe to make white chocolate macadamia oatmeal cookies. Do you think I can substitue one for one portion of chocolate and pecans? Or should I use your salted white chocolate oatmeal cookie recipe instead?

    Thanks!!!
    -Charlotte

  92. Mama Megan

    OMG……….soooo good when you swap out the chocolate chips for white chocolate..no orange zest in mine and they came out really yummy….oh I love LOVE your website use it weekly :)

  93. Mama Megan

    I just have to say I love LOVE your webite!!! Oh and these taste even better when you swap out the chocolate chips for white chocolate….yummy!

  94. Alice

    i just got these out the oven and perhaps ate a whole tray of them!! my cookies were flat but i think that must be my destiny as i have never, ever made a batch of cookies which didn’t turn out flat!! the orange makes them amazing!

  95. Jenn

    I have a batch in progress right now and they are wonderful! I used Cointreau instead of orange zest, as I seem to be out of vanilla (how is this possible?). Great recipe, thanks!

  96. Iris

    Just made these and they’re amazing! I substituted half a cup of the flour for wholewheat and used chocolate chips and dried cranberries because I didn’t have pecans. Then ate a bowlful of batter. Yum.

  97. Samantha

    So I made these tonight and they were delicious. However, we found them a bit sweet and lost the flavor of the pecans. If (who am I kidding… when) I make them again, I think I would use a little less sugar; perhaps 3/4 c brown and 1/2 c white.

  98. symphonic chef

    Deb, I love these cookies, I make them regularly and people love me for it. One question… do you have tips for preventing cookies from spreading? I always chill my cookie dough thoroughly but I don’t use parchment paper. does that make a difference? Thanks!

  99. Charity

    Unfortunately, these cookies were kind of a bust for me. They taste great, but have the texture and constinency of a lacey cookie. Which isn’t what I was expecting. Kind of hard to eat right out of the oven so I had to let them cool on racks a long time.

    I made them both right after making the recipe and after having the dough frozen for a few days. Used parchment and room temp (hadn’t been in the oven yet) pans. Both spread a lot and were again like lace cookies. Tasted great though but did not turn out like the pictures above. But again they were yummy to eat.

  100. Emily B

    This recipe nailed the texture I was looking for: crispy on the edges, chewy and soft in the middle. The spice blend was perfect too, especially for the Fall. I agree with one of the other users that the chocolate overpowered the rest of the flavors (and this is coming from a chocolate lover) so next time I’ll use a little less. Otherwise, I was very pleased. Thank you for this wonderful recipe!

  101. Eliza

    I hesitated to comment, since I’m one of “those” people who alters a recipe and then isnt happy, but… these were really great, but they spread.. a lot! I used a 1/4 cup of wheat germ and some whole wheat flour, but I suspect the spreading was a result of a very helpful 4 year and too much sugar. The caramelization effect is yummy though! And I cant wait to make them again. Oh, we skipped the spices too to get a simple cookie.

  102. Rosie

    This was only my third or fourth time ever making cookies. As I was going I felt like I had probably messed something up lol However, thankfully, they turned out great! Thank you for such an easy to follow and delicious recipe. They were exactly what I was looking for and I hope to make many more to give my friends and family.

  103. we came into a pile of pecans recently so i finally got around to making these. due to pantry shortage, i used dark brown sugar and the dough looked just a bit too wet, so i added 1/4 of ground pecan meal. the result? awesome pecan flavor. the. best. cookies. ever.

  104. Patty

    these came out beautifully! I don’t bake a lot but have a “cookie” challenge tomorrow with colleagues and picked this recipe. I chopped the pecans in the processor making a mix of finely chopped and larger, and used Ghiradelli 60% chips. They didn’t spread as much as others claimed. Also used Penzey’s Vietnamese cinnamon and grated orange peel, fresh nutmeg and the flavors are subtle and used Wessex Scottish Oats. Giving the cookie 12 mins. they came out with a crispy crunch light, 10 mins. were more chewy and chunkier looking.
    Two thumbs up and thank you! Will get back on the cookie challenge results.

  105. Amy

    I made these last night for a party I went to this evening and they were AMAZING. They were everything I love in a cookie. The zest was such a nice twist–I only had nectarines on hand and they did just fine. They are definitely added to my go-to cookie list.

  106. Kelly

    I made these today with cranberries instead of the nuts and some chopped up left over hershey kisses from halloween :] They were FANTASTIC! I made your snickerdoodles yesterday (I know two days in a row of cookies! I’m out of control) and was told by a couple people it was the best they had ever had. You’re the best thanks for the food reading therapy!

  107. Carrie

    Super yummy! Didn’t add the zest and clove, and fell short of the pecans. Still had some amazing cookies. Picture perfect and this was the first recipe tested from Simtten Kitchen. Looking forward to trying more of your goodies!

  108. Lynn

    I just made these tonight and they are awesome! Only added 1 tsp. of orange zest (was just enough!), only one cup of pecans, and 8oz. of mini chocolate chips (all I had). Still, turned out great! My daughter says she likes the mini chips better. Will give these as gifts – so gourmet! :-) Thanks for sharing!

  109. Patrick

    I nust love the oatmeal.chc chip cookies awsome …… I do all the baking in the house…the chewy cookies are great. Made them all for football games

  110. Marie

    I am baking these right now! I did not have any pecans on hand, so I left them out, and my first batch of cookies spread like crazy. I chilled the dough and added about a quarter cup of flour, and the second batch came out perfect. Thanks for another great recipe!

  111. Cara

    I admit that I did add a little coconut to these. They were some of the best cookies I’ve ever eaten. My husband and I just ate 5 each in about 3 minutes…

  112. Jennifer

    I skipped the orange zest and the nuts, used 1/2 c of whole wheat flour and used steel cut and rolled oats added some cardamom and in what I am self-labeling total awesomeness, added cocoa nibs. I made them for an upcoming camping trip, and the cookies generally get used for s’mores.

  113. Janet

    These are just fantastic cookies. I’ve made them twice now. The second time I learned something, which is that if you add the flour and spices and the batter looks really dry, maybe you left out the eggs. And also if you add the eggs in after the flour and other dry ingredients, the cookies still turn out awesome.

  114. Moira

    I’ve made these cookies about 50 times now. They’re incredible and a family favorite. Don’t forget the zest — it makes all the difference.

    Will you be coming to Rutger’s Prep on your book tour? My husband is Dick O’Connell’s son.

  115. Eliza

    Interesting… the last few times I made these they spread a lot. They didnt this time. Again, I had a few changes with the sub of 1/2c whole wheat flour, homemade brown sugar, and my add-ins were 2 cups of chopped up nut pomegranate pistachio mix with black pepper. They’re a really great base to build on. We love them!

  116. Nancy

    OMG so delicious!! We all loved them…I left out the cloves and zest and they were perfect..this is my new go-to recipe..thank you:)

  117. Lily

    Just made these, they were fantastic and lauded by all! Great recipe – and I have tried many on the www – this is by far the best. Thank you!!

  118. Lia

    I was underwhelmed by the cookies as drop cookies, but as bar cookies they were amazing! They froze perfectly and were delicious either cold from the freezer or microwaved for about a minute.

  119. Jon

    These cookies are fantastico! I wish there was a rating system on this site because I’d give the max allowed. I halved the orange zest but followed everything else verbatim. Directions flavors and consistency were spot on. Orange still came through even at half the amount.

  120. emily chandler

    These are my favorite oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. Thank you for the post! I don’t know if I’ll get tired of the distinctive taste the unusual (to me) spices provide, but for my first try I really love it.

  121. Ana jayy

    Awesome recipe !! I’m crazy abou chocolate chip oatmeal cookies and have a big taste for nuts these are the perfect cookies!!! I used half of the orange zest and it was still a bit orangey so I’m making them again as I type with a but less and hopefully it’ll be the perfect amount !
    Thank you so much for this perfect cookie recipe !!!

  122. Fernanda

    Browsing through your cookies recipes I found this one. I didn’t have pecan nuts in the pantry but had pistachios. Why not? :) I substituted the spices for cardamom only (as I wasn’t sure about combining your recipe’s spices with pistachios) and it was great!

    The consistency of the cookies is really nice and everyone who eats them loves them. Thank you for all your wonderful recipes!

  123. Jenny

    Hey Deb, sadly even after chilling both baking sheet and cookie dough — and having used whole wheat flour for what I thought would be added sturdiness — these babies spread out so badly both in tablespoon and teaspoon size that each tray became accidental cookie pie…totally raw in the center :(. I appreciate the tips above re: adding more flour and/or oats, but could you please convert this one to metric so I can at least be clear on what weight of flour to add?? Seems like this is a pretty popular cookie that people keep coming back to since original publication so I’m sure others would appreciate the weights too :) Thanks!!!

  124. deb

    Hi Jenny — Sometimes, it takes me a while to figure out that a comment is a frequent happening. For example, I just did a word-search for “spread” in these comments and it turns out, it’s totally not just you. I haven’t made these in years, when I did, I didn’t have huge spreading problems, but clearly others are. You can dial back the butter a touch, or, if you’d like, you could try my go-to oatmeal cookies.

    https://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2009/02/thick-chewy-oatmeal-raisin-cookies/

    They have raisins and sometimes chocolate chunks in them, but the same flavorings here could be used instead. Hope that helps. Sorry I just put two and two together about the spreading.

  125. Eliza

    I made them again but this time with crushed candy canes, choc chips, and little mint extract. I chilled them this time. LOVE this recipe!

  126. Elaine

    Hi, that is so weird: I made them with the 8 tablespoons of butter and my mixture was so crumbly! I had to ball them up really good, but I had pecans and chocolate chips falling off every which way. I made about 60 small cookies. Maybe I didn’t fluff it enough?

  127. Jean

    I made these for a Mother’s Day care package last year and the moms loved them. I didn’t have a problem with them spreading but I was a bit OCD with rolling them into tight balls and flash freezing them right before putting them into the oven. I might try to roll them with less force next time bc I thought the texture was a tad too dense for my liking.

  128. Great cookies even without the cloves, nutmeg, nuts (allergic) and the zest. (Also not a citrus fan.) Last but not least I also used dark chocolate chips! They came out perfect and I will definitely be saving this one in my recipe book. Thank you!!!!

  129. Mary bowman

    I especially appreciate this recipe because it calls for one cube of butter instead of two! Delicious and semi-sensible? I adore butter, but……..it can lead to “Butter Butt.”. Love this site!

  130. Akitar

    I’ve made these cookies several times in the past couple months and they come out great! They taste amazing and freeze beautifully.

  131. Nicole

    Fantastic! Love your website and recipes. I think the ground cloves taste wow in this recipe..I added a little extra. I used oat flour (just grinding up rolled oats in magic bullet…1 cup oat flour substitutes for 1 cup plain flour) and that worked well.

  132. Ellen Lerner

    I had high hopes for this cookie! Admittedly, I am not a real fan of the basic chocolate chip cookie, which I find excessively rich, sweet and bland. I don’t like pecans so substituted walnuts. Pecans probably would have been better. The spices are undetectable, and the full amount of orange zest gives just a hint of orange flavor. I reduced the sugar to 1/2 C white and 3/4 C brown, and the cookies are excessively sweet. This is just not the cookie for me — no need to suggest changes!

  133. Eliza

    We LOVE this cookie. Today’s rendition is with 1 cup of choc chips plus about 2 cups of crunched up Gravel Crunch (Rex’s Outrageoous Road Crew Crunch, look it up, SOO good!). Such a great cookie!

  134. Alice

    I have made this 3 times, and my husband couldn’t get enough of it. I did not use ground cloves or the orange zest, but at one time I added lemon zest and used white chocolate chips instead; the lemon and white chocolate taste so good togetheter. I love this recipe, thank you!

  135. BlizzardGirl

    A comment to everyone who omitted the orange zest. I recommend you try the recipe again and use the orange zest! It makes the cookies so unique and tasty. Adventurous oatmeal cookies, yum!

  136. I have been making the Rx for oatmeal cookie found on the box of Quaker Oats for over 30 years and insted of rasins I use Chocolate Chips and Walnuts. Its much easier then this Rx and a whole lot better…

  137. Brittani

    Been using this recipe for YEARS!! My mom always used to buy the premade mix for choc chip pecan cookies but I turned her onto these yearsssss ago. They’re our family favorite! Although we do omit the orange, my bf doesn’t care for the taste. Thank you! This is my favorite food blog (along with userealbutter :)) and I can’t thank you enough for the amazing recipes you post. I’ve made so many things!

  138. Maro

    made these last night and the only thing i would do differently is take them out of the oven when they still look a bit under-baked. how do i always forget that?

    for those who had spreading issues: i stuck my batter in the fridge for less than an hour and had no spreading issue whatsoever. the batter was nice and dry.

  139. This is a very good recipe. It brings the best of both worlds together: chocolate and oatmeal. I first made these with the spices but no orange zest. My family felt the chocolate chips were overwhelmed by the spices.

    Next I made them with no spices but I reversed the amounts for the flour and oatmeal. I also reduced the sugar by half. The were as sweet as they needed to be and they disappeared In what seemed seconds.

  140. Eliza

    I made it with a bunch of different add-ins and made the cookies large for a bake sale. It made about 27 large cookies. Delicious!

  141. Lorelei

    Amazing! Perfect combination of spices and orange and chocolate. Liiiitle bit crispy, so I think next time I would cut the cooking time by a couple minutes. By the way, your recipes are always fantastic!!

  142. Claire

    These are perfect! Oh my gosh! The orange takes it to another level. I used one cup raisins and one cup cinnamon chips instead of the chocolate. I’ve never made a better cookie. Thank you!

  143. Jo

    I made a half batch of these today, with some modifications based on what I read in the comments above.

    In the list below, the full recipe amount is listed first, with the half batch (or, what I actually put in the batter) in parens.
    – 1.5 C sugar total, and I used coconut sugar (3/4 C)
    – 1 C flour (1/2 C)
    – 1.5 C oats (1/2 C)
    – 1 C pecans (1/2 C)
    I used bittersweet chips, and I omitted the orange zest & cloves.

    They were delicious, though they did still spread quite a bit. I definitely had to let them cool on a rack before picking them up (thank goodness for parchment paper).

  144. Micael

    I was so desperate to make these cookies during my daughters nap time that I had to make some modifications and they came out spread flat. Wondered if you could give me a tip. I didn’t put pecans in, whipped the bitter cold until soft, and use half whole wheat flour/half all-purpose flour. If it was the four, what could I have done to fix it? They were delicious, even though the texture was off!

  145. Jenny

    Hi Deb! I was commenter 185 on this and – somehow – just saw your response to my question from 2013! I’m Still an avid fan and reader :) Belated thanks for the tip to look at your other oatmeal cookie recipe to adapt with the flavors here, but I’m still holding out hope you’ll have an urge to update this to metric…the cookie of my dreams is oatmeal pecan chocolate chip, and you are my most trusted recipe source! Also thanks for your recent Instagram tips on baby food, as I am due in May!

  146. Bonita

    Hei Deb!
    I made these yesterday, they’re great! I followed the recipe step by step, and I am however wondering something: I was expecting them to taste a bit more like oats but they taste so much like butter that it almost obscures the other flavours! (orange, spices, even nuts…). Could it be because I used salted butter?

    Thanks!

  147. Julia L.

    I made these last night with dark brown, coarse sugar instead of light, almonds instead of pecans, and chopped up dark chocolate instead of chocolate chips. They turned out AMAZING! The course dark brown sugar made the cookies even chewier but with a tiny sugary crunch in every bite. The consistency is perfect as well. I used standard old-fashioned oats and it came out just fine. Thanks Deb for another amazing recipe!

  148. Bess Seewald

    Just made these with walnuts and dark brown sugar instead of light. Also used about 3/4 of the bag of chocolate chips. Fantastic.