How to Bake Gluten, Refined Sugar and Caffeine Free Double Chocolate Chip Cookies
Happy New Year Life is Made readers! Is everyone as excited as I am to be ringing in the new year with a bunch of lame-o resolutions like cutting DELICIOUS gluten and cane sugar out of their diets? When I decided to start this diet I was miserable at just the thought of eliminating bread and sugary desserts from my diet. Biting into a fresh baked loaf of french bread or chomping down on some chocolate cookies at the end of the day is pretty high up there on my pyramid of pleasures. But you know what? It really has not been that difficult (yet). Yes, it does make my trips the grocery store a lot longer and more tedious and it does suck to be at a dinner party if the menu is gluten and sugar laden, but I have been absolutely loving the time I'm spending in the kitchen learning about and experimenting with different types of flours and unrefined sugars. Most flours have WAY more nutrients than wheat flour and unrefined sugars are lower on the glycemic index, have more nutrients and have more complex flavors that plane old refined cane sugar.
I'm definitely all about eating for nutrition and not just pleasure so the challenge of finding recipes that are both yummy and more nutritious is really exciting. I'm not one hundred percent sold on the idea of a gluten free diet, but I have heard enough anecdotal evidence that it helps with certain ailments that it would be silly not to try and see if helps with what ails me. I'm cutting refined sugar out of my diet because I'm a bit of sugar addict and I think I need to curb my sweet habit for a bit so I can get back on track with good eating habits. You don't realize it until you decide to remove refined sugar from your diet, but that stuff is in everything. Start reading labels and you will see what I mean. I decided to use caffeine free carob powder and carob chips in these cookies because I have a hard time digesting chocolate, I think because of the caffeine. If you don't have any problem eating chocolate, you could just as easily make these cookies with cocoa powder and unsweetened dark chocolate chips.
These cookies may look healthy, but they taste oh so sinful. They are plenty sweet with the coconut sugar and maple sugar and the chocolate taste is perfection. My husband is a major carob cynic and he could not believe how good they tasted. When cooking gluten free, it is really important to add something to the flours to help with the binding process because gluten does all of the binding in wheat flour baking. I added xanthan gum to help bind these cookies, but if you can't find it or don't want to make an extra trip to the store, you can use corn starch instead. You should be able to find all of the ingredients I've listed at health food store or Whole Foods. If you don't live near a good health food store you can also order all of the harder to find ingredients online.
Yield: 24 cookies
- 1 cup sorghum flour
- 3/4 cup tapioca flour
- 1/2 cup rice flour
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp xanthan gum
- 1/4 cup carob powder*
- 1 stick softened butter
- 1 1/4 cup coconut sugar
- 1/4 cup maple sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup of unsweetened Chatfield's Carob Chips**
*Carob powder can be purchase at most health food stores, you can also purchase it online at Vitacost here.
**I chose Chatfield's Carob Chips because they come sweetened and unsweeted. You can purchase Chatfield's Carob Chips from their website here.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flours, baking soda, baking powder, xanthum gum and carob powder and set aside. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugars together until well creamed. Beat in the eggs and vanilla extract and beat on high speed for 2 minutes. Turn the speed down to medium and slowly mix in the dry ingredients. Once the dry ingredients are well incorporated, mix on medium speed for another minute. The batter will be much more dense and sticky than regular cookie dough. Use a spatula to incorporate the carob chips. Spoon a heaping tablespoon per cookie onto an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 13-15 minutes.