Tag Archives: cookies

Gluten Free Pecan, Oat, and Dark Chocolate-Chunk Cookies

Get the recipe for Gluten Free Pecan, Oat, and Dark Chocolate-Chunk Cookies at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet

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Gluten Free Five-Ingredient Chocolate Chip Cookies

Gluten Free Five-Ingredient Chocolate Chip Cookies - get the easy to make recipe at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet

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Holiday Oatmeal Recipes: The Best Oatmeal Cookie Recipe for cookie and gift exchanges

Holiday Oatmeal Recipes: The Best Oatmeal Cookie Recipe for cookie and gift exchanges. Get the gluten free recipe at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com (#spon)

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Gluten Free Rice Flour Snickerdoodles

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Gluten Free Rice Flour Snickerdoodles at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

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Gluten Free Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

Gluten Free Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies - Get the recipe at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet

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Gluten Free Mango Coconut Macaroons

Gluten Free Mango Coconut Macaroons at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

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Gluten Free Pine Nut Cookies from the Grand Canyon Cook Book

Gluten Free Pine Nut Cookies

My family and I just came back from visiting the Grand Canyon. It was one of the best trips we’ve ever taken, and if you have a chance – GO! While we were there I picked up a fun little cookbook called The Grand Canyon Cook Book, Southwestern recipes from Arizona’s natural wonder by Bruce and Bobbie Fisher. It features recipes from park rangers, hikers and Grand Canyon chefs. (Yes, there’s fantastic eating to be had at the Grand Canyon, especially at the El Tovar dining room. Check out their dinner menu!)

Piñon nuts versus pine nuts

I was especially intrigued that several of the recipes from the Grand Canyon Cook Book used piñon nuts. According to the New Mexico Piñon Nut Company, “Pine nuts from New Mexico called Pinon nuts are called Pinon or Piñon by law in New Mexico. Pinon nuts come specifically from the pine tree species: pinus edulis. They taste different from other varieties. The pinon pine tree is a two-needled pine which grows wild in high desert mountain areas of Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah. These edible nuts are not to be confused with the ‘single needle’ pine tree from Nevada.”

The pine nuts you get at the store (usually imported from China) are much cheaper than piñon nuts from New Mexico, which sell anywhere from $25-40. Pinon nuts are a hand-harvest, wild crop and the pines can only be picked once every three to seven years. That’s why you see cars pulled on the highway and people on the medians when it’s piñon season.

More on pine nuts from Wikipedia:

In Asia, two species are widely harvested, Korean Pine in northeast Asia (the most important species in international trade), and Chilgoza Pine in the western Himalaya. Four other species, Siberian Pine, Siberian Dwarf Pine, Chinese White Pine and Lacebark Pine  are also used to a lesser extent.

Pine nuts produced in Europe mostly come from the Stone Pine, which has been cultivated for its nuts for over 6,000 years, and harvested from wild trees for far longer. The Swiss Pine is also used to a very small extent.

In North America, the main species are three of the pinyon pines, Colorado Pinyon, Single-leaf Pinyon, and Mexican Pinyon.

I’ve read that some people experience a metallic aftertaste when eating Chinese pine nuts, and that this has more to do with a genetic predisposition than the pine nuts themselves. However, pine nuts do go rancid quite easily, so keep yours in the refrigerator. Also, you should taste test before cooking with them to make sure they’re OK. I use pine nuts from Costco and have never had a problem.

cookie dough

Gluten Free Pine Nut Cookies

I’ve “healthed up” the original Piñon Nut Squares recipe from the Grand Canyon Cook Book by using brown rice and oat flours to make the cookies gluten free. I also used stevia instead of white sugar and coconut palm sugar instead of brown sugar.

My kids LOVED these!

Makes 30-33 cookies



  1. Set oven for 375 degrees.
  2. Sift flours, salt, cinnamon and baking soda together.
  3. Mix oats into dry ingredients.
  4. In a large bowl, beat egg, both sugars, buttery spread and vanilla until the butter is well integrated.
  5. Mix in dry ingredients.
  6. Stir in pine nuts and raisins.
  7. Drop by the tablespoonfuls onto a greased cookie sheet or one covered with a silicon baking mat. (I use Wilton Easy Flex™ Silicone Baking Mats.)
  8. Bake on the center rack of oven for 10 to 12 minutes until the pine nut cookies turn slightly golden.
  9. Serve with a glass of your favorite “milk” (soy, rice, coconut or cow’s milk) and don’t forget the napkins and plates. These cookies are very crumbly!

Nutritional information

Per cookie:

  • Calories 69
  • Calories from Fat 43
  • Total Fat 4.8g
  • Saturated Fat 0.8g
  • Trans Fat 0.0g
  • Cholesterol 6mg
  • Sodium 78mg
  • Total Carbohydrates 6.1g
  • Dietary Fiber 0.6g
  • Sugars 2.0g
  • Protein 1.2g

Nutrition Grade C from CalorieCount 

Weight Watchers POINTS = 2

Egg Free Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies

Egg Free Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies - Get this allergy free cookie recipe perfect for Halloween or Thanksgiving at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet

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Healthy holiday cookies: Peppermint Meringue Crisps

I’ve loved meringue cookies since I was a kid. But now that I’m trying to watch my calories, I like them even more. Here’s a holiday treat created by Laurel Hudson, the culinary instructor at Wellspring Academies that will let you indulge without packing on the pounds. Even better, these are perfect for those who are avoiding gluten in their diets.

Peppermint Meringue Crisps

Candy Cane

Yield: 18 cookies


  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 egg whites
  • Pinch salt
  • ¼ tsp cream of tartar
  • ½ cup Stevia in the Raw
  • 1 sugar free candy cane
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 300 F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray lightly with Pam.
  3. Combine the egg whites, lemon juice, cream of tartar, salt, and sugar in a bowl.
  4. Using an electric mixer, whip the egg whites into a meringue, until the whites are thick and stand up in peaks.
  5. Add the stevia and vanilla and whip for 30 seconds.
  6. Drop by the spoonful onto pan, making 12 cookies.
  7. Crush the candy cane into small bits.
  8. Sprinkle the candy cane on top of the cookies.
  9. Bake 1 ½ hours, then turn the oven off and let the cookies sit in the oven while it is left partially open until the oven is cool.
  10. Remove the cookies from the tray and enjoy!

Nutritional Information: approx. 12 calories and 0g fat per cookie

Weight Watchers POINTS = 1 POINT for 5 cookies

A Review of PopularCookieRecipes.com

Did you know that the first cookie dates all the way back to the 7th century in Persia? Seems that sugar was first cultivated there and then spread to the eastern Mediterranean. At the end of the 14th century, you could walk along the streets of Paris and buy little wafers, and cookie recipes began to show up in Renaissance era cookbooks. From there it was only a matter before cookies took over the world – well its sweet tooth that is.

That’s one of the fun things I learned about cookies at PopularCookieRecipes.com, a collection of popular cookie recipes from around the world – a website you should check out for basic, simple cookie recipes.

This time of year we don’t think about cookies much since we’re busy making pies and tarts from all the great fruit available in the summer. Still, cookies are classic and very portable – great for picnicking or taking to the beach for a snack.

Since I’m always on the lookout for eggfree dessert recipes, I thought I’d share PopularCookieRecipes.com recipe for shortbread cookies.

Shortbread Cookies
I think these cookies would be marvelous to dip into a little fruit preserves or maybe eat with a bowl of fresh berries and a tall glass of iced tea.


  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 cups all purpose flour


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix butter and sugar in large bowl.
  3. Stir in flour. If dough is crumbly, mix in an additional 1 to 2 tablespoons of softened butter.
  4. Roll dough to 1/2 inch thickness and cut dough with cookie cutters into desired shapes. The dough can even be cut with a knife into wedges or strips for interesting designs. Get creative and have fun!
  5. Bake about 20 minutes or until set.
  6. Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.

PopularCookieRecipes.com bills itself as a collection of popular cookie recipes. Yet the selection is pretty limited now. Since it’s a new website, I look forward to seeing them expand their cookie recipe collection.

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The good, bad and ugly

Anthony_bourdainFirst the good. My sister sent me Anthony Bourdain’s Les Halles Cookbook. It’s the only cookbook I have with cuss words in it. Anthony manages to drop the f-bomb at least every third page and extols the virtues of eating organ meats, fat and marrow. Needless to say, I love it. Thanks Michele!

Then the bad. I’ve decided that Kraft’s 4-in-1 cookie recipe completely, utterly SUCKS! I think the problem is that there is too much fat from the cream cheese and butter, and not enough flour and eggs to keep the cookies together to roll out and bake successfully.

Finally the ugly. The Thumbprint Cookies I made today melted and are completely flat. The Pecan Bars never set (even though I over-cooked them) and are gushy. So I have weird-looking flat cookies and squishy bar cookies for my mom’s club cookie exchange tomorrow. I’m even too embarassed and pissed off to post a picture. So much time, money and food wasted. Oh well, at least they taste good.

Froogle_imageNext year, I’m going to use a traditional sugar cookie recipe, like the this one by Alton Brown. Or maybe I’ll try my hand at meringue cookies.

Screw the friggin’ cookies. Christmas trifle anyone?

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It’s cookie time – final thoughts

I tried making the Pinwheel Cookies again, and this batch turned out even worse looking that the first ones. The cookies were cracked and not round. And the swirls got all goofed up again. Storing them is impossible because they crumble. But they’re still delicious and the raw dough is addictive.

Some thoughts:

  • A friend mentioned that you need to buy "real" butter from a dairy. She believes that the butter at the grocery store is full of oils that can affect the results of your cookie baking. She says her sister uses butter-flavored Crisco with good results, but she prefers butter.
  • Forget the Pinwheel Cookies or the Sugar Cookie cutouts, since the dough has to be rolled out. Try making the Pecan Bars or the Thumbprint Cookies instead.
  • If you ever have the jones for raw cookie dough, this is a perfect recipe – no raw, bacteria-laden eggs!
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It’s cookie time! – Update

Pinwheel_2I just finished making the Pinwheel Cookies from Kraft’s recipe for 4-in-1 cookie dough. The dough was easy to make and absolutely delicious.

Another benefit of this recipe (versus a traditional sugar cookie recipe) is that it’s egg-free for those allergic to eggs, or people like me who like to nibble on raw cookie dough.

However, rolling out the dough was much harder than I thought, because it was too fragile to pick up once you rolled it out. The dough stretched out and ripped numerous times, and the rolls I made look pretty funky.

Then I remembered that Alton Brown’s did a Good Eats show on making sugar cookies. Even though I only caught the last five minutes of the The Cookie Clause last night, I remembered there were some good tips so I looked ’em up.

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