Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Healthy Banana Cookies

Okay if you've read my blog at all you know that I like to bake and that I am always looking for a good recipe that I can tweak to make healthy so I can continue to enjoy that passion. I found my new favorite! Now I am not talking about an old fashioned milk chocolate chocolate chip cookie with too much butter and white flour in it, albeit delicious cookie here, but I am talking about a hearty, chewy, full of texture, no guilt cookie with really NO sweetener in it! That's right folks no sweetener but somehow I just haven't been able to keep myself away from the plate of them.

These cookies get their sweetness from mashed up banana and finely chopped dates.

I really have come to love dates and figs! You need to look for dates that have no added sugar however. They are plenty sweet all on their own! Don't get the ones all diced up and rolled in sugar to keep them from sticking together.

I had some bananas that I really needed to use up so I went searching for a healthy cookie recipe I could put them in. I did manage to find a pretty decent one but of course I tweaked it enough that I could now call it my own recipe!

Gather up these ingredients:
3 bananas, mashed
2 1/2 cup old fashioned oats (grind up 1 cup of them into a flour)
1/2 cup dates finely chopped
1/3 cup all natural applesauce
1/4 cup Sunbutter, or your favorite nut butter
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. vanilla
dash of salt
optional: handful of raisins or craisins and 1 Tbsp. Agave nectar

Directions: Dump it all into a bowl and mix! (These are my favorite directions of course) Then walk away and let it sit for 15 minutes before baking! This helps the oats absorb some of the liquid.

Helpful Hint for Ground Oats
I have this awesome little mini food processor that I love to use for jobs like this. They are super cheap to buy. I think less than $10 at Wal-Mart, but a coffee grinder will even work if you have nothing else. Another helpful hint for dicing up the very sticky dates is to spray your knife with cooking spray.

Just in case you are wondering I did add those optional ingredients. I just wasn't sure about it being sweet enough so I threw in the agave. I now think they would be awesome with out that. I really only added the raisins and craisins for some color but I will probably add them again next time because they are super delicious and I don't want to mess with the recipe.

Place them on an ungreased cookie sheet by the spoonful. You will bake them at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. I think I got about 25-28 cookies out of the batch. These cookies will not spread out. So if you would like them a little flatter then push them down a bit before you put them in the oven.

They will look nice and golden and be scrumptiously chewy on the inside like this when they are done. But like I said they won't flatten out. They are fat little cookie.

Someone should have been slapping my hand away from the plate because there are only 4 of these left. I didn't really tell the kids a whole lot about them because frankly I didn't want to share. Miles has had several and I have kept my mouth shut about it. However I will be keeping those last 4 to myself. I might hurt someone if they touch them because this morning I discovered and even better way to enjoy them.....

I crumbled it up and put it over my Greek yogurt mixed with one packet Stevia, some cinnamon, sliced almonds, frozen blueberries, and a little agave. Oh my gosh! Is it wrong to eat this for dinner tonight too? Miles will eat at the church since it is Wednesday night and I can feed my kids a bowl of Kix right?? 

Faith would actually eat this but not Evan. He HATES things mixed into his yogurt and since the kid eats everything else I make without complaining I don't push the issue. However, like I said above.......I AM NOT SHARING MY COOKIES! So none for the kids! Maybe if I just have another V8 on the side I can call it good!

P.S. If your name is Marcy and you are my sister then you need to make these cookies ASAP! They completely have your name written all over them!

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