Vegan Zucchini & Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

January is the season of resolutions and for some, this means trying to live a healthier, happier life, wether that means being more active, eating more plant-based foods or practicing mindfulness. This year, I am trying to be more kind with myself and eat in a way that reflects my values and that makes me feel good. I must admit that I have a real sweet tooth so cutting out sugar isn't really an option, but I try my best to find a happy medium and this is how these cookies came about.


These vegan zucchini and chocolate oatmeal cookies are packed with fibre, are free of refined sugar and are made with only 10 simple ingredients!

Instead of using all-purpose flour, the base for the dough is oat flour. You can actually make it yourself by blitzing oats in a blender for a few seconds. Incredibly easy and it makes these cookies naturally gluten-free. The zucchini packs a healthy dose of nutrients and adds moisture to the dough, while the ground flaxseed has healthy fats, fibre and acts as a binder. The whole thing is sweetened with maple syrup and a touch of cinnamon adds a perfect hint of spice to round the whole thing out.


These little cookies are such a good healthy treat. They have no added fat so they won't turn golden or crispy but that doesn't mean they aren't delicious! They are super tender and chewy and perfectly sweetened. Enjoy with a nice cup of coffee in the morning or as an after dinner snack.








ZUCCHINI & CHOCOLATE OATMEAL COOKIES

Gluten-free

Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 10-12 minutes Servings: 18 cookies


Ingredients:

3 tbsp ground flaxseed (+6 tbsp water to make a flax egg)

2 cups quick oats* (divided)

2/3 cup packed grated zucchini

1/2 cup pure maple syrup

1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips

1-1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 tsp flaky sea salt (optional)


Directions:

1. Preheat your oven to 375 and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. In a small bowl, combine ground flaxseed and water. Mix well and set aside while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

3. To make oat flour, place 1-1/2 cups of oats in a blender, blending on high for 30 seconds to 1 minute until it ressembles the consistency of flour.

4. Place the oat flour in a bowl with baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Whisk to combine & set aside.

5. In a large bowl, add zucchini, maple syrup, vanilla extract and flax egg and mix well to combine. Add your dry ingredients and mix until everything is incorporated. Fold in chocolate chips & remaining 1/2 cup of oats.

6. Using a 1.5 tbsp cookie scoop (or just a regular spoon), portion out the cookie dough onto the lined baking sheets. Press the dough down slightly with your fingers to make them a little more flat as the won't really spread once they bake.

7. This step is optional, but I love to sprinkle all of my baked goods with flaky sea salt. It adds a nice crunchy texture, enhances the flavours and makes the cookies that much more special.

8. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the dough springs back when you press it lightly with your finger. They won't really brown as they don't have fat in them. Let cool for 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an air-tight container for about a week. Enjoy!


*Note: Oats are usually gluten-free, but if you have an intolerance, it's always best to double-check the packaging just to be sure.

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