Sugar and cookies go hand in hand, don’t they? They’re synchronized in flavor and texture and come together to create one of the most well-loved treats. At Bob’s Red Mill, we love our cookies just as much as you do, and we’re always on the lookout for healthy cookie recipes. So the good news is, if you’re looking for sugar alternatives, that doesn’t mean you have to cut cookies out of your diet altogether!
Whether you’re exploring alternative sweetener options like date sugar and coconut sugar, or adding ingredients like nut butter and oats, nutritious options for cookies abound. Similar to other baked goods, like muffins, breads, and bars, cookies can also be made to satisfy your sweet tooth and also fill you up in a way that feels good from the inside out. Low sugar cookies and sugar free cookie recipes make for some delicious end results, too.
Keep in mind that when it comes to sugar free baking, reducing sugar in cookie recipes is also possible; though depending on the type of cookie, it can likely change the texture.
From maple pecan cookies to chocolate chip coconut cookies and beyond, let’s take a deeper dive into the world of sugars and healthy cookies. Because when it comes to balanced and mindful eating, cookies are always a good idea.
To kick things off, we will explain the different types of sugar and the purpose behind them:
Organic Coconut Sugar
Bob’s Red Mill Organic Coconut Sugar is a made from the nectar of coconut palm tree blossoms. It’s a wholesome alternative to regular sugar and has a mellow and smooth caramel flavor perfect for desserts like cookies. If you’re interested in utilizing it in other recipes, try it on top of your oatmeal or in cakes of all sorts.
Bob’s Red Mill Date Sugar is made from premium quality Deglet Noor dates. It has a lightly sweet flavor with notes of butterscotch, and can be used in a wide variety of baking recipes as a one-to-one replacement for brown or white sugar. It’s made from dehydrated ground dates and is fun to experiment with in everything from cookies to cinnamon rolls.
Coarse Turbinado Sugar
Though it is traditional sugar, Bob’s Red Mill Coarse Turbinado Sugar is made from quality sugar cane. The amber colored, large-grain crystals have a flavor reminiscent of toffee. You can use it to sprinkle on scones, pies, muffins, and cookies. You’ll need a beverage to pair with your baked goods, so try this sugar in your coffee and tea, too!
Old Fashioned Brown Sugar
Bob’s Red Mill Old Fashioned Brown Sugar is made simply with cane sugar and molasses. It has a rich caramel flavor that works beautifully in glazes and marinades, as well as on top of your morning bowl of cereal. Did we mention it’s perfect for treats like sticky buns and chocolate chip cookies? Brown sugar adds a fantastic depth of rich flavor, and because the molasses adds moisture, it allows the proteins in the cookie dough to firm up faster and makes for a chewy consistency.
Fine Crystal Cane Sugar
Bob’s Red Mill Fine Crystal Cane Sugar is created from simple sugar cane. Use it as a one-to-one replacement for white sugar, as its sweetness will yield hints of caramel in all your baked goods (cookies included).
Bob’s Red Mill Sparkling Sugar adds a touch of fancy whimsy to baked goods like muffins, scones, pies, and cookies. It’s made by polishing large crystals of wholesome cane sugar and gives homemade baked goods a sparkling bakery-style makeover. There’s a reason why those glittery treats in the pastry case call for you from across the room, after all.
Now that you have an understanding of the different sugar varieties, here are a few recipes to try! Keep in mind that you can always reduce the amount of sugar added to the cookies. (This may change the flavor but it’s a small price to pay if you want to adhere to your dietary restrictions.)
These Hazelnut Macaroons are a hybrid of French almond macarons and American coconut macaroons, the perfect treat for the spring season. They’re made using hazelnut flour, Organic Coconut Sugar, egg whites, and almond extract. Once they’re spread on a cookie sheet, they only need to be baked for 15 minutes before you can indulge and enjoy.
Oatmeal Raisin Date Cookies
These Oatmeal Raisin Date Cookies can be found on our bags of Date Sugar. They’re a low calorie, low carb, whole grain alternative to the classic oatmeal raisin cookie and are made perfectly sweet with the addition of applesauce and honey. Pair them with a mug of warm tea for a late afternoon treat. In fact, some may argue that the addition of oatmeal and raisins means these cookies are fit for breakfast, too. We like to eat ours with almond or peanut butter spread on top.
Paleo Chocolate Almond Butter Cookie Cups
These healthy Paleo Chocolate Almond Butter Cookie Cups are made with a delectable and fudge-filled center. They’re easy and fun to make for parents and kids alike and are gluten free, grain free, and dairy free. With this cookie, you get the best of both worlds: a tasty treat to both satisfy your sweet tooth and make you feel good at the same time. In other words, welcome to the world of cookie nirvana.
Healthy Thumbprint Cookies
Thumbprint cookies are a classic recipe for holiday baking--or at any time of the year. These Healthy Thumbprint Cookies are made with Natural Almond Meal, Regular Rolled Oats, and Whole Wheat Flour, and are made sweet with Organic Coconut Sugar and maple syrup. For added texture and more nutritional value, try using a low sugar chia seed jam in the center.
Maple Pecan Cookies
These Maple Pecan Cookies are both vegan and gluten free. Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour is used as the base, and each bite is packed with the flavors of maple, pecan, and toasted oats. Instead of cane sugar, they’re created using a mix of Organic Coconut Sugar and maple syrup. They’re as wonderful to eat as they are to look at!
Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies
These Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies are golden and somewhat crispy on the outside. They’re filled with chocolate and melt-in-your-mouth coconut flavors from Organic Coconut Sugar, Coconut Flakes, and coconut oil. Eat them alongside a glass of your favorite nut milk, or maybe, a glass of coconut milk. To keep them dairy free, make sure to opt for vegan chocolate chips in place of regular chocolate chips.
Healthy Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies
These Healthy Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies are made using our Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour and a healthier alternative to regular caramel sauce. They also call for 3/4 cup brown sugar, although if you’d like, you can substitute this for coconut sugar. It will add to the smooth caramel notes the cookies already have.
Cranberry Almond Oat Cookies
These Cranberry Almond Oat Cookies call for cane sugar and brown sugar, but are made nutritious with the addition of whole almonds, dried cranberries, Quick Cooking Rolled Oats, and a base of Organic Whole Wheat Pastry Flour. We think they taste pretty good as an after dinner treat to celebrate a day well spent.
Peanut Butter Protein Cookies
These Peanut Butter Protein Cookies will help you incorporate high protein treats into your homemade dessert roundup. They have a crispy exterior and a chewy interior and are made with Vanilla Protein Powder Nutritional Booster, Gluten Free Quick Rolled Oats, and a hefty dollop of peanut butter!
Tahini and Almond Cookies
As the recipe headnote states, we think these Tahini and Almond Cookies are incredible. They’re not too sweet and have a wonderful texture. Create your own using Unbleached White All-Purpose Flour, Whole Wheat Flour, Almond Meal, unsalted butter, 3/4 cup sugar of your choice, vanilla extract, salt, and raw tahini paste. To make your own tahini paste, combine 1 3/4 cups white sesame seeds and 1/4 cup olive oil and blend until smooth. If you’d like a richer flavor, try toasting and cooling the sesame seeds before blending.
These Paleo Cookies are rich with flavors of almond, chocolate, and vanilla with a crispy edge and chewy center. They’re made with Paleo Baking Flour, Organic Coconut Sugar, and dark chocolate chips. For a variation on these tasty morsels, try adding 1/2 cup chopped dried cherries for dark chocolate cherry cookies.
Chocolate Chip and Pecan Oatmeal Cookies
These Chocolate Chip and Pecan Oatmeal Cookies take a nutritious turn with the addition of toasted chopped pecans and Gluten Free Organic Regular Rolled Oats. Though the recipe calls for granulated sugar and packed brown sugar, you can feel free to get creative with your sweetener of choice. For those following a gluten-free diet, these amazing cookies are made with our own Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour. And we must admit, they’re pretty darn good.
Whether you’re looking to experiment with ways of incorporating alternative sugars into your baking routine or are interested in crafting the perfectly scrumptious low sugar cookie fit for any occasion, we hope this article has provided some sweetness and inspiration.
Have any favorite low sugar cookie recipes you’d like to share? Feel free to let us know in the comments below. We’d love to hear what you create.
From all of us at Bob’s Red Mill, happy baking. May it lead to happy cookie eating!