Grandma Dunkley’s Oatmeal Cookies


“I remember my Great Grandma Dunkley making these oatmeal cookies while having us over for tea. She would sit us down at her little table and serve us fresh biscuits and jam. She would be in the kitchen, apron covered in flour, hunched over the counter rolling these cookies (the thinner the better) and cutting them with the same small antique glass cups she would serve fruit juice in. My mom would constantly ask “can I give you a hand Marge?” to which she would respond, “Oh Lori, now don’t you even dream of it!” She was truly a gracious host.

Now the recipe says that you can make a date filling and stick them together like Oreos, but I have no real memory of that ever happening. All I remember is that every Christmas, there would be a big tin of these cookies, still cold from the freezer. I would eat so many that I would lose count, they were the perfect bit-size-melt-in-your-mouth-delicious cookies.”

By: Colby Deighton, Food Program Intern

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Makes 48 cookies


3 cups oats
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup flour
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract


1) Preheat oven to 400F.

2) Grind oats finely in food processor or roll oats with a rolling pin (that’s how Margie did it).

3) In a large bowl, mix sugar, butter (at room temperature), flour, ground oats, baking soda and salt. Combine with pastry knife or hands until dense batter is formed.

4) Add egg and vanilla extract, mix until consistent.

5) Add flour until dough is stiff enough to handle (roughly 1/2 to 1 cup).

6) Roll dough out thin on a well-floured surface, cut with cookie cutter or a small cup (that’s how Margie did it). Aim for bite-sized cookies!

7) Place floured cookies on a baking sheet.

8) Bake for 7 minutes or until the edges just start to brown.

9) Let cool on a rack.

10) Enjoy immediately or serve chilled with a glass of milk!

Click here for a printable PDF

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