Laura Bush's Cowboy Cookies

Added on by Caroline Zhang.

Until about a week ago, I had no idea what cowboy cookies were. I was looking for a recipe that would make big, soft cookies (And I take back what I said here about not liking to bake cookies. Ever since I started baking at college, I'm totally into recipes that make big batches that can be frozen and saved for later.) I came across Bakerella's cowgirl cookies in jars, and when I Googled cowboy cookies, one of the first things that come up is Laura Bush's version. If I'm going to  bake cookies, why not go all the way and use the former first lady's recipe?

I'm not Republican (far from it), but I have to say, these cookies are kind of amazing. These are what I imagine when I think of fresh from the oven bakery cookies; they're huge (5 inches in diameter), slightly crisp around the edge, soft and chewy in the middle, with crunchy pecans and pools of melted chocolate scattered throughout. The yield is also ridiculous: 36 enormous cookies, are 72 smaller ones. And as I posted on the Facebook page yesterday, these things have 3 sticks of butter in them, so you know they must be good.

Cream your butter and sugar. It's much easier to do with a mixer, but you can do it by hand...your wrist might get kind of sore, but think of it as burning calories in preparation for eating these cookies. Beat in your eggs, one at a time, and then the vanilla. In another bowl, mix together the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon. Mix in the dry ingredients.

Mix in the chocolate, coconut, oats, and pecans. Freak out because your biggest mixing bowl is not big enough and the dough is about to spill over.

Drop 1/4-cupfuls of dough on a greased baking sheet, and bake at 350 Fahrenheit for about 16-18 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through.

Now, use all your self control to let the cookies cool a little bit. I wouldn't want you to get all impatient and bite into one straight from the oven and burn your tongue. Not that I've ever been there or anything.

Gorgeous. I want to give this cookie a hug. Is that weird?

I never realized how lucky George Bush was. But that's okay, because now you too can make these cookies!

Enjoy, all!


Cowboy Cookies

Click here for the printer-friendly recipe.
Lightly adapted from Laura Bush’s recipe for cowboy cookies
Yields 36 five-inch cookies, or 72 small cookies

1 ½ cups butter, softened
1 ½ cups brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
3 eggs, at room temperature
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups rolled or quick oats
3 cups chocolate chips
2 cups pecans, chopped
2 cups sweetened flaked coconut


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Cream together the butter and sugars. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Beat in the vanilla.

Whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon. Mix the dry ingredients into the butter mixture.

Mix in the oats, chocolate chips, pecans, and coconut.

For large cookies drop ¼-cupfuls of dough onto a baking sheet. Use about 2 tablespoons for small cookies.

Bake large cookies 16-18 minutes, small cookies 12-15 minutes or until they turn a little brown around the edges, rotating the pan halfway through. Let cool and enjoy!