Healthy cookies are oxymoron, right? Well, not exactly. Not today, at least.
With many more vegan and gluten-free swaps available in grocery stores, incorporating flour alternatives and better-for-you ingredients makes dessert time easier for everyone. Supplement those with naturally delicious, wholesome ingredients like dark chocolate, dried fruits, cacao and fibrous grains and oats, satisfying that sweet tooth is just a quick bake away.
While it's always encouraged to indulge from time to time in the many iterations of buttery, rich, hard-to-eat-more-than-one kind of cookie recipes (we only live once right?), having a good amount of easy, healthy cookie recipes at the ready are great to ensure that our appetites and dietary needs are both met with delight.
Most of these quick-fix recipes are quite fast to make. That means they're not only saving calories but also time, which, let us be reminded, is precious. Some of them can be baked ahead of time and frozen so that when dessert cravings kick in, the freezer is the only place you need to look. And all of them, created by culinary mavens like Martha Stewart to nutrition experts like Joy Bauer, are absolutely delicious.
Flourless Peanut Butter and Banana Cookies by Kevin Curry
On a gluten-free diet and craving something sweet? These are the treats you've been waiting for! Fruity banana, creamy peanut butter and rich dark chocolate will satisfy your sweet tooth without any flour.
Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies by Samah Dada
Sure, oatmeal raisin cookies are more well-known, but we'll take chocolate over dried fruit any day! This recipe is great because it can easily be made vegan and is a great way to use up any oats sitting in the pantry.
Valerie Bertinelli's Crispy Chewy Almond Butter Cookies by Valerie Bertinelli
Heart-healthy almond butter and coconut sugar, which has a lower glycemic index and more natural fiber than refined white sugar, make these cookies an indulgence you can feel good about. With their oh-so-satisfying crunch, chewy center, a hint of vanilla and cinnamon, they tick all the boxes.
Crispy Gluten-Free Oatmeal Cookies by Dr. Jessica B. Harris
"I served (these cookies) to a friend and was astonished when she asked about the ingredients and then informed me that they were not only amazingly tasty, but also gluten-free," says Jessica B. Harris. "I was delighted to know that an adaptation of a cookie recipe from my true-north kitchen had combined my tastes from the past with the present dietary needs of some of my friends."
Vegan Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies by Samah Dada
There's nothing better than being able to whip up a batch of cookies that uses all real, whole ingredients! These vegan, gluten- and grain-free chocolate chunk cookies are sweetened with un-refined coconut sugar are made with a base of coconut and almond flour, which give them an almost cake-like texture.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies by Samah Dada
Even if you're a pumpkin skeptic, you can't deny the magic that is made when these cakey cookies meet melted chocolate chips. The pumpkin adds a subtle flavor that isn't too overpowering, while lending to the extremely soft and fluffy texture.
Pretzel Tahini Cookies by Samah Dada
The sweetness from the coconut sugar, maple earthiness from the tahini and crunchy, salty pretzels create the most addictive combination that will keep you coming back for more.
Healthy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies by Joy Bauer
These delicious homemade oatmeal raisin cookies are only 50 calories each! You can use any flour you prefer, but whole wheat pastry flour and whole wheat-white flour are variations of whole grain that are softer and work well in baked goods.
Martha Stewart's Farro Chocolate-Chunk Cookies by Martha Stewart
The whole-wheat chocolate chip cookie from the book "Good to the Grain," by pastry chef Kim Boyce, inspired this recipe, which relies on farro flour. With fruit, nuts and chocolate chunks in every bite, these cookies are perfect for the countertop jar.
Giada's Chocolate Chip-Quinoa Cookies by Giada De Laurentiis
These have become such a staple in the De Laurentiis house that Giada makes them weekly. The toasted quinoa is irresistibly crunchy and, well, chocolate! Need we say more?
Double Ginger Banana-Almond Oatmeal Cookies by David Zinczenko
You won’t want to eat just one of these cookies because they’re so delicious, but one will satisfy you because of the belly-filling fiber.
Healthy Fruit-and-Nut Breakfast Cookies by Casey Barber
In addition to the warm, delicious ingredients that make them taste great, like some butter, brown sugar and whole wheat flour, these cookies get their nutritious value from protein-filled nuts, dried berries and rolled oats, which are a great slow-burning carb that can help reduces stress and keep you fuller, longer.
Joy Bauer's Snowball Coconut Macaroons by Joy Bauer
These decadent delights are light, fluffy and melt-in-your-mouth good. Each cookie is the perfect combination of a buttery snowball and a coconutty macaroon. They're soft, chewy and perfect for coconut fans.
Vegan Gluten-Free Double Chocolate Cookies by Ryan Scott
If you don't tell people these cookies are gluten-free and vegan, they'll never know. They're decadent, luxurious and delicious. And did we mention they take only five minutes to make and nine minutes to bake?
Chocolate Chip, Raspberry and Oat Cookies by Leah Itsines
These sweet treats are soft but also have a firmness to them that makes them super delicious. The sourness from the raspberries is a perfect addition to the sweetness of the melted chocolate.
Three-Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookies by Checka Ciammaichelli
Don't have much too much to bake with on hand? No problem! These sweet and nutty cookies only require three ingredients. They're easy to make with the kids and will easily satisfy a craving for something sweet.
Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies by Madelyn Fernstrom
These better-for-you chocolate chip cookies are lower in sugar, fat and salt than the typical store-bought chocolate chip cookie. Swapping part of the wheat flour for ground oats boosts flavor and fiber. The cookies also have fewer ingredients than packaged cookies and no preservatives.
Gluten-Free Snickerdoodle Cookies by Danielle Walker
"I grew up making snickerdoodle cookies. After going gluten-free and dairy-free, I wasn’t able to enjoy them anymore and was so disappointed that I couldn’t bake them in the kitchen like I did growing up with my mom and sister," says Danielle Walker. "Now with this recipe my boys and I can roll the dough in the cinnamon and sugar just like I remember and enjoy them together with a glass of creamy cashew milk!"
Chocolate Cherry Chipotle Cookies by Cameron Neal and Greer Gilchrist
Chocolate cherry chipotle cookies are easy to make but hard to say five times fast. The recipe is full of fun flavor combinations since they're pack a little heat along with the sweet. The cookie dough yields its best results with some kneading, so don't be afraid to use your hands. And if you have friends that are allergic to eggs, don't worry — this recipe doesn't have any.
Berry Nut Cookies by Hilaria Baldwin
These dairy-free cookies from Hilaria Baldwin are packed with oats, nuts and dried fruits and sweet enough for dessert but healthy enough for breakfast.
No-Bake Nutella Oat Cookies by Carrie Parente
This no-bake dessert is an oatmeal cookie and Nutella lover's dream. These cookies require few ingredients and just a little work. The best part? They're ready in just 20 minutes! Like coconut? Feel free to add a cup of shredded coconut when stirring in the Nutella for an extra chewy treat.