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Thread: "Healthy" or Healthier Cookies?

  1. #1
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    "Healthy" or Healthier Cookies?

    I am looking for some healthier cookie recipes. My Dad who is in the early to moderate stage of dementia prefers to eat sweet things for breakfast. (His wife does not cook/bake and he will just pick up things like grocery store brand sweets unless I bake for him.) I would like to try some things that use oil rather than butter and whole grains and add dried fruits and nuts, etc to add calories.

    I have had this Martha Stewart EveryDay Food recipe for years and finally tried it. It was quite good-I used all whole wheat pastry flour, added cinnamon, and walnuts. I don't care for raisins but he likes them and I used raisins in this batch.

    Healthy Oatmeal Cookies (also posted here by peachesncream)

    Everyday Food Sept. 07

    1/2 cup whole wheat flour
    1/2 cup all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/3 cup vegetable oil
    2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
    1 large egg
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup rolled oats (not quick-cooking)
    1/2 cup raisins

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, whisk together flours and baking powder. Set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together oil, sugar, egg and vanilla. Add flour mixture, and stir to combine; mix in oats and raisins.

    Roll into balls, using 2 tablespoonfuls of dough for each; place on parchment lined cookie sheets, 1-1/2" apart. Flatten cookies a bit with bottom of a glass. Bake 13 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool cookies on sheets for a few minutes; then remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Makes 16-18 cookies.
    Last edited by KAnn; 05-07-2012 at 06:25 PM. Reason: typo
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  2. #2
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    Here a very good cookie that I enjoy. I posted it previously in this thread of cookies made with oil.

    from http://desertcandy.blogspot.com/2007...t-cookies.html

    Kleeja (Cardamom-Wheat Cookies)

    3 cups whole wheat flour.
    1/2 cup vegetable oil or 9 Tbl melted butter
    3/4 cup sugar
    1/4 cup milk
    1 egg, beaten
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    2 teaspoons ground cardamom
    1 egg beaten with 2 tbl water, for glazing

    1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease 2 baking sheets or line with parchment. Combine sugar and milk in small pan, stir over heat without boiling until sugar dissolves, set aside to let cool.
    2. Combine flour with baking powder, salt, cardamom in a bowl. Mix in the oil/butter until crumbly and well combined, then add egg, sugar and milk, mix well to form a dough. Set aside to rest for 15 minutes.
    3. Roll out the dough with a floured rolling pin (you do not need to flour your work surface) to 1/4" thick. Cut out rounds with a biscuit cutter, rerolling until all the dough is used. Make a cross-hatch pattern on the cookies with a knife if desired. Transfer to baking sheets and brush the cookies with egg wash. Bake 15-20 minutes, or until just golden and firm on top (the bottoms will brown, but keep an eye that they don't burn). Cool on a rack, store in a cookie tin.

    Mercedes’ note: The recipe came to me with vegetable oil, but I suspect that is because of the recent sanctions in Iraq when oil was part of the food rations while butter was more expensive. (technically, it would be made with samne, clarified buuter) I have made the recipe both ways, and I find there is little difference. I actually prefer the vegetable oil because it's easier and I find the texture is a tiny bit more crumbly when made with butter. Also, because the cardamom is the overwhelming flavor, the butter flavor doesn't make much of a difference. I included the butter version because I know there are some purists out there who will prefer it. I should have put a note in the recipe as to my reasoning.

    Andy’s note: I seed about 20-22 green cardamom pods which gives 2 tsp (gently packed) after grinding the seeds. After mixing the ingredients to form the dough I scrape it out onto the counter and knead it for a minute then wrap it in plastic wrap and leave out on the counter. You really don't need to flour your counter or pastry board when rolling the dough out. The cookies don’t spread much when baked, and I easily get 24 on a large cookie sheet with a Teflon baking liner. At 350F they took about 12 to 13 minutes to bake. I get about 72 cookies (rolled 1/4") using a 1-7/8" scalloped cookie cutter. The glaze adds a nice sheen to the baked cookies.
    Cheers! Andy

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by hAndyman View Post
    Here a very good cookie that I enjoy. I posted it previously in this thread of cookies made with oil.

    from http://desertcandy.blogspot.com/2007...t-cookies.html
    Thanks, Andy! I used that thread earlier as a jumping off point. I definitely prefer to use organic canola or olive oil to butter in the recipes I am looking for. I just found a file folder of recipes that I marked "Healthy Cookies" so I am about to look through those, too.
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  4. #4
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    There is a book called One Smart Cookie that has been the topic of several threads. You might do a search and see if you can locate one of the previous threads.
    Life is not the way it's supposed to be. It's the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference.

  5. #5
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    I just did a search for "One Smart Cookie" in the thread tiltles only and there were 8 results. Sorry - I have never figured out how to post a link for another thread.
    Life is not the way it's supposed to be. It's the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goin' Coastal View Post
    I just did a search for "One Smart Cookie" in the thread tiltles only and there were 8 results. Sorry - I have never figured out how to post a link for another thread.
    Is this it?
    http://community.cookinglight.com/sh...ad.php?t=81028
    Jill

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  7. #7
    Biscotti is another healthy choice; most recipes are low in fat and many use oil rather than butter.

    Here is one we like a lot.

    Banana-Pecan Biscotti

    http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/bana...0000000222216/

  8. #8
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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by Goin' Coastal View Post
    There is a book called One Smart Cookie that has been the topic of several threads. You might do a search and see if you can locate one of the previous threads.
    I have this book. It is excellent but it is more about lower fat/calorie recipes and I am actuallly looking for high calorie but nutrient dense recipes. I will keep searching but I have found a few of interest....mainly they call for oil rather than butter and are whole grain or mostly whole grain. Thank you so much for the suggestion, though, and I will take another look at my copy of One Smart Cookie as I am sure there are a few that meet my criteria!
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by peachesncream View Post
    Biscotti is another healthy choice; most recipes are low in fat and many use oil rather than butter.

    Here is one we like a lot.

    Banana-Pecan Biscotti

    http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/bana...0000000222216/
    This looks good. He likes to dunk them in coffee....I would need to try to substitute some or all of the white flour. Thank you!
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  10. #10
    This blog has a lot of healthier recipes for sweets. I stumbled on it while searching for homemade Larabars. Here is a link to her recipe page:

    http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/cho...vered-recipes/

  11. #11
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    We liked these...

    Banana Oat Breakfast Cookie (Adapted from BH & G)



    1/2 cup natural peanut butter
    1/2 cup mashed ripe bananas
    1/4 cup honey
    1/4 cup golden syrup
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1 cup rolled oats
    1/2 cup whole wheat flour
    1/4 cup dry milk powder
    2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1 cup dried cranberries

    Preheat oven to 350

    In a large bowl, mix together peanut butter, mashed banana, honey, golden syrup and vanilla.

    In a medium bowl, whisk together oats, flour, dry milk, cinnamon and baking soda. Stir dry ingredients into the wet until combined. Fold in cranberries.

    Drop dough onto parchment lined baking sheets in 1/4 cupful amounts. Gently flatten each mound to about 1/2" thick.

    Bake until lightly golden, about 14-16 minutes. Remove and let sit on the baking sheet for a couple minutes, then carefully move to wire racks to cool completely.
    Joe

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  12. #12
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    Just a thought for another option--Would some of the versions of the baked oatmeal recipes work for him?

    There a lot of ideas on this thread:
    http://community.cookinglight.com/sh...akfast+cookies

    I can vouch for tasty goodness in 1) the Daybreak Cookies created by Val (they have butter, though); 2) the Pumpkin Cranberry cookies in Andy's post (love these); 3) the Ellie Kreiger bars and breakfast cookies (very soft, cakey cookie); and 4) the Super Cookies at the link to Joe's blog in EmptyNestMom's post.
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  13. #13
    I work in health care and a lot in care of the elderly. We often debate about restrictive diets in the elderly vs. quality of life. Are you working with a dietician? I would think with dementia he should recognize what he is eating.... sweet.

  14. #14
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    Anna, who used to post here frequently, has a lovely cookie and baking blog. One of the categories for the posts and recipes on her blog is "Breakfast Cookies." Maybe you can find some ideas there.


    http://www.cookiemadness.net/categor...kfast-cookies/
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  15. #15
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    I was going to post the same link that I see that Joanie B has posted as there are some interesting recipes there. I was also going to recommend Nigella's Breakfast Bars if that might fit your dad's requirements - I make them in 3 versions: peanut + cranberry; apple + cinnamon + toasted almonds ( + candied ginger); dark chocolate + dried cherry + toasted almonds. They are all really good, chewy, nutritious treats.
    Cheers! Andy

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by margeslp View Post
    I work in health care and a lot in care of the elderly. We often debate about restrictive diets in the elderly vs. quality of life. Are you working with a dietician? I would think with dementia he should recognize what he is eating.... sweet.
    I think (and all of the family agree) that quality of life is the most important thing. He will eat healthy, nutritious things when they are served to him but it is a challenege because his wife, while well intentioned, simply does not cook, much less bake. They eat out frequently. (This is really hard for me and my sisters as we all cook and are very health/nutrition conscious but she is unlikely to change.) He has always preferred something sweet for breakfast but he made better choices for the rest of his meals. His health is closely monitored and his vitamin levels are all within normal range, etc, but his wife is in denial about many things. ( Probably TMI for a food thread but I know many of you are dealing with aging parents-his disposition is wonderful so things could be much worse.)

    Sooo, if I can help them by baking some cookies, etc that have some nutritional value, we all feel better. I used to make a lot of whole grain muffins but he seems to prefer cookies. He said he did like the MS cookies but he would like some with chocolate chips so I will revise the recipe and add some 70% chocolate chunks-the WF brand.

    Thank you for all the above suggestions! I have lots to work with!

    p.s. I do read Anna's blog (Cookie Madness) regularly and she does have a few that I can tinker with....also Chocolate Covered Katie is one I recently discovered-perfect for my taste but probably not "traditional" enough for my Dad. But all great ideas!
    Last edited by KAnn; 05-08-2012 at 01:06 PM.
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  17. #17
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    When I was little we used to make no bake honey balls (had maybe four ingredients, honey, evaporated milk were the main ones) which were very sweet. It would be somewhat like this recipe http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/me...BALLS-50179364

    It would definitely be caloric, anyhow
    Once, during prohibition, I was forced to live for days on nothing but food and water. W. C. Fields

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