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GF Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yields 24 Cookies

As much as I love to cook, I love to bake. I particularly enjoy experimenting with healthy versions of all the goodies out there. I favor organic flours and natural sweeteners just because they are healthier. Of course, binging on these isn’t a good idea either…trust me! But when you’re in the mood for something sweet, there’s no need to head to the refined alleys of dessert-ville. There are a myriad of choices out there (some better than others) especially if your diet is somehow restricted. I have had better luck with my GF baking experiments than I’ve had with vegan ones, though I just made a delicious vegan and GF tart that just may have to make its way to these pages!

This version of the cookie uses very little sweetener because I relied on the sweetness of the dried cherries. Dried fruit goes a long way. Cherries are very low in sodium and high in vitamin A and dietary fiber. They support joint health and are helpful for those with arthritis, rheumatism and gout. The one catch is that this dried fruit is a bit higher on the sugar content than other fruits. If you don’t love this idea, any dried fruit would work wonderfully! If you do experiment, please leave me a comment and let me know how they came out!

You’ll need:

1/2C organic butter (1 stick), softened

1/4C coconut or date sugar

2 large organic eggs

1 t vanilla extract

1C almond meal or hazelnut meal

1C Brown Rice Flour

1/3C oat flour

1 t baking powder

1/2 t baking soda

1/2 t sea salt

1/2 C semi-sweet chocolate chips (or more if you want them chocolatey)

1/2 dried cherries, roughly chopped

a handful of pepitas (pumpkin seeds)

To make:

Preheat oven to 350 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

1. In a food processor, add butter and coconut sugar and process until creamy (about 30 seconds should do it). Add the eggs and vanilla and process to blend.

2. Add the almond meal, rice flour, oat flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and process until dough forms.

3. 2 options: 1. You can add the rest of the ingredients and pulse to blend. This will break up the chocolate chips and make chocolatey ‘streaks’ in your cookies. Or 2. Place dough into a bowl and using a rubber spatula, incorporate the chocolate chips, cherries and pepitas. (I go with the first option because it’s easier and there’s less to clean…every little bit helps when you’ve got a 5 month old to look after!)

4. Make walnut size balls (I use a heaping tablespoon as my measure) and press down lightly on each one. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool completely before digging in!

5. Enjoy!

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