Friday, February 3, 2012

Low-Fat, No Sugar, Still Delicious Oat Breakfast Cookies

I know, I know. No sugar? No butter?! Is this even Rush Slowly??? Yes. Sometimes you reach the point in your life where you realize that baking two cakes in a week (and then eating chocolate cake for breakfast) isn't going to make you look great in your little black retro swimsuit on your trip to Vegas next weekend (!!!). So. You go to the gym. You bake something mostly healthy, with no eggs, no butter, minimal but good-for-you fats, and very little sugar (but still with a healthy dose of chocolate to give your morning a boost).

And you have a slightly smaller slice of dark chocolate cake with creamy coconut chocolate frosting after dinner. I really like cake.

I'll admit, I cheated a bit on these by using some home-made apple sauce that definitely had some brown sugar and maple syrup in it... but I think it would be just as good and even better for you with plain 'sauce.  I was inspired by a recipe I found via pinterest, of course. But I yummed it up a bit more.

These are loaded with protein and good for you nutrients & even healthy fats. You won't be hungry five minutes after leaving the house. Yeah, there's some chocolate, which probably won't help you drop 2 dress sizes in a week. But chocolate triggers the release of endorphins, which we all need in the morning. So. You'll be happier, even if your skirt is still a bit tight.

I've been trying to replace some of the fats in my baking with coconut oil of late because, despite being a saturated fat, coconut oil is actually good for you!  Studies have shown that it  promotes heart health & boosts your metabolism. Your body can burn the fat more efficiently because of the composition of the molecules (they're smaller). PLUS, it also doubles as a fantastic lotion. This I learned in India after I spent a day spreading lye-based cement by hand. My skin was chapped & raw. I went to a small home near the shop we were building & asked for water to rinse the lye off my hands. The sweet woman of the house helped me wash, then motioned that I should wait. She returned with coconut oil & slathered my arms & hands. It felt wonderful.

Sorry. Tangent. The point is, coconut oil is good for you. It's a bit more expensive, but so are visits to the doctor.

Oat Breakfast Cookies
2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
3/4 cups shredded coconut (mine was toasted)
1/3 cup almond meal (blanched almonds ground in a food processor until smooth)
3/4 cup Krusteeze wheat & honey pancake mix
3/4 cup cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/3 cup mixed nuts (I used more almonds)
2/3 cup dried fruit (I used cranberries)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
dash of ginger
pinch of salt (unless using salted nuts)

3 ripe bananas
2 tblsp canola oil
2 heaping tblsp coconut oil
1/2 cup applesauce
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 tbslp. water
dash of almond extract (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a large cookie sheet.

In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients & stir until evenly combined. If you don't have almond meal (I didn't, either), put 1/4 cup of almonds in a blender or food processor & blend on high until you have a fairly fine powder.

If you have a food processor, the wet ingredients come together in a snap. If not,  a hand mixer, KitchenAid, or Bosch would also work well. Mash bananas thoroughly, then add oils, applesauce, vanilla, water, & almond extract, if you so choose. Whip them together until smooth.

Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until evenly blended. I let my dough sit for a while (while I folded laundry) so the oats could soak up some of the moisture of the wet ingredients. Drop by large spoonful—these are breakfast, remember—onto your lightly greased baking sheet. Bake at 350°F for twenty minutes, or until edges begin to brown and the bottoms of the cookies are light brown & crisp.

I'm already a fan of these! They feel a lot more loving that tossing a Clif bar at your honey on a rushed morning. :)


Katie said...

this looks really tasty, as do your other recipes. Ok, I need help. Whenever I hear of ingredients like coconut oil, almond meal, etc. I gets super intimidated and freeze up. Where do you find these things in the store? For total beginners like me, I am so hopeful that someone will do a grocery shopping post where they give readers a tour of their logic when buying their ingredients.

Anyway, like I said, great recipe! Looks yummy. Your husband is a lucky man.

Kels H.M. said...

Katie, I try not to use ingredients that are totally inaccessible. You can find coconut oil at most supermarkets (it's least expensive at sunflower) and you can replace it with canola oil.

When I find a recipe that I want to try but might not have the ingredients, I always google replacements, which have sometimes had even better results!

A grocery shopping post would be interesting... I'll have to think about that. Usually, I find a few key ingredients that either look really good or are on sale, then figure out what I can cook up from there.

Kristen said...

Those look fantastic. I see you are doing well :)