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breakfast cookies

We like Clif and Luna bars, but they can be expensive and sometimes taste too proteiny for my liking. And have you seen the ingredient list? Vivi loves granola bars (especially the Quaker smores flavor), but I like to cut the sugar by making my own healthier snacks. This recipe was adapted from Ellie Krieger’s, with my own substitutions and including some ideas from Cooking Light. If you haven’t seen EK on the Food Network, she’s a dietician who makes healthy recipes. I sometimes catch her show while at the gym and always come away with great ideas.

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breakfast cookies
makes 9-10 big cookies

3/4 cup whole-wheat flour (I like buckwheat or spelt)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbs butter
1/4 cup oil
1/4 cup light brown sugar
Squirt of molasses
3 Tbs granulated sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup applesauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup bran flakes (like raisin bran cereal) or unprocessed bran
1/3 cup dried fruit, e.g. raisins, cranberries, and/or chopped figs
1/3 cup chopped and toasted nuts, e.g. walnuts, almonds, or pecans

Oven at 350 degF.
Whisk dry ingredients through salt in a medium bowl. Combine butter, oil and sugars in another bowl; mix for two minutes by hand, or if using a stand mixer, on high speed for 1 minute (you’re looking for a lighter color). Add egg, applesauce, and vanilla; beat for 30 seconds. Add flour mixture and beat for 30 seconds. Gently fold in oats, flakes, fruit, and nuts (Warning: Sticky dough! Use an ice cream scoop). Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Form balls and use wet fingers to press cookies flat. Bake for 12 minutes until almost set. Let cookies cool 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Editor’s Note: This recipe is part of Real Food Wednesday and Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways

Update 1/20/12: Last week I tried adding 1/4 cup of Bob’s Red Mill flax seed meal in place of half the all-purpose flour. The cookies came out a bit more loose than usual but still delicious. Next time I think I’ll leave the same amount of flour and add a bit of water to balance the meal. I think this will do the trick. Also go try Dinner: A Love Story’s breakfast cookies with quinoa, cherries, and almond extract