Presidential Cookie Bake Off, Round 1: Laura Bush’s Texas Governor’s Mansion Cowboy Cookies

Another Presidential Election down and another accurate prediction by Family Circle’s Presidential Cookie Bake Off.  This time, Michelle Obama’s White and Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies took the prize over Ann Romney’s M&M Cookies.

In the spirit of all things election, Justin convinced me I needed to bake cookies from one of the Presidential Cookie Bake Off candidates, past or present.  We put our political alliances aside and  looked at the list of entries dating back to the 1992 election when Hillary Clinton and Barbara Bush kicked off the tradition.  Cookies ranged from oatmeal to chocolate chip to ginger snaps, but we were most intrigued by a recipe that seemed to require dumping just about all of our  baking mix-ins  into a single mixing bowl.

That particular recipe was Laura Bush’s winning entry in 2000 against Tipper Gore with her Texas Governor’s Mansion Cowboy Cookies, which appeared as a classic chocolate chip cookie.  With oats.  And  pecans.  And coconut.  And more chocolate chips.  Here is a look at the recipe and a glance at our joint effort, yes Justin joined me in the kitchen, when trying this winning recipe out for ourselves.


  • cups all-purpose flour (I used whole wheat white flour.)
  • tablespoon baking powder
  • tablespoon baking soda
  • tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups packed light-brown sugar
  • eggs
  • tablespoon vanilla extract
  • cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • cups sweetened flake coconut
  • cups chopped pecans (8 ounces)


  • Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in bowl.
  • In 8-quart bowl, beat butter on medium speed until smooth and creamy, 1 minute. Gradually beat in sugars to combine, 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each. Beat in vanilla.
  • Stir in flour mixture until just combined. Add chocolate chips, oats, coconut and pecans.  

Sorry, Justin, it does not say anything about testing 20 chocolate chips before adding to the mixture.

Adding the mix-ins gave the standing mixer a run for its money.  I had to pull out all the stops and actually use the lid to prevent cookie dough from flying all over the kitchen during the “stir” phase.

Everything IS bigger in Texas.  Including the cookie recipes.

  • For each cookie, drop 1/4 cup dough onto ungreased baking sheets, spacing 3 inches apart.

  • Bake in 350 degree F oven 17 to 20 minutes, until edges are lightly browned; rotate sheets halfway through. Remove cookies to rack to cool. (I baked standard-sized cookies for 10-12 minutes.)

Well, there you have it!  We loved this recipe and will definitely make it again despite Justin’s mind-over-matter aversion to coconut.  It actually reminded me of Potbelly’s oatmeal chocolate chip cookies, which I have never been able to replicate.

Two final notes:

(1) A little detail you should know about this recipe in case it was not obvious with the amount of flour and oats required in the recipe – this makes a lot of cookies.  A LOT of cookies.  It notes around 3 dozen cookies, but the recipe fails to tell you that if you follow the recipe and make standard cookie scooper-sized cookies, you will end up with nearly 90 cookies.  Needless to say, in addition to the  couple dozen cookies we threw in the  freezer, we made our  coworkers pretty happy this week.

(2) You may note that I have declared this Presidential Cookie Bake Off, Round 1.  See what I did there?  Oh yeah, there will be more rounds of  former Presidential cookie submissions.  And what better time to kick this off than now that the cookie baking season is quickly approaching, if it isn’t already in full swing.  I think Justin and I will soon try the other recipe we had our eye on for this round –  the First Lady’s White and Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies.  Judging from the title of the cookie, I’m pretty sure Michele did not pick anything from the garden for this recipe 🙂


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One thought on “Presidential Cookie Bake Off, Round 1: Laura Bush’s Texas Governor’s Mansion Cowboy Cookies

  1. […] since I baked the delicious winning recipe for the Texas Governor’s Mansion Cowboy Cookies back around the election in November, I knew that I would pay tribute to the winner of the election […]

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