I love cookies. I will admit to having eaten entire batches not long after baking them, while forgoing other, more nutritious foods. Not many of us are immune to the sweet, crunchy, chewy qualities of a great cookie, or ten. However, I’ve read in more than a few places that wheat and sugar (aka the building blocks of most cookie recipes) can be more addictive than cocaine and cause intense cravings, among other negative side effects. Google ‘sugar and cocaine’ or ‘wheat as an opiate’ if you don’t believe me!
Maybe you, like me, have already noticed how awful you feel after eating too much sugar or wheat-based junk foods. The foods we consume are strong substances, that can support our health or not. With all the extras that this season brings, it's as important as ever to be aware of what we consume. I'm not going to suggest that you skip all baked goods this month, or quit them all together because that's an entirely unreasonable request.
Instead, try what I’ve been doing and switch up your ingredients- use almond, coconut and/or oat flour in place of wheat. Try some sweeteners that have health benefits like raw honey, molasses and stevia, a natural, calorie-free, plant based sweetener. With a little effort, you can bake a healthier cookie. One that you won’t regret eating an entire batch of, if that’s your style.
These Better Chocolate Chip Cookies are a modification (just a few changes) to the Almond Joy Oatmeal Cookie on runningwithspoons.com (because you can't eat with scissors) by Amanda, a health coach. There's minimal added sugars and plenty of sweet flavor from coconut flakes, dark chocolate chips, honey and pecans. By combining a small amount of glycerine-based stevia, which can have a bitter aftertaste on its own, with a few tablespoons of a very flavorful sweetener, like honey, you get the best of both: a sweet tasting cookie, no bitter aftertaste and no sugar rush/crash/cravings! There's no wheat flour in this gluten-free recipe; instead, I used chewy whole oats and almond flour. While I still wouldn't call these a health food, they are certainly made with many healthy, whole foods. Enjoy!
- ¾ cup whole oats
- ¾ cup almond meal/flour
- ¼ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ dropperful liquid vanilla stevia OR 1-3 tablespoons coconut sugar, to taste
- 2 tablespoons raw honey
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 2 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup dark chocolate chunks/chips
- ¼ cup toasted pecan pieces
Combine the first 5 dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
In another bowl, whisk the egg, then whisk in the melted (but not too hot, you don’t want to cook the eggs!) coconut oil, vanilla, honey and stevia OR coconut sugar.
Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture and mix to combine. Fold in the chocolate chips and pecan pieces.
Pre-heat oven to 350 and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
I used a 1 tablespoon scoop, then flattened each half moon of dough with my hand.
Bake for 9-13 minutes, until the cookies are starting to brown around the edges, and set in the middle. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack.