Tiny (healthy) morsels

The perfect snack

My husband and I had a lovely evening last night, spending it BBQing with friends, keeping things mellow.

As I often do (knowing I was going to be with friends who share my passion toward whole living), instead of picking up a delicious pre-made dessert from the market, I spent the afternoon creating "healthy" cookies to share. My taste buds are pretty used to eating little goodies made with whole wheat flour, oats, agave nectar and all other natural/whole baking additions, so I enjoy them...but for many, I'm sure my baked goods would probably taste a bit bland and boring (although, last night, I think even the boys enjoyed!). For those of you who want to make a nutrient rich "goodie" to help curb the sweet craving (without the guilt!), I've included my recipe here. No butter, no oil and no eggs! :)

*I use organic products whenever possible

1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cook)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnimon
1 cup plain nonfat yogurt (I use European-style but you can use any plain)
1/2 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup honey (or 1/2 cup if you would like sweeter)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup dried cranberries
3/4 cup dark chocolate chips or semi-sweet

Mix all dry ingredients, except chocolate chips & cranberries, in a large bowl with a wooden spoon.
Mix all wet ingredients in a separate bowl with spoon - yogurt, agave, honey.
Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients.
Add cranberries and chocolate chips, stir.

Drop batter by tablespoon-fulls onto a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake on 350 degrees for 10-12 min. Make sure to not over-bake...they are best when there are just slightly undercooked (which I actually think is the key to almost all extra-yummy baking).

*save energy by turning on oven late in the game...wait until you have prepared both bowls full of ingredients and turn on oven when you are ready to start putting batter onto baking sheet.

Now, keep in mind...I basically make up these recipes (with a little direction from a bunch of "regular" baking recipes I have collected through the years) so these are not "gourmet" by any stretch. They are tasty, nutritious and are great when you just want something a little sweet but without the guilt. The consistency is more of a breakfast-style cookie...similar to a scone but a bit softer and even more dense. Matt enjoys them in the morning with his coffee, and they hit the spot when I need something sweet at the end of the day.

Also, you can add flax seed, almond butter and/or a banana....and even substitute the chocolate chips with walnuts if you want to make it super, duper healthy. I bet you could even add flax oil to the wet ingredients, but I haven't done it yet...

Basically, I just throw in anything that sounds yummy and nutritious. People have always told me that with baking, unlike cooking, you really have to get measurements correct...well, I disagree. When it comes to creating my healthy goodies, I just modify here and there, and it almost always comes out just fine. The consistency might be different and the recipe is always evolving, but they get eaten nonetheless!

Happy Sunday!
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