Friday, April 30, 2010

Yummy Chocolate Chip Cookies Loaded with Sneaky Healthy Ingredients

Seems like I've been writing about food a lot. It's not intentional, I just love food! And ever since I bought the sneaky chef recipe books, I've been able to bake again. I hadn't baked in ages because it was too unhealthy. But her sneaky recipes are healthy and delicious, and even more so with my modifications.

I know it seems like you have to buy a lot of specialty ingredients to make these, but I think it's worth it because they're so healthy. Also, they're useful in tons of other healthy, yummy recipes so it's just an investment in transforming your baking and cooking into a healthier routine. And last, you can buy whole wheat flour, wheat germ, oat bran, and almonds from the bulk bins at grocery stores like Raley's, so you could conceivably just buy the amount you need for this recipe, and it won't cost too much.

I recommend doubling or tripling the recipe and freezing the extra batter for later (or bake them all at once and freeze the extra cookies for later. You'll just end up making them again because they're sooooo yummy!)

Light Chocolate Chip cookies (makes 2-4 dozen, depending on how big you make them)

1 cup flour blend (1/3 white flour, 1/3 whole wheat flour, 1/3 wheat germ)

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt (omit if using canned white beans, which are already sodium-laden)

1/4 cup oat bran

4 tblsp unsalted butter, softened

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup white sugar

2 egg whites (her recipe called for 2 egg yolks, but I don't eat egg yolks anymore since they're high in cholesterol. Of course, use whichever you want)

2 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup white navy bean puree (either drain, thoroughly rinse, and puree canned white beans or soak, cook, and puree dried white beans)

1/2 cup plain non-fat yogurt (I just used a whole 6 oz single serving container, which was a little more than 1/2 cup)

1/2 cup (or so) ground almonds (I pulsed slivered almonds in my mini food processor until they were crumbly little bits. Next time I would add even more. This was one of my modifications. Optional)

3/4 cup milk chocolate chips (I used Ghiradelli because it cost only slight more than Nestle [$2.69 vs. $2.04 at Target], but tastes so much better. Original recipe called for 1/2 cup, but that didn't seem like enough to me!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cover 2 baking sheets with wax paper, then spray with cooking spray.

In a bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (remember to omit the salt if using canned beans).

In a separate large bowl, beat together butter and sugars (easiest with an electric mixer). Then beat in everything except the chocolate. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, mix until just combined. Lastly, mix in the chocolate chips.

Drop rounded teaspoonfuls (or bigger, depending on your preference) onto the prepared baking sheets, and flatten with a fork. Bake 12-16 minutes (depending on size of cookies) until golden brown. Let cool on a rack (but make sure to eat one while they're still warm and gooey!)

Nutrition facts (original recipe) per 1 heaping teaspoon-sized cookie: 44 calories, 2g fat, 6g carbs, 3g sugar, 1g protein, 39g sodium, 10g cholesterol, 10mg calcium.

Not bad for home-baked chocolatey goodness!

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