A new classic
I know what you’re thinking… these healthy oatmeal raisin cookies are just another cookie recipe that will end up tasting like cardboard… Well, if you’re thinking that, it’s because you don’t know me at all… I don’t care if anything is labeled “healthy” if it doesn’t taste amazing… So if I share this recipe with you, it’s because it’s simply delicious. And did I mention healthy?
Oatmeal raisin cookies are a classic of American cuisine. I am sure you have all eaten at some point in your life a classic “vanishing oatmeal raisin cookie” based on the recipe posted inside every box of Quaker oatmeal. It includes 1 stick of butter, 3/4 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup of sugar… all things we now know are not so good for you… The oatmeal part was supposed to make up for it a bit, as oats are among the healthiest grains on earth. They’re a gluten-free whole grain and a great source of important vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants. Studies show that oats and oatmeal have many health benefits. These include weight loss, lower blood sugar levels and a reduced risk of heart disease.
But yeah, once you combine them with butter and sugar, it kind of defeats the purpose…
How I came up with this recipe
I had been playing for some time with different versions of healthy cookies that would include no added sugar and no added fat – especially no saturated fat from butter or even coconut oil. I have already shared my Banana oatmeal walnut cookies that are so popular.
Once I discovered that bananas could replace sugar, egg and fat in cookies, there was no stopping my imagination! I mean, bananas are a magic ingredient when it comes to baking!
Enters… a healthy oatmeal raisin cookie! Made from oatmeal, bananas, almond meal, raisins and walnuts. Granted, it is not a crunchy cookie but a soft and moist one, almost like a tiny flat muffin. That’s because #1 – the oats need to be ground into a flour in your blender in order to bind with the banana to create the structure, #2 – I like it that way! and #3 it wouldn’t sound good if I called it a tiny flat oatmeal raisin muffin…
I added the almond meal in this recipe to provide an extra boost of healthy fat and moisture (don’t worry, we’re still a far cry from the amount of fat in a traditional cookie).
How to make these healthy oatmeal raisin cookies
The first version I made of these cookies was with the oats ground into a coarse flour consistency in a blender. For that you will need a good blender or food processor. Or you could use oat flour, and in that case reduce the amount to 3/4 cup.
A second version I made was leaving the oats whole, and it turned out just as delicious, just a bit more chewy. So pick the method you want, the result will be tasty no matter what.
Place the oats, whole or ground, into a bowl, add the almond meal, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. Give that a quick stir with a whisk.
Peel and mash your bananas (that’s a great stress reliever by the way). You want to use ripe bananas whose skin has brown spots, they have more sweetness and mash more easily. Add to the bowl along with the vanilla. Stir well with a spatula to combine.
Add raisins and walnuts and mix well.
Use an ice cream scoop to portion out the dough onto a silicone pad. Don’t worry about shaping the cookies, all you need to do is drop the scoops of dough at reasonable intervals, they will take their shape naturally while baking, and they don’t spread out very much.
Into the oven for 20 minutes, et voila! You can have healthy oatmeal cookies for breakfast, dessert, or as an any time guiltless treat!
Check out other recipes you might like:
Healthy oatmeal raisin cookies
- Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone pad.
- Optional: In a high power blender or food processor, pulse the oats a few times until you get a rough flour consistency. You can skip this step if you want a more chewy texture.
- Pour oats into mixing bowl and add almond meal, baking soda and spices.
- Mash bananas with a fork until completely smooth. Add to the bowl along with vanilla. Blend well with a spatula.
- Add nuts and raisins until combined.
- Using an ice cream/cookie scoop (= about 2 tbsp), drop balls of dough onto cookies sheet, spacing well. Do not worry about the shape, these cookies will rise slightly and will not spread very much.
- Bake 20 minutes. Cool on the sheet pan 15 minutes then on a wire rack until completely cool.
- Store in an airtight container