Thursday, February 28, 2008

Gluten Free Oatmeal Apple Snack Cookies

I am very blessed to live in a "real" neighborhood where I actually know and interact with my neighbors. We email and call each other often. We also hang out together on occasion! One such occasion happened last week when we had a rare occurrence of a moon eclipse.

James, Donna, and their son came to hang out with us in our back yard to watch this spectacular event. While it was rather cloudy for most of the show, we did get a few amazing glimpses of the extraordinary celestial experience!

Afterwards we went to the kitchen for some warm oatmeal snack cookies and homemade hot chocolate (my favorite frugal recipe!). Michael asked why I didn't make his favorite chocolate chip cookies, he seems to think those are the only permissible cookies in our house. But these cookies are "grown-up" cookies. They are warm, nutty, sweet, fruity, and (shhh... don't tell anybody) good for you! Packed with fiber, fruit, healthy fats, and lower in sugar, they are truly a very healthy (and delicious!) cookie!

The idea for these cookies came from a recent Southern Living issue. I changed the recipe considerably, not only to make it gluten free, but also very easy. I used my new gluten free master baking mix which worked beautifully in this recipe! I can't wait to make the cookies again. I think next time I'll throw in some chocolate chips for Michael. Poor guy.

I'm so thankful for my neighbors! Donna is one of the most positive people I know and she always makes me feel like I am an expert cook and baker. (You're too nice Donna! You always seem to miss my cooking flops.. I'll invite you over next time!) She and her husband enjoyed these cookies (and that yummy hot chocolate)! I hope you will too!

Gluten Free Oatmeal Apple Snack Cookies

1 1/4 cups Gluten Free Master Baking Mix
2 tsp. pumpkin (or apple) pie spice
1/4 cup neufchatel cheese, softened
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 cups certified gluten free rolled oats
1/3 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cup dried apples, finely chopped (any other dried fruit would work also!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine master mix and pumpkin (or apple) pie spice together. Set aside. Mix neufchatel cheese and brown sugar together at medium speed until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time until well blended. Add vanilla, mixing until blended. Gradually add flour mixture, beating at low speed until blended. In a large bowl mix oats, dried apples and pecans together. By hand, stir oat mixture into cookie batter just until incorporated. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Gently flatten into circles. Bake in batches at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes until golden brown, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Makes around 35 cookies. Let cool slightly on wire racks. Cookies are excellent warm and will be chewy!

Note: These cookies freeze well and can be kept in a tightly sealed container on the counter for several days (if they last that long! Ours only lasted 2 days!!)

For a printer friendly version, click here.

This post is linked to Ricki's Gluten Free Holiday Roundup at Diet, Dessert, and Dogs. 

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