Sunday, June 23, 2013

Fudgy Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies (vegan)

Flax seeds and oatmeal in a cookie practically make it a health food, right?  Let's go with yes.  Nevermind the sugar or oil...

These cookies may not win any beauty contests, but they taste amazing.  I was pleasantly surprised when I sampled the dough.  And then proceeded to eat a spoonful... or five.  The husband came in the kitchen for a test and promptly walked off with the bowl.  Bonus of vegan cookies - no worries about raw egg in the dough!  Not that it has ever stopped me from eating cookie dough before...

I did manage to bake the cookies, despite our gratuitous sampling, and they turned out wonderfully.  Chocolaty and chewy - what more can you ask for?  I brought them to work, and they were gone in a flash.  I was in a meeting with my boss and she commented how she was still thinking about the cookies and really wanted another.

I wasn't sure a vegan cookie could hold its own in flavor and richness, but these sure did.  It really doesn't matter that there aren't any eggs or butter!  Bake them, you won't regret it!

The original recipe does call for dried fruit of some kind - raisins, cherries, craisins, if you like.  But anytime I have dried fruit in a cookie, I just feel like they are the bits that should be chocolate.  So, mix them in if you want, but it was my preference to go for just chocolate.

**7/22/13 EDIT: If you'd prefer to lower the caloric impact, I recommend using unsweetened applesauce in place of half of the canola oil.  1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce and 1/3 cup canola oil.  It didn't change the texture or flavor, and is much better for you!

Fudgy Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies
(from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar)
Makes ~ 3 dozen cookies

2 cups quick-cooking oats
1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 Tbsp ground flax seeds
2/3 cup nondairy milk (I used almond)
2/3 cup canola oil
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 cup chocolate chips (I used a mix of milk, dark, and mini chocolate chips)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium-size bowl, stir together oats, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat together sugar, flax seeds, and nondairy milk until smooth.  Add the oil and the vanilla and almond extracts and beat until well mixed.  Fold in half of the flour mixture to moisten, then fold in the remaining half.  Just before the mixture is completely combined, fold in the chocolate chips.

For each cookie, drop 2 Tbsp of dough onto the cookie sheet, leaving about 2 inches of space between each cookie.  If desired (for a crisper, less chewy cookie), flatten slightly with fingers.  Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until cookies are firm and risen.  Let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks to complete cooling.  Store in a tightly covered container.


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