Soft Baked Zucchini Bread Cookies

Soft baked zucchini cookies are not only a terrific  simple dessert, they’re one of my favorite pre-workout snacks.It’s not what you do once in awhile, it’s what you do on most days. My philosophy for better nutrition is eating in a way that  balances the goals of health with eating for pleasure. I do this  by  including the nutrient rich foods  my  body needs, without sacrificing enjoyment. I often modify recipes to boost the nutritional  value and still maintain taste. Like these..soft caked cookies  made with a combination of both white flour and white whole wheat, and  cutting back on total fat by substituting nonfat Greek yogurt.   When I ran the  nutritional profile (see below) I realized they meet the criteria I use for an pre-workout snack:

100-200 calories 24-40 grams carbohydrate, ≤ 5 grams fat, ,≤ 5 grams fiber, ,≤ 10 grams protein.

My family prefers cookies for dessert over almost anything. I’m glad they do, because  cookies are already portioned, and  they can be combined with other nibbles like  a piece of dark chocolate and a few dried apricots.  After dinner or pre-workout, these soft baked zucchini cookies are sure to please.

Soft Baked Zucchini Cookies

by Diane Boyd

Ingredients (3 dozen)

  • 1 pound zucchini (about 2 medium)
  • 1 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups 100% white whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 6 tablespoons cup canola oil
  • 6 tablespoons low fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Instructions

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Trim stem and root end of zucchini. Using a box grater, grate zucchini. You should have about 3 cups.

3. Place the grated zucchini in a clean kitchen towel or several layers of cheese cloth and squeeze to press out as much liquid as possible.

4. Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

5. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, oil, Greek yogurt and vanilla extract .

6. Add grated zucchini to dry ingredients. Pour liquids over the top. Gently stir and fold just until no more flour is visible.

7.Drop cookie dough by rounded tablespoons onto parchment lined baking sheets.

8. Bake about 10-15 minutes, or until edges are firm. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

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Pumpkin Spice Cookies

Putting together holiday cookie trays will be a snap, when you make these  pumpkin spice cookies ahead of time and freeze.in-style-1
I’m a fan of repurposing. It’s economical, efficient, and reduces waste. Oh the pleasure of seeing used or ‘old items’ take on a second life!  Here’s what I’ve recently recycled.

Item number 1: My Grandma Tillie’s china takes on a starring role on my tabletop… img_5205I love the whimsical pattern, and the touch of black ties in with my decor, don’t you agree?

Item number 2: A vintage console table gets moved to the second floor and transformed into a peaceful vignette. It’s as quiet as it appears and this work space is without distractions! (I’m planning on writing my Chirstmas cards here and hopefully img_5203 finding some blogging inspiration in the coming year!)

Item number 3: My favorite pumpkin bread recipe is recreated into a recipe for soft pumpkin cookies,  perfect for holiday party trays and for this month’s Recipe Redux theme: favorite baked holiday desserts. img_5196

These  pillow like cookies are not only delicious, they’re nutritious  providing the goodness of  pumpkin (hello beta carotene), healthy fat and only 145 calories per cookie (more nutritional details posted below).  I especially like that these  can be made ahead of time and frozen #preparefortheavalanche.

What your favorite baked holiday desserts?  Have you repurposed anything you’re excited to share?  

Remember to visit the links at the bottom of this post to see what desserts my colleagues are baking for the holidays! Have a Happy and Safe Thanksgiving!

img_5179Nutritional Profile (One cookie) : 145 calories, 21 grams carbohydrate, 2 grams protein, 5 grams fat, 1 gream fiber, 10 mg cholesterol, 120 mg sodium, 25 % the DV for vitamin A (base on a 2000 calorie diet).

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

by Diane Boyd

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients (4 dozen)

  • 4 cups flour, unsifted
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 16-oz. can pumpkin
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 4 eggs

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Line 4 baking sheet with parchment paper.

3. Mix dry ingredients thoroughly in a large bowl.

4. Beat pumpkin, oil, and eggs together. Add to dry ingredients. Stir until dry ingredients are just moistened.

5. Drop batter by rounded tablespoons onto parchment lined baking sheets.

6. Bake about 10 – 15 minutes or until edges are from. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes and then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

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