Baby Shower Gift Idea: Lactation Cookie Mix in a Jar

Lactation Cookie Mix in a Jar - perfect gift for nursing moms |

When I had my babies, the gifts I appreciated most were the ones that I could actually use. And when they were homemade, it was even better. So I came up with my own useful, homemade gift idea to give to other moms . . . Lactation Cookie Mix in a Jar.

Many nursing mothers struggle with milk supply issues. Certain foods are lactogenic, meaning they boost milk production and increase supply. Lactation cookies are an easy (and delicious way) to get many of these foods all in one snack. Even those mothers that don’t have supply issues will appreciate the important nutrients in these cookies.

These cookies include a number of lactation-friendly ingredients. Oats are not only super nutritious but frequently used to boost milk production. Nuts, including almonds, support a healthy milk supply. Healthy fats, such as butter and coconut oil, will ensure healthy fats in the mother’s milk. Brewer’s or nutritional yeast contain things like protein and vitamin B12 that help increase milk supply. Flaxseed meal contain essential fatty acids. For more information about lactogenic foods, visit Mobi Motherhood International’s list of foods and herbs that can boost milk supply.

Lactation Cookie Mix in a Jar - great gift for new breastfeeding moms |

Here is a recipe for making your own Lactation Cookie Mix in a Jar. I recommend using organic ingredients as much as possible.


  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1 c. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 c. chocolate chips (semisweet or dark chocolate if you can find it) (optional)
  • 1/2 c. cranberries (optional)
  • 1/4 chopped raw almonds or walnuts (optional)
  • 1-1/2 c. rolled oats
  • 2 Tbsp. flaxseed meal
  • 1 Tbsp. Brewer’s yeast or nutritional yeast

To be added by the recipient:

  • 1/2 cup melted butter (cooled)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla


In a small bowl, combine the flour, sea salt, baking soda and baking powder. In a separate small bowl, combine the rolled oats, flaxseed meal and yeast. Using a quart-size glass Mason jar, layer the ingredients in the following order: brown sugar, white sugar, flour mixture, chocolate chips, cranberries, almonds, and finally the oats mixture.

Include a card with your cookie mix with the following cooking directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine 1/2 cup melted butter (cooled), 1 egg and 1 tsp. vanilla. Add the contents of the cookie jar to the bowl and mix well. Place balls of dough on a greased or parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes.

Lactation Cookies - Great gift for new moms to help them with their milk supply |

Remember that nutritious foods are just one component of a healthy milk supply. Nursing mothers should also drink plenty of water and try to get adequate sleep. Pumping and medications can also be used to increase supply. If you have trouble with milk supply, I highly recommend that you talk to your doctor as well as a qualified lactation consultant. Also, please consult with a doctor before using anything to increase your milk supply.

I struggled with my milk supply with my first child. After months of pumping, medication, a supplemental nursing system, and no sleep, I finally produced just enough milk. I didn’t have a good lactation consultant to tell me about things like lactogenic foods, and I wonder how much it might have changed things. With my second child, I made sure to drink plenty of water and eat healthy foods from the day she was born. I pumped several times in the first few days. And my milk supply was more than adequate. I also had a natural birth (I had an epidural with my first child), and I wonder how much that affected my milk supply.

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38 thoughts on “Baby Shower Gift Idea: Lactation Cookie Mix in a Jar

  1. Yummy recipe but mine didn’t spread hardly at all. What do you think the difference was between what you did and what I did? I got 24 balls from the batter – and included both cranberries and chocolate chips. And does that say 1.5 cups of oats or just 0.5 cup? For some reason I was having a hard time figuring that out (I used 1.5 cups).

    1. Hi Sarah! Did you add 1/2 cup melted butter? If so, maybe try adding a couple of tablespoons more. And try bringing your egg to room temp. If your ingredients are too cold, it is harder for the cookies to spread. Also, try placing your baking sheet closer to the heating element in the oven.
      And the recipe does call for 1.5 cups oats. Thanks for your comment!

      1. Thanks for the tips! I bet more butter would have solved the problem (as it does most problems in life!). Thanks for the great recipe!

  2. CaN these be made with coconut oil instead of butter? I love that they don’t have milk as I’m dairy free for my nursling!

    1. Hi Lauren. I’m not sure about coconut oil. They are similar to an oatmeal cookie so if you have had luck with coconut oil in those, it would probably work for these.

    1. I haven’t tried to freeze them but I have successfully frozen other cookies like them. I just make the dough and roll it into little balls. Freeze on a cookie sheet and then transfer into containers. Hope that helps!

  3. Brewers yeast and nutritional yeast are NOT interchangable! Brewers yeast must be used for these cookies, if you are indeed trying to boost milk production. It is difficult to find, but this is important!

    Also, I had an epidural with both of my kids (they were 8 1/2 & 10 1/2 lbs, respectively. Not really ideal for natural delivery!). With the first, I struggled with supply until I realized I wasn’t drinking enough water. With my second, being a little wiser, I always carried a large reusable bottle of water with me and made sure to refill it 3 times a day. Please don’t insinuate that having an epidural will effect ones milk production. That simply isn’t true.

    1. Hi Laura. Thanks for your comment. You are right about the yeast. Brewers yeast is preferable for boosting milk production. However, nursing moms should definitely talk to their doctors before using anything to boost milk production. I agree that not drinking enough water will definitely have a huge impact on your milk supply!

      I appreciate your comment about the epidural. There is conflicting research about the effects of epidurals and other drugs during delivery on milk production. But I am definitely not trying to dissuade anyone from having an epidural. I think there are many good reasons to have one. I just think women should be informed in case they have a choice. In my case, I had an epidural with my first child and I do think it had an indirect effect on my milk supply. The epidural caused my blood pressure to drop significantly and prolonged my labor to more than 32 hours. Because of the blood pressure issues, I was unable to sleep during the entire 32 hours. Also, I was having trouble pushing because of the loss of feeling so the doctor had to use a vacuum extractor to pull my son out. The extractor ripped off his poor little head twice removing a layer of skin. I believe that the lack of sleep and the pain that my child was in led to an inability to nurse him properly in the first few days. He failed to gain weight in the first few days and my milk supply was always low once it finally came in. Breastfeeding was an exhausting struggle for the first few months. But I stuck with it and we eventually came to a good place. That is just my experience and obviously will not apply to everyone, but I think it’s important to know about the risks.

      1. I chose not to have an epidural due to the fact my cousin had one and when it came time for her to push she couldn’t because she didn’t have any feeling in her lower extremities, and had to be rushed to an emergency C-section, I had my son all natural and even though there were times I didn’t think I would make it, I did and I’d do it all over again, I’d take that pain then the pain you have to deal with when having a C-section, but I do understand there are many cases where women need epidurals and C-sections, I’m just saying if you have a choice and there are no complications with your labor, go natural

        1. Well said, Sophine. I understand that a lot of women don’t want to deal with the pain of childbirth (I didn’t the first time around). And it’s hard to know whether you will suffer from side effects from the epidural because most women handle it just fine. I personally just did not want to risk those side effects again. The (natural) birth of my second child was so much less stressful and the days and weeks following her birth were so wonderful compared to everything I had to deal with after my first child was born (with an epidural). I feel bad for him because I was such a wreck and because breastfeeding was such a struggle.

    1. Good question! I’m not sure. All of the ingredients are shelf stable. And since they have not been cooked yet or anything, I imagine it will last as long as the individual ingredients would. For example, if you are using flour that is close to its expiration date, then the mix would probably expire just as quickly. Assuming everything is fresh, I would say at least 3 or 4 months. With that said, I had some mix in my pantry for a year and I used it with no problem!

    1. It’s hard to give an exact number because it depends on how big you make your scoops! I think I got about 2 dozen medium sized cookies from this.

  4. Hi! I love your idea and plan on making a jar for my sister! I used this recipe when I nursed my youngest son and also made “milk cookies” for nursing friends! It really seemed to help my supply! I saw this comment though and wanted to add some info about the expiration date! Flaxseed meal has a very short shelf life, if not refrigerated is can spoil in 1 week. It does last longer if refrigerated or put in the freezer (1-2 months).

    1. Good point, Angie! So it might be a good idea to leave the flax meal out if you aren’t planning to use the mix relatively soon. Or make sure to refrigerate the whole thing. Thanks!

  5. These were great! I followed the recipe exactly, and the cookies turned out great (and I am NOT a good baker…!) I did end up cooking them for about 14 minutes, but I think I may have made my cookies a little bigger than called for (I did 13 cookies on 2 trays). Hopefully, I measured everything correctly for the “jar” recipe, too! (I made myself a batch while making a gift, too!) Thank you!

  6. This is a great gift idea for moms to be. Just a quick question, my friend is around 17 weeks now. I am visiting her (since she lives a couple hundred miles from me) and probably won’t be able to see her when the baby comes. Can I gift this to her now or will the nutritional value decrease overtime? Or will it taste funky after?

    1. I would suggest that she keep the mix in the refrigerator or freezer. The ingredients are mostly shelf stable but certain ingredients like flax seed really need to be refrigerated if they aren’t going to be used within a few weeks. I can’t imagine the nutritional value or taste would be affected over time.

  7. Note: You must use a wide-mouth jar I guess! I even cut the sugar in half and all the ingredients wouldn’t fit in a regular quart jar. 🙁

  8. I followed the recipe exactly and the mix was too dry to form a dough. Maybe it’s because I added all the optional ingredients? After adding a softened stick of butter it worked and they turned out delicious.

    1. Adding more ingredients can definitely do that. Thanks for pointing that out and for offering a solution!

  9. How can I make birthday cake lactation cookies or a recipe for them. I’ve been searching and nothing.

    1. I have never tried birthday cake cookies. If you find a recipe, please let me know! Thanks.

  10. Tried it for myself and they are delicious my baby boy is in the nicu and I was looking for a recipie to make of my own and I’m going back to work soon wanted to keep the flow going I have a great ?? supply and a freezer full of milk ? defiantly making again !!

  11. Hello! Can I put all the jar ingredients in a ziplock bag to mail? It’s easier than a glass jar to ship. Or does the order of the ingredients matter. Thank you! Fran

    1. That shouldn’t be a problem at all. The order does not matter – I suggest that mostly so it will look pretty.

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