Almond Flour Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies

Almond Flour Cookies

It’s Day 4 and I’m saving some of the best for last! I discovered these cookies while we were stuck at home during the recent snowstorm and they were a HUGE hit. In fact, my husband said he thinks they’re some of the BEST cookies I’ve ever made, which is a huge compliment since he’s a “cookie guy.”

Like I said, we’ve been experimenting with gluten free and Paleo recipes and I was determined to find a chocolate chip cookie recipe that used almond flour. I took my chances and did a Google search and just happened to come across these on Meaningful Eats, a blog that focuses on gluten free foods. The original recipe doesn’t call for coconut, but I LOVE coconut – the taste, smell – you name it, so I added some unsweetened flakes and was thrilled with how they turned out! But, if you don’t like coconut, you don’t have to use it. Instead, you could add chopped nuts or you could add both!

Okay, so a few tips before you get started. To simplify things, I melt the butter and coconut oil together in the microwave for about a minute. This is especially helpful if your butter is coming straight out of the fridge. The batter seems a bit softer than “normal” cookie dough, but don’t worry, it’s fine. Also, to get the nice little round cookies, I like to use a medium-size melon baller (is that what they’re called?) or small ice cream scoop. And, because these cookies taste best the day of, I bake half a batch and then scoop the rest, freeze them on a cookie sheet and transfer them to a freezer bag. When you’re ready to bake them, just take them out and add a couple minutes to the bake time. I did this and they turned out perfect!

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, softened
  • ¾ cup brown sugar (or coconut palm sugar)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1¼ cups chocolate chips of choice
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes (optional)
  • ⅔ cup toasted walnuts (optional)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (or I used my silpat mat).
  • In a large bowl, cream together the butter, coconut oil and brown sugar. Add the vanilla and eggs, mixing until incorporated.
  • Mix in the baking soda and salt. Add the almond flour, 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition. Fold in the chocolate chips and coconut and/or walnuts with a wooden spoon.
  • Form the dough into tablespoon rounds and place on the lined baking sheet about 3 inches apart. Bake for 11-13 minutes, or until golden brown around edges. (I typically bake them for 11 minutes, but it will depend on your oven).

Enjoy! And, don’t forget to stop by tomorrow for a celebration!

Paleo Waffles – That Taste Good!

Paleo Waffles

Today, marks Day 2 of my “healthy eating-but tastes good” series!

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE waffles – and so does everyone else in my family! Both my husband and I grew up with waffles and our kids have now become waffle converts. I’m not a big pancake person (unless they’re my dad’s which are made in a cast iron pan with lots of butter), but I’ll take a good waffle any day (usually on the weekend with a big ol’ cup of coffee!).

And, just like the Paleo granola I featured in my last post, my husband’s aunt introduced me to these seriously scrumptious Paleo waffles. Originally, a Paleo pancake recipe from The Paleo Mom, she tried them in a waffle iron and they turned out great! The key ingredient in these are plantains, which sounded pretty strange at first, but provide the perfect texture for the waffles. Not every grocery store sells plantains, but I did find them at my local WinCo. Typically, any large grocery store will have them so just call around before you go shopping.

I like to put fruit on anything I can, and these are especially good with fresh or frozen berries. Costco sells a wonderful organic frozen berry mix that I love. Just put some in a bowl and defrost them in the microwave and they’re ready to go. Top it off with a little maple syrup and a side of bacon – and you might become a Paleo waffle convert too!

Ingredients:

  • 2 large green plantains (about 2 cups pureed)
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
  • 1/8 tsp salt (a generous pinch)
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • Coconut cooking spray

Directions:

  • Peel plantains (I find it easier to quarter them before I peel them) and place pieces in your blender or food processor.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients to the blender or food processor and process until it forms a smooth batter (about 1-2 minutes).
  • Spray waffle iron with cooking spray and poor batter into waffle iron.
  • Let cook 4-5 minutes, or until golden brown.
  • Repeat with remaining batter, adding a little more cooking spray as needed.

One batch of batter will typically serve a family of four, however, if you have big eaters or want leftovers (they’re great heated up in the toaster), I would suggest making two batches.

Enjoy!

AMAZING Paleo Granola

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A few things before I tell you about this amazing recipe! First, considering that this isn’t a “foodie” blog, I find it funny that my most consistently viewed post continues to be my “Easy Peasy” Chicken Enchilada recipe thanks to Bembu – I’m forever grateful! Second, I LOVE food – all kinds, so I’m thrilled to have an outlet to share that love; and lastly, I regained my love for food and cooking when I got sober, which is truly a gift in my mind. While I don’t focus on writing about food, it’s always on my mind and once in awhile I’ll come across some recipes that I MUST share!

So, this week I’ve decided to change things up and do a little “healthy eating, but still tastes good” themed week of posts. And, on Friday I’ll end the week with a not-so-healthy look at my very favorite treat in honor of a special day. So, just roll with it and hopefully you’ll get something out of it along the way!

Okay, so onward to Paleo Granola. Please, please don’t let the name scare you away! I know the whole “Paleo” thing has been all the rage lately, and to be honest, I was a little skeptical at first. However, a number of family members and friends have had GREAT success with the Paleo lifestyle – and, really, that’s what it is – a lifestyle. While I admire those who can do strictly Paleo, I’m afraid that I enjoy a few non-Paleo items just too much. And, really, I already gave up alcohol, so in many ways I feel like I’ve done my “duty” in the area of giving up things for health-related reasons – at least, that’s the excuse I’m using for now! But, that still doesn’t mean I won’t incorporate some yummy recipes into our daily living.

Recently, we were visiting my husband’s aunt and uncle, who practice a Paleo lifestyle, and his aunt had made this wonderful – seriously-out-of-this-world granola. Disclaimer: I could live off of Greek yogurt, fruit and granola. I’m pretty sure I’ve had every variety of granola out there (hello, my parents were hippies!) and this was the BEST. Turns out it’s Paleo and comes from Stacy at Paleo Parents (oh, and my kids love it!). I prefer mine over plain Greek yogurt with a little honey and fruit, but you can eat it however you like – right out of the container it great too!

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Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 C sliced almonds
  • 1 1/2 C unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 C walnuts, finely chopped or pureed
  • 1 C macadamia nuts, finely chopped or pureed
  • 1 C dried cranberries
  • 1/2 C fresh dates, diced
  • 1/2 C coconut oil, melted
  • 1/3 C honey
  • 2 tsp cinnamon

Directions:

  • Combine almonds, coconut flakes, nuts and fruit in a bowl
  • Whisk together oil, honey and cinnamon
  • Pour oil-honey mixture over nuts and fruit and mix, mix well (hands work best)
  • Spread onto a single layer on lightly oiled baking sheet
  • Bake for one hour at 275 degrees, stirring every 15 minutes to prevent burning (this is important or it will have a burnt taste to it)

Enjoy!