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Chocolate Icebox Cookies with Oatmeal and Chocolate Chips

Sneak Preview: Keep these slice-and-bake Chocolate Icebox Cookies with oatmeal in the freezer at all times. Optional chocolate chips and pecans add flavor to this easy recipe.

That moment when you’re kids, grandkids, or Eddie Haskell-like neighbor kids start going through your pantry looking for something to eat: Will they find a) a nearly-empty bag of crumbled corn chips, b)some stale saltines, or c) leftover marshmallows from last Christmas?

Maybe you are fully stocked, but I can’t handle the temptation. That list above came from my own pantry.

My solution is to make these rich and fudgy Slice-and-Bake Chocolate Icebox Cookies. Store them in the freezer for up to three months. You’ll be deemed the “baker of the year” when that fresh-baked-cookie aroma permeates the house.

Refrigerator Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies stacked on a plate with milk in the background

Recipe Inspiration

Thanks to my friend Beth P. for putting me on to these cookies many years and memories ago. The subtle almond flavor makes them especially tasty.

This recipe is slightly adapted from a similar recipe in Betty Crocker’s Cooky Book for Chocolate Oatmeal Refrigerator cookies.

Do you secretly eat raw cookie dough? (I’ll never tell.)

This particular cookie tastes kinda like fudge before it’s baked. Although the raw slices appear to contain coconut, it’s actually oatmeal which gives a wonderful chewy texture to the baked cookies.

raw slice and bake chocolate oatmeal refrigerator cookies
The raw cookie dough tastes like fudge. I’m not suggesting you eat the dough, but I thought you would like to know what you’re missing.

Ingredients and Substitutions

  • UNSWEETENED CHOCOLATE: To substitute for this important ingredient, Cooks Illustrated recommends you combine 6 tablespoons of unsweetened powdered cocoa with 2 tablespoons of oil or melted butter. Stir together. I’ve tried it. Works great.
  • BUTTER: I can’t recommend substituting margarine for the butter, but it will probably work. The original recipe called for shortening, so that’s another option.
  • BROWN SUGAR: Be sure to pack your measuring cup to accurately measure brown sugar.
  • EGG: I always bake with “large” eggs.
  • VANILLA AND ALMOND EXTRACT: You don’t need much, but the almond extract is the secret ingredient in this recipe.
  • FLOUR: Bleached or unbleached all-purpose flour is fine.
  • SALT: Kosher salt is what I use, but table salt is a good substitute.
  • OATMEAL: Quick oats or old-fashioned oats are both acceptable. Instant oatmeal with added sugar and flavorings are not suitable.
  • PECANS: These are optional, but not for me. I always toast pecans in any recipe where they won’t be toasted in the baking process. Try toasting nuts in the microwave. It only takes a couple of minutes.
  • MINI CHOCOLATE CHIPS: You don’t have to use the mini chips, but when frozen inside the dough, they are easier to slice than regular chips.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are they called icebox cookies?

Refrigerators used to be called iceboxes before there was electricity. Icebox cookies are the homemade version of slice and bake cookies.

How long can I keep the dough in the freezer?

If you keep them double wrapped, the logs of dough will keep for up to 3 months. Don’t slice them until you are ready to bake.

How can I slice frozen chocolate oatmeal cookies without destroying them?

  1. Don’t substitute regular-sized chocolate chips for the miniature chips. They are REALLY hard to slice.
  2. Use a sharp knife.
  3. Try a serrated knife. Although a cheap serrated knife will make it worse. A Victorinox serrated knife is my favorite. It doesn’t tear cookies or bread if you saw it patiently with a steady hand.
  4. The frozen dough will slice cleaner than refrigerated dough.

How to make Chocolate Icebox Cookies

mixing the brown sugar and butter until fluffy
Beat the room-temperature butter and brown sugar until it is light and fluffy.
adding egg, vanilla extract, and almond extract
Add the egg, vanilla extract, and almond extract.
mixing sugar and butter with egg and extracts
Mix until combined.
adding flour, salt, and baking soda
Add flour, salt, and soda along with chocolate.
mixing in oatmeal, pecans and chocolate chips
Mix well. Stir in oatmeal, pecans, and chips.
making a log of dough
Form dough into two logs. Wrap in wax paper or plastic wrap.
log of cookie dough wrapped to put in the refrigerator or freezer
Chill for at least 4-5 hours or overnight. You can also freeze the log.
slicing raw icebox cookie dough to make cookies
When the dough is firm and hard, slice into 1/4-inch slices and place on a prepared cookie sheet. Bake at 350˚F for 10-12 minutes or until cookie is puffy but still soft in the middle. Do not overcook or cookies will be hard when they cool.
Does the oatmeal make them OK to eat for breakfast?

More Recipes for Oatmeal Lovers

Pinterest Image for Chocolate Oatmeal Icebox Cookies

If you enjoyed this recipe, it would help others and me if you gave it a five-star rating inside the recipe card below. 🤩 No comment required. Thank you.

Hope to see you again soon!

p.s. Questions or suggestions? Please email me: Paula at

Yield: 4 dozen cookies

Slice-and-Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookie Recipe


A chocolate slice-and-bake cookie dough with oatmeal and mini chocolate chips--a long-time family favorite.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes


  • 2 squares unsweetened chocolate (2 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup quick or old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips


  1. Melt chocolate in a microwave for 2 minutes on MEDIUM and set aside to cool.
  2. Mix butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and flavorings and continue to beat. Blend in cooled chocolate. Add flour, soda, and salt. Stir in oats, pecans, and mini chocolate chips.
  3. Mold into a long cylinder and wrap in waxed paper. Refrigerate at least 4-5 hours or overnight.
  4. Cut cookies with a sharp knife into 1/4-inch thick slices. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees F. for 10-12 minutes. It is difficult to tell when they're done because you won't see any browning. The entire cookie should be puffed up but soft in the middle.


DO NOT OVERBAKE or they will be hard when cool. Mine are always done in 10 minutes (when coming out of the fridge), but your oven may be different. Allow an extra minute or two if the cookie dough is frozen.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 164Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 18mgSodium: 81mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 2gSugar: 12gProtein: 2g

Did you make this recipe?

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This recipe is slightly adapted from a similar recipe in Betty Crocker’s Cooky Book.


Friday 2nd of August 2013

Stumbled on this post looking for "oatmeal icebox cookies," but had to leave a comment: I too once got my mom to agree to letting me make a cake for the purpose of eating the batter. When she said yes, I was so surprised I checked that she had understood the request. Later, when I was partway through one cake pan's worth of batter, I felt sick. However, my mom denied having given any such permission.

Lucero De La Tierra

Saturday 15th of September 2012

This recipe looks divine. I wonder if I can make these gluten free and still have the batter hold together similarly. One of my munchkins is gluten intolerant and I've had to make concessions with anything bread or flour related. I'll have to give it a try and let you know :)


Sunday 16th of September 2012

Hi Lucero, I don't even dabble in gluten-free recipes so I have no idea. But if you try it and it works I would love to hear about it.

Meal Plan Mom (Brenda)

Thursday 9th of June 2011

These are definitely going on our "must try this summer" list which is steadily growing longer! I am looking forward to the extra time the kids and I will have to play in the kitchen. Thanks for sharing!


Tuesday 7th of June 2011

Paula, wow! These look like a keeper. I love an easy freezer dough cookie. Have you made these with coconut before? I wonder how they would be with coconut subbed for oatmeal. What a gem that book is!

Tracey @ Kitchen Playground

Tuesday 7th of June 2011

I, too, am known to make a batch of cookies purely so I can eat the raw dough. While I love the baked cookies, the raw dough is even soooo much better! I knew I liked you!!!

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