I love using quinoa in cookies, because they add a lighter, slightly crunchy texture along with protein and minerals to make a really healthy treat.
Lavender brings a really unique flavor to food, and is one that doesn’t get used often. If you see some at your local farmer’s market, or have some growing in your garden, this is an excellent way to use it.
Lavender goes really nicely with sweet flavors, and pairs perfectly with the lemon, pistachios and chocolate chips in this recipe.
You can use the leaves and the flowers of lavender, but the flowers tend to have a softer flavor. If you’ve never used lavender in your cooking before, start with a small amount and see how you like it. If you don’t have access to lavender, not to worry! You can use cinnamon instead.
These cookies are very low in sugar, relying on applesauce and chocolate chips for added sweetness (though you can replace the chocolate with carob chips, dried cranberries or chopped dates if you prefer). If you want a sweeter cookie, you could add a bit more unrefined sugar or maple syrup.
Yield: Makes 24 cookies
Prep time: 15 min.
Bake time: 20 min.
Total time: 35 min. (plus 20 min. to cook quinoa)
- 1/2 cup almond butter (or other nut/seed butter, like sunflower or tahini)
- 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/2 cup unrefined sugar (coconut, date, sucanat)
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 2 Tbsp ground flax, mixed in 3 Tbsp water
- 1 tsp lemon zest (optional)
- 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice (or 1 Tbsp concentrated)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1-3 tsp fresh lavender (leaves and/or flowers)—or cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/4 cups coconut flour, brown rice flour or ground almonds
- 1/2 cup pistachios, shelled and chopped
- 1/2 cup non-dairy chocolate chips (or carob chips, dried cranberries or chopped dates)
- Put 1 cup dry quinoa in a pot with 2 cups of water and a pinch of salt. Bring this to a boil, and then simmer (covered with a tight-fitting lid) for about 20 minutes, or until all the water has been absorbed. You’ll have some quinoa left over, but if you try to cook a smaller quantity, it doesn’t tend to cook as well. Lucky you, you can use it in another recipe. 🙂
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. If it’s a really hot day, you can also bake the cookies in your BBQ on low.
- Put 2 Tbsp ground flax in a small bowl with 3 Tbsp water and let it sit until it turns into a jelly-like texture.
- Mix together the almond butter, sugar and applesauce in a large mixing bowl until it’s smooth. Add the quinoa and the flax mixture, along with the lemon, zest, vanilla and lavender. Make sure everything is combined well.
- Add the baking soda, baking powder and flour and stir gently until all of the dry ingredients are incorporated into the wet.
- Fold in the pistachios and chocolate chips, then form the dough into cookies on a lined sheet. Press them down flat before baking at 400 degrees F for 20 min.
- Take them out of the oven, and let them cool for a few minutes before transferring to a cooling rack and letting them cool completely. They will be a bit delicate until they’re fully cooled, so try to keep yourself—or your family—from diving in too soon!