Friday, January 9, 2009

Chocolate Chip Granola Cookies (Gluten Free, Casein Free, Soy Free)

One of the joys of cooking on winter evenings in my kitchen is the fact that no matter how delicious the cookies are, you WILL NOT get a decent picture of them. The lack of good light seems to do that.

So therefore you get a picture of a squirrel in the quaint seaside town of Beaufort, NC. The squirrel says the cookies are very good, and quite healthy and you need to try them even without a picture!

Actually, these cookies look very similar to how mine turned out, so if you really need a picture, there you go.

These cookies are actually a revision of Heidi's cookies. I added an egg and a small amount of natural sweeteners and I varied the fiber and bulk of the cookie.

The past few weeks I have been following a low-carb diet to try to lose some weight and lower my blood pressure. I am not completely sure of the actual carb count of these cookies, but I know they contain a LOT of natural fiber, and other than a few tablespoons of honey and natural sugar from the bananas, they are extremely healthy for you.

Ground flax seeds are a great source of protein, omega 3 fatty acids, natural fiber, and B vitamins. Quinoa also provides additional protein, natural fiber, and a high amount of nutrients such an manganese, magnesium, and iron. Blackstrap molasses also adds potassium, manganese, magnesium, and calcium! These cookies are really an oasis of good nutrition!

I LOVE how they turned out! I have been eating these cookies as my mid-morning snack all week and they are just delicious! If you have a chocolate craving, these cookies will hit the spot. For the chocolate chips I used a 85% cocoa dark chocolate bar cut up into bits. It worked perfectly and I love the texture it added to these cookies.


I was finally able to get a good picture of these cookies, I think you will really enjoy them! They are chewy and delicious!

Chocolate Chip Granola Cookies
(AKA... pretty darn tasty and healthy cookies! No added refined sugar, gluten free, soy free, and casein free)

Wet Ingredients:
2 large ripe bananas, mashed to oblivion! (about 1 cup of mashed bananas)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg
*1/4 cup coconut oil, slightly warmed (will mix better with bananas this way!)
2 tablespoons blackstrap molasses
* 3 tablespoons raw honey (optional -- add if you need additional sweetness)

Dry Ingredients:
*1 cup gluten free rolled oats
*1 cup flaked quinoa
1/3 cup ground flax seeds
1/3 cup unsweetened coconut, finely shredded
1/3 cup almond meal
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder

Possible Add In's:
6 ounces chocolate chips (or a high quality dark chocolate bar cut into pieces)
1/2 cup raisins (optional)
1/2 cup dried cranberries (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl mash bananas, egg, and coconut oil together. Add remaining wet ingredients. Set aside. In another bowl whisk together all dry ingredients, except chocolate chips. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix together until thoroughly combined. Mixture will be thick! Fold in chocolate chips and any other add in's that you would like!

Using a spoon, drop mixture by tablespoons on to a greased cookie sheet (or use a silpat mat or parchment paper). Shape the cookies by hand into circular cookie shapes. (Cookies will NOT spread!)

Bake for 12-14 minutes until cookies are lightly browned. Cool on wire racks and store in a tightly sealed container on the counter (if they last that long!)

Makes approximately 30 (2") cookies.

(Printer-friendly version.)

Carrie's Recipe Notes:

-An estimated carbohydrate count is 10 carbs per cookie, if you make 30 cookies. So these are still relatively high in carbs, but they are a nice naturally sweet treat if you are saving carbs for something special. I may to to make another version of these cookies using shredded zucchini and no oats to see if I can make them with very few carbs.

-If you do not have access to gluten free rolled oats you can use 2 cups of flaked quinoa instead (or vice versa.) You can also use puffed millet for part of the amount of either grain.

- The honey is completely optional. There is enough sweetness with the banana, cinnamon, and chocolate chips that you do not really need additional sweetener, but it also adds a nice texture to the cookie dough if you choose to use it.

- If you do not have coconut oil, I suggest using softened butter or a lightly flavored oil such as extra virgin olive oil, or canola oil. Use the same amount.

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