Healthy recipes chocolate chip cookies (gluten free, vegan, low sugar)

I love a good cookie and adding Gluten Free and Skinny to the mix only makes it better. While I admit, I’ve eaten raw dough (with eggs) for decades, I’m excited to try this recipe because most eggless recipes I’ve seen call for things like chickpeas.


  • 1 cup gluten-free flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup honey (agave nectar for vegan diet)
  • 4 Tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 4 ounces unsweetened applesauce
  • 3 ounces 70-88% dark chocolate bar, crushed
  • 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips


    1. Preheat oven to 350° F
    2. Prepare baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone mat
    3. In a medium bowl add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix together.
    4. Stir in the vanilla extract, honey, peanut butter, applesauce. Stir until fully combined.
    5. Fold in the crushed dark chocolate and mini chocolate chips
    6. Mixture will be slightly sticky. Drop the dough onto baking sheet by the Tablespoon.
    7. They were not spread out during being baked so make sure you have them looking the way you want them to look. I personally like to flatten them and make them more of a circle cookie.
    8. Bake them for 8-11 minutes or until they have risen and are golden brown.




No Bake Peanut Butter Bars take only 5 ingredients and 10 minutes (plus chilling time). My Grandma calls them “Almost Reese’s” for good reason!

Here is a delightfully simple candy recipe with that eternally delicious combination: Chocolate and Peanut Butter. With 5 ingredients and about 10 minutes, you can be on your way to a batch of homemade “Almost Reese’s”!

My grandma coined the term “Almost Reese’s” for obvious reasons (she also gave us this chocolate cream pie; thanks Grandma!). These luscious bars are perfect for the holiday parties, for gift-giving, or for a Friday night at home.

Just try to stop eating them.
The recipe calls for milk chocolate chips and those would most closely align with a traditional Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. However, I have always preferred dark chocolate so I made my chocolate-covered peanut butter bars with semi-sweet chocolate chips. Delicious!

I have an informal poll going that men prefer milk chocolate and women prefer dark chocolate. Am I right? Please leave your chocolate preference in the comments below.

By the way, these bars have to chill for at least a few hours, preferably overnight. Make your next party less stressful by preparing these the day before! Or, freeze for up to 2 months in advance and thaw overnight in the refrigerator.



  • 1 ½ cups brown sugar
  • 1 ¾ cups powdered sugar
  • 10 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 ½ cups peanut butter
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips or semi-sweet chocolate chips


  1. Line an 8-inch or 9-inch square pan with aluminum foil (see notes).
  2. In a large microwave-safe dish, melt 5 Tablespoons butter. Stir in brown sugar, powdered sugar, and peanut butter. Mix well and press into prepared pan.
  3. Wipe out microwave-safe dish and heat chocolate chips and remaining 5 tablespoons butter for 1 minute. Stir carefully and continue to microwave in 30-second increments until smooth, stirring after each increment. Pour over peanut butter crust and spread evenly.

You can find complete recipes of this NO BAKE PEANUT BUTTER BARS in



Fresh raspberries, Framboise, and plenty of dark chocolate come together in these decadent Raspberry Chocolate Cupcakes.

essa, who’s seven, grabbed a box of little chocolate heart cookies at the store the other day. When my girls ask to buy cookies, I usually tell them that we should just make them ourselves. Before I could say a word this time, she asked,”Wouldn’t these look perfect on top of some Valentine’s Day cupcakes?” She held the box up to my face to make sure I’d taken in the full measure of their chocolate-covered-pink-and-white-sprinkled adorableness.

“Why, yes. Yes, they would.”

The girl is good. With one simple question, she got me to buy her cookies AND make some Raspberry Chocolate Cupcakes.

Not only that, her idea of topping cupcakes with little cookies is a genius trick for turning already cute cupcakes into super festive treats. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can make your own cookies, but if you’re like me, you don’t want to bake cookies and cupcakes at the same time. Am I right? Just buy ’em.

With or without a cookie on top, you’re going to want these cupcakes. Dark chocolate cake full of raspberry goodness awaits you under all that sweet raspberry buttercream. The cupcake batter includes both Framboise and sweet, tart raspberries, which make these little treats super moist and delicious.




  • 2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa powder
  • ⅓ cup boiling water
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup Framboise
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoons baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter, softened but still cool
  • ¾ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ cups fresh or frozen raspberries, at room temperature and gently crushed
  • 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

Raspberry Buttercream

  • ¾ cups fresh or frozen raspberries, at room temperature
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3 to 4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Framboise
  • 1 tablespoon milk or cream, as needed


  1. For the cupcakes, preheat oven to 350° F. Grease or paper-line 24 muffin tin cups. Set aside.
  2. Combine chocolate and cocoa powder in a small bowl. Carefully pour in boiling water and stir until the chocolate has melted and the ingredients are well combined. Add sour cream and Framboise and mix well. Set aside.
  3. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a bowl and set aside.
  4. In the bowl of a standing electric mixer, cream together butter and sugar until well combined.
  5. Add the eggs to the butter mixture one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat until well blended.
  6. Add the flour mixture, alternating with the chocolate mixture, to the egg-butter mixture. Stir until the dry ingredients until just incorporated. Stir in raspberries and their juices. Fold in chocolate chips.
  7. Add batter to prepared muffin cups, filling each one about half full.
  8. Bake until the cupcakes are set and a tester inserted in the center comes out clean, about 15 minutes.
  9. Remove from the oven and cool in the pan for 15 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.

You can find complete recipes of this RASPBERRY CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES in

Coconut Flour Almond Butter Truffles

Coconut Flour Almond Butter Truffles

So I was doing a pantry clean-out recently, when – to my horror – I discovered SEVERAL unopened bags of fancy flours.


I’m talking coconut, almond, garbanzo bean – you know the kind.

And I know exactly how it happened, too.

When creating content for clients or other publications, I sometimes have to purchase an ingredient that I’ve never used. As such, I panic that I’ll have to make multiple attempts at getting a new recipe “just right”, so I buy an extra bag or two to play it safe. I figure, I’ll for sure find SOME use for it at some point.

And then said bag goes to the very back of the very top shelf of my pantry – never to be seen or heard from again.

Till now.

For the next few weeks I’ll be sharing recipes that use these “alternative” flours in a variety of sweet and savory recipes. The timing is perfect with Passover around the corner, but as many of us are reducing (or eliminating) wheat from our diets, I’m hoping that you’ll find a recipe or two that you might want to try even if you’re not celebrating the holiday!

You with me? Good!

Let’s start with coconut flour, and a super easy recipe.

Coconut Flour Almond Butter Truffles
Coconut Flour Almond Butter Truffles


  • Coconut Flour Almond Butter Truffles
  • from From Cats to Cooking
  • 1 cup almond butter (read here for a great tip!)
  • 3/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1 cup dairy-free chocolate chips


  1. flaky sea salt, such as Maldon, for sprinkling
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
  3. Stir the almond butter and coconut flour in a medium bowl (note: if your almond butter is unsalted you may add a pinch of salt to the mixture). Freeze till firm enough to scoop.
  4. Scoop small mounds (about 2 teaspoons each) onto your prepared baking sheet. Use slightly damp hands to form the mixture into balls. Freeze till solid.
  5. Melt the chocolate chips in the top half of a double boiler set over a pan of barely simmering water. Remove one truffle from the freezer and place on a fork. Hold the fork over the bowl of chocolate and use a spoon to pour it over the truffle. Gently tap the handle of the fork on the edge of the bowl so that the excess drips off. Use another fork to slide the truffle back onto your baking sheet. Immediately sprinkle with a bit of flaky sea salt. Keep truffles in the fridge till ready to serve.

You can find complete recipes of this Coconut Flour Almond Butter Truffles in

Gluten Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread {Maple-Syrup Sweetened, Dairy-Free}

Gluten Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread {Maple-Syrup Sweetened, Dairy-Free}

Of all the quick breads, pumpkin chocolate chip bread might just reign supreme as the most delicious! And of all the gluten-free versions I’ve tried, this recipe is my very favorite.

Pumpkin chocolate chip bread is something I love to bake in the fall, and I wanted to create a truly delicious gluten-free version. I also wanted to make a maple-syrup sweetened version that doesn’t rely on all starches and white flours.

A few weeks ago I started testing recipes and found creating a gluten-free quick bread with no granulated sugar proved to be more difficult than I thought! Many gluten-free baked goods rely on extra sugar to provide the structure needed when you have no gluten.

After two disappointing loafs, I took a step back to think about the science of it all. Regular flour contains more protein than many gluten-free flours, so creating a blend with a similar level of protein to regular flour is what I did first. Here are my tricks for this recipe!

Buckwheat Flour: Buckwheat flour made from buckwheat groats you grind up finely in the blender is one of my favorite flours. If you don’t like the taste of buckwheat, don’t worry! There are so many spices and flavors you can’t even taste it. Buckwheat can have a nutty flavor, so I like combining it with other ingredients.

What it does provide, however, is the needed protein for structure in this quick bread. Buckwheat flour also has natural elastic properties which eliminate the need for a binder like xanthan gum, which is a great thing in my book. I’m not totally anti-xanthan gum. It has a place in some recipes, but I know many people with extra sensitive stomachs try and avoid it. I prefer natural binders like psyllium, flaxseed, and in this case, buckwheat whenever possible.

Aside from giving this bread great structure, buckwheat also has amazing health benefits! It is full of minerals and fiber and actually slows the absorption of carbohydrates into your blood stream. If you buy buckwheat groats for this recipe you can also use them in my family’s favorite crepes and these blender waffles.

Gluten Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread {Maple-Syrup Sweetened, Dairy-Free}
Gluten Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread {Maple-Syrup Sweetened, Dairy-Free}


Dry Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup buckwheat groats
  • 1/2 cup potato starch
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves

Wet Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (canned or fresh)
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

Optional Mix-In:

  • 1/2-2/3 cup chocolate chips, pecans, or walnuts


  1. Adjust the oven rack to the bottom third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 375F. Grease an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 loaf pan. (A 9×5 will work as well, but the bread won’t be as tall.)
  2. Place the buckwheat groats in a dry blender and blend into a very fine, smooth flour. Add the ground buckwheat to a bowl along with the remaining dry ingredients.
  3. In another bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients until very smooth. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until just combined. The chocolate chips tend to sink to the bottom of the batter, so add the chocolate chips in layers as you add batter to the pan, keeping most of them in the top layers.

You can find complete recipes of this Gluten Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread in



While prepping the ingredients for these Almond Joy Macaroons, Z asked me if I was making Mounds. I pointed out that I was using almonds which would make them Almond Joys and proceeded to relive one of my sillier childhood memories. In case the name wasn’t clarification enough, I repeatedly sang the 70’s jingle, “Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don’t. Almond Joy’s got nuts, Mounds don’t.” Z may have rolled his eyes and walked away, but there I stood and savored the moment for a little while longer.

I have vivid memories of my mom singing that song when I was a child and that afternoon, despite the number of the miles between us, my mom was in the kitchen baking with me as I quietly hummed away. I’m always fascinated by the memories we choose keep tucked away for a rainy day and by the seemingly insignificant triggers that cause them to resurface. Whether in person or in spirit, it’s always a great day when time is spent with family. Love you Mom, thanks for baking with me!



  • 4 large egg whites
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 5⅓ cups (14 ounce bag) sweetened flaked coconut
  • 24 whole almonds
  • ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together egg whites, sugar, salt and vanilla extract until foamy.
  3. Fold in coconut flakes until mixture is evenly distributed.
  4. Scoop golf ball sized mounds of coconut mixture, place almond in the center and roll into a ball. Place macaroons about one inch apart on prepared baking sheet.

You can find complete recipes of this ALMOND JOY COCONUT MACAROONS in

White Chocolate Coconut Candy (Raffaello Copycat)

White Chocolate Coconut Candy (Raffaello Copycat)

Simple and delicious bites of white chocolate and coconut taste just like the Raffaello Candies, and are a breeze to make. They’re perfect as a little treat to enjoy yourself or to give away as party favors, or even holiday gifts.

All you have to do to make them is melt the chocolate and butter, combine it with the shredded coconut, roll small amounts into balls and dip in coconut for that authentic look of the Raffaello candy.

At home, it is impossible to replicate the wafer shell of the Raffaello candy, so instead, the proportions of chocolate to coconut create crunch-like texture by not making the white chocolate too soft. It is hard to explain what the texture is like, but I’m telling you, they come out so good! My sister, who lives a floor up from me and who always gets to taste test my stuff, said they’re better than the original and recommended I bring these to our Thanksgiving dinner next week. Who knows, I just might.

I have bought a jar of coconut oil that I had no idea what to use for and these Raffaello Copycat candies are a perfect use for it. The coconut doesn’t just thin out the chocolate, but it also gives the extra coconut flavor and since the coconut oil stays solid at room temperature, the candies don’t melt and create a mess like some other recipes I have seen. If you don’t have coconut oil, it’s fine to use butter, but then you might just have to store them in the fridge.

White Chocolate Coconut Candy (Raffaello Copycat)
White Chocolate Coconut Candy (Raffaello Copycat)


  • 2½ cups desiccated unsweetened coconut
  • 2 cups white chocolate chips (Ghirardelli)
  • 4 Tbsp melted unsalted butter or coconut oil
  • 40-50 Almonds, toasted (in a 350F oven, for 10 minutes)

To coat White Chocolate Coconut Candy:

  • 1 cup white chocolate chips (Ghirardelli)
  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil or unsalted butter
  • Shredded unsweetened coconut


  1. Add the melted butter or coconut oil to the chocolate chips and microwave for about a little more than a minute in the following pattern: 20 seconds+20 seconds+10 seconds+10 seconds+10 seconds, stirring after each one. As soon as the chocolate is mostly melted stop heating and stir until the chocolate is smooth.
  2. Add the melted chocolate to the coconut.
  3. Stir coconut with the melted chocolate. If the mixture clumps up, heat in the microwave for 10 seconds until the mixture is easy to stir. Using a tablespoon or a small ice cream scoop take a little bit of the coconut mixture, add an almond to the middle of it. Try to make the candies very small, the ingredients are rich and you want them to be one small bite.
  4. Using hands (you can wear disposable gloves to keep the mixture from sticking to your hands) form a ball, then roll between the palms of your hands until it’s smooth. Now quickly while it’s still somewhat soft roll in the coconut. If the chocolate hardens the coconut will not stick to the outside. If the coconut mixture becomes too hard to roll, just microwave the mixture for 5-7 seconds, stir and get back to rolling.

The candies are ready to be eaten at this point.

  1. If you want the candy to have a white chocolate shell similar to the Raffaello candies, you can dip each candy in melted chocolate.

You can find complete recipes of this White Chocolate Coconut Candy (Raffaello Copycat) in



If you love chocolate and peanut butter, then this Crock Pot Chocolate Peanut Butter Lava Cake is going to be your ultimate dessert! Oh. My. Yum.

Aunt Lou here.

As usual, we are having our weekly pitch-in for our small group at our church. When we were planning the meal, I volunteered for dessert but had no idea what I was going to make. Flash foward a few days. I was talking to Michael about it trying to come up with something. Then out of the clear blue, this Crock Pot Chocolate Peanut Butter Lava Cake was born!


I really have no idea what made me think this up, but I remembered how much I loved this Crock Pot Chocolate Lava Cake and the thought of peanut butter added to it just made my mouth water.

But how to do it? Peanut butter? Some kind of peanut butter mixture? How would that effect the cake batter? So I did what I usually do when I have an idea I can’t quite put together. I called Cris. She said peanut butter chips, I said brilliant. And now you get to say yum! 😉



  • 2 c all purpose flour
  • 1 c sugar
  • 12 T baking cocoa, divided
  • 4 t baking powder
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 c milk
  • 4 T oil
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 2 10 oz bag peanut butter chips
  • 1½ c packed brown sugar
  • 3 c hot water


  1. Spray crock pot with cooking spray
  2. Combine flour, sugar, 4 T cocoa, baking powder and salt
  3. Add milk, oil and vanilla and stir
  4. Gently stir in one bag of peanut butter chips
  5. Place in your crock pot and spread evenly
  6. Combine brown sugar and 8 T cocoa in separate bowl

You can find complete recipes of this CROCK POT CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER LAVA CAKE in



Hello Friday. Boy have I missed you.

Guys, I have found THE BEST and easiest way to make granola bars on this sweet planet earth. I found a link on Pinterest to a recipe that had been adapted from Rachael Ray. So, I followed the trail along and found the original recipe….which I then adapted myself {you must have seen that coming…} to be healthier and to use what I had in my cupboards. Pretty darn simple granola bars AND amazingly delicious. I was seriously shocked at how well these turned out for 3 minutes of work. Literally 3 minutes.

If you have kids make these! Heck, even if you don’t, make ’em anyways. They are great snacks or fast breakfasts.

Here’s what you do: In a small saucepan, heat up some butter, honey and brown sugar over medium high heat. Stir it together and let it bubble for 2 minutes. You want all the brown sugar granules to dissolve.



  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 cups quick cooking oats {not rolled oats!}
  • 1 cup crispy rice cereal
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons mini chocolate chips


  1. In a large bowl, stir oats and rice cereal together. Set aside. In a small pot, melt butter, honey and brown sugar together over medium high heat until it comes to a bubble. Reduce the heat and cook 2 minutes. Pour in vanilla and stir. Pour over dry ingredients and mix well to moisten all ingredients. Pour into lightly greased small jelly roll pan {about 12x8x1} and press out to be about 3/4 inch in thickness. {If your pan isn’t small enough, pack the mixture into one side. You really want to press them down so they stick together.} Sprinkle with mini chocolate chips and press down lightly. Cool on a countertop to room temperature for two hours or until the chocolate chips are set before cutting into bars. Wrap in parchment or plastic wrap and store at room temperature.

You can find complete recipes of this NO-BAKE CHOCOLATE CHIP GRANOLA BARS in

No Bake Oreo Mint Cheesecake

No Bake Oreo Mint Cheesecake

No Bake Oreo Mint Cheesecake – try to make this Oreo Mint Cheesecake, and you will see that you have never made easiest cake that is so yummy! So easy to make without baking, Oreo Mint Cheesecake!

How we can make good, delicious cheese cake like we eat in the restaurant? I was watching TV and I saw this beautiful cake and a perfect photo. That photo motivated me to make this so tasty cake! I wrote down recipe and started my Oreo Mint Cheesecake adventure. This is so easy, without baking, and believe me it will definitely succeed. Oreo lovers, must try this sweet, creamy, surprise and it is so easy to make that your children cake help you to make it! I guess that you like to make sweet things for your family and friends, but when it is so easy like my No Bake Oreo Cheesecake, believe me, you will like it the most!
So delicious cake in a short time. In my family this Oreo Cheesecake is favorite. I make this Oreo Mint Cheesecake and my family eat it immediately. When I finish Oreo Mint Cheesecake I try to decorate it, but my children can’t wait to eat! This dessert I make in my kitchen very often. In the beginning I was making it only for my family, but anyone else who has tasted this cake asked for recipe. I got many compliments, and everyone thought that it was difficult to make. I think I never made easiest cake. Today, my Oreo Cheesecake became favorite dessert of my friends and their families. Children or adults, everyone likes this Oreo Mint Cheesecake. But maybe, we like it because it is easy and quick to make.. Who knows.. Try to make it..

No Bake Oreo Mint Cheesecake
No Bake Oreo Mint Cheesecake

For the Crust:

  • 24 Oreo cookies-finely crushed
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter melted


  • 2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 24 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1½ cup Oreo crumbs (from about 15 Oreos)
  • 5-6 drops green food color
  • 1 teaspoon extract mint

For Chocolate:

  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Instructions – Crust:

  1. In the finely crushed Oreo cakes add melted butter.
  2. Add crust mixture on the bottom of springform pan and leave it for 10-15 minutes in the fridge.

Instructions – Fill and Chocolate:

  1. In the large bowl mix cream cheese, powdered sugar, until become creamy.
  2. Add heavy whipping cream and mix until becomes thick.
  3. Add mint extract, green food color and Oreo crumbs.

You can find complete recipes of this No Bake Oreo Mint Cheesecake in