This kids recipe is slightly more advanced than the No-Bake Peanut Butter Granola Cookies, but it’s worth it. These can be messy, if you really let the kids go for it during prep.

Furthermore, you can dress these cookies up or down. The cookies in the photo above were formed into animals by my 4-year-old. She grabbed our fiber cereal box and mini chocolate chips to make a bear, spider and other faces. If you planned ahead, I bet you could come up with cuter designs. As you’ll see at the bottom of the recipe, these can also be turned into professional looking, truffle-like cookies.

No-Bake Chocolate Coconut Cookies

3 1/2 cups of powdered sugar (almost one 16oz box)
3/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder, plus more for dusting
1 can of sweetened condensed milk (14oz)
3 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cup coconut
1/2 cup pecan chips, or very finely chopped pecans (you can buy pecan chips in a bag)

1. Adult prep: Open the condensed milk. Open the bags or boxes (assuming they are new and sealed) of powdered sugar, coconut and pecan chips. Measure vanilla into bowl, if too challenging for the child.
2. Measure the powdered sugar. If you don’t want to use the entire 1lb box or bag, have your child dump the entire box or bag into the bowl. Then have them remove 1/4 cup.
3. Add 3/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa.
4. Stir until combined.
5. Add sweetened condensed milk. It’s helpful to teach your child how to spatula out the remainder in the can.

6. Add the vanilla.
7. Stir the mixture. You can start with a spoon, but it will be come very sticky and a little tough.
8. Add coconut and pecan chips. Stir until you almost have to knead it. If you think your child will enjoy it, let them do it with their hands. I will warn you that this is messy, but we sure laughed a lot.

The dough sticks like crazy to their fingers. But, this kids recipe makes so many little cookies that it won’t matter if you have to wash some down the drain. She called these her monster hands. Her fingers totally disappeared in the dough and I had to spatula it off.

9. Chill the dough for about 30 minutes. Afterward, it will be easier to work with.
10. Roll into small balls. A little goes a long way, so I would suggest about the size of a quarter at the most.
11. Coat balls with unsweetened chocolate. They look fancy in a Tiffany bowl, and are slightly similar to truffles I used to order at La Maison du Chocolat when I lived overseas.

I’m a big fan of recipes that allow kids to let their imaginations run wild. And, I promise, these are delicious. I’ve decided that no-bake cookies are for people like me who love cookie dough and fudge. So, why not let your kids make your favorites for you?

(Speaking of coconut, have a look at a post I wrote about the health benefits of coconut oil.)

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Katie Dillon is the managing editor of La Jolla Mom. She helps readers plan San Diego vacations through her hotel expertise (that stems from living in a Four Seasons hotel) and local connections. Readers have access to exclusive discounts on theme park tickets (like Disneyland and San Diego Zoo) and perks at luxury hotels worldwide through her. She also shares insider tips for visiting major cities worldwide like Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Shanghai that her family has either lived in or visits regularly (or both).

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  1. I love the fun your daughter is having kneading the cookie dough. And those monster face cookie balls are soooo cute.

  2. This looks like fun! Great cooking project for kids (and adults too). Plus, the cookies sound delicious!