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Thursday, December 6, 2012

Healthy Peanut Butter Cookies

Healthy Dessert Recipes Can Be Tasty Too!

A Little Trick For Making a Healthy Cookie Taste Sweet….

without Adding Empty Calorie Sugar

Believe it or not my healthy cookie recipe actually only has 3 tablespoons of sugar (but they still taste sweet!) The rest of the sweetness comes from all-natural dried apricots. By the way, sometimes I’ll use prunes as a sweetener but because I wanted the peanut butter cookies to look like “regular” colored peanut butter cookies I decided to use sun-colored dried apricots instead of purplish-brown prunes.

Dried apricots are a favorite “health food” among the natural food crowd because they offer a concentrated source of natural fruit sweetness that comes packaged with anti-inflammatory plant-based phytonutrients, tons of antioxidants including vitamin A and beta-carotene plus potassium and phytosterols too.

When using dried apricots as a sweetener for cookies you want to stew them first. You can stew apricots stove top or just do what I do and put the apricots in a cup of water in a microwave-safe dish and microwave on high for about 2 1/2 minutes. Then let the apricots sit in the super hot water for about 5 minutes to soften. Drain the water and the dried apricots are ready to be pureed with the wet ingredients you use in your cookie batter.
Oh! and I buy organic dried apricots because they don’t contain sulfur dioxide. Ok, on with the healthy cookie recipe….

A Yummy Healthy Cookie For the Holidays

Peanut Butter Cookies

Yields 20 Cookies

  • 14 organic dried apricots
  • 1/2 cup peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin coconut oil melted
  • 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons all-natural creamy peanut butter
  • 1 pastured organic egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons white whole wheat flour (such as King Arthur brand)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon unrefined sea salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly oil a baking sheet with extra virgin coconut oil.
  2. Place dried apricots in a microwave-safe dish and cover with 1 cup of water. Heat on high for 2 1/2 minutes. Let apricots sit in hot water for 5 minutes. Drain water and set apricots aside.
  3. Place peanuts in a mini food processor and process into fine “crumbs”. Set aside.
  4. In a high-speed blender, add the apricots, melted extra virgin coconut oil, peanut butter, egg, pure vanilla extract and water. Process on high speed for 1 minute, or until smooth and creamy. Add the brown sugar and process again.
  5. In a medium-sized bowl mix together the flour, baking soda and salt. Stir the wet ingredients in with the dry and mix well. Add in the peanuts and stir to combine.
  6. Measure one tablespoon of batter per cookie and place cookies on prepared baking sheet. Flatten cookies lightly with a fork. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Remove cookies from the oven and set on a rack to cool. Note: Cookies will keep for 3 days in a covered container or freeze for up to one month in a zip-top bag.

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