Considered by many to be one of the healthiest cookies of all, the classic Oatmeal Cookie offers sustenance to a hungry clan, while also addressing the vital needs of that pervasive sweet tooth. Crispy or chewy, glazed or fruity, and often enjoyed with a glass of milk, oatmeal cookies are versatile and fun to make as well as to eat.
National Oatmeal Cookie Day is the perfect opportunity to celebrate the deliciousness of all cookies, but especially this one made with yummy oats and often juicy raisins.
Invite some friends to join and get started celebrating National Oatmeal Cookie Day in a variety of fun ways!
History National Oatmeal Cookie Day
To understand the history of National Oatmeal Cookie Day, it may be helpful to have a better understanding of the origins of the oatmeal cookie, as well as oats themselves. Because, prior to the oatmeal cookie, there was the oatcake, and prior even to the oatcake was simply oatmeal.
First cultivated thousands of years ago and eaten as a type of porridge, oats are a cereal grain that grows in temperate regions. In fact, oats are the oldest cereal grain that has been cultivated by humans. Filled with fiber and essential nutrients, oats are especially useful to people who have allergies to other grains, such as wheat or corn.
Popular in Scotland since at least the Roman times, traditional Scottish oatcakes have been relied on to deliver quick boosts of energy since the middle ages. In fact, the story goes that soldiers would carry the oatcakes with them during wartime as a quick snack for battle that would last. Sometimes they were described as “little pancakes rather like communion wafers”.
But although they may have been an ancestor, oatcakes were much crispier and less sweet than the oatmeal cookies most people think of today. While recipes today are far more elaborate and tasty, oatmeal cookies are still trusted to supply a healthy dose of fiber and iron to the hungry snacker. Oatmeal is now dressed with the finest of fruits, nuts, candies and spices to reign supreme in cookie jars around the world.
While there are rumors that the first versions of oatmeal cookies originated in England, it’s difficult to find any record of this. The creator of the first oatmeal cookie, or at least the first person who published a recipe for it, seems to have been Fannie Merrit Farmer in 1896 in the United States. Farmer was the principal of the Boston Cooking School and her original recipe, which appeared in the Boston Cooking School Cookbook, used milk and cream, which are not common ingredients for this cookie today.
Also, this original oatmeal cookie recipe did not actually contain raisins, but the treat developed over time and it wasn’t long before sweet raisins (standard or golden) quickly became a common ingredient. In fact, in the early 1900s, Quaker Oats featured an oatmeal raisin cookie recipe on every box.
National Oatmeal Cookie Day is a fitting tribute to the taste and versatility of oats and a tasty reason to celebrate!
How to Celebrate National Oatmeal Cookie Day
Celebrating National Oatmeal Cookie Day is a great opportunity to enjoy some freshly baked cookies and appreciate everything that they’re about. But this day is also an ideal time to share these delightful treats with friends and family as well as neighbors and coworkers.
Consider these ideas for celebrating National Oatmeal Cookie Day:
Bake Some Oatmeal Cookies
National Oatmeal Cookie Day can certainly be trusted to flood the internet with fresh ideas for baking enthusiasts on how to best serve up the humble oat flake. Oats, butter, flour, eggs, and sugar (both brown sugar and white sugar) are the main ingredients, with a few other items such as vanilla extract, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.
Whether aiming for a basic oatmeal cookie with the standard raisins or getting creative with other ingredients like butterscotch chips or nuts, baking oatmeal cookies at home is a fairly simple task. Whatever option is chosen, don’t forget to bake a double batch so there are enough to pass around to neighbors, coworkers or other friends.
Get Creative With How Oatmeal Cookies are Baked
For an easier option than rolling out each cookie into small balls and baking them individually, try an alternative of making cookie cups by dropping a portion into the bottom of a muffin tin. For a delicious addition, these cookie cups can even be iced with cream cheese frosting once they have cooled.
And for those who are really looking for a time-saver, place the entirety of the cookie dough recipe in a rectangular cake pan and bake the cookies into bars that are easy to cut and serve. These have a consistency that is more like brownies but just as yummy!
One other fun option is to place the oatmeal cookie dough in a flattened round (on parchment paper) in the middle of a cookie sheet. Bake as usual and then slice like a pie to create something similar to an oatmeal cookie scone.
Share Oatmeal Cookies
Whether baking them at home or purchasing from a bakery, National Oatmeal Cookie Day can be best celebrated by sharing with friends, family and other loved ones! Even if it’s simply buying a package of Little Debbie Oatmeal Pies and passing them around.
Say thank-you to the postman, give a bonus to a favorite barista, provide a treat for the kids’ teachers, take some over to a family shelter, or make the bus driver’s day just a bit happier. Spreading cheer with the simple act of giving away a few oatmeal cookies is a great way to make the world a better place. It’s a simple and easy gesture but it can make someone’s day!
Host an National Oatmeal Cookie Day Baking Contest
Coordinate with coworkers at the office to have an oatmeal cookie baking contest. Have interested participants bake up their favorite recipe and bring it to work. Then have a contest with judges to see which one is the favorite. Use the leftover cookies to create a delicious cookie buffet in the breakroom at work. Or, even better, this could also be a great way to earn a bit of money for charity by auctioning off the cookies or having people buy them, bake sale style.
Make a New Twist on a Classic Cookie
Substitute dried cranberries or dried strawberries for raisins, or get even more adventurous with baking oatmeal cookies using these unique ingredients to impress friends and family members who eat them:
- Peanut Butter Oatmeal Blackstrap Molasses Breakfast Cookies
- Coconut Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Skillet Cookies (baked in an iron skillet)
- Molten Lava Caramel Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
- Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Banana Oatmeal Cookies
This day reigns supreme as a genuine celebration of what is considered to be the healthiest cookie of all. So get on board and start celebrating!