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Banana Oatmeal Cookies

I have tried several times in the past to incorporate bananas into cookies, simply because there are not all that many banana flavored cookies out there. Is banana a less popular flavor than I previously imagined? Perhaps not. The reason that I have never posted a banana cookie recipe before is that they haven’t turned out so well. They have been cakey and, in some cases, too moist. A few tasted not enough like banana.

No so with these.

These cookies taste like banana bread, but feel like a cookie. The banana flavor is present, accentuated by notes of vanilla, and the edges of the cookie have that crispness that almost every cookie should have.

I made them with and without chocolate chips. The non-chocolate version tasted more strongly of banana, but only because the chocolate there to take center stage. And it did take center stage because I put in almost a whole cup full of chocolate chips, which is quite a lot when your recipe only makes two dozen cookies. Is anyone going to complain about a cookie with too many chips? Unlikely.

These are easy to put together and, because the recipe is both low-fat and fairly small, you don’t have to have any guilt about keeping them around the house. They’ll stay fresh for several days when stored in an air-tight container.

Banana Oatmeal Cookies

1 cup all purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

2 tbsp butter, very soft

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup mashed banana (1 small/medium)

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups oats

1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking sodaand salt.
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and the sugars. Beat in egg and banana, followed by the vanilla extract. Gradually, on low speed or by hand, add in the flour mixture. Stir in the oats (either whole rolled oats or “quick cooking”) and chocolate chips.
Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 11-14 minutes at 350F, until set and lightly browned.
Let cookies cool for about 5 minutes on the pan before transfering them to a wire rack to cool completely.
Makes 2 dozen cookies.

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  • Alanna
    May 12, 2006

    Yummy … and you’re right, banana cookies are few and far between. Thanks to this, not for long! I’ve been trying to find ‘banana’ oil after eating leftover wedding cake last year, the most moist ‘banana’ cake I’ve ever ever had. We’re still working on the baker for the recipe … still without much luck!

  • Ivonne
    May 12, 2006

    Where’s my cold glass of milk to enjoy these lovely cookies?

    Well done, Nic!

  • Dawna
    May 12, 2006

    Nic, these are lovely. I’ve been playing with oatmeal cookie recipes a lot lately, so I’ll have to give these a whirl. There’s always a frozen banana lurking in my freezer…

  • Chloe
    May 12, 2006

    I love that you find things that don’t have 2 sticks of butter in them! That way I can make AND eat my creations without guilt! Those look great and I have a banana all lonely and brown waiting for me!

  • Nic
    May 12, 2006

    ak – I know that I’ve seen banana oil/essence at baking supply stores around here. It’s actually a great way to boost the flavor.

    Ivonne – I still take my cookies with coffee. Thanks!

    Dawna – Tell me about it! I have so many frozen bananas it’s a bit out of control at the moment.

    Chloe – I think these are a great way to use up a banana. And I like that I don’t feel guilty after eating a couple, too.

  • Bunny Bakes
    May 12, 2006

    Oh, this looks good… I always have bananas in the house and am left wondering at the last minute what to do with the really ripe ones. I can never get sick of bananas…

  • Natalia
    May 12, 2006

    It must be that time of year when you buy lots of bananas and don’t eat them. Then you’re stuck with tons of old, brown ones and have to find a use for them. I’ve been in this situation a lot lately, so I’m happy to find an exciting new recipe to try and I won’t have to worry about eating so many bananas before they turn brown.

  • ~~my~~
    May 12, 2006

    Thanks for sharing this recipe, as you’ve said, many banana oatmeal cookies turns out too soft and cakey. Plus, thid doesn’t require lots of fat Ãœ

  • Lis
    May 13, 2006

    Hi Nic, I’ve been a “lurker” for several months now.. quietly taking in your loverly recipes and tips, but I felt the need to comment (finally!) after this post as I also have been on the search for a good cookie with a great banana taste! I so look forward to trying these. Love your blog!

  • eric
    May 13, 2006

    I just sampled one of these just out of the oven. They are wonderful! Thanks for the recipe.

    I did a triple batch and subbed half of the all-purpose flour with some whole wheat flour. I also added an extra banana since I had four the needed to be used up.

    Thanks again!

  • Catherine
    May 13, 2006

    Awesome Nic – I’ve never found a good banana cookie recipe – can’t wait to try it. We’ve been loving your monkey bars!

  • Nic
    May 13, 2006

    It is indeed always good to be able to use up some bananas.

    Lis – I’m glad that you’ve come out of lurkdom to comment. I love to see new commenters! I do hope you like these cookies.

    Eric – Glad to hear that they met your expectations! I love the sub with half ww flour. It makes the tiniest bit heartier, but that much more nutritious.

    Catherine – The monkey bars are a favorite of mine, as well.

  • CameraDawktor
    May 13, 2006

    This sounds yummy, I’ll keep this in mind the next time I have a dead banana I need to use!

  • Anonymous
    May 13, 2006

    delicious with peanut butter chips as well

  • Michele
    May 13, 2006

    Those look so good… two of my favorites, oats and bananas in one! I have all the ingredeints, I need to give these a try. 🙂

  • Lori
    May 13, 2006

    I love bananas but frankly, I don’t think that they go too well in cookies. Perhaps it’s because I’m too used to seeing “bread” preceded by “banana.”

  • julie
    May 14, 2006

    It’s a coincidence that I was thinking of baking cookies with banana as I opened your blog this morning!

    So I made these with wholewheat flour and I do think they are more cakey than cookie-ey but they’re nonetheless yummy! Thanks for another great recipe:)

  • Nic
    May 14, 2006

    Julie – It must be the whole wheat flour that made them more cakey, because my cookies have definitely not been cakey with this recipe. Although, now that I think about it, when I tried to reduce the butter even furthery, they turned out a bit cakey. The butter is crucial to the success of these I think. And what’s a cookie without a little butter, anyway?

  • julie
    May 14, 2006

    Nic, you’re probably right, I used reduced fat margarine instead of butter, there may lies the difference. On second thoughts, I also thought I might have used too much baking powder/soda…

    But they are nonetheless great and very tasty!

  • Anonymous
    May 15, 2006

    I like your site and your recipes are nice and simple (:

    I made the cookies last weekend and they’re long gone haha 😀 They were sort of cake-y actually as I didn’t quite measure the baking powder very strictly. I used unsweetened chocolate because it was the only thing left in the house. The cookies themselves aren’t very sweet because of that but I am not a fan of overly sweet things so yum!


  • Anonymous
    May 21, 2006

    they look reallie yummy!!!:P

  • Anonymous
    May 28, 2006

    I made these cookies this week, and my husband, who is a real oatmeal cookie fan and quite picky, loved them. I substituted raisins for the chocolate chips, as he must have the raisins in them. Thanks so much for a great recipe. Glynda

  • Mel
    June 2, 2006

    Hey there, I tried your wonderful cookies and they are simply fantastic! I am a huge oatmeal cookie fan and these were definately one of the best recipes I’ve tasted yet. Congrats!

  • Deanya
    June 13, 2006

    Just wanted to thank you for the recipe! As the ohers mentioned, new ways to use old bananas is always appreciated! I made these last night and VERY HAPPY with the results. I used 1 large banana instead of 1 small and substituted evaporated cane juice (my personal preference for most of my baking)for the white sugar. The cookies had a great banana flavor and the texture was prrrrrfectly soft and moist! I think I will use less choc. chips next time, just so I can really enjoy the banana flavor.
    Thanks again for this family hit! You rock!

  • Catherine
    June 13, 2006

    I made these yesterday and everyone loved them (and I only used 1/2 cup of chocolate chips!) Yum!

  • Ping
    July 12, 2006

    I am from Taiwan, and this is the first time that I found your website; of course, I do like it very much, and I appreciate it.
    This banana oatmeal cookies will be baked by me next monday. I can’t wait to try it.

  • stella
    August 11, 2006

    Hi there! I stumbled upon your blog when I was searching for recipes to use up some ripe bananas, and I must say, I love your blog! This is one blog I’ll definitely be frequenting. 🙂

    I decided to try this recipe, and the cookies are cooling as I’m typing this. I have a quick question for you.. is the bottom of the cookies supposed to be soft or crispy? Mine turned out soft and well..soft of, bend-able, if that makes any sense?

  • Nic
    August 11, 2006

    Stella – It sounds like you might not have baked them long enough. When the cookies come out of the oven and cool, they will definitely get some crispness, especially at the edges. After they are stored overnight (in an airtight container), they will stay chewy, but I wouldn’t expect them to actually be bendable, as you describe. I’d try adding an extra minute or two to the baking time and double checking to see that you added the right amount of sugar (since that can affect the crispness, too).

  • Emm
    September 27, 2006

    The cookie was cakey as some had commented, the banana flavor not pronounced for me. I do think it’s a great cookie for someone watching their fat intake.

  • Glenda
    November 21, 2006

    Hello! I stumbled upon your blog while searching for oatmeal cookie recipes and wow, I just sampled from a batch I made of this recipe and it’s brilliant. My mom, dad, and brothers who are hard-to-please cookie critics are currently scarfing down the rest of the cookies. Thanks so much for sharing the wonderful recipe. I’m definitely bookmarking your blog.

  • mamta
    May 3, 2007

    Hi,Thanx for the great recipe.I had lots of oats which needed to be used and always have banana’s at home.I tried this recipe today without the egg and substituted brown sugar for white as i did not have it at home.Also made it without the chocolate chips. It turned out great.just increased my baking time to 18-20 mins.My son loved the cookies.I will definetly make it again.

  • Pamela
    July 11, 2007

    I substituted Splenda and Splenda mixed with sugar-free maple syrup for the sugar and brown sugar because I was making these for my mom who is diabetic and because I no longer have white sugar in the house (only sugar in the raw, which I substitute for brown sugar in my baking). As a result of these substitutions, I ended up with chewy little muffin top-like bites. Very cakey and not crisp at all, but tasty nonetheless. Maybe next time I’ll try with the sugar in the raw and see if it crisps up.

  • fran
    October 26, 2007

    My boyfriend and I made this cookies today, they are really great :D! I feel better too, knowing that they’re low fat..thanks!

  • Debbie M
    February 3, 2008

    I just tried these today, using half the salt called for, using whole wheat pastry flour instead of all-purpose flour, and using 1/2 cup chopped walnuts instead of the chocolate chips (next time I’ll use a whole cup).

    Even with these changes, these were just as delicious as I was hoping they’d be when I read this entry. Thanks for finding the lowest amount of butter we could use and have these still work! And thanks for all the other work you did in creating this recipe.

    This recipe is going in my book of favorite recipes, and I’ll be making them again for parties.

  • Lisa in Poland
    May 9, 2008

    I made these for the second time last night and did half cup chocolate chips and half cup craisins. YUM!! About them being cakey– I found that if you overcook them a little they get a bit dry and cakey. Just make sure to take them out of the oven as soon as they are VERY lightly browned, as in possibly just barely starting to get browned on the very edges. The picture Nic has posted here really shows at what point you have to take them out.

    Thanks soooo much for this and the cocoa fudge cookies! Low fat and still very, very good! I bake about 3x a week so I have to try to balance out the decadent brownies/cookies with something a little lower in fat. Love them. I also love your muffin recipes! I keep hoping for another one…

  • Sara
    May 28, 2008

    Hi Nic!
    I love your blog (have been lurking for many moons now); wanted to ask you a question — do you think these cookies would lend themselves well to ice cream sandwiches? I have ripe bananas and some chocolate fudge ice cream, and was wondering if you thought the flavor combination would be good as well as if the cookies would still be good after freezing. Let me know what you think!

  • Nicole
    May 28, 2008

    I think that they would work well for ice cream sandwiches – especially with chocolate fudge ice cream. Yum!

  • Katrina
    June 8, 2008

    Made these on Friday, posted them on my blog. LOVE THEM! Thanks.

  • Anonymous
    November 15, 2008

    These cookies are always tasty. 🙂 I generally use 2 cups oatmeal and one medium banana, with everything else the same and they come out great. Another Variation is to use a little candied ginger in place of the chocolate chips.

  • Elaine
    December 8, 2008

    Regarding the chocolate chips, should I use semi-sweet or milk chocolate?

  • K
    February 11, 2009

    Stumbled upon this site today when looking for a way (other than banana bread or muffins) to use up bananas. These were great – consider yourself bookmarked!

  • Linda
    March 31, 2009

    I made these cookies the other night, and they are AMAZING!!! I definitely couldn’t have just one.

  • Beth
    August 25, 2009

    Needed something to make with a ripe banana other than banana bread. This was GREAT! Nice for the sweet tooth without being too unhealthy. I used 1/2 c mini chocolate chips instead of a whole cup of big ones and it was plenty. Thanks!

  • jen
    February 16, 2010

    thank you for the recipe! I made a few changes…to make it a little bit healthier. I substituted wheat flour and added 2 teaspoons of bran. Yummy and a little less guilt free! Kids love them too!

  • Nikki Adams
    June 6, 2010

    I doubled the recipe and they turned out perfect.

  • Ashley
    July 29, 2010

    These are so wonderful! You’re right, they have the perfect cookie texture without being cakey. I doubled the recipe and added macadamia nuts as well, and I can tell I’m going to be making them again….a lot!! I especially like how much less butter your recipe uses compared to others. Another site called for an entire cup of butter!

  • ebby
    August 6, 2010

    WOW. These were great!!! I didn’t even know banana oatmeal cookies existed. The texture was great, very moist.
    I loved how they didn’t use a lot of butter like all cookies. I actually only used 1 1/2 tablespoons because i used a large banana and it still tasted delicious!!!
    I also tried using white chocolate chips which worked well in the cookies! Thanks for the recipe!!

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