But wait – these are healthy. No really. They are made with oats, bananas, canola oil and just-peanuts peanut butter – and no sugar – all the sweetness comes from the over-ripe bananas. I had seen a recipe for Nikki’s Healthy Cookies over at 101 Cookbooks some time ago, and this afternoon upon flushing my lower kitchen cupboards (sounds much like an enema, doesn’t it? Seriously – you’d be amazed at what came outta there) to sort and consolidate the hundred or so bags of flours, grains, lentils, dried fruits and assorted weird ingredients, I decided I needed to make something using at least some of it. Plus I had three near-black bananas in the fruit bowl, W needed a wintery day project, and we were going to my Mom’s for dinner, and promised to bring cookies. And she’s diabetic. Now I’m no Sherlock Holmes, but all signs pointed to me making these.
The original recipe called for almond meal, which I didn’t have (and didn’t much feel like making out of whole almonds, although I easily could have) – it occurred to me that almond butter would do the trick, and then – of course – peanut butter to go with the banana! The all-nut nut butters are pretty dry anyway. I almost added an egg. And just a bit of sugar or honey. But I held off, and I’m glad I did – these are actually really good and held together very well. They are not very sweet, but definitely sweet enough for kids and diabetics, and even myself, which is surprising in my current chocolate-addicted state. My only regret is not using some of my Bernard Callebaut or Scharffen Berger chocolate stash, and opting instead to use up a (rather crappy) chocolate bar Mike bought for the low low price of $3 from a kid fundraising door to door. (On the wrapper was a cartoon guy in a canoe with the slogan “Tip a Canoe!” – how could it not be good quality chocolate?)
Peanut Butter & Banana Chocolate Chunk Cookies
3 large, very ripe bananas
1/2 cup all-natural (just peanuts) peanut butter, or almond butter
1/4 cup canola oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups old-fashioned (large flake) or quick oats
1/3 cup shredded coconut
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 – 1 cup chopped dark chocolate or chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350F.
In a large bowl mash the bananas with the peanut butter, oil and vanilla. In another bowl stir together the oats, coconut, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients along with the chocolate and stir until combined.
Drop spoonfuls of dough onto a parchment or Silpat lined baking sheet, or one that is sprayed with nonstick spray, and bake for 12-14 minutes, until just set.
Makes about 2 1/2 dozen cookies.
Speaking of my overstuffed cupboards, I have decided to take a Thelma & Louise approach to this no-shop business. I believe it has been two weeks today, and I’m going to keep going. Not only because I feel like it hasn’t really been much of a challenge yet, but because it really has been refreshing to use some of this stuff up, rather than continue to stockpile it. I mean really – should I have to cram everything I buy into an already full freezer/cupboard/shelf? Something is wrong with this picture. I’m sure I’ve saved a ton of money, too.
One Year Ago: Honey Chocolate Cupcakes with Honey Ganache