Triple Threat Oatmeal Cookies

I recently mentioned I had bought another cookbook.

The first step is admitting you have a problem, right?

Last summer, we ate a couple of breakfasts at one of Joanne Chang’s Flour restaurants.  I actually saw this book for sale then but it wasn’t until a couple of weeks ago that I was revisiting photos from the trip and thought about it again.   I ordered it.

You can see the cookbooks for sale along with cool coffee mugs.

It’s a lovely book with lovely photos.  I enjoyed the thirty page introduction which discusses what led Chang (an accomplished sugared-up pasty chef) to develop low-sugar, no-sugar, or naturally sweetened recipes.  She also discusses the science behind using sugar in recipes, besides adding sweetness.  The addition of sugar helps recipes hold moisture, aids in browning, tenderizes and makes pastry “crispy,” lowers freezing point, etc.   Chang also outlines how to stock your pantry with basics, including equipment.  Finally, she offers up some tips:  how to scrape vanilla beans, how to easily grate ginger,  how to make creme fraiche (which she utilizes a LOT in her recipes), and how to calibrate your oven temperature.    The final section of the intro outlines sugar substitutes (beyond artificial sweeteners).  These include the obvious maple syrup, honey, agave nectar and molasses along with fruit juices, vanilla, almond extract, dates, stevia, coconut milk, bananas and other fruit, and coconut sugar.  All of this is worth reading (before you get to the recipes).

There is definitely less sugar in these recipes, but to make up the difference in taste and texture, there is a lot of fat.  Remember the creme fraiche?

I tried to find a happy medium and the first recipe I tried was a hit.  I took Chang’s Oatmeal-Raisin-Cranberry Cookies and turned them into a Triple Threat Oatmeal Cookie.


Triple Threat Oatmeal Cookie

Debra (Based on Joanne Chang’s Oatmea-Raisin-Cranberry Cookies)

Why triple threat? There’s significantly less sugar, lots of super foods, and CHOCOLATE!

Note:  This recipe needs to be refrigerated overnight.


  • 1 c. unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 6 T. sugar
  • 2 large eggs, and 1 egg yolk
  • 2 t. pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 c. whole wheat flour (a fine ground variety)
  • 1 1/2 c. old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 t. baking soda
  • 3/4 t. pink Himalayan salt (fine)
  • 1/4 t. ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 t. ground cinnamon
  • 2 1/4 c. trail mix*


  1. Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment , mix the butter and sugar together on medium speed until the two are completely mixed together, about 5 to 7 minutes.  The mixture should be thick and bright yellow.
  2. Beat in the eggs, egg yolk, and vanilla on medium speed until thoroughly combined, 1 to 2 minutes.  Scrape the bowl and the paddle to make sure the eggs are thoroughly incorporated.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together the fine whole wheat flour, oats, baking soda, salt, grated nutmeg, and ground cinnamon. Turn the mixer on low speed and slowly blend the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Mix until the  dough is completely mixed.
  4. Add trail mix and beat until just combined.
  5. For best results, scrape dough into an airtight container and let it rest in the refrigerator overnight (or at least 3 to 4 hours) before baking. When ready to bake, heat the oven to 350° F/175° C and position a rack in the center of the oven.
  6. With a large scoop drop dough (about the size of a golf ball), onto parchment lined baking sheets.  Place about two inches apart.  Press the dough down slightly with the palm of your hand.
  7. Bake until the cookies are golden brown on the edges and slightly soft in the center, 14 to 18 minutes, rotating the tray about halfway during baking. Be careful not to overbake! Remove the cookies from the oven and let them cool for 5 to 10 minutes on the sheet, then remove the cookies from the sheet and let them continue cooling on a wire rack. The cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days. The unbaked dough can be stored for up to 1 week in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Yield: 16-20

The trail mix I used was one from Peak.  It contains walnuts, blueberries, pecans, dark chocolate, cranberries and raisins.  I would use a mix of these ingredients like 1 c. nuts, 1 c. dried fruit, and 1/2 c. dark chocolate pieces to try to recreate this mix.  Experiment.

And enjoy!

I’ve heard that the Chang’s Cherry Almond Granola is amazing and that is next on my list.  Then, I want to try  the Maple Pecan Ice Cream, Kabocha Squash Spice Cake, Nutty-Seedy-Fruity Energy Bars, and the Mascarpone Brownies.    Sounds good, doesn’t it!

I’m sharing this post at Foodies Read.

Simona at bicriole is hosting Novel Foods #36.  Check that out as well.

10 comments to Triple Threat Oatmeal Cookies

  • Great idea using trail mix as the add in….why have I never thought of that?!

  • Less sugar is always a good thing. These oatmeal cookies would be a hit in our house too. They make a perfect lunch filler or breakfast on the go.

  • My husband and I are doing a super clean diet right now with no dairy, gluten, or refined sugar. I need to check out this cookbook for ideas that I could adapt.

  • We’ve lately been getting rid of some of our cookbooks. All books, actually — we have so many! Cookbooks I still like to read in paper, but almost every other book I prefer electronic versions. But we’ll still have way too many cookbooks left once we finish our purge. Anyway, Love oatmeal cookies, and these look terrific. Thanks!

  • Mae

    Adding trail mix to oatmeal cookies (any recipe!) is a great idea! Most trail mix has added sugar and often oil, which in this case would probably make the result sweeter. Like John KR, I have too many cookbooks already, so I wouldn’t want that one, but I’m glad you wrote about it.

    best… mae at

  • Nephew #2 (or whichever one I am)

    Waiting for you to do something on sushi 😀

  • Sugar by itself is bad enough, but worse is what most large farms do to the cane plants, adding poison, which is then transmitted to the end product. So, the best idea is to use less and only organic. Just my conclusion.

  • This is an oatmeal cookie house and these look delicious! The addition of the salt sounds special. Healthy and good!

  • This sounds like an interesting book for a non-sweet-tooth like me: I’d like to read more about the science of sugar-substitution. Thank you for the review. And your cookies look fabulous. Thank you for contributing to Novel Food 🙂