Ooey Gooey Good-For-You Cookies
This recipe is one of my absolute favorites! While I'm still a sucker for traditional chocolate chip cookies with their buttery, sugary goodness, I make this recipe 10 times more often. These cookies are REALLY delicious and they are good for you! They are just like their name says, ooey, gooey and good for you! They make a great dessert as well as an excellent, guilt-free late afternoon snack. One cookie totally curbs the cravings for sweets and nourishes your body in the process. Double win!
I like to double this recipe; however, I've found that it works better to make two individual batches instead of one giant batch, otherwise, the food processor gets bogged down.
- 1 cup unpitted dates (I usually use Medjool dates but I've also used Piglet Dates and Deglet Noor and both were just as good. So, use whatever kind of pitted dates you can find. Splash of coconut milk
- 1 1/2 cup almond meal/flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- Optional Add-ins
- 1-2 Handfuls of bittersweet or dark chocolate chips. (My favorite is Equal Exchange 70% dark)
- 1-2 Handfuls walnuts
- Any other things you enjoy in cookies
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
- Make sure all dates are pitted, measure 1 cup, packing them down into the cup
- Put 1 cup dates and 1/4 cup almond flour in the food processor fitted with an "s" blade and process until you have a crumbly texture
- Add the remaining 1 1/4 cup almond flour, salt and baking soda and process until well mixed.
- Add in egg and vanilla extract and process until you get a sticky ball that won't be processed anymore in your food processor.
- Add in any of your extra add-ins (my favorite is chocolate chips) and process gently until they are spread throughout the dough
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper
- Take a spoon and make small balls of dough. Set about 1-2 inches apart on the tray (these cookies don't spread out much so you can flatten them some with the spoon, but you don't need to spread them out very far apart.
- Tip: Keep your hands and your spoon wet to keep the dough from sticking to you while you are making cookie balls.
- Bake for 10-14 minutes or until the edges are just slightly golden
- Let cool for 10 minutes or eat immediately because nothing beats a warm, melty cookie :)
- Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 1 week or 1-2 months in the freezer.
Goodies In this Recipe
Dates-Dates are really an incredible superfood! They have high levels of both soluble and insoluble fiber, which is beneficial for intestinal health, digestive health as well as heart health. The nutrients in dates help stimulate the growth of friendly bacteria in the intestines, helping fight stomach illnesses from the flu to cancer. Dates have high levels of bones strengthening minerals including selenium, manganese, copper, and magnesium. Dates also have high levels of iron which can help people with Anemia balance their iron levels resulting in increased energy and strength while decreasing feelings of fatigue and sluggishness. One of dates' most fascinating benefits is the organic sulfur they contain (which is not a very common element in foods). Organic sulfur has been shown to have a positive impact on people suffering from seasonal allergies, making symptoms less noticeable when consumed regularly. So, eat a lot of cookies! :)
Almonds (almond flour)-Almond flour is just ground up almonds so you get all the benefits of almonds in the form of a cookie (or whatever else you use almond flour for). Almonds are low in carbohydrates and high in protein. The protein content of these cookies (due to the almond flour) makes them a great mid-day snack because they do not cause a spike in your blood sugar level, meaning they give you sustained energy, not a high and then a crash like other sweet afternoon treats. One cup of this flour contains about 90 almonds and provides more than 100 percent of the daily requirement for vitamin E. The fat content of almonds is over 65% monounsaturated fat, which is excellent for maintaining healthy cholesterol levels and good overall heart health. A number of scientific studies link almond consumption to reduced risk of coronary heart disease by keeping blood vessels healthy.
Dark Chocolate-If you do add dark chocolate chips to your cookies you are getting some additional health benefits. One gram of dark chocolate (dark chocolate is 70-90% cacao) contains 11 grams of fiber. Dark chocolate also contains vital minerals including iron, magnesium, copper, manganese, potassium, phosphorus, zinc and selenium. Iron and folate are super important to women's health so ladies, eat up! Dark chocolate is also a powerful antioxidant. And, it's CHOCOLATE!
Yes, this is a dessert in taste and concept, but it's a dessert that can double as a snack you can feel good about because of all the good it's doing for your body. Oooey, Gooey and GOOD FOR YOU! :) And just like the kind loaded with refined sugar, these give your house that same, delightful cookie baking smell. Enjoy!