My haystacks recipe is the perfect no-bake cookie combo of sweet, salty, and crunchy!
These are perfect any time you need a quick, tasty treat. Soothe your baking stress with three easy ingredients and no oven time! Plus, you can top them with holiday sprinkles for any holiday (green for St. Patrick’s Day! Red, white, and blue for July 4th!).
Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned baker, this recipe should be on your go-to list along with my all no-bake butterscotch haystacks, church window cookies, Reindeer noses, and Scotcheroos. Grab the kids — these cookies are a family event!
What I Love About This Recipe
- Three ingredients!
- Sweet, salty, and crunch all in one
- Great for bake sales, potlucks, and parties.
- The variations are endless!
- Perfect to make with kids
How To Make Haystacks Recipe
This recipe is so simple that you don’t have to have any cooking experience!
- Start by combining your chocolate and butterscotch chips in a microwave-safe bowl. Melt for 30 seconds, stir, and then continue melting in 15-second intervals until the chocolate is silky.
- Fold in your chow mein noodles (and any extras like nuts, peanut butter, or M&M’s) and drop that luscious, lumpy mixture in spoonfuls onto your cookie sheet. Put them in the fridge to set.
From start to finish, you’re looking at a half-hour, tops!
Haystacks Ingredient Notes
- Three ingredients — and an endless array of variations! My grandmother’s haystack cookies recipe includes only semi-sweet chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, and chow mein noodles. However, these yummy drop cookies have such a versatile flavor that anything goes!
- Chow Mein Noodles – These are the cornerstone of the recipe! They add an amazing flavor with a happy little crunch in every bite. You’re looking for the fried noodles in a can, not lo mein noodles! The two are very different. Chow mein noodles can be found in the Asian section of your supermarket. The brand I buy is La Choy.
- Chocolate – This recipe uses semisweet chocolate chips, but go with your heart! Dark chocolate is equally delicious, and white chocolate brings a lovely light twist. Watch out for the melting times though — the different types of chocolate can have varying melting methods.
- Butterscotch Chips – When melting butterscotch chips in this recipe, it’s important to make sure they don’t burn/scorch. Keep with the 15-second intervals recommended in the recipe. There should be a few chips left unmelted when you do the final stir. Patience is the key to silky smooth melted chocolate!
- Chips vigorously stirred after 45 seconds on high.
- Chips vigorously stirred after additional 15 seconds on high.
- Chips vigorously stirred after 15 seconds more on high.
*** NOTE: You may need more 15-second intervals. Everyone’s microwave cooks a little differently***
You can tweak these to taste anyway you please, but there are a couple of popular add-on ingredients that guarantee a flavor twist that won’t disappoint.
- Peanut Butter: You can simply switch out the butterscotch chips for peanut butter chips! So delicious!
- Marshmallows: If you’ll make haystack cookies with marshmallows, melt your chocolate/candies and then fold chow mein noodles and marshmallows in together.
STORING + FREEZING + MAKE AHEAD
- How Long Can You Keep This In The Fridge? These can be stored in an airtight container for 1 week.
- Can You Freeze This? Yes, they can be frozen and will last for 6 months.
- Make-Ahead: Since there are only three ingredients and two of those ingredients are melted chocolate chips, you can’t prep any of this recipe in advance. But since they store so well, you can always make them well ahead of time and store until you need them!
More No Bake Cookies Recipes
Need more easy cookies like this recipe? Never fear!
- Easy Microwave Fudge
- Buckeye Recipe
- Bourbon Balls
- Reindeer Nutter Butter Treats
- Pretzel Snowmen
- No Bake Peanut Butter Bars.
- 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
- 11 ounces butterscotch chips
- 4 cups crispy chow mein noodles
- Line 2 cookie sheets with waxed paper.
- In a microwave-safe bowl combine the semisweet chocolate chips and the butterscotch chips.
- Cook in the microwave, on high, for 45 seconds. Take the bowl out of the microwave and vigorously stir the chips. If needed, microwave at additional 15-second intervals, stirring (yes, vigorously!) between each interval, until the chips are smooth and melted.
- Add chow mein noodles and gently fold until they're evenly coated.
- Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheet. Place in the fridge, 10-15 minutes, or until cookies are set.
Marlene Blake-Fain says
I’ve learned to make these haystacks while in Home Economics, in the 60s. (Does that date me?) I’ve made them several times since then. For the sake of me, I can’t find that old recipe! So glad you’ve posted it. Thanks 👍🏼
Thanks, Marlene! This is really a classic 🙂
Caryl Woerzd says
I added bits and pieces of cashews.
I made this for Christmas treats and everyone loves them!
Yay! That’s great, Becky! Glad you like these treats 🙂
Nicole Marie says
This recipe is incredible when you add a half cup of peanut butter to the the chocolate/butterscotch mixture and a cup each of roasted peanuts and miniature marshmallows to the chow mein noodles. Absolutely INCREDIBLE!
Thank you for your positive review, Nicole! It’s so easy to make, right? 🙂
Dawn M Berg says
My mom and I made this delicious cookies. We put Spanish peanuts in our. Also you can use white chocolate crash peppermint . Great to make with smaller children.
So glad you enjoyed them, Dawn 🙂
My niece helped me make this! We added pink sprinkles on top!
Have not made these but I wondered if you could use small pretzels instead ? I will try noodles first they sound wonderfu thanks
Hi Lynda! I haven’t tried using pretzels. I’m sorry I can’t be of any help here!? But if you give this a try, let us know how it turns out for you.
I add crushed pretzels and peanuts, delicious
Tricia O'Keane says
Does anyone know how long this will keep outside of the freezer? I’d like to make a batch tonight for Thanksgiving (in 2 days); should I go ahead and freeze them or will they taste okay just being stored in the fridge until then?
My granddaughter and her friend are sleeping over and we are in the process of making these. This is so awesome because they are doing it completely themselves and totally into it…..and dancing to Taylor Swift in the process. Two happy 11 year olds and one happy grandmother. I think I gained some points tonight.
Judi, this honestly makes my day. This is why I write this blog. I love that the recipes I share help to bring joy to families. The picture you described literally brings tears to my eyes! You are a ROCKSTAR grandma. Thank you for sharing the love!!!!!
LYDIA MOLIK says
I have made these cookies but I also added a cup of salted peanuts to the mix. Very tasty.
Hi, Lydia! That sounds awesome! Glad you tried this 🙂
Going to add dried cranberries
Hi, Bernadette! That sounds great! Enjoy! Let us know how it turns out 🙂
Easy/peasy. Lovem’ l have made them butterscotch my favorite i use mixed nuts..
Hey Charlene, Right!? I love easy recipes like this. I love making them butterscotch, too!! <3
Diann Athey says
These look so yummy. We made these back in the day (fifties) with canned potato sticks, crushed them up just a little, used semi-sweet chocolate and a little butter in the melted choc. Really great! I will try yours as soon as I get to the store for the crispy noodles. Thanks for the memory jog. Love your recipes! Diann
Hi, Diann! Yes, potato sticks too! Your version sounds yummy. Let us know how you like crispy noodles. Enjoy! 🙂
Kathy b says
This is my family’s tradition. We make this every year around Christmas. We call it Christmas candy and look forward to it every Christmas season. It’s as if it’s not allowed any other time of the year for my family. Our twist is we add a can of Planter cocktail peanuts. Always a favorite to friends as gifts or to bring as snack to Christmas party.
Hey Kathy! We make it every Christmas too! It’s always a huge favorite. I love the idea of adding the Planters cocktail mix. Thanks so much for sharing that genius tip <3
Wow this recipe just brought me back to my childhood! I can’t wait to make this for my son. Thanks for the recipe Kathleen
Hi Christine! I hope your son enjoys them as much as we did and Still do!! <3
Keeping for holidays ! Love the idea ! Thank you very much !
I ❤️ these cookies ?
Hi Alise! I’m so happy you love these. I do too!