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No-Bake Cookies Recipe-A Journey Into Madness

Updated on October 26, 2014
How the easiest cookie recipe can drive someone insane for the holidays.
How the easiest cookie recipe can drive someone insane for the holidays. | Source

Christmas Tradition

Hello everyone! This year I have decided to try a new tradition for the Christmas holidays! Even though I have never enjoyed making desserts, I have decided to try 11 days of cookie making for the season.

Baking cookies at Christmas is the traditional thing to do, and I know for a fact that the world's best moms do this every year. Since I am a mommy, I have decided to treat my daughter to home made cookies. This year, we are going to make my childhood favorites--No Bake Cookies! What a treat for D.!

If we make a batch of cookies every night for the eleven nights leading up to Christmas, we will have plenty for Santa to take home with him. The surplus will be made into beautiful gift baskets for all of our friends and loved ones. I thought I would journal this heartwarming experience for all to enjoy. I can't wait to get started!

Just look at all those different colors and textures. A true work of art.
Just look at all those different colors and textures. A true work of art. | Source

Day 1

Today we went to the store and bought ingredients for our cookie experiment. I was slightly nervous. I have never successfully made cookies. But I found some excellent recipes online, and they all look easy. Everyone who tried them seem pleased.

I was a little disappointed at my results. The cookies turned out much too soft. I thought I had followed the recipe exactly. I must have under-cooked them. They tasted fine, but needed to be eaten with a straw. That's okay. D. and I had a lot of fun wearing our matching aprons and measuring the ingredients. We will try again tomorrow!

Day 2

Okay...I know for a fact that I did NOT undercook them tonight. There must be something wrong with the recipe. Even though I promised to do only one batch a night, I cheated and cooked two. I used another recipe. It also seems to be defective. The first batch of cookies seem a little greasy. The second batch is spreading across the counter like the Blob.

I know! I need to change brands of peanut butter. Yes. That MUST be it. I used a cheap brand and it is much too oily. Tomorrow, we will have perfect cookies.

Day 3

Splurged on JIF peanut butter. I knew I should have tried Peter Pan. Was it a mistake using quick oats rather than whatever-they-call-the-other-kind-of-oats? Should have I have bought steel-cut oats? Does that affect the texture of cookies? I am out of my element here...

I re-tried that recipe from last night. They didn't turn into chocolate puddles...they balled up into some sort of mass that looks like a form of cancer. I put them in the freezer to see if they would set, but I had to move them when they scared my husband.

I'm pretty sure its the type of margarine I am using. I cooked these for three minutes rather than one. I'm assuming a "full-rolling boil" means when the chocolate splatters all the way to the ceiling, right?

The cookies are NOT burning. They are just...scorching a little.
The cookies are NOT burning. They are just...scorching a little. | Source

Day 4

Back to the store today. I will have to go back tomorrow. Who knew if you set a jar of peanut butter on a gas burner (accidentally!) it would melt! That's just great.

I couldn't make cookies until all the smoke cleared from the kitchen. It was a little embarrassing having to explain that to the fire department, but not as embarrassing as their horrified expressions when I offered them a cookie.

Tonight's batch was a little better. I think dropping the canister of oats in the pan really helped thicken them up. I am going to estimate that it held about 8 cups worth. Tomorrow I will use 8 cups and see if I can make some that don't taste smoky.

Day 5

What the hell? I think I am getting worse! I used the same recipe. I added all the oats. I timed it with four timers. I measured. I RE-MEASURED. I thought this was a recipe for No-Bake cookies, not Flubber. Are they supposed to be stretchy? I finally gave them D. to play with like Silly Putty.

The other batches? Day 1 cookies are still soggy. I thought about putting them in the dehydrator. Day 2 cookies? The greasy ones are still greasy. The others have disappeared. I think they crawled off the counter in the night and escaped.

I am going back online in search of a better recipe! Ha. What I really need is a professional Cookie Whisperer.

Day 6

"Absolutely the BEST No-Bake cookie recipe on Earth." That's what everyone said online. Well I have news for them...it wasn't! In fact, it sucked! I think they left out an important piece of information...like maybe the fact that apparently No-Bake cookies can't be made in my time-zone!

Back to the darn store. I am starting to draw strange looks from the cashier. Well, I don't care. I bought every brand of peanut butter. Of margarine. Of oats. Of cocoa. Heck...I am even going to try melting down chocolate squares and chips. Maybe that will firm them up.

I refuse to admit defeat. I am going to make a perfect No-Bake cookie before Christmas!

Day 7

I HATE the smell of chocolate and peanut butter cooking! I can't even tell anymore if they taste good or not. No one else will taste them. I offered D. the spoon today and she ran screaming into the nursery. Well fine! I will make Christmas cookies alone then! Traitor!

GREAT news though...they finally firmed up! You betcha! I boiled that sugar and butter together for ten minutes and added a package of baking chocolate. Who cares about measuring anymore? The only thing I have been measuring is the wine. Wine is really starting to help me calm down every time I see the kitchen.

Not only is this batch firm...you can throw them through a window! Wanna know how I know this? I know this because I threw them out the door and now I owe my my neighbor a new windshield. He didn't have to act like such a jerk about it! See if he gets any Christmas cookies this year!

Pretty sure this is what they are supposed to look like...
Pretty sure this is what they are supposed to look like... | Source

Day 8

Aha! I found that batch of cookies from day one. Or was it day two? They crawled as far as the back room. I guess they got cold and tried to hibernate.

I made six batches tonight! I was a cookie making fool! I have enough sugar in my body to run a couple of nuclear power plants. Yee-haw! Since I don't need to sleep anymore, I packed up all my household decorations to make room for all the wax paper.

Cookies on the table. Cookies on the counters. Cookies on the entertainment center. Cookies on the spare bed. Cookies on the bathroom vanity.

I even made little flags for each batch so that I could remember which type of peanut butter I used. Yeah...and the name of each recipe site. I am going to be leaving some nasty comments after the happy holidays are over!

No wait. I just want answers! What is the SECRET? I have boiled, I have simmered. I bought a digital kitchen scale so that I could weigh the ingredients right down to a millionth of a milligram. All I want to know is...how can the same recipe yield SIX DIFFERENT results?

Even better question? How did I get ONE cookie that turned out perfectly? Huh? What happened to it's littermates? One cookie out of a dozen? There is something creepy going on here.

What have learned so far?

  1. I know how to make cookies that move like quicksilver!
  2. I know how to make chocolate Silly Putty!
  3. I know how much a windshield on a BMW is worth!
  4. I know that wet chocolate-y oatmeal will clog-up and burn-out a dishwasher!

Yeah...that last part came as a surprise to me too. Tomorrow I have to call a dishwasher repair -person, and hide the checkbook so my husband doesn't see the grocery bill. So much for the word "budget"!

Day 9

How unfair can life get? All I wanted to do was make cookies! Yes, it was my fault about the windshield. But I refuse to pay the vet bill just because someone's dog found one of those cookies and choked on it. It didn't know the damn things would bounce that far.

I ran out of oats. So I substituted puffed rice cereal. Add talking cookies to my list of inventions. I finally had a batch turn out correctly. Too bad no one can eat them. At least I don't think they should. Is that foam stuff from fire extinguishers edible? Reckon adding a dollop of wine was a bad idea too. What the hell. I got the flames out before the fire department showed up this time. Maybe I have figured out the secret ingredient.

The other ten batches I made tonight? I let them stand for three hours then poured them into a cake pan and baked them. Gonna frost that later and call it a chocolate casserole. Hahahahaha! Whose on my naughty list? That's what they are getting! Hahahaha!

I'm still not giving up. Everyone else can do it. My husband is starting to get a little tight around the mouth whenever he hears the sound of a peanut-butter lid being removed. D. packed up her pacifier and her teddy and went to stay the night at her grandmother's house.

Last I heard, they had successfully used acetone to get the chocolate out of her hair. So much for Mommy-and-Me bonding. Oh well. At least I can take off this dorky apron. Next time I decide to do something heartwarming we will just go to the zoo.

Day 10

I found a new recipe! Page 839 of Google search. The good stuff aaaalways gets buried at the back, right? Pretty sure this recipe comes from another century, or at least another planet! It called for "oleo". What the hell is "oleo"? I have NO clue. I thought it said "Oreo". 2 sticks or 2 cups of Oreos. Maybe Oreos came in sticks back in the 1500's! It made perfect sense at 3:00 a.m when I was at Wal-Mart buying more wine!

So I melted down a pound of peanut butter and a bag of sugar while I was drinking the wine. The mixture sure looked nice and thick without that margarine to water it down.

Then I added the vanilla and the milk and let it boil while I took a shower. When I came back it had made a bit of a shellac-like finish on the pan but I thinned it down with a little more peanut butter and milk. Then I added the Oreos and the oats. Hee hee.

Hee hee. Haha.

I just pulled the cork on a new bottle and opened a roll of cellophane. Its gift-basket makin' time!

My Christmas Basket Recipients:

  • Mailman who bent the Christmas cards
  • Rude cashier at the grocery store.
  • My neighbor.
  • The vet
  • Anyone who ever sent me fruitcake
  • People who posted bad recipes
  • People who lied and said the recipes worked for them
  • Whirlpool Appliance Co. (must be a defect with their stove)
  • Dishwasher repairman. (shouldn't have laughed)

I am pretty proud of myself though. One cookie out of 96 dozen turned out looking right. That's just not too bad. As for the rest? Well, one good coat of Krylon clear acrylic in matte finish fixed those babies right up.

Kid-you-not...a cookie this big, attacked me from under the Christmas tree...
Kid-you-not...a cookie this big, attacked me from under the Christmas tree... | Source

Day 11

Dear Santa,

Happy Christmas Eve! I sure as hell hope you like wine and Oreos because that's what we left out for you. Please don't step on the brown stuff when you are trying to get the Christmas tree, some of it is combustible.

If you have any enemies up North, feel free to take some of the many "cookies" you see laying around the house and pass them out. They sink like lead, smell like smoke, taste like plastic, last like chewing gum, fly like missiles, and stick like super-glue.

Please sign the attached form releasing me from all liability in case any bodily harm comes to you, reindeer, automobiles, or elves that come in contact with these confections.

Don't try any funny stuff either, because I am sure that tomorrow afternoon, after my victims open their cookie baskets and my husband discovers the checkbook, I am going to have a good lawyer.

P.S. Could you please leave about $3500 in my stocking? And I hope you didn't bring that toy stove D. asked for, because she has had a change of heart for some reason. Now she wants to be an auto mechanic.

Something about how she "doesn't have to taste anything that comes out of a car." Whatever that means.

Family Recipe

Thought I would share the ol' family recipe with anyone who thinks they can do better. For the math nerds out there...it has a 0.000000000001 success rate. Merry Christmas!

5 stars from 1 rating of No-Bake Cookies

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 3 min
Ready in: 13 min
Yields: 1-2 dozen depending on size

Ingredients

  • 1 Stick Butter
  • 1 cup Peanut Butter
  • 2 cups White sugar
  • 5 Tablespoons Unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
  • 3 cups Quick Oats

Instructions

  1. Measure all ingredients out ahead of time.
  2. Melt butter in medium-sized pan over medium heat.
  3. Stir in sugar and cocoa. Keep stirring until smooth.
  4. Continue to stir until mixture reaches a rolling boil. Boil for one minute exactly.
  5. Turn heat to low and stir in peanut butter and oats while still stirring.
  6. Cook one minute more.
  7. Remove from heat. Drop by spoonfuls onto waxed paper.
  8. Wait 1 hour-1 year for them to cool and set.
  9. Eat!

Author's Note

None of the recipes linked here are ones that I have actually tried. I am still using a family recipe that has been handed down since the 1500's, and works for everyone else in my family. The links here are to recipes that will hopefully work for all of you wonderful candy-makers out there!

Source

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    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Wow, you really had me laughing with this one. My family always makes those no-bake cookies with the oatmeal and chocolate. I thought they were fool-proof. Well, sometimes they turn out a little soft, but I'll eat them no matter what.

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      @Careermommy--I sure hope that the recipe works for you. I'm pretty sure that the ingredients sensed that I hate making sweets, and rebelled. But they are soooo delicious when they turn out right. Enjoy! They are great any time of the year!

    • Careermommy profile image

      Tirralan Watkins 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Sharkye11, I love the humor behind this piece. I remember eating these cookies as a kid as well. Maybe I'll take a trip down memory lane and give these cookies a try, and see what my kids think.

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      @VirginiaLynne--Lol, that sounds like my sister. She can make any kind of specialty pastry, including pies that look like porcelain, and she couldn't get the cookies to turn out right either! For years we used that old recipe and never made a bad cookie. This is now one of the World's great Unsolved Mysteries!

      Thanks for the comment! *eats a storebought cookie* :)

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      @H-Chris--I took that advice! No more holiday cooking until Halloween! The stress isn't worth the reward. Besides, who can afford to buy baking supplies when you are paying for all that damage? lol!

      So glad you got a good laugh from this!

    • VirginiaLynne profile image

      Virginia Kearney 4 years ago from United States

      I love this! I'm an expert baker and I remember making these all the time growing up, but seriously, as an adult I can never get this recipe to work! What happened? Nothing wrong with store bought anyway!

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      @shiningirisheyes--so glad this made you laugh! It made the cookie battle worthwhile! :)

    • H-Chris profile image

      H-Chris 4 years ago from Nebraska

      OMG I had to stop reading so I could catch my breath! Thanks for that, I guess I needed a good laugh. Now I need to find a tissue to wipe away the laughter tears.

      Have a nice New Years...no cooking...just order pizza!

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      @carol7777-Thank you! I don't bake often either. When I do it is always a disaster. I do okay with main courses, but as soon as sugar is added, it becomes a nightmare! :)

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      @Jackie Lynnley--The more peanut butter ones sound delicious. I may try that the next time! I found out that I have to boil 3 1/2 minutes to get them to set. I think it may because I don't have central heat, so my house is pretty humid. Just guessing! Thanks for the comment! Happy Holidays!

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      @Michelle--Thanks! I really did get one whole batch to work. The very next batch thought turned out into some sort of asphalt ingredient. i am hoping to sell the patent to the highway department! :)

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      Thanks you faythef! I am glad you enjoyed it! :)

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 4 years ago from Upstate, New York

      I can not thank you enough for providing me with a much needed laugh this Christmas Eve.

      Thanks again.

    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 4 years ago from Arizona

      I just had fun reading this and your experience. Great photos ...I bake so seldom that I have fun reading of others antics. Have a wonderful holiday season.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 4 years ago from The Beautiful South

      So funny and I make these cookies and it really is hard to get a good turn out on them. I only boil them rolling for 1 minute though. They really are delicious if and when they do turn out. The can be made without the chocolate and more peanut butter. I imagine you could care less though. lol

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 4 years ago from Singapore

      Thanks for sharing this funny story....and don't worry, the cookies will turn out better each time you make them. Thanks for sharing!

    • faythef profile image

      Faythe F. 4 years ago from USA

      LOL..funny and cute story...

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      Thanks Jeannie! I agree! Boxed mixes...and sometimes those bakery items, are the way to go! I just realized that I could have bought several dozen bakery cookies for what I spent making no-bakes, and wouldn't have had to clean up the mess!

    • Sharkye11 profile image
      Author

      Jayme Kinsey 4 years ago from Oklahoma

      Haha! Thanks Richard! If only I had known sooner how evil these cookies were, I could have spread the word faster! Beware of no-bake cookies! Thanks for the comment!

    • Jeannieinabottle profile image

      Jeannie InABottle 4 years ago from Baltimore, MD

      Hahaha... I am no cook, so I know I won't be able to work any magic for that recipe. I will stick to baking treats that come out of a box with few requirements. Just mix it with an egg or two and you can pretend you've slaved over it. :-) Merry Christmas!

    • rcrumple profile image

      Rich 4 years ago from Kentucky

      Jayme - This is hilarious! lol I'm still chuckling over it. This could have been a script for an old Lucille Ball show for sure! Excellent job! Btw, have a very Merry Christmas!