Healthy Holiday Cookie Recipes

3 Healthy Holiday Cookie Recipes That Seem Way Too Delicious to Actually Be Good for You

Our holiday dance cards are pretty full these days and that means lots of parties, dinners and get-togethers with our nearest and dearest. Though we may manage to sneak in a green smoothie every once in awhile in between the cocktails and office chocolate and bacon wrapped everything, it isn’t really the time of year when healthy choices win out over cookies for breakfast. Which is totally okay when those cookies are wholesome, super-food filled, gluten-free and vegan friendly. Add these healthy holiday cookie recipes to your usual sweet swap repertoire or make them your go-to potluck treat for the season. Your insides will thank us.

Nut Butter Chunky Chocolate Chip Cookies
Photography by Justin Cathcart. Styled by Sammi Smith.

Nut Butter Chunky Chocolate Chip Cookies
Yield: 12-14 cookies

These cookies are so chewy, nutty and chocolate-y that it’s crazy to think that they don’t have any flour or butter in them. Naturally gluten-free and protein packed from a healthy dose of nut butter, this recipe is also easy to make vegan by substituting a flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax seed + 3 tbsp water) and making sure to use vegan chocolate chips.

Ingredients:
1 cup natural nut butter
½ cup brown sugar or coconut sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
½ cup vegan mini chocolate chips
¼ cup chopped cashews or almonds

Instructions:
-Pre-heat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
-In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs until well combined, then add in the nut butter, baking soda, vanilla and salt.
-Mix until all ingredients are well combined and smooth, then stir in the chocolate chips and chopped nuts.
-Cover and refrigerate the dough for an hour (or save some time and throw them in the freezer for 20) so that it firms up a bit, then spoon out the dough into roughly one tablespoon size portions.
-Roll into a ball and place them on the lined baking sheet, flattening them slightly with the back of a fork. Bake the cookies for 10 minutes (don’t worry if they’re still very soft when you remove them from the oven) and allow to cool.
-Cookies will keep in an airtight container for 5 days.

Raw Peppermint Fudge Cookies
Photography by Justin Cathcart. Styled by Sammi Smith.

Raw Peppermint Fudge Cookies
Yield: 12 cookies

If you’re one of those people who loves roaming the aisles of your neighbourhood health food store as much as most people like to do at, say, Sephora these cookies are your jam. Raw, vegan and superfood-filled they’re totally good for you, and despite the lack of junky ingredients they still manage to taste like a fudgy, minty delight.

Ingredients:
1 cup, pitted, soft Medjool dates
3 tbsp raw cacao powder + extra for decorating
¼ cup cacao nibs (or a mix of cacao nibs and vegan mini chocolate chips)
1 tbsp hemp hearts
½ tsp natural peppermint extract

Instructions:
-Using a food processor fit with an “S” blade, add in the dates and pulse until they form a smooth paste.
-Add in the remaining ingredients and continue to pulse until everything is well combined.
-Scoop out the mixture and wrap in plastic wrap to refrigerate for 20 minutes so that the dough firms up slightly.
-Roll the dough into one inch size balls, then flatten and shape them into a small discs.
-Dust with extra cacao powder to finish.
-Cookies will keep in an airtight container for about one week.

Oatmeal Thumbprint Cookies with Cranberry Raspberry Chia Seed Jam
Photography by Justin Cathcart. Styled by Sammi Smith.

Oatmeal Thumbprint Cookies with Cranberry-Raspberry Chia Seed Jam
Yield: 24-26 cookies

Kind of like your Grandma’s classic oatmeal and thumbprint cookies but vegan, gluten-free and full of health food pantry staples so that you don’t fall into a sugar coma when you accidentally eat a dozen of them. Bonus — the leftover chia seed jam is delicious slathered on some toast, yogurt or oatmeal for breakfast. Yum!

Ingredients:
For the cookies
2 cups gluten-free rolled oats, blended into oat flour (or 1 ½ cups oat flour)
½ cup rolled oats
½ cup almonds, roughly chopped
½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
¼ cup brown sugar or coconut sugar
¼ mixed seeds (sunflower, sesame, pumpkin or hemp hearts) + 2 tbsp chia seeds
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda

1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax meal + 3 tbsp water)
¼ cup nut butter
¼ cup coconut oil, melted
¼ cup honey

For the chia jam
3/4 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
3/4 cup fresh or frozen raspberries
3 tbsp honey
1 tbsp chia seeds
½ tsp vanilla

Instructions:
Begin by making the chia seed jam.

-Add the fruit and honey to a small saucepan and cook on medium heat until the fruit starts to break down and the mixture comes to a simmer, about 5 minutes.
-Add in the chia seeds, lower the heat and allow to cook until the jam thickens, another 5-10 minutes.
-Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla. Set aside until ready to use.

For the cookies, pre-heat oven to 325F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Make the flax egg in a small bowl and set aside so it has time to gel up.

-In a large bowl, add in all dry ingredients and whisk together.
-In a separate bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients, including the flax egg and add to the dry.
-Mix with a spoon or your hands until everything is well combined.
-Spoon out the mixture into heaping tablespoons, roll into a ball and place on the lined baking sheet.
-Press your thumb into the centre of the ball to create a small well and shape the cookie into a circle, then fill each well with a small spoonful of jam.
-Bake for 10 minutes until the cookies are lightly golden and allow to cool.
-Cookies will keep in an airtight container for about one week.