Guilt-Free Dark Chocolate Chip Cookie Bites
Just try and keep your hands out of the cookie jar with these bad boys. These little cookie bites, even though they’re on the healthier side, are super addicting. I shouldn’t really be calling them a cookie, as they are a take on the classic Cliff Kid’s ZBAR, so they’re more of an energy bar in cookie form. Maybe I should just call them cute little energy cookie bites!
These cookie bites are vegan, gluten-free (if you use GF oats), have no refined sugar, are flourless, eggless and dairy free, and they still taste great! That’s a winner recipe in my book! The texture is soft and a bit chewy, sort of like a ZBAR.
Also, the new food guidelines are out and the biggest “NO NO” is refined sugar, most of us already know that too much sugar is not healthy, but since the FDA gave it the big “NO” many people are looking for natural sugar alternatives for their favorite treats! There are so many ways to cut back on sugar and still have a tasty, kid approved treat! These cookies, as well as my gluten-free healthy cookie bites are the perfect segway from your traditional refined sugar chocolate chip cookie to a healthier unrefined sugar, whole-food chocolate chip cookie.
So you’re probably wondering what my kiddo’s think of the cookies? Well, Zoe LOVES them and is totally addicted like me! We seriously can’t keep our hands out of the cookie jar! She asked for them for dessert last night, as well as for her snack at school, so I think it’s safe to say that she adores these cute little cookie bites! Eli loves them as well, but it took him a few tries before he gave me the double thumbs up. He had to get used to the fact that dates were used in the cookies, but he later admitted that he didn’t even taste the dates in the cookie, so there you go…
I also brought these down to my bestie Carey to sample, and she couldn’t stop eating them, she absolutely loved them! So there you have it, four out of four of us loved these cookie bites!
The batter is super yummy as well, so if you’re into eating cookie batter, then go for it. As I said above this batter is egg-free, so you won’t have to worry about getting sick from eating raw eggs.
These cookie bites do taste better as they sit, (like a couple of hours later and even better the next day) as the flavors and texture have a chance meld together, so don’t judge them right as they come out of the oven.
guilt-free dark chocolate chip cookie bites:
recipe from Power Hungry: The Ultimate Energy Bar Cookbook Power Hungry: The Ultimate Energy Bar Cookbook
makes 14 cookies using a 1 3/4″ cookie scooper (that’s what I used)
makes 20-24 cookies using a tablespoon measurement
prep time 10 min
cook time 10 min
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats, also called rolled oats – You can also make this gluten free by using gluten free oats from Bob’s Red Mill
- 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed – If you don’t have flaxseed on hand, then you can use an equal amount of additional rolled oats, wheat germ or chia seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup (approx. 8 large) de-pitted medjool dates – You don’t need to buy pitted dates, just get the regular medjool dates and de-pit them
- 1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter, almond butter, or nut butter of choice – I adore this no stir peanut butter from MaraNatha
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk, or non-dairy milk of choice or dairy milk – I used unsweetened almond milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup dark or bittersweet chocolate chips – I used these extra dark chips from Guittard
Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a food processor, process the oats into a fine powder (about 20 seconds).
Add the 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda to the processed oats, and pulse to combine.
Add the dates to the processor bowl.
Process until the dates are very finely chopped (about 20-25 seconds).
Add in the 1/2 cup peanut butter, 1/2 cup almond milk and the 1 teaspoon vanilla.
Pulse to combine, using a spatula to scrape down the sides once or twice, until the mixture is well blended.
Transfer the dough to a medium bowl and stir in the chocolate chips.
Using an ice-cream scooper, (the ice cream scooper I used is 1 3/4″) or a heaping tablespoon, scoop out the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing them 2 inches apart.
I got 14 cookies by using my 1 3/4″ scooper, you will get more cookies (20-24) by using a tablespoon measurement.
Dip the tines of a fork into water and gently flatten each cookie. Don’t make them too flat, but just press down lightly in the cookie ball with the fork.
Bake the cookies for 10-11 minutes in the preheated oven until the edges are golden brown. I baked mine for exactly 10 minutes, and they were perfect. I found that baking them for 11 minutes made my cookies a tiny bit drier. It’s all personal preference here!
Cool the cookies for 1 minute on the baking sheets, and then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
Note: These cookies are better after they cool down for a couple of hours, and are actually better day two, three and four, as the texture and flavors have a chance to meld together.
Storage: Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days (see if you can keep them around for 5 days) or freeze them for up to 1 month (thaw them out at room temp). I wouldn’t suggest storing them in the fridge, as they will taste drier.
If you like these cookie bites, then you need to try my gluten-free healthy cookie bites. These cookie bites are made with 100% whole ingredients. They’re dairy-free, butter and oil-free, grain-free and gluten-free, but have an amazing buttery taste and texture. They’re also totally kid approved and tested! Give them a try. They only take 10 minutes to whip up and 12 minutes to bake.
My kids and I also go crazy for these no-bake dark chocolate peanut butter granola bars. These are sort of a Kind Bar copycat. You can make these gluten-free by using gluten-free oats.
I also love these quinoa snack bars. They’re filled with the goodness of quinoa, quinoa flour, chia seeds, goji berries, local raw honey and so much more. You can even make these gulten-free by using gluten-free oats. Awesome!