Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Have you ever made cookies with a box of cake mix? I have made them many times and in many different ways. I like them because they are quick and easy. I also like them because you don't have to use butter to get a yummy cookie. Don't get me wrong, I love my chocolate chip cookies made with butter. However, they can be temper-mental since the butter has to be at just the right temperature to get a good dough. So, when I have to bring cookies somewhere and want to do an easy cookie, I do cake mix cookies. However, I don't like all the ingredients in cake mix, and I don't care for the refined flours in them either. 

So, this is my recipe for cake mix cookies from SCRATCH without the box of cake mix. Specifically, "Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies." Maybe kind of silly to make an easy cookie a little more complicated. But, I like it because it makes them a little bit healthier. In this recipe, the only "unhealthy" ingredient is the sugar. Everything else is pretty good for you and a little sugar every once in a while isn't so bad. And if you want, you could always use a boxed chocolate cake mix instead of making the cake mix yourself. 
Here are just a few of the ingredients I used. The applesauce is UNSWEETENED and the oil is COCONUT oil. 
 First, I prepare the chocolate cake mix. It is just some whole wheat white flour, white sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder,  baking soda, and salt all mixed together! See, not too hard. Right? (As a disclaimer, I have never used this cake mix to make a chocolate cake, just cookies).
 Then, I just add the rest of the ingredients to the cake mix. I start out by making my flax egg. It is a TBSP of ground flax whisked together with 3 TBSP of water and I let it sit for a few minutes. If you don't want to bother with a flax egg, you could use a regular egg. I haven't ever used a regular egg in this before, but it should work fine. Along with the flax egg, you add some coconut oil, applesauce, vanilla, and oats (I usually use quick oats, but rolled oats are fine too). You could also add some chocolate chips, nuts or other mix in if you like. I usually don't bother adding anything.
Once everything is in the bowl, mix it really well. I usually have to get my hands in there and mix it by hand. It may seem like it needs more liquid at first, but just keep mixing. Trust me! Once everything is well incorporated, the dough will look like this big clump in the picture above.
 Then, roll the dough and place it on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. You should be able to get 3 dozen good sized cookies. This cookie dough also freezes well, so you can place the balls of dough you don't need in a freezer bag to use another time!
Don't they look so good! And with whole wheat flour and oats, they aren't too sinful either! The applesauce makes this a soft, chewy cookie.  If you prefer a crunchy cookie, you can up the oil to 1/2 cup and use a 1/4 cup of water instead of the applesauce.

And here is the whole recipe:

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

2 C. soft whole wheat white flour (all purpose flour would also work)
1 C. cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 and 3/4 C. white sugar

1 C. oatmeal
1/4 C. coconut oil
1/2 C. unsweetened applesauce
1 flax egg
1 tsp vanilla
Chocolate chips or other mix in, if desired

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together the first 6 ingredients to make the dry cake mix or use a boxed chocolate cake mix. Add the other ingredients and mix well. Form balls of dough and place on parchment lined cookie sheet. Bake for 12 minutes. (Makes 3 dozen)

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