Ranger Cookies

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Ranger Cookies

star rating (34) rate this recipe »
Published prior to 2008

These cookies will knock your socks off with sweetness! Kids will love them with a glass of ice-cold milk; the more "mature" folks can enjoy them with a cup of hot coffee.

Ed Note: I’d heard rumors of "Ranger Cookies" for years, but never really paid enough attention to figure out what they were. Then recently, while idly flipping through the cards in my grandmother’s well-worn wooden recipe box, there they were: Ranger Cookies, carefully written out in her distinctive longhand. Wow, they must have been around longer than I thought! I checked some of my older cookbooks: There they were in the ’60s… in the ’50s… my search petered out after that, due to the dearth of older cookbooks in our library. Suffice it to say, Ranger Cookies have been a part of the American cookie landscape for probably half a century, at least. While many versions of this sweet cookie forego the chocolate chips, my grandmother added them to hers.

1 cup (6 1/4 ounces) vegetable shortening or butter (8 ounces)
1 cup (7 1/2 ounces) brown sugar, firmly packed, light or dark
1 cup (7 ounces) granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 cups (8 1/2 ounces) King Arthur unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup (3 1/2 ounces) old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup (2 1/2 ounces) shredded coconut
1 cup (6 ounces) chocolate chips
3 cups (2 3/8 ounces) crispy rice cereal or cornflakes

Beat together the shortening and sugars, vanilla and salt until fluffy; add the eggs and beat until smooth.

In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and baking soda; add the flour mixture to the shortening mixture and beat until well blended. Stir in the oats, coconut, chips and cereal, mixing just until blended.

Drop the dough by rounded teaspoonfuls onto lightly greased or parchment-lined cookie sheets. Bake the cookies in a preheated 350°F oven for 10 to 12 minutes, or until they're golden brown. Yield: 60 (2- to 2 1/2- inch) cookies.

Nutrition information per serving (1 cookie, 22g): 101 cal, 5g fat, 1g protein, 5g complex carbohydrates, 8g sugar, 1g dietary fiber, 7mg cholesterol, 79mg sodium, 41mg potassium, 9RE vitamin A, 1mg vitamin C, 1mg iron, 8mg calcium, 21mg phosphorus, 2mg caffeine.

This recipe reprinted from The Baking Sheet Newsletter, Vol. XII, No. 4, Spring 2001 issue.


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  • star rating 01/27/2015
  • Karina from NH
  • Made these without the cereal and used tiny twist pretzels instead. Also made them a little larger about 1/4 cup because of the pretzels. FAB! Maybe that makes them cowboy cookies?
    Whether you say ranger or cowboy - this cookie signature is an unlikely combination of both cake and crunch. Your variation with pretzels sounds delish. Happy Baking - Irene@KAF
  • star rating 11/09/2014
  • kush16486 from KAF Community
  • Excellent, dependable and always popular. I halve the recipe because my hand mixer can't handle a full batch - which is too bad because they disappear so quickly.
  • star rating 08/06/2014
  • Melissa from Sunnyvale, Ca
  • Instead of chocolate chips I used cut up gummy orange slices. Huge hit!!! My cookie tasters said it was the best cookie I've made yet. I also used butter and cornflakes. It's a big single recipe for my Kitchen Aid (I mean to the top full) but so worth the mess. Great recipe King Arthur! Thanks!
  • star rating 01/14/2014
  • Vee from ME
  • These cookies just don't live up to my memories of them.
    We hate to disappoint, Vee, but also realize the cookies of our memories are so precious and very personal. Ranger cookies usually make a big batch of cookies, with chocolate chips, some form of cereal or oatmeal and may be either bend-y or crispy depending on the bake time and baker preferences. We hope you'll find the recipe of your fond memories and we're here to help at our baker's hotline (855-371-2253). Happy Baking! Irene@KAF
  • star rating 12/29/2013
  • Stephanie from Clarksville, TN
  • I baked a batch of these cookies and they were great! I was worried after reading all of the negative comments about dryness, but I did not have this issue. I baked only 1/2 the recipe (didn't need 60 cookies!). I also left out the chocolate chips and used cornflakes. I used a medium PC (famous brand) cookie scooper and placed them on a cookie sheet lined with a baking mat. I baked them for 9 minutes just until the bottom and edges were a golden brown. The cookies were very soft and I let them cool a few minutes before transferring them to a wire rack. The final product was soft, chewy and not at all dry. The cookies were just as good the second day, too. I will definitely be making these again. Good luck!
  • star rating 12/07/2013
  • Abi from Maryland
  • This is a fantastic recipe. Everyone loves the cookies and the recipe makes a ton of cookies. I make some without chocolate chips because I think they overpower the amazing flavor of the rest of the cookie but no one else agrees with me. I don't think I'd like raisins in it though I am sure some people would.
  • star rating 11/04/2013
  • Leslie from Lexington, KY
  • These cookies are fantastic!
  • star rating 10/09/2013
  • Jim from
  • This is a very good recipe, but not as good as the one I tweaked from one I found years ago. It is very close, though. Mine has a bit more oil (1/2 C shortening and 3/4 C (1.5 sticks) butter). That makes it a bit easier to mix (esp. with added nuts, below) and they end up crispy on the outside, yet chewy on the inside. Mine has equal baking soda and baking powder, 3/4 tsp each (not an important difference). I use 3/4 C white chocolate chips and 1/2 to 3/4 C macadamia nuts. The extra butter helps when adding the nuts. White chocolate and macadamia nuts go great together. Also with the extra oil I cut the Rice Krispies (never use corn flakes!) to 2.5 C and increase the oats to 1.5 C. (not an important difference really) All of these are small changes, but I suggest you try white chocolate and macadamia nuts if you like them both, and then increase the oil a bit. For those who have tough, hard, cookies: Don't over-bake! They should just be brown around the edges. And don't over-mix! Stir in the flour slowly until 1/2 to 1/3 of it is still unmixed. Then stir in the oats, cereal, coconut, chips, (and nuts). You can mix that in until it is all evenly incorporated and sticks together without worrying about over-mixing the flour and making them tough. Over-mixing flour makes thing tough!
  • star rating 09/27/2013
  • Z.MacDonald from Macungie, Pa.
  • I made these cookies and totally Loved them!! They were a hit! I followed the recipe and used rice krispies cereal.
  • star rating 07/27/2013
  • tht523 from KAF Community
  • Made the recipe exactly as written. I used corn flakes rather than the rice crispies. I thought the texture was great, with a nice, sweet, buttery taste. I would add extra chocolate chips next time -- just my taste because I like chocolate. They would probably be good with raisins as well.
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