Trail Mix Cookies

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Trail Mix Cookies are a fun and unique twist on Oatmeal Cookies — add a generous scoop of your favorite trail mix to the batter and be prepared to have a new favorite cookie recipe!

Overhead image of Trail Mix Cookies

Trail Mix Cookies

A good trail mix is one of my all-time favorite snacks. You’d be hard pressed to ever find my pantry not stocked with some variety of trail mix! So when I was out of chocolate chips and had a serious craving for a good Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie, I replaced the chips with trail mix. This happy accident has turned into a new favorite dessert — yum!

These easy Trail Mix Cookies are fully loaded — they’ve got bits of chocolate chips, nuts, or dried fruit in literally every bite. And one of the fun things about this cookie recipe — you can use whatever trail mix you like best!

Process shots-- images of the trail mix used in this treat

Let’s Chat Trail Mix

I’ve already mentioned my affinity for trail mix — I think I’ve tried every variety to ever hit my local grocery store shelves! Since it’s more economical, I usually make my own, which you can definitely do for this recipe. Of course, nothing compares to homemade — you can use better quality baking chips and your preferred dry-roasted nuts.

We’ve tested these cookies with a few different varieties of trail mix, but the store-bought (or our homemade version) of “Indulgent Trail Mix” was hands down the favorite with “Mountain Trail Mix” in second place.

Read on for more about this specific mix!

Process shots of Trail Mix Cookies-- images of the butter, brown sugar, egg, and vanilla being added and it all being creamed together

Homemade Indulgent Trail Mix Recipe

There are dozens of trail mix varieties. My favorite, Indulgent Trail Mix, combines milk chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, peanut butter baking chips, dried cranberries, peanuts, and cashews. Sometimes golden raisins are thrown into the blend. This mix is meant to be more of a treat so it’s perfect in these cookies. If you aren’t able to locate this mix, here’s how to make your own:

Combine the following ingredients in a small bowl and stir. Measure out 1-1/2 cups for this cookie recipe:

  • White chocolate chips — 1/3 cup (55g)
  • Milk chocolate chips — 1/3 cup (55g)
  • Peanut butter baking chips — 1/3 cup (55g) 
  • Dried sweetened cranberries — 1/2 cup (62g)
  • Dry-roasted and lightly salted cashews — 1 cup (126g)
  • Dry-roasted and lightly salted peanuts  — 1/2 cup (70g)


Even though this was our favorite trail mix, you may prefer a different mix; use your favorite and pick out any ingredients from the trail mix that you don’t want in your cookies. (My kids made me make a few Trail Mix Cookies without cranberries and golden raisins!)

Process shots-- images of the baking agents, oats, coconut, flour, and trail mix all being added

Tips for Trail Mix Cookies

  • Precise measuring: Too much flour will give you dense, cake-like cookies. Spoon the flour into the measuring cup and level it off with the flat edge of a table knife.
  • Slightly underbake: This ensures the soft and chewy texture we all love! Overbaked cookies lose their delicious chewy texture and become less flavorful.
  • Bake on a Silpat® liner: I’ve tested these cookies on parchment paper and with a Silpat silicone liner, and prefer the cookies baked on the liner. The bottoms always end up the best! If you don’t have a liner, parchment paper is still better than nothing.
  • Make ’em pretty: I like to press a few additional baking chips or nuts from the trail mix package on top of the cookies right out of the oven. While this is (of course) completely optional, it makes the cookies beautiful AND ensures you’re getting trail mix in every single bite! 
  • Use old-fashioned oats: It’s important to use old-fashioned instead of quick or steel-cut oats — each type of oat reacts differently in baked recipes.
  • Grab sweetened coconut flakes: You don’t want desiccated coconut or unsweetened coconut. Sweetened coconut adds an additional layer of sweetness to these Trail Mix Cookies — we like ’em sweet!
  • See if your baking agents are fresh by using this quick test!

Process shots of Trail Mix Cookies- images of the dough chilling and then it being rolled out into balls

Trail Mix Cookie Recipe Variations

  • Peanut butter trail mix cookies: Use a chocolate and peanut butter trail mix instead! Or make these delicious Peanut Butter Cookies and add in 1-3/4 cups trail mix (reduce the flour by 1/3 cup).
  • Trail mix cookie bars: Make these Cookie Bars and replace the chocolate chips with trail mix.
  • Monster trail mix cookies: Try out these Monster Cookies and replace the M&M’s with trail mix. Also, for trail mix cookies that are gluten-free, use the monster cookie recipe instead (with certified GF oats!).
  • Oatmeal trail mix cookies: Not sure about the coconut in these? Try out these Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cCookies instead, replacing chocolate chips for trail mix.

Overhead image of the cookies


Trail Mix Cookie Storage

Store fully cooled Trail Mix Cookies at room temperature in an airtight container and use them within three days. We recommend freezing the unbaked dough as opposed to baked cookies, but here are directions for either way:

To freeze baked cookies: Place completely cooled cookies on a baking sheet and freeze until solid. Then place the cookies in freezer bags or plastic containers, layering parchment paper in between each layer. Freeze for up to 3 months. Note there is a slight loss of texture with freezing already-baked cookies.

To freeze unbaked cookies: Place shaped cookie dough balls on a baking sheet and freeze until solid. Place frozen cookie dough balls in a freezer bag or plastic container. When ready to bake, you don’t have to thaw the cookie dough. Simply place the frozen dough onto a baking sheet and bake for 2-3 minutes longer than the recipe indicates.

Up-close overhead image of Trail Mix Cookies

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Trail Mix Cookies

5 from 3 votes
Trail Mix Cookies are a fun and unique twist on oatmeal cookies -- add a generous scoop of your favorite trail mix to the batter and be prepared to have a new favorite cookie recipe!
Print Recipe

Trail Mix Cookies

5 from 3 votes
Trail Mix Cookies are a fun and unique twist on oatmeal cookies -- add a generous scoop of your favorite trail mix to the batter and be prepared to have a new favorite cookie recipe!
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American, Vegetarian
Keyword trail mix cookies
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Chilling Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings 24 cookies
Chelsea Lords
Calories 172kcal
Cost $4.52


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar (or light -- Note 1)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda Note 2
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, optional
  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats Note 3
  • 1-1/4 cup white all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut Note 4
  • 1 cup trail mix Note 5


  • BUTTER AND SUGARS: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (or use a large bowl and a hand mixer), add the room temperature butter (not melted, not softened) and dark brown sugar. Beat at medium speed until light in color, about 1-2 minutes. Add in the egg and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 more minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • BAKING AGENTS: Add in the baking soda and fine sea salt. Mix until just combined, about 20 seconds.
  • FLOUR, OATS, AND COCONUT: Add in the oats, flour, and coconut. Mix until just combined, about 30 seconds.
  • TRAIL MIX: Add in the trail mix and mix until ingredients are JUST combined. Do not overmix or overbeat. Overworking the dough will result in dense cookies. Cover the bowl of dough tightly and chill for 30 minutes.
  • SHAPE TALL COOKIE BALLS: Shape the cookie dough into balls -- a packed 2 tablespoons in size (if you have a food scale: 40 grams). Roll the balls taller rather than wider (see picture). Place them on a plate lined with parchment paper and cover gently with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for another 30-45 minutes. Don't refrigerate for too long. If you're in a rush, freeze the dough balls for about 20-25 minutes.
  • BAKE: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line 2 half-sheet pans with Silpat liners (very important that the trays are lined, so the cookies don't burn on the bottom). Place 6 cookie dough balls per sheet pan (they can spread a good deal!), spacing them with plenty of room. Bake for 9 to 14 minutes (mine always take around 11-12 minutes), remembering they're best slightly underbaked. They should look ever-so-slightly gooey in the center (they harden a bit as they cool) and should be lightly browned around the edges. Remove from the oven (See Note 6 for troubleshooting) and if they're too puffy, bang the sheet pan a few times on the counter to get them to flatten more. Let stand on the cookie sheet for 5-10 more minutes to firm up enough to remove to a wire cooling rack. Right out of the oven you can press a few more chocolate chips or pieces of trail mix in the tops of the cookies if desired.
  • COOL AND ENJOY: Let cookies fully cool and set up before eating; they firm up a lot as they cool! Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. Cookies are best when eaten within 2-3 days.


Recipe Notes

Note 1: Brown sugar: We like dark brown sugar best, but light brown works too. Make sure the sugar is very fresh and very soft! Hard brown sugar won't cream properly.
 Note 2: Baking soda: See if the baking soda is fresh by using this quick test! If baking soda is at all clumpy, press through a fine-mesh sieve first.
Note 3: Old-fashioned oats: Quick or steel-cut oats won't work. Only old-fashioned for this recipe!
Note 4: Coconut: Use sweetened coconut flakes (not desiccated coconut).
Note 5: Trail mix: We've tested these trail mix cookies with a few different varieties of trail mix. "Indulgent Trail Mix" was hands down the favorite with "Mountain Trail Mix" in second place. Feel free to pick out the raisins before measuring out 1 cup if you don't want them in the cookies! Additionally, if the candy pieces are too large, pick those out as well.
Note 6: Trouble-shooting: If the cookies aren't spreading at all, it's likely there was too much flour added, or the dough was overchilled. Pull out of the oven and press down the tops of the cookies with the back of a metal spatula then return to the oven for another 1-3 minutes or until cooked through. If cookies are spreading too much, it's likely too little flour, old baking agents, or dough was not properly chilled. Right out of the oven and working quickly, press the edges inwards with a metal spatula.

Nutrition Facts

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 172kcal | Carbohydrates: 18.2g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 10.5g | Cholesterol: 17.9mg | Sodium: 5.3mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 9.6g

We do our best to provide accurate nutritional analysis for our recipes. Our nutritional data is calculated using a third-party algorithm and may vary, based on individual cooking styles, measurements, and ingredient sizes. Please use this information for comparison purposes and consult a health professional for nutrition guidance as needed.


I love hearing from you when you've made one of my recipes! Tag me on Instagram at @ChelseasMessyApron or leave me a comment below.

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