Sometimes, recipes are born out of necessity. Take this one for example: I’ve been on an anti-Candida diet for about 5 months now (it basically involves almost no sugar, no yeast, no refined foods, no alcohol, no fermented foods, very little carbs, no pickles or vinegars etc – no fun!). Although I think I’ve done really well at sticking to it and still feeding myself nourishing and appealing foods, there are times when it’s really hard. Like when it’s Christmas and you just want to bake cookies.
As I’ve been reintroducing a small amount of dates back into my diet, I decided now was the time to try and create a Christmas cookie recipe. This one aligns with my current diet (low sugar and low carb), and I’m pretty delighted with the result!
A note on ingredients
With these Wholesome Holiday Cookies, I think I’ve managed to create a recipe that not only tastes really good (I may be biased) but is naturally grain-free, low in sugar, gluten-free, high in protein and naturally vegan. I’m all about nutrient-dense ingredients so these cookies contain only whole foods. They are full of vitamins, and due to their high protein content they won’t give you a sugar crash!
If you’re a fan of soft, rich cookies with a molasses flavour, these Wholesome Holiday Cookies are for you. They don’t taste like shop-bought confections, but they do taste homemade, delicious and full of love. Plus, you can add my optional simple frosting (recipe below) to make them even more festive! I’m pretty proud of these ones and hope you love them too.
One more note. If you’re using date paste instead of regular dates, use ⅓ cup instead of the ½ cup specified below. This is because date paste is more condensed in sweetness, so you need less of it!
Wholesome Holiday Cookies (vegan + gluten-free)
- 1 heaped tbsp ground flax
- 3 tbsp water
- ¾ cup pecans or almonds
- 1 cup chickpea flour
- 1 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp ground cloves
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- Pinch of salt
- ½ packed cup dates (if using date paste, use ⅓ cup instead)
- ½ cup unmelted coconut oil
- ¼ cup coconut butter/manna
- ⅛ tsp stevia powder
- ⅛ tsp ground cinnamon
- Preheat your oven to 350°F/175°C and line two baking trays with parchment paper.
- Mix the flax and water in a bowl and set aside.
- Blend the pecans/almonds in a blender/food processor until they are flour.
- Add this and all other dry ingredients to a large bowl and mix together.
- Blend the dates in a high-speed blender/food processor until they are broken down into really small pieces.
- Rub them into the dry mixture with your hands.
- Add the coconut oil and flax/water mixture to the dry mixture, and knead until all ingredients are combined and a dough forms.
- Divide the dough into 12 equal balls, and press them down flat into ½cm circles on the baking trays, equally spaced apart.
- If you have cookie stamps, press them into each cookie now to make a pattern.
- Bake the cookies for 13-14 minutes until they are just beginning to brown (they will still be soft), then remove from the oven and leave to rest on the baking tray for 5 minutes.
- Transfer to a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes.
- Heat the coconut butter on your stovetop in a small saucepan on a very low heat, until it becomes runny. Remove from heat.
- Mix in the stevia and cinnamon, and spoon the frosting into an icing bag.
- Use this to decorate your cookies with festive shapes!