Kristen, author of Eating with Purpose, and I met when she moved to Dallas. Like she shares below, we had an instant connection. Kristen has a very clean approach to food and I always learn something from her. Make sure to stop by her blog. You’ll love her unique point of view.
I am so honored to be here at Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free today! Amy is a true pro at making our favorite foods healthier. I knew I had to share something sweet and decadent…. and my Chewy Chocolate Cookies fit the bill!
When Amy and I met, we instantly connected because both of us had experienced a radical health transformation by changing our diet. For me, there was a time period I needed to deal with the root cause of my sugar addiction, so I completely took out all sugar in my diet… besides a little fruit. So during this time I used liquid stevia and xylitol as my sweeteners of choice. After my health improved I was able to add in whole food sweeteners such as: coconut sugar, raw honey, maple syrup, yacon syrup, dates, etc. This cookie recipe can be tailored for those of us on a refined sugar-free lifestyle or a completely sugar-free lifestyle.
Here’s my take on stevia and xylitol:
Stevia – For those of you who aren’t familiar with stevia, it is an herb that is about 300 times sweeter than sugar, but completely sugar-free! KAL brand or NuNaturals brand alcohol-free liquid stevia are my favorites…. no odd flavor or bitter aftertaste. Many powdered stevias are mixed with highly processed bulking agents and they still taste odd, in my opinion. So if you think you are not a fan of stevia, try one more time and pick up one of these brands in their liquid version. If you’ve found one you love, great… I’m sure there are other great brands out there!
Xylitol – Xylitol is not a sugar at all, but a sugar alcohol. It actually has beneficial effects on the metabolism, which is ideal for those of us who want to lose excess body fat. If you are on an anti-candida diet, xylitol actually helps to kill the candida and other harmful pathogens…which can help to get rid of those nasty sugar cravings. The downfall? Well, since xylitol is a sugar alcohol the body processes it differently than regular sugar… meaning it can cause stomach discomfort. The key is to slowly integrate it into your diet and build up your tolerance. The body just needs time to get used to digesting it. Some people are more sensitive than others, so just have one or two cookies and you shouldn’t have a problem. Xylitol sometimes gets a bad reputation because people overdo it and eat 12 cookies in one sitting and then have stomach discomfort. Just like sugar- moderation is key!
For my completely sugar free recipes I like to use liquid stevia and xylitol together, so I get the health benefits of both… and xylitol is kept to a minimum. It also creates the perfect balance of real sugar flavor!
Ideally I like to use the unrefined sweeteners I mentioned above and add in a little stevia and/or xylitol to keep sugar in good proportion. For this recipe you can lessen the xylitol by substituting some with coconut sugar or replace all the xylitol and stevia with the coconut sugar.
Since these cookies are so nutrient dense, one or two are super satisfying…. unlike a regular store-bought cookie that keeps you coming back for more and more….. and more!
Serves: 16 - 18 cookies
- 2 large organic eggs
- 1 cup raw unsalted creamy almond butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 12 drops KAL liquid stevia
- ½ cup xylitol or ¾ cup coconut sugar
- ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons buckwheat flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ cup unsweetened shredded dried coconut (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350°. Line 2 cookie sheets (I use an 18 x 13 cookie sheet) with parchment paper. (I use the same parchment paper later to store them.)
- Beat eggs with an electric-mixer in a medium bowl and then add almond butter, vanilla, apple cider vinegar and liquid stevia. Do not mix the rest of the wet ingredients together.
- Add dry ingredients (xylitol, unsweetened cocoa powder, buckwheat flour, baking soda, sea salt and dried coconut, if you so desire) in a separate large bowl and whisk together.
- Combine the wet and dry ingredients and mix well with an electric-mixer until thoroughly mixed. At first it will seem too dry, but keep mixing and it will form into a thick, fudge-like dough. Finish mixing with a spatula to make sure it is well mixed.
- I use a 1 ½ tablespoon cookie scoop to evenly portion out the dough onto a cookie sheet. Flatten the cookies gently using the back of a spoon or your fingertips.
- Bake for about 12 minutes. The cookies will be soft and moist on the inside. It’s a little hard to tell when they are golden brown because they are already brown…so I tend to cook them about 12 minutes, they will still be gooey and moist on the inside! Cook less when in doubt, they firm up as they cool… do NOT overcook.
- Cool the cookies on a cooling rack for 10-15 minutes.
- After they are completely cooled use parchment paper to separate them and store in a ziplock bag or airtight container.
Kristin Kons is a Certified Natural Food Chef and Holistic Nutrition Coach. She does nutrition segments for the TV health show “Know the Cause.”
Kristin’s blog, Eating with Purpose was born out of her own struggles with multiplying health and weight issues and her relationship with food. Kristin has lost and maintained a 60+ pound weight loss and believes extraordinary health starts in the kitchen!