Chai spiced oatmeal cookies are classic chewy oatmeal cookies filled with cozy spices like cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and cardamom. It's the perfect cookie to enjoy with a warm mug of coffee or tea!
You're going to love these chai oatmeal cookies because they're chewy, sweet, and buttery, just like classic oatmeal cookies. They're also filled with warm spices like ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom, making them perfect for cooler fall weather.
If you've never had chai before, it's an aromatic tea that's filled with flavorful spices and herbs. Originating in India, it is now a popular hot beverage around the world.
I've made my own chai spice blend that is perfect for this recipe. You're welcome to make your own batch to keep on hand. Or, use a store bought version instead - like this King Arthur Flour Chai Spice.
Ingredients and substitutions
- Unsalted butter - The butter and salt listed in the recipe can be substituted with salted butter if needed.
- Sugars - We're using a combination of granulated sugar and brown sugar in this recipe for optimal texture and flavor. Granulated sugar helps aerate the butter when creaming the two together, which helps lift your cookies as they bake. Brown sugar adds a caramelized, molasses flavor and chewy texture to your cookies.
- Eggs - Room temperature eggs incorporate seamlessly into the dough and add moisture and structure.
- Vanilla extract - Enhances the flavor of your cookies.
- All-purpose flour - Adds structure to your cookies and balances the wet ingredients in the recipe. I haven't tested this recipe with other types of flours, so I can't say for sure how your cookies would turn out with substitutions. To avoid wasting ingredients, I highly suggest searching for a recipe that has been developed with the type of flour you'd like to use.
- Leavening - You'll need baking soda for the proper lift in this recipe. It cannot be substituted with baking powder, the two are not interchangeable.
- Salt - Enhances the flavor of your cookies and balances the sweetness without making your cookies "salty".
- Chai spice blend - Feel free to make your own chai spice blend, try my recipe (chai spice blend), or use a store bought blend. My recipe is made with ginger, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, and black pepper.
- Old fashioned oats - Can be substituted with quick cook oats if that's what you have on hand. Your cookies will have slightly less chewy texture than if using old fashioned oats. I don't recommend using steel cut oats, they're thicker and take longer to cook through.
Cookie tips and tricks
Check out my full post, 10 tips for baking cookies, for my best tips on baking a perfect batch of cookies. Here are my favorites:
- Room temperature ingredients - Room temperature ingredients mix together evenly to create a perfectly mixed dough (without streaks of unmixed ingredients).
- Bring ingredients to room temperature quickly - Slice sticks of butter into small, ½ inch slivers. Small pieces warm up faster than a whole stick. Place eggs into a bowl and cover with very warm tap water. They'll come to room temperature in about ten minutes.
- Properly measure your flour - The most common issue I see in baking is the improper measuring of flour. I highly recommend using a kitchen scale and measuring using the gram measurements in the recipe card. If you don't have a scale, use the spoon and level method. Stir your flour, then spoon gently into a measuring cup and level off the top with a knife.
- Cookie scoop - Use a cookie scoop (I used a medium OXO cookie scoop for this recipe) for perfectly sized, round cookies. Cookie scoops work especially well for a sticky dough like this one.
Quick cook oats vs. old fashioned oats
You may be wondering, can I use quick cook oats instead of old fashioned oats in this recipe? In short - yes, either kind of oats will work. However, you will get different results with each.
The main difference between the two types of oats is that old fashioned oats are more "meaty" and substantial. They add chewiness and texture to your cookies.
Quick cooking oats are powdery and thin. They'll cook into the dough and leave less texture than old fashioned oats.
Your cookies will keep for up to 5 days in a tightly sealed container at room temperature.
To help keep cookies fresh, place a slice of bread in the container with the cookies. While the bread gets stale, the cookies stay soft and fresh. Replace the bread slice as needed.
After receiving reader feedback about this recipe, I've updated this recipe in 2023 to make a chewier, more flavorful cookie! Here are the specific changes I've made:
- Less flour - This allows the other ingredients like chai spices, butter, vanilla, and sugar to shine. Since we're using less flour, it's even more important to chill your dough and allow it to firm up before baking.
- More oats - For a chewier oatmeal cookie.
- More chai spices - For a stronger, more distinct flavor.
- More vanilla extract - For more flavor.
- Slightly more brown sugar - For a chewier cookie with more molasses flavor.
Chai Spiced Oatmeal Cookies
- 1 cup (226 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup (213 g) brown sugar
- ½ cup (99 g) granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups (180 g) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon chai spice blend
- 3 cups (267 g) old fashioned oats
- In a large bowl, add butter and sugars. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat until fluffy, about a minute. Add eggs and vanilla extract. Beat until fluffy, about a minute.
- In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, chai spices, baking soda, and salt. Gradually stir dry ingredients into butter mixture until just combined. Add old fashioned oats and stir until just combined. Dough will feel sticky.
- Cover bowl or wrap dough in wax paper. Chill for at 1 hour (up to 24 hours) in the refrigerator. Refrigerating helps the flavors meld and also creates a firmer, less sticky dough to roll into balls.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Remove dough from refrigerator and scoop dough using a 1.5 tablespoon (medium) scoop or shape by hand into 1.5 inch balls.
- Place cookie dough balls 2 inches apart onto a prepared baking sheet. Bake for about 11-13 minutes, or until lightly browned around edges and across the tops. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Cookies will keep for up to 5 days in a sealed container. To help keep cookies fresh, you can place a slice of bread in the container with the cookies. Replace the bread slice as needed.
- Raw dough will keep in the refrigerator for 3 days. Cookie dough balls (and baked cookies) freeze well, up to 3 months in a sealed plastic container or freezer bag. Allow frozen balls to thaw for up to 10 minutes on the baking sheet before baking, or add 1-2 minutes to the baking time.
- Be sure to check out my 10 tips for baking cookies, based on reader comments and questions!