This past weekend, Momma, Ben and I joined my Uncle Steve and Auntie Lisa for dinner at their home. We hadn’t seen each other in a while and catching up was past due, so we decided to meet up for dinner. Dinner at my Uncle’s house is always tricky because he and my Auntie aren’t such healthy eaters (we’re talking no fresh produce here). Whenever we go over Mom makes a salad and we attempt to have them try our new recipes. But, as they say, “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” My Uncle will try anything and everything, but my Auntie… not so much.
Mom decided on a compromise: fried organic, free-range chicken, her amazing chopped salad, and mushroom barley “risotto”. I brought over some elvin wraps [and was shocked when my Uncle actually tried them!] and decided to bring a healthier option for a dessert: oatmeal raisin cookies.
I’m a huge fan of oatmeal cookies, so I searched my favorite food blogs far and wide for a legit-looking recipe. I wanted them to be vegan and lower in sugar [because the raisins are super sweet as it is]. When I saw the name “Ultimate” attached to a recipe I knew I had to try it. Of course, because I can’t leave a recipe alone, I made a few modifications: whole wheat instead of gluten-free flour and less sugar and maple syrup. These cookies definitely deserve their title! The roasted walnuts create depth, while the raw sugar adds an incredible crunch to the cookie, rounding out the chewy oatmeal and juicy raisins. They are divine.
A word to the wise: don’t go overboard like I did. Between batter and cookie-tasting, I made myself sick off of this recipe. I’m serious, tasting this batter will make you wonder why you’re even planning to cook them… until you get them warm out of the oven. Then you realize they’re just as good – is it possible they’re even better? – after baking! By the time we made it to my Uncle’s house I literally had a tummy-ache from cookie overload!
In case you need further evidence, let me also say this: my Uncle, Mom, and hubby all loved these [Auntie Lisa didn’t want to try them]. When I told them the cookies were lower in sugar and vegan, my Uncle didn’t believe it [“you mean this doesn’t have egg?” – YEP. Or butter! – “WOW”]. Leftover cookies were fought over [Ben made sure to bring half home].
Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
adapted from Oh She Glows
- 1 1/2 c walnuts, toasted
- 2 c rolled or regular oats – divided
- 3/4 c whole wheat flour
- 1/3 c raw sugar [or brown sugar]
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 c maple syrup
- 1/4 c almond milk
- 3 Tbsp coconut oil –softened
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2/3 c raisins
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Toast the walnuts on the baking sheet for about ten minutes, or until they’re golden [nuts burn quickly, so keep your eye on them!].
Grind the walnuts in a food processor until they’re finely ground.
Add flour, baking soda, 1 cup oats, cinnamon and sugar to the food processor and process until everything is mixed thoroughly [about 30 seconds].
Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and stir in the remaining 1 cup oats.
Stir together the maple syrup, almond milk, vanilla and coconut oil in a small bowl, then add these wet ingredients to the dry.
Fold in the raisins.
[Taste-test the best cookie dough you’ve ever had in your life – don’t worry, it’s vegan!]
Form eighteen large balls of dough onto the cookie sheet and flatten with your palm.
Bake for 10 minutes and no longer. Remove from the oven; let sit on baking sheet for a few minutes before transferring them onto a cookie rack until cool.
Enjoy! Makes 18 large cookies that will rock yo world!
Nutrition Facts [one cookie]:
Calories 175 • Fat 8g • Sodium 50mg • Carbs 22g • Fiber 2.5g • Sugars 10g • Protein 3.7g
[walnuts are high in cals and fat… you could reduce the amount if you like, but they really are what make this cookie…]
Moral of the story: this recipe is going to become a staple in our home [and I reserve the right to tell my family whether they’re vegan or not]!
Happy Hump Day! Make today count!
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