A Southern Grace: maximum productivity (and a novica giveaway!)

December 10, 2015

maximum productivity (and a novica giveaway!)


When it's time to buckle down and get serious about cookie production (and by that, I mean simply that December begins), I like to set myself up so that my cookie-making is as efficient as possible.

That means that I'll often make a huge batch of a cookie base, whether it's plain ol' sugar, chocolate chip, chocolate, or oatmeal cookie dough. From that, I can portion out and make several smaller batches with any number of mix-ins, from M&Ms to morsels to dried fruit to bacon bits.

Let your imagination run wild! Monster cookies are a hit with my family, but regular oatmeal scotchies are an all-time favorite for many, including me. Slipping in some porky, salty bacon might shock some palates, but I think everyone will come to appreciate its unique contribution to the mix. One of my best combinations to date has been dried cranberries, white chocolate chips, and a bit of orange zest, but your mileage may vary. Regardless, have fun, and make cookies!

Oh, are you wondering about the giveaway? Good! I'm bestowing upon one lucky reader a $50 gift code to NOVICA, where you can find everything from gorgeous hand-made jewelry to gifts for that special guy in your life. Anyone is eligible! Enter using the widget below, and good luck:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Oatmeal Cookie Extravaganza
(printable recipe)
Makes nearly 4 dozen
  • 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, tightly packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups quick or old-fashioned oats
Add-ins, used separately or in combination:
  • 1 (11-ounce) package butterscotch, cinnamon, or peanut butter morsels
  • 1 (11-ounce) package dark, semi-sweet, or white chocolate morsels
  • 1 (10-ounce) package cinnamon chips
  • 1 (9.9-ounce) package crispy M&Ms
  • 1 (9.9-ounce) package pretzel M&Ms
  • 1 cup crumbled bacon
  • 1-2 cups dried fruit
  • 1-2 cups chopped nuts
Combine flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in small bowl.
Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl.
Gradually beat in flour mixture.
Stir in oats and anywhere from 1-4 cups of add-ins. Chill at least one hour.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Drop cookie dough by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.
Bake for 7 to 8 minutes for chewy cookies or 9 to 10 minutes for crisp cookies.
Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.


Ellen said...

I love sapphires!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Lovely cookies!

I love moonstones...



xenacat1 said...

Amethyst. It just so happens to be my birthstone, but purple's my favorite color anyway.

Angie's Recipes said...

They look fantastic! The one with M&M looks particularly chewy and great.

Laura M. said...

I love emeralds!

Pam said...

Great idea with a huge batch, made into different versions! Bacon, bacon!!! I love pearls!

Ali said...

My favorite is sapphire...my birthstone!

Carolyn Jung said...

Oatmeal cookies are a fave. Hey, it's whole grain, right? So it's good for you. I tell myself that, even when I stuff the dough silly with chocolate chunks or butterscotch chips. ;)

Unknown said...


Cheryl said...

My favorite gemstone is my birthstone Ruby.

Sue/the view from great island said...

Loaded oatmeal cookies are my favorite, and so are opals!

craftyone said...

i like sapphires, emeralds, and rubies.

Marjie said...

I often make oatmeal cookies with craisins, white chips and chopped walnuts. They usually last at least 12 minutes. Around here, even with most of my hungry horde gone, 4 dozen cookies is nothing.

fruitcrmble said...

cookies are way better than kind of gemstone

Big Rigs 'n Lil' Cookies said...

I really should get smart like you and find a way to be more efficient with my baking. Like using this recipe!

Inger @ Art of Natural Living said...

Opal is my birthstone and Ruby my husband's so either of those... Artofnaturalliving (at) live (dot) com.

Kate said...

Mmmmm Baaacccoooonnnn!!!!

sara said...

I have to say rubies.. They're my birth stone!

Beth said...

What an easy way to have a great variety of cookies around the house!

Marcelle said...

This is a terrific versatile recipe :) really great! Oh, and opals please!

Pam said...

I think they are all pretty but especially emeralds and rubies.

Making a huge batch of base cookie dough is brilliant! Why oh why haven't I thought of that!!

Suburban prep said...

Maureen on refflecopter

I love love sapphires.

Unknown said...

yum! i love rubies

- Judith

Julie M. said...

Diamonds for sure! I also love Amethyst as it's my birthstone. I love how versatile these cookies are grace! Perfect for all my picky eaters. :)

Jemma@athomewithjemma said...

Perfect cookies, for a Christmas Cookie exchange!

Katerina said...

These are not simple cookies, they are fully loaded! Love them!

Barbara said...

I love your add-ins, Grace. I had no idea they even made M & M's in pretzel version! Being a bacon addict, I'd like that idea too. You can't squeeze too much more in a cookie...it's loaded, all right.

Manda said...


Unknown said...

My favorite gemstone is peridot--my kids and husband are August babies.

April was in CA now MA said...


Cheri Savory Spoon said...

Love monster cookies, great give away Velva!

Big Rigs 'n Lil' Cookies said...

Sapphire would be my favorite :)

Jenn said...

Late to the party as usual. Having been blessed/cursed with diamond as my birthstone, I adopted aquamarine as an alternate. What luck that my girl is a March birthday!