Category Archives: Cookies

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies

You think I’m going to share a recipe for peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips, don’t you?

Sorry to disappoint you, but that’s not what I’ve got for you tonight.

Instead, I’ve got two separate recipes to share that you could combine for quite the sweet treat if you really wanted to.

First up, homemade peanut butter!

Honey Vanilla Peanut Butter (Makes 1 1/2 cups)

  • 2 cups unsalted, dry roasted peanuts
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • pinch of salt

1. Place peanuts in a food processor.

2. Turn on and let process for about 2 minutes. Scrape down the bowl if necessary.

3. Continue to let it process until it is smooth and creamy. This can take up to 5 minutes. It turned into a smooth texture, but clumped back up shortly afterwards, so I processed it for quite awhile.

4. Once smooth, add in the vanilla, honey and salt. Process again to incorporate.

5. Remove from bowl and store in air tight containers, such as half-pint mason jars.

I used this in my Triple Nut Crunch Granola Bars last night and they are my favorite batch I’ve made!


Next up is a recipe I have not had since I stopped eating wheat. I’ve been dying for a good chocolate chip cookie for some time, but never felt that maple syrup was going to give me the same flavor as brown sugar does, so I put off making them. Recently, I’ve been reading more about palm sugar and coconut sugar. I’m still not completely sure of the difference, but some people say the names are used interchangeably for the same thing.

Leanne over at Healthful Pursuit just posted a video about it, so check out her explanation because it is way better than I could ever do!

I had an Amazon gift certificate, so I decided to finally buy some palm sugar with visions of chocolate chip cookies dancing in my head 🙂

Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies (Makes 1 1/2 dozen cookies)

A wonderfully soft cookie with a nice blend of salt and sweet. 

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup palm sugar
  • 1 flax egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour
  • 1 1/4 cup chocolate chips

1. Combine 1 tbsp ground flax seed with 2 1/2 tbsp warm water. Set aside.

2. Beat butter with a mixer for a minute. Add the palm sugar and mix until incorporated.

3. Add the flax egg and vanilla. Mix again until combined.

4. Add the salt and baking powder. Then add 1/2 cup of the flour. Mix until combined.

5. Add another 1/2 cup flour and mix again. I added the last 1/2 cup a little at a time to make sure I got the consistency right.

6. Add the chocolate chips and stir with spatula or large spoon until incorporated.

7. Spoon cookies onto cookie sheet, and bake at 375 for 10-12 minutes, or until lightly browned on top.

I’m only slightly embarrassed to admit that I had three of these cookies, along with two bowls of Rice Chex for dinner last night 🙂

I would have to say chocolate chip cookies (especially these ones!!) are up at the top of my list of favorite cookies. What’s yours??


3 new recipes

Today did not start out so great. Titan woke me up at 2am to go out and I had a hard time falling back asleep. Then, he didn’t want to sleep this morning once my honey left, which meant I couldn’t sleep either. It was rainy and really dreary out and I was worried the rain wouldn’t end!

Alas, it did and this is what it looks like outside now:

Even though it started out a little rough, I have gotten a lot accomplished so far!

The main thing I have done is work on my recipe page. I actually went back through about 45 posts and have updated recipes (I still have a lot to go!). I have also been adding categories to each post which I didn’t do as I was posting them…word to the wise….don’t be like me!

I have also worked out, done my video for next Tuesday’s Tuesday Trainer, and baked two new recipes!! I’ve also gone for a run and walked the dog around the yard. I still have to make a dish for the Apple Butter Festival tomorrow and make dinner for tonight, plus clean up around the house and get a few other things done. I doubt I’ll get to it all today, but here’s hoping!

I am excited to have three new recipes to share today! A smoothie and then two pumpkin baked goods 🙂

Mango-Peach-Squash Green Smoothie (Makes about 6 cups)

I rarely make the same smoothie twice, but the addition of butternut squash puree was something I had to share because I’ve been doing it lately! I made a big batch so I could have it all weekend long. 

  • 2 cups yogurt
  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 cup kale
  • 1 mango (I cut up and froze a few last week)
  • 1 peach (again, cut up and frozen)
  • 1 cup butternut squash puree

Blend all ingredients until smooth.


Like I mentioned yesterday, I planned to make a new cookie recipe today. It turned out great, but it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting. Here’s why: I’ve never used pumpkin puree before. (I know…oh the horror, right? Nah, I couldn’t care less!)

Anyway. I am making cookies for the RA class I teach on Monday and I wanted to do something different. For one thing, they wanted chocolate chip and sugar cookies, so I obliged and bought Pilsbury all purpose flour and regular white sugar for them. But I wanted to have something I could eat. I saw the can of pumpkin as soon as I walked in the store and got this idea in my head to make a pumpkin cookie. With pecans. Thus, my Pecan Pumpkin Cookie was born.

By the way, for this recipe you have to pronounce it pee-can, not peh-cahn.

Pecan Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies (Makes 3 dozen)

  • 1/2 stick butter, softened
  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground up flax seed + 2 1/2 tbsp warm water)
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin
  • 2 tsp cinnamon spice blend/pumpkin pie spice blend
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 cup GF flour
  • 1 1/2 cup oatmeal
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans

1. First make your flax egg and set aside.

2. With a hand mixer, beat the butter until fluffy.

3. Add the flax egg, maple syrup, vanilla and pumpkin. Mix well.

4. Combine dry ingredients in a small bowl.

5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients a little at a time. Mix well before adding the next batch.

6. Fold in the chopped pecans.

7. Spoon mixture onto baking sheet and bake at 350 for about 10 minutes.

It is best to undercook these a little as my first batch was a little dry. I thought the pee-can flavor would come out more, but it really didn’t. I might roast them first if I make these cookies again. The pumpkin flavor is definitely there, which is something I’ll have to get used to. I really haven’t eaten a lot of pumpkin foods in my day.


I had a few bananas lying around the kitchen, so I decided I needed another banana muffin. I had already opened the can of pumpkin, so I figured why not?

Pumpkin Banana Muffins (Makes 12 muffins)
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin
  • 1 flax egg
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp melted butter
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cup GF flour
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

1. First make your flax egg and set aside.

2. Next, mash up the bananas with the pumpkin in a large bowl.

3. Then add in the flax egg, maple syrup, and melted butter.

3. Combine the dry ingredients in a small bowl.

4. Mix together the wet and dry ingredients until just combined.

5. Fold in the chopped pecans gently.

6. Divide evenly into 12 muffin cups.

7. Bake at 350 until the tops are slightly brown.

I think I like the muffins better than the cookies because of the banana. It adds a different type of sweetness and an extra punch of flavor.


Off to clean the floor and finally shower! And then make dinner 🙂

What is your favorite pumpkin recipe? Or are you like me and have never really used it?

Vanilla Cashew Butter Cookies

Ever since I saw Ashley post a recipe for Cake Batter Cashew Butter, I knew I had to make some. I finally bought a package of cashews when I was in Minnesota last weekend just for it.

I finally found the time to make it today!

I had to change up Ashley’s recipe just a little because I don’t like almond extract, I don’t have sucanat, and my cashews were already salted. I also left out the sprinkles, so really I made almost an entirely different recipe than Ashley, but her recipe was my inspiration!

Vanilla Cashew Butter 

I had never had cashew butter before today, and now I’m not sure how I’m going to be able to afford the $8.99/lb price tag so I can have it all the time! 

2 cups dry roasted and lightly salted cashews (from TJs)

2 tsp vanilla

1 tbsp maple syrup

Put the cashews in your food processor and process until smooth. Stop it every once in awhile to scrape down the sides. I probably stopped it 4 times before it got smooth. Then I stopped it 2 more times. Don’t be alarmed (like I was!) if it forms into a big ball and spins around on the blade for awhile. It will stop and smooth out eventually. Once it is smooth, add the vanilla and maple syrup. Process again for a minute. Taste it to make sure it is sweet enough and add more maple syrup if desired and process again. Store in an airtight container, I used 1/2 pint mason jars. This made about 1 1/4 cups. Resist the urge to dive into the jars with a spoon and eat it all in one sitting!

*Note: Having tried lots of different brands of vanilla extract, I must make this comment here. Make sure you have quality vanilla extract. The vanilla flavor is so potent in this that you don’t want to have a cheap brand that doesn’t taste all that good.

So with all this cashew butter lying around, I was thinking of all the ways I could enjoy it. I had it on a piece of GF toast and boy was it good. But, I knew I didn’t want to eat toast just to enjoy the cashew butter.

Then, I had a brilliant idea. Cookies!!!

Vanilla Cashew Butter Cookies

A delicious way to enjoy cashew butter! The cookies are soft on the inside and have a nice outer layer that adds a small amount of crunch. They are buttery with a powerful vanilla flavor, and simply sweet. Definitely my new favorite cookie!!

6 tbsp salted butter, softened

2/3 cup maple syrup

2 flax eggs

2 tsp vanilla

2/3 cup cashew butter

2 cups GF flour

Preheat your oven to 350*. Begin by beating the butter until fluffy. Add the maple syrup, flax eggs, and vanilla. Beat until combined. Add the cashew butter and mix again until smooth. Resist the urge to eat it straight from the bowl. Add the flour 1/2 cup a time. I think I used a few extra tablespoons to get it thick enough. The dough won’t be as thick as most cookie doughs. It is light and fluffy and will spread when baking. I used a large cookie scoop and made 24 perfect sized cookies with a little leftover batter for me to enjoy off the spoon 🙂 Bake the cookies for about 10-12 minutes. Bake longer for crunchier cookies.

Vanilla Maple Oatmeal Walnut Butter Cookies

This morning on my way into work, I heard an interview with Dr. Oz on Elvis Duran and the Morning Show (a really funny radio show that is highly inappropriate most of the time!). I’ve never really had an opinion on Dr. Oz because I haven’t followed his career really. However, I can now confidently say that he is awesome!

He said two things that literally made me cheer out loud in the car.

1) America is not fat because we eat fat, America is overweight because we eat white flour, white sugar, and white rice.

2) Between skim and whole milk, which one makes you fat? The skim milk!!! Once you take out the fat from it, all that is left is sugar- which makes us fat (see number 1).

Can I get an AMEN?!? I just had to share this! These are things I have learned over the past year or so and I wish I had known them years ago! I’m just so glad someone as popular as Dr. Oz preaches this kind of stuff. Hopefully people are out there listening 🙂

Okay, onto what you’re really here for: cookies!

I’m sure you’ve figured out what you might need for this recipe and hopefully by now you’ve done the mental checklist to see if you have the ingredients on hand (or in your cupboard…you know, wherever you keep the stuff!) to make these cookies tonight (or right this second if you can!).

A few weeks ago, I got an idea in my head for some cookies. I often have these thoughts as I’m driving home from work (see my Raspberry Banana Muffin recipe from Monday for more proof!), and I just can’t stop thinking about it until I’ve made the recipe. This was one of those recipes.

I wasn’t quite sure what to call these, so I figured I’d just name the ingredients and see how that sounds.

Vanilla Maple Oatmeal Walnut Butter Cookies

This light and fluffy butter cookie packs tons of protein and lots of flavor! Super easy to throw together in a matter of minutes. They are super delicious and will disappear quickly!

1 stick butter, salted

2 flax eggs

2 tsp vanilla

3/4 cup maple syrup

2 3/4 cups Pamela’s GF flour

1 cup old fashion oats

1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts

Beat the butter until fluffy. Add the flax eggs, vanilla and maple syrup and beat for a minute or so until well combined. Add the oatmeal and 1 cup of the flour. Mix until combined. Add the other cup of flour and combine again. Finish with the last 3/4 cup flour, then add the walnuts and mix with a spatula. Once it is all combined, use a cookie scoop to make balls of dough and place on a cookie sheet. Bake in a 375 degree oven for  12-15 minutes, or until very lightly browned on top. Enjoy with a big glass of cold milk!

These were beyond belief! They were light and buttery with a chewiness from the oatmeal that made them last a while in your mouth. I told my honey they were little puffy balls of buttery heaven! Maybe that’s what I should name them??

Do you keep up with Dr. Oz? Have you read any of his books or watched his show? Thoughts on his comments are welcome!

A Weekend in the Kitchen

Seriously, I have spent the entire weekend in my kitchen! Luckily, I absolutely LOVE my kitchen!!!

Here’s what it looked like when we moved in last October (notice the absence of the extremely long table and instead a normal person table!):

I have made SO many recipes this weekend!

Starting with a homemade marinara sauce for spaghetti on Friday night. I’ve been making my own sauce for awhile now from canned tomatoes; however, now that tomatoes are in season, I decided to try my hand at using fresh tomatoes. Wow! It was amazing!

It is super easy to use fresh tomatoes. Just bring a pot of water to a boil and place the tomatoes in the water. Let cook for about a minute or until you see the skin start to crack. Immediately place the tomatoes into an ice water bath and let cool. Take them out and peel the skin, then dice the tomatoes to the desired size. Use them as you’d use any other diced tomatoes!

On Saturday, I said that I would be making a few different recipes throughout the day. I wasn’t able to make all of them, but I busted out 4 of them!

The first one I made was actually not on my list yesterday!

Averie’s Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls: I thought these would be phenomenal because they sort of sounded like other ones I’d seen. However, I have to be honest. I’m surprised I made it past the first bite…the recipe calls for agave nectar which I don’t use that often at all. I think it was the different flavor and intensity of sweetness that was the problem for me. I will eat the rest of them though! I think if I make these again, I wouldn’t use as much agave nectar.

The second recipe I made was Mama Pea’s Pumpkin Spice Roasted Chickpeas, which I’ve made before. The reason I made them again (since I actually didn’t like them by themselves) was to put in some Protein Balls. I used my first batch of these chickpeas in some Protein Balls last weekend, and they were so good, I decided to make another batch this weekend. Instead of making them into balls this time though, I put them into a 9×9 pan and will cut them as bars throughout the week. I also omitted the chocolate chips this time. They are good enough with them!

I know, I know...really great picture, Kristin!! Sorry, I was too tired to make it look pretty.

After all of that, I tried my hand at Leanne’s 100 Calorie Beary Simple Cookies. While they were definitely beary simple to make, I was not very pleased with the outcome. This was my first time using buckwheat flour and it definitely has a different taste and texture. Mine also turned out green and hers didn’t! I also made a lot of substitutions: vanilla extract for the vanilla powder, maple syrup for the coconut sugar, and peanut butter for the almond butter. I have cut back a lot of my sugar intake so I’m used to not-so-sweet things, but these were still not sweet enough for me. Oh well! They were fun to make 🙂

The final recipe I made was Pioneer Woman’s Peach-Whiskey Barbecue Chicken. YUM! This was a little time consuming, but simple enough that I know will I make it again! Lucky enough, my honey’s grandma lives 1/2 a mile down the road and had some whiskey on hand for me. My honey likes whiskey, but I wasn’t going to buy a whole bottle just for this recipe! By the way (or BTW as my honey likes to say because that’s how his middle school kids talk to him!), I could never do this recipe justice in pictures, so you’ll have to check out PW’s page to see how beautiful it is!

Because I didn’t get to make my other recipes yesterday, I made them all today! I told you I spent all weekend in the kitchen 🙂 And I still have to make dinner for tonight!

I made up all three recipes I made today: vegetable potato soup, squash and quinoa salad, and caesar chicken salad, and I’m quite proud of how they all turned out!

I haven’t taken pictures of any of the recipes yet, so I’ll just tell you that it was all pretty amazing! I plan to share recipes on Tuesday, so check back then!

Now I’ve gotta go make some tacos for the honey and I for dinner! And some salsa…I think that puts me up to 10 recipes this weekend!!!  I can’t think of a better way to spend the weekend 🙂

What is your favorite recipe to make?