Gluten-free monster cookies are peanut butter-oatmeal cookies loaded with candy pieces, butterscotch chips, and peanuts. Thick, chewy, and so easy-to-make.
Why You’ll Love Gluten-Free Monster Cookies
- Soft and chewy.
- Peanut butter and oatmeal flavor.
- Loaded with candy pieces, butterscotch chips, and peanuts.
- Easy-to-make. Only one bowl required!
- No chilling required. You mix the dough and it’s ready to bake.
What are gluten-free monster cookies?
Monster cookies could also be called “loaded oatmeal cookies.” At their heart, they’re peanut butter-oatmeal cookies with M&Ms. And then the recipes go all over the place. Some, like this recipe, contain butterscotch chips and peanuts. Others contain chocolate chips and raisins. And others include all of those ingredients plus raisins. (If you aren’t in the mood for loaded oatmeal cookies, give my gluten-free oatmeal cookies a try. They’re yummy too.)
Are Monster cookies large?
Some recipes make huge monster cookies. How big? One recipe calls for one cup of dough per cookie. That’s huge. These cookies are nowhere near that large. They make what I’d consider a standard size cookie. If you want to make larger monster cookies, go for it. And, if you want to make smaller cookies, that also works.
Gluten-Free Monster Cookies: Important Ingredients
Gluten-Free Oats: Look for gluten-free oats and/or purity protocol oats. You can use either quick cook/instant oats or traditional oats in this recipe. Traditional oats give you a chewier texture than instant oats but both have good flavor and texture. (If you’re confused about the gluten-free status of oats, I understand. Please visit Gluten-Free Watchdog for more information.)
Gluten-Free Flour: This recipe was tested with Bob’s Red Mill’s 1:1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour. Using a different gluten-free flour blend might affect the texture of the cookies.
Peanut Butter: This recipe was tested using traditional smooth peanut butter. If you use natural peanut butter, stir it well before measuring so that the oil is completely incorporated.
Butterscotch Chips: This is an ingredient that folks either love or HATE. There seems to be no middle ground. If you love them, fantastic! If you don’t, you can replace the butterscotch chips with white chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, or chocolate chips. (Or you can just omit them. It’s up to you.)
Note: For a long time, some brands of butterscotch chips contained barley. I haven’t seen this ingredient listed anymore. However, always read labels as ingredients change.
Peanuts: Look for roasted peanuts and be sure that the ingredients list doesn’t include garlic or onion powder. While garlic and onion are lovely, it doesn’t have a place in these cookies.
M&Ms: I use plain M&Ms in my monster cookies but you can use any variety that you think will taste good. Just be sure, as always, to read labels. Some varieties of M&Ms may contain gluten.
How to Make Gluten-Free Monster Cookies: Keys to Success
Melt butter and mix with peanut butter and brown sugar. Like my recipe for gluten-free oatmeal cookies, this recipe starts by mixing melted butter and brown sugar together. You can use an electric mixer for this step or, if it’s comfortable for you, mix it by hand with a whisk.
Add the eggs and vanilla. Once the butter brown sugar mixture is smooth, add the eggs and vanilla and mix until smooth. At this point, the mixture is surprisingly thick.
Add the dry ingredients. There’s only a 3/4 cup of gluten-free flour in this recipe. Stir the flour into the butter-egg mixture along with the baking soda and salt. Gluten-free flour loves to cling to the bottom of the bowl. Scrape the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to remove any flour that’s clinging to the bowl and give the dough a final stir before adding the remaining ingredients.
Mix in the Oats and Other Goodies. Stir the oats, chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, and peanuts. Give the dough a good stir. You want all the goodies equally spread through the dough.
Bake. Drop the dough onto a parchment-lined baking sheet, about two tablespoons each. I love to use a cookie scoop for this job. It ensures each cookie is the same size.
Flatten. Or Not. These cookies don’t spread much during baking. If you prefer your monster cookies thick and chewy, scoop them onto the prepared baking sheet and bake. If you prefer them a little crunchy on the edges, flatten the cookies with the bottom of a flat glass or measuring cup. To keep the dough from sticking to the glass, dip it in cold water before pressing down the dough. Repeat as needed.
Gluten-Free Monster Cookies
- 1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled slightly (4 ounces/ 113 grams)
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar (6 ounces/ 170 grams)
- 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter, see note (7 ounces; 198 grams)
- 2 large eggs (about 4 ounces/ 113 grams out of shell)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup gluten-free flour, see note (3 3/4 ounces/ 106 grams)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/4 cups gluten-free oats, instant or rolled, uncooked, see note (5 1/4 ounces/ 148 grams)
- 1 cup gluten-free butterscotch chips or chocolate chips (about 6 ounces/ 170 grams)
- 1 cup dry roasted peanuts ( 5ounces/ 142 grams)
- 2/3 cup plain M&Ms (about 3 ounces; 85 grams)
Heat oven and prepare pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Mix the dough. Whisk melted butter together with brown sugar and peanut butter until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla extract. Mix until eggs are combined and the mixture is smooth. Switch to a rubber spatula or wooden spoon. Add the gluten-free flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix until flour is combined. Add the oats, butterscotch chips, peanuts, and candy pieces.
Drop dough onto pan. Scoop dough, about two tablespoons each, onto prepared baking sheet. Space cookies about one-inch apart. If desired, flatten each cookie with the bottom of a glass or measuring cup. Dip the bottom of the measuring cup in cold water to keep it from sticking to the dough.
Bake until set. Bake until edges are golden brown and set, about 12 minutes. Allow cookies to cool on the pan for about three minutes and then transfer cookies to a wire rack. Repeat with remaining dough.
Cool on a rack. Allow cookies to cool on the pan for about three minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Store in an airtight container or freeze. Place cookies in an airtight container and store on the counter for up to four days or freeze in a freezer container, for up to three months. Allow cookies to thaw on the counter.
Gluten-Free Flour: This recipe was tested with Bob's Red Mill 1:1 Gluten-Free Flour Blend and is recommended for the best texture.
Oats: Use gluten-free oats. Quick cook (instant) oats or old fashioned oats may be used. Do not use steel cut oats in this recipe.