I like taking an indulgent, baked goods recipe and experimenting with it to replace the usual un-healthy, un-heart friendly ingredients with other superfood ingredients with the goal of having them taste better than awful, or dare I say, great. Believe it or not I’ve been having some good luck with it. When there are no holds barred as to what you can substitute sometimes I forget the point is to make them healthier and in all the excitement I’m tempted to try off the wall substitutions like throwing some mustard or ketchup in there to see what happens. Just like that “Just Like Mom” game show; the beloved Canadian kid’s show from the 80’s that we all wanted to be on…or maybe just me. But alas, I rein it in and stick to my plan of creating something pretty darn healthy while feeding that sweet tooth at once.
Here's how to transform indulgent baked goods into superfoods with a few key ingredient updates!
- Replace white flour with the same amount of spelt flour or brown rice flour or coconut flour etc.
- Replace white flour with ½ the amount of rolled oats and the other ½ with a spelt flour or other healthier flour substitute
- Replace butter with the same amount of coconut oil
- Replace sugar with 2 tbsps of honey or agave nectar and ¼ cup of apple sauce or mashed banana
- Add in naturally sweet things like dried cranberries, raisins, unsweetened shredded coconut or carob chips which taste just like chocolate but are more of a fruit-based chip.
- Throw in some chia seeds for fun…a couple of tbsps.
Here is a recipe that I transformed from indulgent blueberry oat cakes into a superfood granola cookie. These taste better than the store bought granola bar snacks we all know and love but they are that much better for you and your kids. You make them with your own two hands so you know what’s in them! Good stuff.
Superfood Granola Cookies
- 1 ½ cups rolled oats
- 1 cup spelt flour
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- ½ tsp. coarse salt
- ½ tsp. cinnamon
- ½ cup coconut oil
- ¼ cup chopped walnuts
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup carob chips
- 2 tbsps. chia seeds
- 2 tbsps. honey or agave nectar
- ¼ cup apple sauce
- ¼ cup almond milk
- Preheat oven to 350˚ C and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- Whisk oats, flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together in bowl.
- Add in coconut oil and work in well with hands until it is combined to a sort of crumble.
- Add everything else in and stir to combine well.
- Roll into balls and put onto parchment lined cookie sheets.
- Press them with your palm into a cookie shape.
- Bake in 350˚ C oven for 15 minutes or until edges are slightly brown.
- Let cool on cooling rack.
Makes – Approx. 24 granola cookies
Note: Feel free to switch out the nuts or dried fruit for other varieties. Remember there are no holds barred for this recipe so go nuts!
Have fun with your free ticket to experiment. It’s not often you are given the o.k. to veer from direction. Better to do it with a non-threatening treat than to do it with your boss’s strict instructions.