I know people are divided on this — should cookies be healthy?! Doesn’t that defeat the purpose of eating a cookie? If you’re going to eat a cookie, shouldn’t you just eat a big, full-fat, white-flour, and refined-sugar-full cookie?
Well, I think that’s up to you.
Some people believe the body is a temple. Some people believe the body is a temple we bring sacrifices of chocolate and wine to.
Personally, I believe in honoring your cravings and not making any foods off limits (allergies and medical conditions aside) — but if I want something super indulgent, I like to either go out and eat it, or buy one and bring it home. If I want to make a big batch of cookies to keep around the house and eat throughout the week, I want it to be a healthy-ish cookie.
What meets the “healthy-ish” criteria?
Mostly whole grain flours. Even when I used a gluten-free all-purpose flour, I chose an AP flour with a chickpea flour base (Bob’s Red Mill brand… my favorite). I tried to limit starchier and/or flours that are more highly processed (read: stripped of most nutrients).
Refined sugar free. All the cookies I chose are made with either coconut sugar, honey, real maple syrup, or molasses.
All healthy fats. Instead of butter, lard, shortening (even more processed vegetable oils), I used nut butters, olive oil, and coconut oil.
Without further ado, here is a round-up of my top healthy-ish Christmas cookies (and other treats) to make this season.
These are break-up-with-your-boyfriend, who-needs-a-man kind of ultimate pleasure pancakes. I don’t mean to over-hype, but these might be the best pancakes I’ve ever made. (And my pancakes are something I really pride myself on!) Make these on a Sunday morning to get in the holiday spirit, and feel good knowing they’re packed with ingredients that will make you feel good, will keep you full all day long, and won’t give you a nasty sugar crash later.
Ryan and I overzealously doubled this batch (we were very hungry), and despite stuffing ourselves still couldn’t finish each of our shares. I would recommend one batch for two people for a more *comfortable* fullness. You’ll be daydreaming these pancakes for the rest of the day, and bonus: they’ll make your house smell amazing.
Comfortably serves 2 people.
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. peppermint extract
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 1/3 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour (I love Bob’s Red Mill, which has a chickpea flour base… more fiber + protein!)
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 – 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, extracts, oil, and milk until frothy.
Slowly start stirring in the flour, baking powder, and unsweetened cocoa powder. Stir until there are no lumps left, but be careful not to over-mix. Your batter should be thick and almost pudding-like.
Finally, add in the chocolate chips and stir until just combined.
Grease and heat a large griddle. Once hot, spoon your pancake batter on in size of your choice. You’ll know your pancakes are ready to flip when the edges start bubbling — about 2-3 minutes per side.
Serve with real maple syrup, and a dusting more of cocoa powder (optional).