Monster Cookies

5 from 4 votes
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The ultimate treat packed with chocolate chips, peanut butter, and colorful M&M’s, this monster cookie recipe is a true crowd-pleaser! Whether you’re a cookie lover or a fan of all things sweet, get ready to sink your teeth into the perfect blend of chewy, crispy, and loaded with flavor.

For more sweet treats, try my recipes for S’mores cookies, cheesecake brownies, kiss cookies, and soft sugar cookies.

Delicious monster cookies on a white plate, just waiting to be eaten.

If you’re looking for the ultimate cookie experience, this recipe is for you! The dough has a little of everything: creamy peanut butter, chewy oats, M&Ms, and chocolate chips. It’s a sweet indulgence that any cookie monster would love!

The base is the ideal ratio of ingredients to balance the sweet and savory flavors. Chilling the dough is not necessary; just scoop it onto the tray and pop it in the oven. When baked, the cookies yield delicious crisp edges and chewy centers.

Recipe ingredients

Ingredients needed to make this monster cookie recipe.
  • Oats: Thick old-fashioned oats add a chewy texture and prevent the dough from spreading too much as it bakes.
  • Flour: Use all-purpose flour; it contains a moderate 10 to 13% protein level. This adds structure while keeping the texture tender in the center.
  • Sugar: Use two types of sugar: granulated and brown sugar. The crystallized sugar creates crisp edges. The dark brown sugar adds a molasses taste, and it’s a humectant that keeps the centers soft.
  • Peanut Butter: Use my homemade peanut butter or smooth and creamy Jif or Skippy. They won’t separate in the dough, and it’s easier to incorporate. Add chopped peanuts for extra crunch.
  • Chocolate: A mix of semi-sweet chocolate chips and colorful M&M candies with crisp candy coating make for an interesting taste and texture.
  • Leavening Agents: Baking soda helps puff up the middle so it’s not so dense. It also helps with slight spread and crispiness. Eggs help with binding and aeration.
  • Flavoring: Vanilla extract enhances the baked notes. A small amount of salt balances the sweetness of the sugars and chocolate.

See the recipe card below for all ingredients and measurements (US and metric).

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350ºF (177ºC) while preparing the cookie dough. Set the oven rack to the middle position.

Prepare the dry ingredients

Bowl of oats and flour that has been whisked together.

Step 2: With the varying sizes of the dry ingredients, it’s essential to give them a good mix. Whisk the oats, flour, baking soda, and salt to disperse the fine particles. This is especially important for the leavening agent so that each cookie rises properly during baking.

Mix the butter and sugars

Softened butter, peanut butter and brown sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer.

Step 3: Before mixing, soften the butter to about 65ºF (18ºC), just below room temperature. I use the beater attachment to cream the butter, sugar, and peanut butter.

The pliable butter traps air pockets, which gives the cookie a lightened consistency. The granulated and dark brown sugar crystals help to incorporate the air. The peanut butter is also added at this step because it has a similar consistency to the butter.

Add the egg and vanilla

Egg yolk and vanilla in a mixer bowl.
Wet dough batter in a stand mixer bowl.

Step 4: Add the egg and vanilla extract once the butter and sugars are creamed together. Whip on medium setting for about 1 minute.

The mixture should become light brown and look fluffy. The egg whites help to aerate the dense butter. The egg yolks emulsify the dough, helping to bind the cookie and add richness.

Fold in flour mix and chocolate

Step 5: I incorporate the flour and oat mixture by hand into the wet ingredients to prevent a tough texture. Give it a good stir with a spatula until no flour pockets remain. Add ¾ cup of M&M candies and chocolate chips and mix until evenly distributed. You don’t have to wait to rest the cookie dough; it’s ready to portion and bake.

Portion out the dough

Raw cookie dough balls on a parchment paper lined sheet pan.

Step 6: Portion out the dough into 2 tablespoon-sized rounds. This is about a 1 ounce (30 grams) size. The dough is wet and sticky, making it a drop cookie. It’s best to use a scoop or spoon; it will be challenging to roll. Place the dough at least 2 inches apart; they will spread to about 2 ½ inches in size.

I was able to fit 13 cookies on a large sheet pan. You can either add the extra M&Ms to the dough or after the cookies are baked. The candy shells tend to crack more in the oven, so I add them later while the cookie is warm.

Bake the cookies

Freshly baked monster cookies on a parchment paper lined sheet pan.

Step 7: For even cooking, bake the cookies one tray at a time, at a moderate oven temperature and in the middle position. I don’t turn the baking sheet halfway through. It’s ready when the surface becomes light golden and the edges set. The baking time is about 10 to 12 minutes.

Add more M&Ms and cool

Person pressing a red M&M into the surface of a warm monster cookie.

Step 8: Immediately after removing the cookies from the oven, press a few M&Ms on top while they’re soft. This will add a festive pop of color. This step is optional, but once the cookies cool and harden in a few minutes, you won’t be able to add the candies.

Leave the cookies on the warm tray for 5 minutes to gently finish them through carry-over cooking. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. These chewy monster cookies have wonderfully crisp edges!

Flavor variations

Now that you know how to make monster cookies, try these tasty variations:

  • Chocolate: Try using different types of chocolate, like milk chocolate, dark chocolate, or white chocolate chips. There are even butterscotch, caramel, or peppermint chips. For different holidays, you can switch up the color of the M&M candies.
  • Nut Butter: Change up the peanut butter flavor with almond butter, cashew butter, or sunflower butter if you have a nut allergy.
  • Nuts: Add extra crunch with chopped peanuts, peanuts, or almonds.
  • Flavoring: Instead of vanilla, try almond extract, peppermint, or mint. Experiment with warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and allspice, or add pumpkin pie spice. Add toffee bits or crushed candy canes.
  • Fruit: Add dried fruits like raisins, cranberries, or currants.

Frequently asked questions

Can I make these cookies gluten-free?

I recommend using gluten-free oats and gluten-free baking flour. I like Bob’s Red Mill or King Arthur products.

Can I use quick or instant oats instead or old-fashioned?

Quick oats can be used; however, they are precooked with smaller flakes, creating a finer texture with less contrast in texture.

Can I freeze the dough or the baked cookies?

The cookies stay fresh at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 1 week. When stored in a freezer-safe bag, the cookie dough or baked cookies can be kept for up to 2 months.

Several fun and festive monster cookies spread out on a table.

Using the right peanut butter

A creamy peanut but like Jif or Skippy, provides the best texture for the cookie. The processing creates a super smooth consistency, making it much easier to incorporate the nut pieces, fat, and protein into the dough. A small amount of added hydrogenated vegetable oil helps to prevent the fat from separating after baking, keeping it tender. Natural peanut butter, where the oil settles on top, makes it harder to mix into the dough. It can be used, but the shelf life will be shorter by a few days because the fat starts to separate.

Monster Cookies

The most indulgent monster cookie recipe for all the cookie lovers out there. This irresistible treat is guaranteed to satisfy your sweet tooth cravings.
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Servings 26 servings
Course Dessert
Cuisine American

Ingredients 
 

  • 1 ¼ cups old fashioned oats
  • ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened to 65 to 67ºF (18 to 19ºC)
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup M&M candies, divided
  • ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions 

  • Preheat the Oven – Adjust the oven rack to the middle position. Heat to 350°F (177ºC). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, then set aside.
  • Prepare the Dry Ingredients – In a medium bowl, whisk together the oats, flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  • Cream the Butter and Sugars – In a stand mixer or hand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, add the softened butter, peanut butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar. Whisk on medium speed (setting 5) until combined, about 60 seconds. Scrape down the sides as needed.
  • Mix in the Wet Ingredients – Add the egg and vanilla. Whisk on medium speed until light and fluffy, scraping down the bowl halfway through, about 1 minute.
  • Combine and Add Chocolates – Using a spatula, stir in the flour mixture until just combined. Stir in ¾ cups of the M&M candies and chocolate chips.
  • Portion the Dough – Scoop out 2 tablespoon portions (about 1 ounce, 30 grams). Arrange the dough at least 2" apart on lined baking sheets, 13 portions per tray.
  • Bake the Cookies – Bake one tray at a time in the center position until the cookies are lightly golden brown and set on the edges, 10 to 12 minutes. Bake the remaining tray.
  • Let Them Cool – Immediately press some of the remaining M&M candies onto the surface of the warm cookie. Leave the cookies on the baking sheet to cool for 3 to 5 minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe Video

YouTube video

Notes

  • Make Ahead: Portion dough and refrigerate in a resealable plastic bag for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 2 months. Allow to sit at room temperature on the tray for 10 minutes before baking.
  • Storing: ​​Baked cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 5 days or 2 months in the freezer.
  • Make it Gluten-Free: Substitute gluten-free flour for all-purpose flour. I recommend Bob’s Redmill 1:1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour. 
 

Nutrition Facts

Serves: 26 servings
Calories 171kcal (9%)Carbohydrates 20g (7%)Protein 3g (6%)Fat 9g (14%)Saturated Fat 4g (20%)Polyunsaturated Fat 1gMonounsaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0.2gCholesterol 10mg (3%)Sodium 71mg (3%)Potassium 73mg (2%)Fiber 1g (4%)Sugar 14g (16%)Vitamin A 124IU (2%)Vitamin C 0.04mgCalcium 19mg (2%)Iron 1mg (6%)

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000-calorie diet. All nutritional information is based on estimated third-party calculations. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods, and portion sizes per household.

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Jessica Gavin

I'm a culinary school graduate, cookbook author, and a mom who loves croissants! My passion is creating recipes and sharing the science behind cooking to help you gain confidence in the kitchen.

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