Cashew Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

IMG_9909

Round One

I found this recipe on My Whole Food Life  and was super excited because it calls for cashew butter.  So many of the Gluten Free cookie recipes that I’ve come across call for peanut butter.   I adore peanut butter, but Brian doesn’t like it…. so I was pretty excited to see what Brian thought about cashew butter.

Another exciting twist to this recipe?  Dates!  I’ve already learned to use dates to make a pie crust (which is freaking awesome!) and brownies (double freaking awesome) but dates to make a caramel sauce?  Eeep!

The first batch of cookies turned out… ummm…. okay.  Brian said that I’d under-baked them, but they were already starting to burn around the edges…. I think they were just destined to be gooey since they don’t spread.  I took some to Mom and she made ‘that face.’  You know the one where your mom is trying to be nice and supportive, but she hates whatever it is?  Yeah, that one.  She loved the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip cookies and I think she was expecting something similar….. sad mommy.

IMG_9926I didn’t want to give up on them. They had potential, but they just weren’t there yet. First of all, the texture was just wrong.  I figured I could fix that by rolling them in sugar and cinnamon.  Yeah, yeah….the original baker wanted to make a sugar-free, gluten-free, egg-free, dairy-free cookie….and that’s good…. but if no one will eat them……The Gluten/Egg/Dairy work-arounds were pretty cool….I wanted to keep those…. it just needed sugar.  So I rolled em in sugar… and then added some sugar and cinnamon to the cashew butter.  Not a ton, but just enough to bring some “cookie” flavor back.

The second problem was that they didn’t spread at all and the middles stayed gooey (or the outside burned).  No problem there… I’d just squish em.  I used a fork to make crosshatch marks and squished them down a bit.

I also added more chocolate chips…. ’cause…. well… I mean, chocolate chips! More is almost always better!

Round Two went much better.  I think if Mom hadn’t tasted Round One she would have been more impressed.  As it was she was a bit hesitant to try Round Two.  I liked them.  They stayed soft and chewy and the cinnamon at sugar made them much more “cookie.”

True, they’re not sugar-free anymore…. I don’t care…. They’re a cookie.

Cashew Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 c Cashew Butter (Recipe HERE)
  • 3 TBSP Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 5 Medjool Dates (pits removed and soaked in water for 30 minutes)
  • 2 T Water
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 tsp Sea Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 c Dark Chocolate Chips
  • Cinnamon & Sugar for rolling the cookie dough

Directions

Preheat oven to 350°

Slice the dates and place them in a bowl of water.  Allow to soak for 30 minutes.  Drain the dates.

In a mini food processor or blender combine the dates, sea salt and 2 tablespoons of water.   Process until the mixture begins to resemble caramel.

In a food processor, mix the cashew butter, brown sugar, cinnamon vanilla and baking powder together.  Add the date-caramel to the cashew butter mixture and pulse a few times.  Finally, add the chocolate chips and pulse a few more times., careful not to chop up all your chips.

Using a 1 inch cookie scoop, drop cookies into the cinnamon/sugar mix and toss to coat.  Place each cookie on a lined baking sheet and gently squish with the tines of a fork.  (Dip the fork into the sugar to keep it from sticking to the cookie.)

Bake for 10-11 minutes.

Wait until the cookies are completely cooled before removing them from the baking sheet.

Store cookies in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. You can also freeze them for longer.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

IMG_9888During the last Gluten Free Living dinner party I said the next dinner party would focus on cookies and candies.

It wasn’t until I started to pull my recipes together for the party that I realized that I haven’t been making cookies very much since I went Gluten Free.  How was that possible?!  I love to bake cookies!  How had I not noticed?  Truth is… I guess I’m just not missing the cookies and candies. Crazy, huh?

So since I haven’t been making many cookies…. (Except for Brian’s Avocado Brownies) I don’t have many tried and true recipes to share at the dinner party.  Oh no!

I hit Pinterest and started searching.  I wanted to avoid having to use flour replacements… don’t get me wrong, I love Cup4Cup and Pamela’s, but I want to try to go as simple as possible.  I want to use “real” ingredients.  Sometimes I feel like the flour replacements are a crutch for Gluten Free Living.  I know I can cook and survive without wheat (or a substitute for wheat).  It just requires learning a little bit more of the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of baking.  What makes a cookie “work”.

Now, I know these are cookies… they’re loaded with sugar… they’re not nutritious…. I’m not fooling myself….. I just want to go with “real” ingredients.

Here’s the first cookie that I came across that looked yummy and didn’t require fake sugar or a flour replacement.

IMG_9873I love them!  Brian’s not super impressed (he doesn’t like peanut butter), but admits that they do “look” like real cookies.  Stored in an airtight container, four days later, they are still soft and chewy.  Its been a real struggle to not eat them all!  I’m trying to ration them.

I found the recipe on Averie Cooks.  I made a couple of tiny changes from her recipe, but nothing that I think would make a big difference, I’m just noting that you could do it either way and you should be fine.

  • I used crunchy peanut butter (Jiff) instead of smooth.  Just a personal preference.  Averie did say not to use homemade peanut butter.
  • I used a 2-inch cookie scoop and ended up with 2 1/2 dozen cookies (or would have, if I hadn’t eaten several cookies raw….. Yes, I know that’s bad and I’m sure to die from salmonella poisioning… I’m okay with that.)
  • I didn’t use parchment paper or grease the cookie sheet.  They came off the pan just fine.

 Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies 

Ingredients

1 c. Peanut Butter
1 c. Light Brown Sugar, packed
1 Large Egg
1 TBSP Vanilla
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 c. Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Directions

Combine the peanut butter, brown sugar, egg, and vanilla in the bowl of your stand mixer and beat on medium-high speed until well-combined and the sugar is fully incorporated and is mixture is no longer gritty.   Add the baking soda and beat to incorporate.  Stir in the chocolate chips.

Divide dough into two balls, wrap each ball in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Using a 2-inch cookie scoop, drop cookies onto an ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake 8-10 minutes.

Remove cookies from the baking sheet and allow to cool before storing in an airtight container.

——–

Cookies will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 4 months. Unbaked cookie dough can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 4 months.