Banana Maple Cranberry Cookies

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You know those commercials for the cookie diet? You see them and you’re like “Oh, hell no. There is no way I can eat all cookies all day every day and lose weight. Liars!” So, you laugh at the gimmick and then laugh a little harder when you see the lovely straight-from-Jersey-Shore Snooki promoting the product. But then, then, you see Snookie again and she’s lost like a million pounds and you’re like “Huh?! But I thought she was only eating cookies…” And then you maybe start to believe in the cookie diet a little bit. Right? I don’t know where I’m going with this because I’m not trying to lose weight. And I’d never buy a cookie diet that has commercials on television that Snooki is promoting. But I do strongly believe in a world where we can eat as many cookies as we want and not gain one billion pounds. And I’m pretty sure I found it. A world that contains a cookie diet that works.

I spotted a version of these cookies in Shape magazine and was astounded. I mean, there is no flour or granulated sugar in these cookies. No baking soda or baking powder. They’re made from bananas. And oats. And applesauce. Basically. I changed up the recipe, but followed the banana oats rule and discovered a cookie that’s actually good for me. Bananas, oats, ground flax, and dried cranberries. You can eat these all day every day and will probably lose weight. But uh, don’t take my word on it. They don’t involve kale, after all… But now my mind is working over-time.

Banana Maple Cranberry Cookies (makes about 24):
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  • 3 very ripe bananas
  • 2 C rolled oats
  • 1/3 C unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 T real maple syrup
  • 1 T ground flaxseed meal
  • 1/2 C dried cranberries

(heat oven to 350 degrees)

Also, this is the easiest recipe ever. I was literally IN BED when I started craving cookies. And I decided to hop out of bed and make these. They needed to bake for 20 minutes, but they only required about 10 minutes of work from me. Easy AND healthy are not two words you hear together very often.

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Start by mashing your bananas all together in a bowl with a fork.

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Then, mix all the other ingredients together with the banana. The oats, applesauce, maple syrup, flaxseed meal, and dried cranberries.

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I’ve never had flaxseed meal, but found it at Market Basket and thought I’d check it out. All I know is that flax has lots of vitamins and healthy stuff in it… And it’s really filling, too.

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Drop dough on a parchment-lined cookie sheet by the tablespoon. This is how I dropped the dough down.

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And bake for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees. I realized that my cookies weren’t very cookie-like, so for my second tray, I pushed the dough down with my palm to flatten them a bit.

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A little more cookie-like.

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I know, I know. You’re probably thinking: THIS IS NOT A COOKIE. This is a banana covered in oats and applesauce. Woo hoo. But they’re delicious. Really, they are. Kind of like a nice and chewy granola bar.

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Obviously, you have to like bananas to enjoy these because there is a strong banana flavor involved.

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But there’s also a delicious maple touch and a nice chewy oat texture. I swear they’re cookies. Really, they are. I had a few after lunch today and was completely satisfied and happy.

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Of course, I couldn’t help but wonder what these would be like if I added chocolate chips instead of dried cranberries. Because you never know. And coconut maybe? But I AM a Craisins lover, so these totally hit the spot for me.

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And since I rarely post about healthy desserts, I feel like you have to trust me on this one. After all, I’m the first person to down a package of Fudge Stripes or Keebler’s Chewy Choclate Chip Cookies (Soft Batch!), but sometimes I want to feel a little better about my choices. Not often, but sometimes. I do, after all, have to fit into a wedding dress in 4.5 months (eek!). And I’m sure as heck not giving up cookies. Nor do I plan on befriending Snooki.

What’s your favorite healthy-ish dessert?

[Sues]

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17 Responses to "Banana Maple Cranberry Cookies"

  1. Erica says:

    Yup… Trying it with chocolate chips!! These look awesome. Favorite healthy dessert? Apple microwaved with cinnamon and toppex with walnuts or a little nut butter

  2. Simply Life says:

    oh these look like fabulous cookies- what a great idea!

  3. Michelle says:

    These almost seem like little balls of granola! Interesting cookie recipe.

  4. Mandy says:

    I’ve made a recipe similar to this many times from another blog. These have both chocolate chips and coconut. The only sweetener in these is the banana, but they are still just as satisfying as a regular cookie.

    http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/nikkis-healthy-cookies-recipe.html

  5. kellypea says:

    I think I need these. But I have to confess I’ve never heard of the cookie diet and I have no clue who Snooki is. hahah! Dang I’m out of it ! Fave healthy-ish dessert? We’re big cereal people when we want a snack late at night. It’s Kashi most nights and definitely not every night, but it hits the spot. In fact, it would probably work in these cookies 🙂

  6. Mmm, I love dessert recipes like this – moist and delicious, yet good-for-you (so I never feel bad eating the entire batch).

  7. Shannon says:

    ha, now you’ve got my mind contemplating kale cookies. uh oh! these look great though 🙂

  8. Gia Grossman says:

    PERFECTION! I can eat one million of them!

  9. Susan says:

    I was thinking about adding in chocolate chips the whole time then you threw it out there too! These look delish and I’m trying them.

  10. I love healthy cookies like these! Amazing what a few bananas can do.

  11. oh yum!! i love the chocolate chip idea cause i don’t like craisins in cookies (but love ’em in muffins or plain)…but if i tell myself they are granola bites then maybe it’ll work 🙂

  12. Betty says:

    I’m making these for my daughter in law for sure- they sound really good!

  13. Libby says:

    These look great. I make similar ones with chocolate chips and eat them for breakfast all the time – it is basically fruit and oatmeal (well and some chocolate)! I love that its a great way to use those “softened” bananas that I won’t eat otherwise.

  14. Vidya says:

    Do you think these would work baked in a pan and cut up like granola bars? I’m hunting for a good granola bar recipe that doesn’t involve loads of sugary syrup and stays chewy, not crunchy.

  15. joan says:

    Definitely tring these!
    Sliced banana, dash of milk, and a sprinkle of sugar. I have loved this for more years than I want to count. 🙂

  16. Melissa says:

    Made these and love them! Now I need some more recipes to use the giant bag of ground flaxseed meal that I bought 🙂

  17. Eliana says:

    I can see myself growing quite addicted to these beauties. They look incredibly delicious.

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