I have to be honest, I usually politely smile and then walk away from ultra healthified cookie recipes. If I’m going to eat a cookie, I’m going to eat a cookie. If you know what I mean.
So when Brynn, a lovely MKC reader, sent me this recipe she created to take chocolate chip oatmeal cookies to a healthier level, I wasn’t sure what to expect. The impetus that finally had me trying them was simply her sweet email description that told me she came up with this recipe so her mom could have a quick, healthy snack to take (right out of the freezer) and stuff in her saddlebags when she went horseback riding. Call me old-fashioned but the whole horseback riding, daughter-making-cookies-for-mom thing screamed Little House on the Praire awesomeness all the way to the kitchen.
I figured if a cookie loaded with quinoa, oatmeal, flax, and other hearty ingredients could win me over, it would prove to be quite revolutionary. Not that I’m against any of those ingredients or healthy food in any way, I’ve just never really dreamed of all of them mooched up in a cookie.
Well, consider this a revolutionary post. These babies are good. Goooooood. Really, really good.
The texture of the baked cookies is super soft and fluffy (especially if you stir with a light hand toward the end of mixing) and I absolutely loved the heartiness of the oats and flax and toasted almonds. Surprisingly I felt like the quinoa, instead of being an in your face ingredient, added to the soft texture, melting into the cookie batter like it was meant to be there (this feature probably depends on how tender one cooks their quinoa so keep that in mind if you make these). Just sweet enough to be a cookie (honey, nothing else) but not so sweet that it discounts all the other healthy ingredients, these cookies are fabulous. We’ve been digging them out of the freezer for lunches and snacks and everything in between (including dragging them out to all-day soccer and wrestling events). Every time I snitch one, I’m even more in love.
I’m not claiming them to be bona fide health food or calorie free or something you should detox with and eat for 30-days straight at every meal…but I am saying that they are a delightful addition to the much-loved cookies of the world. They kind of remind me of a granola bar in cookie form, heavy on the softness and light on the crunch.
Basically, they’re terribly yummy.
When measuring the cooked and cooled quinoa, don't mash and compress it into the measuring cup. Spoon it into the cup and lightly press so it stays fluffy.
Also, keep in mind these cookies freeze amazingly well after being baked and cooled.
- 1 cup solid coconut oil, melted
- 3/4 cup honey
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 1/2 cups cooked and cooled quinoa (cooked only in water, not broth) - see note above
- 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds
- 1/2 cup toasted slivered almonds
- 1/2 cup dried cherries or cranberries
- 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line large, rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper, silpat liners or lightly grease with cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, beat together the oil and honey with an electric mixer. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix until combined. Stir in the flour, salt and baking soda until just combined and a few streaks of dry flour remain. Add the oats, quinoa, flax, chia seeds, almonds, cherries or cranberries and chocolate chips and mix by hand gently (so the dough stays nice and fluffy) until the ingredients are pretty evenly mixed.
- Use a spoon or cookie scoop to scoop the dough into 2-3 tablespoon-sized portions. Bake for 8-10 minutes until the bottoms are browned but the insides are still nice and soft. If you want a thinner cookie (instead of puffy), flatten slightly before baking.
Recipe Source: sent to me by a reader, Brynn A. (she created the recipe to healthify normal chocolate chip cookies and also so her mother has something nutritious and snacky to take while horseback riding)