Paula Deen's Monster Cookies are an easy one-bowl cookie recipe, super soft and chewy, and jam-packed with oats, peanut butter, M&Ms, and chocolate chips. Great recipe to swap out with seasonal M&Ms for Christmas, Easter, and Halloween!
- Why You're Going to Love This Recipe
- How Did the Monster Cookie Get Its Name?
- My Spin on Paula Deen Monster Cookies
- More Cookie Add-In Ideas
- How to Make Paula Deen's Monster Cookies
- Storage & Freezing Instructions
- How to Bake Monster Cookies from Frozen
- Expert Tips
- Stuff I Use
- More Delicious Recipes
- Let's Stay in Touch
- Paula Deen Monster Cookie Recipe
- Storage & Freezing Instructions
- How to Bake Monster Cookies from Frozen
If I had to pick a favorite cookie, a giant monster cookie would be it.
And Paula Deen's recipe for chewy monster cookies is one I've been making for years.
These monster M&M cookies have a perfectly soft and chewy texture, rich peanut butter flavor, and tons of stuff in them. They're the best cookies ever.
Plus, they mix together in minutes in one bowl (yay! fewer dishes!), and the dough and the cookies both freeze well so you'll never run out of them!
And if you're looking for a flourless monster cookie recipe: you are here.
Why You're Going to Love This Recipe
- Easy to customize with your favorite add-ins
- Mixes together in minutes
- Loaded with tons of chocolate chips and M&Ms
- Super soft and chewy flourless monster cookie recipe
How Did the Monster Cookie Get Its Name?
According to a 1971 article in the Lansing State Journal, monster cookies were invented by Michigan State University photographer and father of six, Dick Wesley.
He tried to make a batch of peanut butter cookies but didn't have any flour, so he used oatmeal instead. The recipe eventually grew (what with the six kids ... and their friends ...) to include pretty much anything that was left over.
So much like Frankenstein, Wesley created a monster using little bits of this and that. Here's a copy of his original recipe.
My Spin on Paula Deen Monster Cookies
I made just a few slight changes to Paula Deen's recipe. Here's what they are and why.
More vanilla. The original recipe called for ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, but I added two teaspoons to enhance and balance all the other flavors going on in these cookies.
Cinnamon. Oatmeal cookies love cinnamon (and so do I). I added ½ teaspoon, but you can add more or leave it out.
More chocolate chips and more M&Ms. I followed the directions to add ½ cup of each into the cookies, but then I added almost another ½ cup of each onto the cookies, too. It makes the cookies look pretty (especially if you're using holiday M&Ms) and makes sure each cookie (and bite!) gets plenty of everything.
No raisins. But more chocolate chips! The recipe calls for ¼ cup raisins as an optional ingredient. I like raisins in some things, like straight-up oatmeal raisin cookies or these baked apples. But not so much in chocolate chip cookies. So I skipped them and added ¼ cup more chocolate chips to the cookie dough.
Chilled dough. Paula Deen never mentions chilling the dough. Unchilled, the dough spreads into a pretty thin cookie. When the dough is chilled for 30 minutes up to overnight, the cookies bake up much thicker -- the way we like them.
Click here for the original Paula Deen recipe.
Brown sugar. Brown sugar makes the cookies soft and chewy and adds rich molasses flavor. I used dark brown sugar, but you can also use light brown sugar.
Creamy peanut butter. Paula Deen's recipe calls for one 12-ounce jar of peanut butter -- which I'm not even sure they make anymore. Peanut butter is measured by weight, not volume, so 12 ounces equals 1 ¼ cups. You can also use crunchy peanut butter for even more texture.
Vanilla. I quadrupled the amount of vanilla called for in the original recipe -- from ½ teaspoon to 2 teaspoons.
Cinnamon, optional. Ms. Deen's recipe doesn't have cinnamon in it, but I added ½ teaspoon because I think oatmeal cookies need cinnamon. You can leave it out if you wish.
Quick-cooking oats. Quick oats are just old-fashioned oats rolled thin and cut into smaller pieces. They add a soft, fine texture in this monster cookies recipe.
Chocolate chips. I used dark chocolate chips, but you can use semi-sweet, milk chocolate, or bittersweet chocolate chips.
M&Ms. I used regular-sized M&Ms, but mini M&M candies would work, too!
More Cookie Add-In Ideas
Honesty, you can stir almost anything into these cookies and they'd be delicious. Here are a few ideas to swap out for some of the M&Ms, chocolate chips, and raisins. I recommend keeping the total amount of add-ins to 1 ¼ cups.
- White chocolate chips
- Peanut butter chips
- Chopped roasted or honey-roasted peanuts
- Dried cranberries
- Heath bits
- Chopped almonds, walnuts, pecans, pistachios, or macadamia nuts
- Chopped pretzels
- Chopped cookies like Oreos or Nutter Butters
- Orange zest
- Rainbow or chocolate sprinkles
- Shredded coconut
How to Make Paula Deen's Monster Cookies
In a very large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, white sugar, and brown sugar together with an electric mixer on medium speed for about 2 minutes.
Mix in the peanut butter, soft butter, vanilla, salt, and cinnamon (optional) until well combined.
With a sturdy spatula or wooden spoon, stir in the baking soda, oats, ½ cup M&Ms, ½ cup chocolate chips, and raisins (optional -- or just add more chocolate chips!). The dough will be very thick.
Chill the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees f. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
Scoop the cookie dough into 2-tablespoon balls and place 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheets.
You can use a cookie scoop, ice cream scoop, or measuring spoon. For thicker cookies, use your hands to shape the dough into tall balls.
Place 2-3 more M&Ms and chocolate chips on top of each of the cookie dough balls.
Bake for 9-11 minutes or until lightly browned. Take care not to overbake.
Chill the cookie dough between batches and bake each batch on a cooled cookie sheet to keep the dough from spreading.
Let cool on the baking sheet for about 3 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool the rest of the way.
Storage & Freezing Instructions
Storage. Store baked cookies in large resealable plastic bags or an airtight container for about a week.
Freezing. Freeze the baked cookies in a freezer bag for up to 3 months. You can also freeze unbaked cookie dough balls for up to 3 months.
How to Bake Monster Cookies from Frozen
Place frozen dough balls on a baking sheet and bake as directed, adding a few extra minutes to the baking time.
Instead of raisins, add ¼ cup more chocolate chips or M&Ms.
For thinner cookies, do not chill the dough before baking.
For thicker cookies, chill the dough and use your hands to make "tall" cookie dough balls.
Paula Deen's monster cookie recipe is made without flour, so to make it gluten-free, use gluten-free oats and check the labels of the rest of the ingredients to ensure they are gluten-free, as well.
Yes. Shape the dough into balls and place them on a baking sheet. Freeze until solid and transfer the portions to a ziptop bag. When ready to make, place the frozen dough balls directly on a baking sheet into a preheated oven. Add a couple extra minutes to the baking time.
There are a few reasons why monster cookies could go flat. The oven, butter, cookie dough, or cookie sheets might be too warm -- just to name a few. For the best chance at thicker cookies, chill the dough for at least 30 minutes and between batches, shape the dough into tall balls, and use a cooled cookie sheet for each batch.
Stuff I Use
I am also a big fan of using silicone nonstick baking mats for baking cookies.
More Delicious Recipes
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Paula Deen Monster Cookie Recipe
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 ¼ cup brown sugar light or dark
- 1 ¼ cup creamy peanut butter
- ½ cup butter softened
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon optional
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 4 ½ cups quick-cooking oats not instant
- 1 cup M&Ms divided
- 1 cup chocolate chips divided
- ¼ cup raisins optional, or substitute with ¼ cup more chocolate chips
- In a very large bowl, beat the eggs, white sugar, and brown sugar together on medium speed for about 2 minutes. Mix in the peanut butter, butter, vanilla, salt, and cinnamon (optional) until well combined. With a sturdy spatula or wooden spoon, stir in the baking soda, oats, ½ cup M&Ms, ½ cup chocolate chips, and raisins (optional). The dough will be very thick. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350. Prepare baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
- Scoop the cookie dough into 2-tablespoon balls and place 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet. You can use a cookie scoop, ice cream scoop, or measuring spoon. For thicker cookies, use your hands to shape the dough into tall balls. Place 2-3 more M&Ms and chocolate chips on top of each cookie dough ball.
- Bake for 9-11 minutes or until lightly browned. Do not overbake. Chill the cookie dough between batches.
- Let cool on the baking sheet for about 3 minutes. Transfer to a wire baking rack to cool the rest of the way.