It's the middle of February in Montreal, and we have a new baby in the house. So essentially, we are pretty much house-bound these days. And we're suffering from some serious cabin-fever.
Zachary especially.... He's a rambunctious 2 year old with a very tangible need to burn off excess physical energy. And running up and down our (thankfully) long hallway for hours on end isn't exactly cutting it anymore.
So we've been cooking and baking a lot. Turns out, baking is a great activity for toddlers (at least for mine). It completely engages him, and the pay-off is pretty sweet too ;)
Yesterday we decided to invent some healthy "toddler cookies". (We had so much success with our Toddler Muffins, after all, so why not try again?!)
We scoured the internet for suitable recipes and inspiration, but we couldn't find anything that suited our needs. We used to make these 2-ingredient cookies all the time, but after a while they just weren't satisfying enough... they were, dare I say, a little too healthy for our tastes. I wanted our cookies to still taste like a treat - yet be full of protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates.... you know, a well-balanced toddler snack that is fun to eat too. Is that too much to ask for?
So anyway, I took out a bunch of healthy ingredients from the pantry, and we started to experiment....
And the result was rather delicious actually!
The entire batch lasted less than 24 hours in this house... they were that good. (Also a clear indicator that we are house-bound and bored out of our minds and just stuffing our faces with cookies to pass the time!). No but seriously, these cookies are fantastic, and we will definitely be making them again and again.
^^ my little sous-chef! For the record, Zac did not scoop out all those perfectly placed cookies by himself, but he did try!
And a warning: giving your toddler free-reign at fresh out-of-the-oven chocolate chip cookies will inevitably result in some serious chocolate hands ^^
Read on for this easy recipe that you and your kids can make together...
(makes 18 large cookies)
1 very ripe banana, mashed
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
1 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups almond meal (finely ground almonds)
1/2 cup whole grain flour (whole wheat, spelt or kamut flour)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup finely chopped pecans
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the mashed banana, egg, melted coconut oil, maple syrup, brown sugar & vanilla.
- In another bowl, combine the almond meal, flour, salt & baking soda. (a tsp of cinnamon would also go wonderfully, if so inclined).
- Mix the wet & dry ingredients together. Then add in the pecans, raisins & chocolate chips. Refrigerate dough for at least 30 minutes.
- Using an ice cream scoop, scoop spoonfuls of dough onto the baking sheet, leaving about 2 inches of space between the cookies (no need to flatten them out). Bake for 15 minutes, until edges are golden brown.
- Allow the cookies to cool for 10 minutes on their baking tray, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.