Made with brown sugar, shredded coconut and pecans, these Cowboy Cookies are a delicious adaption of the cookie recipe made famous by former First Lady Laura Bush. Elevated with the addition of brown butter, I can promise that everyone will love these hearty, chewy cookies!
These Cowboy Cookies, also known as Texas Cowboy Cookies, are packed with hearty, flavorful ingredients that are sure to satisfy any sweet tooth! Impressively, this sweet treat also has a wonderfully soft yet crunchy texture to them.
After only 10 minutes of baking time, you will have incredibly chewy, delicious cookies. The mixture of chocolate, pecans, and coconut is absolutely heavenly!
Feel free to mix and match your own ingredients in this easy Cowboy Cookie recipe. Personally, I love using my Homemade Apple Pie Spice in this recipe in place of the cinnamon.
WHY ARE THEY CALLED COWBOY COOKIES?
In 2000 during the Bush-Gore campaign, Family Circle magazine ran an article with cookie recipes from each of the candidates’ wives and asked readers to vote. Laura Bush’s cowboy cookies, a classic chocolate chip cookie that’s been elevated with oats, pecans, coconut flakes, and cinnamon, beat Tipper Gore’s Ginger Snaps cookie recipe as the best cookies.
Laura Bush might have made this cookie famous but these charming treats have been around for quite some time. Some people claim the confection originated in Texas, dating back to the days of actual cowboys, where they were named for their ability to withstand long days in a saddlebag.
This delicious treat also goes by many names, such as Cowboy Cookies, Western Cookies, or even Ranger Cookies. Traditionally, Cowboy Cookies are made with oats, chocolate chips, and pecans. Ranger Cookies, on the other hand, boast rolled oats, chocolate chips, shredded coconut, and crushed corn flakes. As you can see, my recipe is the ultimate tasty mix of both of those recipes!
The version I am sharing with you today is somewhat adapted from Reese Witherspoon’s book, Whiskey In A Teacup. However, her recipe calls for 2 cups of rolled oats. I have made them both ways, and making Cowboy Cookies without oatmeal is our personal preference. I also elevated the recipe by browning my butter before adding it.
INGREDIENTS FOR EASY WESTERN COOKIES
This decadent cowboy cookie recipe uses a handful of simple ingredients that you may already have in the refrigerator or pantry! For best results and full recipe, scroll down to the recipe card.
- All Purpose Flour: Helps the cookie rise and creates soft, fluffy cookies.
- Baking Powder: Used to make the dough spread out evenly.
- Baking Soda: Acts as a leavener to create the perfect chewy texture in the cookie.
- Cinnamon: For this recipe, I love using my Homemade Apple Pie Spice in this recipe in place of the cinnamon.
- Sea Salt: Without this flavor enhancer, the secondary flavors in a cookie fall flat as the sweetness takes over
- Brown Sugar: Used to keep the cookies moist and chewy. Light brown sugar or dark brown sugar will work, it’s totally your preference!
- Sugar: Mixing with the brown sugar, adding white granulated sugar helps with the structure of the cookie.
- Pure Vanilla Extract: Used to enhance the flavor palette of these tasty cookies.
- Butter: Can enhance the richness and tenderness of the cookie. Salted or unsalted butter both work just fine.
- Eggs: Adds structure, leavening, color, and flavor to any baked goods.
- Rice Krispies Cereal: Gives a lovely bit of crunch to the cookies as well as adding flavor.
- Shredded Sweetened Coconut: Balances out the other sweet ingredients by adding a hint of fruity flavor.
- Pecans: Adds to the sweet, buttery flavor while adding texture to the recipe.
- Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips: Designed to keep their shape during baking, chocolate chips and cookies are the perfect match! Feel free to try different types of chocolate chips or even macadamia nuts.
HOW TO MAKE THE BEST COWBOY COOKIES
My recipe for rustic Western Cookies is so incredibly easy to prepare! To see even more detailed steps, please scroll down to the recipe card.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookies sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
Brown the butter: Place butter in a large saucepan and melt over medium heat. The butter will begin to foam and then it will reduce to small bubbles. It will become amber in color and fragrant. Stir occasionally so as not to burn the butter. Set aside to cool for about 5 minutes.
Prepare the dough: In a large bowl, with an electric mixer, combine sugars, vanilla, and browned butter until it resembles wet sand. Add each egg in one at a time, mixing after each addition.
Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon into the wet mixture and stir the flour mixture in slowly until it’s incorporated.
With a wooden spoon stir in chocolate chips and pecans first, with a spoon. Next, add in the coconut and finish with the Rice Krispies.
Using a cookie scoop. drop a rounded spoonful onto the prepared cookie sheet and bake for approximately 10 minutes. Edges will be brown and the centers will still be slightly soft.
Let cookies rest for a couple of minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool the rest of the way.
Serve these warm cookies with a cold glass of milk and relax after a long day!
Store in an airtight container for up to two weeks. These cookies freeze extremely well. Enjoy!
LOVE IT? PIN IT!
Don’t forget where you found this winning recipe! Pin it to your favorite recipe board on Pinterest before you go!
OTHER DELICIOUS COOKIE RECIPES
- Old Fashioned Iced Molasses Cookies (pictured above)
- Grandma Jane’s Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- Apple Pie Oatmeal Cookies
- Giant Butterscotch Cookies
- Butter Brickle Cookies
- Brown Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookies
- Chocolate Oatmeal Coconut Cookies
- Operation Desert Fox Cookies
Let’s bake up this yummy brown butter cowboy cookies recipe!
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 Tablespoon baking powder
- 1 Tablespoon baking soda
- 1 Tablespoon cinnamon *see notes
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
- 3 large eggs
- 2 cups Rice Krispies Cereal
- 2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
- 1 1/2 cups pecans, chopped
- 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Brown the butter: Place butter in a large saucepan and melt over medium heat. The butter will begin to foam and then it will reduce to small bubbles. It will become amber in color and fragrant. Stir occasionally so as not to burn the butter. Set aside. to cool for about 5 minutes.
- Prepare the cookie dough: In a large mixing bowl, combine sugars, vanilla, and browned butter until it resembles wet sand. Add each egg in one at a time, mixing after each addition.
- Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon into the wet mixture and stir in slowly until it's incorporated.
- Stir in chocolate chips and pecans first, with a spoon. Next, add in the coconut and finish with the Rice Krispies.
- Drop by rounded spoonful onto a prepared cookie sheet and bake for approximately 10 minutes. Edges will be golden brown and the centers will still be slightly soft. Let cookies rest for a couple of minutes before transferring the to a cooling rack to cool to room temperature.
- Store in an airtight container for up to two weeks. These cookies freeze really well!
* I love using my Homemade Apple Pie Spice in this recipe in place of the cinnamon.
Reese Witherspoon's original recipe calls for 2 cups of rolled oats. I have made them both ways, and making them without them is our personal preference.
These are soft and chewy cookies. If you prefer to have crunchy cookies, bake them for a couple of minutes longer.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 320Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 43mgSodium: 355mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 2gSugar: 26gProtein: 3g
Please note that nutrition is not guaranteed accurate. This is based on recipe making approximately 60 cookies and the calories in a 2 cookie serving size.