I realize that I might seem a bit Dr. Jekyll and Mr.Hyde with this blog- One week decadent desserts, the next healthy treats, with almost no in between. That is actually pretty much the way I roll with my diet in real life, too. I love to eat for absolute pleasure and look for rich, gooey sinful treats that are no good if made “low fat” or “low sugar” or my favorite… “low carb.” I eat that way until it catches up with me, then it is time to reign it in and eat a healthier, whole food type diet. Recently, I decided that this oppositional yo-yo approach is not great for me, mentally or physically. So, I am going to work on balance this year, having the occasional decadent treat, but mostly opting for better choices for my health. Enter the “Healthy Oatmeal Banana Chip Cookie.”
I had been seeing a similar recipe pop up on Facebook from time to time. That other recipe pretty much consists of bananas, applesauce, almond milk (a no-no in this nut free home), oats, raisins, and a couple of other ingredients. I decided that the recipe looked flawed to me (too much liquid), and I could recreate it in a yummier (albeit slightly less perfect nutritionally) way. I cut a lot of the liquid, added some soy nut butter (you could use almond or peanut butter), and added a small but satisfying amount of brown sugar and mini-chocolate chips. Voila! A healthy cookie that would make the perfect pre-workout energy/carb boost without breaking the caloric bank. There is no butter in there, and only a minimal amount of brown sugar for flavor. They have a nice dense, chewy texture and are best enjoyed warm. You could reheat them in the toaster oven for a minute before serving.
Begin with 3 very ripe (brown) bananas. Mash those babies up with one egg, a teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 cup dark brown sugar, and 1/4 cup of soy nut butter (or almond or peanut butter!). Stir in 2 cups of old fashioned or rolled oats and 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips. The dough will be wet, but will firm up during baking. Scoop out cookies and spread them out slightly on the parchment, leaving a little bit of space between cookies. They won’t spread much. Bake for 14-16 minutes at 350 degrees on parchment lined baking sheets. Makes 12 large cookies (about 100 calories each) or 24 smaller cookies (50 calories each). The larger ones are great as a breakfast cookie. Serve warm or reheated.
Allergy friendly versions:
You could definitely make these dairy-free by using chocolate chips that contain no dairy ingredients. You could leave out the egg, and I think they would still work, though I have not tested them. At that point, they would be vegan. If you used gluten-free oats, they would (obviously) be gluten free as well. If you are not eating added sugar, feel free to leave out the brown sugar and/or chocolate chips.
Healthy cookies, warm and ready to enjoy!
- 3 overripe bananas
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup soy, sun, almond, or peanut butter
- 2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
- 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Mash bananas in large mixing bowl.
- Stir in egg, vanilla, brown sugar, and "nut" butter.
- Stir in oats and chocolate chips.
- Spoon 12 large cookies or 24 smaller cookies onto parchment paper, spreading batter out slightly until 1/4 inch thick. Batter will be wet, but will firm upon baking.
- Bake for 14-16 minutes or until golden around edges.
- Let cool 5 minutes and serve warm.