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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Breakfast Cookies

Do you often grab a granola bar or cereal bar for a breakfast on the go?

Well I have news for you: most of these products are no better for you than a standard cookie. They also are unlikely to keep you fueled for long since they are generally full of sugar, and low in protein and fibre.

So why not chow down on an actual cookie that tastes better than anything you can buy and is chock-full of nutrition? These are not only delicious and super healthy, they are ridiculously easy to make since all you have to do is throw everything into your food processor.

I chose to make them with tahini (sesame seed paste) because I love it and it is full of solid nutrition (iron, folate, calcium, vitamin A, magnesium, potassium, zinc), but you can sub any nut or seed butter. If you want it nut/seed free, use soynut or pea butter instead.

These are wheat/gluten free - if you ensure you are using gluten-free oats, and can be made vegan by replacing the egg whites with chia egg whites (instructions below).

You can use regular sugar, if you want, but I would cut it down to 1/2 cup, if you do. I recommend using an alternative sweetener such as Splenda, stevia or xylitol.

The final product is sweet, delicious and satisfying, packed with protein, fibre and healthy fats.

Customize them any way you like with the optional add-ins. Just be aware that even unsweetened dried fruit is high in sugars and adding in nuts/seeds increases the fat/calorie content.

They are perfect as a breakfast treat on the go, as a post-workout snack, or an after-school snack for the kids.

2 cups oat flour (made in food processor)
1/2 cup ground flax seeds
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup tahini (or other nut/seed butter)
Splenda, stevia, xylitol, etc. to make equivalent of 1 cup of sugar
2 large, ripe bananas
1 tsp vanilla extract
4 egg whites (or chia egg whites)*
1/2 cup large flake oats

Start by making the oat flour in the food processor. When oats are fully processed, add in all other ingredients except for the 1/2 cup large flake oats. Process until dough forms. Add oats and pulse a few times to combine. Stir in any desired add-in ingredients. Drop massive spoonfuls on non-stick baking sheet and bake at 350F for 14 minutes. Cool and then remove from baking sheet. Makes 14 cookies. For a quick breakfast, store cookies in the freezer and take out the night before to defrost.

*Chia egg white: replace the 4 egg whites by mixing 2 tsp of ground chia seeds and 1/4 cup of water in a small bowl. Let stand 2 minutes and then whisk until it is the consistency of egg white.

Suggested add-ins: 2 tbls walnuts, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds or cacao nibs. 1/4 cup raisins, chopped dates, dried apricots, dried cranberries, goji berries, cherries or blueberries.