Scratch the 'Scotch: Oatmeal Scotchies

I recently got copy of Cookie Love by Mindy Segal and I couldn't wait to start trying out some of her recipes. My desire for some instant gratification narrowed down my recipe choices a bit, as quite a few of her cookies require a prolonged or overnight chilling step. So for my first recipe from the book, I chose Segal's Oatmeal Scotchies -- in large part because you can bake them immediately after making the dough.

Oatmeal scotchies are oatmeal cookies with butterscotch chips -- but Segal's are different from other recipes I've seen because her cookies are super thin and very crisp. I personally have never liked butterscotch chips. The only brand generally available in supermarkets is Nestle butterscotch morsels, and they are basically comprised of sugar, partially hydrogenated oil, and artificial flavor and color. However, the recipe notes that you can substitute shards of homemade toffee for the butterscotch chips, and that sounded a lot more appealing. While it's easy enough to make your own toffee, my instant gratification mindset caused me to just open up a bag of Heath Bits O' Brickle Toffee Bits instead.

Because toasting oats helps bring out their flavor, the first step in the recipe is to toast old-fashioned oats in the oven until they smell like cooked oatmeal. You grind two tablespoons of the toasted oats in a spice grinder and keep the remainder whole. After you prepare the oats, mixing the batter is straightforward. You beat softened butter with sugar, light brown sugar, and dark brown sugar; add an egg and vanilla; and then add all of the dry ingredients (the powdered and whole oats, cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, salt, and toffee bits).

I used a #60 scoop to portion out the dough and I got 60 cookies. I was pleased as punch with the yield, because this means that the recipe produced exactly one quart of dough -- scoops are numbered with the quantity of scoops you get per quart. So if I had used a #50 scoop, I would have gotten exactly 50 cookies instead. Being able to precisely calculate yields for different sizes of cookies is one thing that makes a finicky baker like me very happy.
The cookies spread a lot during baking and they ended up very flat.  In part, this is because the recipe instructs you to pull the cookies out midway through baking and tap the pan against the counter or oven the deflate the cookies; the cookies definitely lost volume as a result.

These are not the most attractive cookies I've ever seen, but they are some of the most delicious. They taste like pure candy. The brown sugar gives them a deep caramel flavor that is enhanced by the toffee bits, and the crisp texture of the cookie is delicate and yet satisfying. I don't think I've ever tasted another cookie quite like it. They were positively addictive. I assume these taste great with good-quality butterscotch chips as well -- but I don't feel the need to ever find out, because I wouldn't change a thing.

Recipe: "Oatmeal Scotchies" from Cookie Love by Mindy Segal, recipe available here at


Louise said…
I'm so glad to see you review something from Cookie Love. I got a copy just before I left for cooking school in Italy and haven't had a chance to bake anything yet. I've flagged several and will add this to my list. Heath Bits sound like a good substitution to me.
I've tried three recipes from the cookbook so far (other posts forthcoming) and this one is my favorite so far... But I'm looking forward to trying many more!
Louise said…
After reading a few Amazon reviews, I was a little concerned about finding some of the ingredients, such as goats milk butter, but was relieved to find it at Wegmans. Actually, I think they had three brands. I excel at cookies. It's definitely my best baking. I found some of her baking techniques, such as the way she measures flour, to be odd, and I'll have to reread the details before baking. But most of her stuff just looks and sounds so good.
Louise said…
I made these today as part of my Christmas cookie baking. They are really tasty. I used Skor bits which I get at my local Mennonite bulk store. I wasn't sure what size scoop to use. I wish I had seen your note first as I made 32 huge cookies. They seem a little greasy to the touch, but the taste is great. Next time I'll probably add a little more flour. I'm not comfortable with the way Mindy Segal measures flour, so I probably erred on the light side. Since she's not using the conventional method, it's too bad she doesn't include weights.