Christmas Cowboy Cookies in a Jar

With holiday M&M, chocolate chips and oatmeal these Christmas Cowboy Cookies are a sure-fire hit. Baked straight or in a jar for gifting!

Christmas Cowboy Cookies Cooling

Christmas Cowboy Cookies Cooling

Even a cookie can get its 15 minutes of fame.

Cowboy Cookies entered the spotlight in 2000, when Laura Bush’s version beat Tipper Gore’s ginger snaps in the legendary candidates’ wives cookie bake-off.  This particular “Cookie in a Jar” twist was inspired by the blog Bakerella, but, as usual,  I have tweaked it just a bit.  Three grueling tests right before Christmas–ah, the sacrifices bloggers make for quality control 😉

Christmas Cowboy Cookies in a Jar

Christmas Cowboy Cookies in a Jar

I still remember the first time I got a cookie in a jar kit.  It was  a Christmas gift from a coworker who made them for everyone on our team.  It struck me as charming at the time, but it was a couple months later when I really appreciated it.  One (long) Saturday afternoon, my youngest had a new friend over for a playdate that wasn’t going well.  Games were boring, crafts were a bust… and Mom was at a loss.

Finally I remembered the cookie kit and set the girls to work. Flour went flying, dough was snitched and the afternoon was saved!   And we all got some tasty cookies.

Christmas Cowboy Cookies

Christmas Cowboy Cookies–Mmmm

I’ve wanted to try my own ever since and finally (as in, yes, I know yesterday was three days before Christmas) got around to doing it.  These kits will go to my teenage nieces (shhh) as  over-sized stocking stuffers.  Although the girls are beyond the age of problem playdates, I’m pretty sure they can find an occasion that calls for cookies.

Christmas Cookies in a Jar

Christmas Cookies in a Jar Ready to Go

Christmas Cowboy Cookies 

Ingredients (if baking from scratch–jar preparation directions below)

  • 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup cooking oats
  • 1/2 cup m&ms
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup sweetened coconut
  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup pecans (optional–and if they fit)


1.  Stir all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

2.  Add:

  • 1 lightly beaten egg
  • 1/2 cup butter (melted slightly)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

3.  Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients. I broke down and used my fingers to get everything well blended.



4.  Roll the cookie dough into 1 1/2 inch balls, place on a greased or parchment covered baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes in a preheated 350 degree oven.  Bake until slightly golden but do not brown or they will be dry.  The cookies spread quite a bit so don’t overcrowd the cookie sheet.


To prepare the jars:

Start with clean quart-sized canning or other  jars.  (I used old glass mayonnaise jars, which happen to fit standard canning lids)

Layer ingredients, alternating colors.  I settled on the following:

  • Brown sugar mixed with cinnamon
  • White sugar
  • Chocolate chips
  • M & Ms
  • Oatmeal
  • Flour mixed with baking soda, baking powder & salt
  • Coconut
  • I left out the nuts–the kids are lukewarm about them & I was out of space but a different jar might be different

Tamp down each layer tightly or you will run out of space.  Pay special attention around the edge of the glass which is the area that shows.  I found a melon baller worked well for this.  And for a narrow mouthed jar, a canning funnel may make pouring easier.



Cover with a canning lid topped with a 6-7 inch square of cute fabric, then twist canning ring around.


Consider decorating with a bit of matching ribbon.


Still a couple last minute gifts on your gift list?  Well you might just pull this off (I know, ‘cause I just did 😉 )

With holiday M&M, chocolate chips and oatmeal these Christmas Cowboy Cookies are a sure-fire hit. Baked straight or in a jar for gifting!

23 thoughts on “Christmas Cowboy Cookies in a Jar

  1. Ruthie

    Hi. I love these cookies and they are so good. I was wondering if I could link your recipe to my blog. I’m an author of a series called the Second Chance Series. You can visit my website. Basically I want to start a blog on all things cowboy as I am a cowgirl at heart.

    1. Inger Post author

      Hi Ruthie–yes, you can use a photo and brief extract (like title, description) with attribution and a link back. Good luck with your blog!

  2. Pingback: Whole Grain Ginger Chunk Cookies - Art of Natural Living

  3. sarah franks

    Hi! Just wanted to say what an amazing cookie this makes! Thanks so much.
    Really wanted to make these as gifts but worried about buying jars to large (1.4lts instead of 1lts) but they fit wonderfully and loiked beautiful. Thanks so much for sharing….!

    1. Inger Post author

      I am glad this worked out for you! Thanks for the tip on the jar size, since the smaller is quite tight.

    1. Inger Wilkerson

      Merry Christmas Louise! I cooked (too much) last night and I think we’ll be eating leftovers for the next week–which is perfect! Enjoy your special time with your family in Idaho!

  4. Karis

    I love food gifts, especially this version with festive M&Ms, which is sure to please anyone that receives it. Hope you’re having a wonderful Christmas!

  5. Freeda Baker Nichols

    How unique. I’ve never heard of these Christmas Cowboy cookies, but they caught my attention because of my “cowboy” grandsons. They would love these cookies! Merry Christmas, Inger, to you and yours. I really enjoy your blog.

    1. Inger Wilkerson

      Merry Christmas to you too Freeda! I do hope you get to share these cookies with your grandsons at some point (even if you need to change the color of the M &Ms 😉 I am enjoying your blog (and your comments) as well.

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