Coconut Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies Recipe + Being Able to Eat Butter Again

Today I am sharing with you my favorite gluten free cookie recipe ever. It is the one cookie recipe that I have consistently made time and time again over the past two years since I was diagnosed with celiac disease. It is our go-to cookie recipe.

20140421-112318.jpg

Best of all, it’s pretty simple. It doesn’t have a terribly crazy combination of flours, as so many gluten free recipes do. This recipe is also adaptable. I have often run out of one or the other of the flours for the mix, so I replace it with combinations of flours I happen to have on hand. For example, I have often used tapioca starch instead of potato starch, potato flour instead of rice flour, coconut flour instead of sorgum flour (in this case, I use a little less coconut flour, since coconut flour sucks up a lot more moisture than most flours, and is also pretty dense). In the easiest variation of all, I just use a gluten free flour mix and replace all the flours with that. They all taste great, but so far this is my favorite combination ever.

If you’ve been reading this blog consistently, or if you know me, you might know that I have celiac disease. On top of that I am also lactose and soy intolerant. At the time of my diagnoses, I was told that my dairy intolerance was really due to the damage that eating gluten for so long had done to my digestive system. You see, I probably had celiac disease for about 5 years before I actually got diagnosed, and in all that time my diet consisted mostly of bread and cereal (I love love love bread). Because of this my body was a mess, I was unable to tolerate lactose or soy. However my doctor told me that eventually, with the healing of my digestive system through this gluten free diet, I might be able to have dairy again someday. And so I started that day with a gluten free diet, and waited.

So fast forward to nearly two years later: a few months ago my husband, Dane, was dying for some cookies made with real, actual butter. In general, Dane basically lives with as strict a diet as I do, since I don’t bother cooking separate meals for him and I. But Dane, understandably, misses dairy and gluten! Now I’ve started to consistently add real, cow milk, and cottage cheese, and so on to our grocery list. I’m still really hesitant to ever buy wheat bread, or gluten containing foods, since I am SO sensitive to gluten that even a crumb that happened to fall into my food would affect me for a couple weeks. But anyway, back to the cookies. Dane used this same basic recipe that I am sharing with you today, and went to the store to buy butter and cane sugar. He loved what adding butter did to the cookies, though the regular sugar was a bit too much (the only time we ever eat cane sugar is if happens to already be in the food we buy- when baking/cooking, I always used coconut sugar). I was hesitant to try them, even though they were gluten free, because I hadn’t had butter in a couple years. But I knew that eventually I was supposed to be able to have butter, so after a couple days passed I was dying for a cookie so I gave in and tried one. And guess what? I had absolutely. no. reaction. I was eating butter and was just fine!

It is really exciting to experience some visible, tangible progress in this crazy diet and roller coaster health of mine. When I was initially diagnosed with celiac disease, I was totally devastated. How was I ever supposed to eat anything good again? Over time I realized there are a lot of replacement options for gluten free living, so it wasn’t as bad as I thought. Through a lot of work and research (probiotics, juice cleanses, multi-vitamins, exercise, and most recently, quitting coffee drinking) I have come a long way in becoming and feeling healthier and stronger. But this is one of the most notable milestones yet!

Since that first discovery that I could eat those delicious, buttery cookies, I have continued to experiment with just how much butter I can tolerate. In general, I still need the aid of taking enzymes/probiotics in order to avoid having any discomfort during digestion even with my gluten/dairy/soy free diet. And this applies to butter as well. But as long as I follow my normal routine with eating, it’s not a problem. I have buttered GF bread, I have made french onion soup containing butter, eggplant with butter, cookies with butter… it’s amazing! I still am careful not to go overboard- I try to only have butter a few times a week. I have to be cautious and not rush the (sometimes painfully) slow, but sure progress towards total healing.

So below is my first recipe ever on this blog to contain butter! It has a dairy free option listed right there with it, and it tastes just as delicious when dairy free. I also added milk to my recipe though I’ve only ever made it with an alternative milk (usually coconut milk) since I’m not quite at the milk drinking stage (and not sure if I ever will be). So I can’t say for sure how that will taste (though I can’t possibly see how it would taste bad..I mean, it’s milk).

Enjoy and let me know what you think! What sort of progress have you seen your process toward healing in your life?

20140421-113853.jpg

20140421-112329.jpg

Coconut Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

  • 1/2 cup butter or coconut oil, melted
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 3 tbsp milk or alternative milk (coconut, almond, etc)
  • 1 tsp GF vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sorgum flour
  • 1/3 cup potato starch
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 1 1/2 cup GF oats
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/4 tsp soda

Directions

Preheat oven to 350° F

Cream the coconut sugar and butter or coconut oil in a mixer until smooth.

Add the milk and vanilla and mix till blended.

In a separate bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients (flours, oat, powders) except for the coconut flakes and chocolate chips.

Combine the dry flour/oat mix with the butter/sugar and mix until it is just combined (but before it turns into a ball of dough).

Add the chocolate chips and coconut flakes and combine.

Roll into cookie shapes onto a greased baking sheet. Makes 12-24 cookies depending on the size you roll them out.

Bake for 12-15 minutes until just slightly golden brown.

Cool and enjoy with some milk!

Gluten Free Strawberry and Peach Cobbler (6 cartons of strawberries continued)

So remember this post when I told you all how I had 6 cartons of strawberries? Well….I must admit that I just now got to that final, sixth pack. No worries…I checked, each, individual strawberry to make sure there was no mold, they didn’t smell, etc. It must have not been a very ripe batch when I bought it cuz most of those strawberries were still good. 

Anyway, I had strawberries and a bag of peaches my mother in law had given me a week or so before. Similarly to how I am bad at actually eating sufficient vegetables each day, so also I am bad (if not worse) at ever eating fruit. I love starchy things: nuts, breads, etc. That’s why I juice, or have smoothies, nearly every day. All this to say, I had all this fruit in my fridge that was very very ripe, so I decided to bake a pie.

Then I remembered how as a child, peach cobbler was basically equivalent to heaven in my book. I’d lamented when I first was diagnosed with celiac disease that I’d never get to eat my mom’s amazingly delicious peach cobbler again. However, what’s to stop me now from trying out a gluten free one now? Nothing. So I did. I spent (too much of) the afternoon looking up several gluten free cobbler recipes, and below is what I came up with. 

All this to say, not a single carton of those original six went to waste, and neither did that bag of peaches. Yay.

Please enjoy:

Strawberry and Peach Cobbler

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups, 1/2 strawberries and 1/2 peaches
  • 2 tsp tapioca starch
  • 2 tbs pure honey
  • 1/2 cup sorgum flour
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 6 tbs coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup pure honey
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 cups dairy free milk alternative (I used unsweetened coconut milk)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F

Chop up the fruit, add them to a pan, add the tapioca starch, then the honey. Heat on low for 10 minutes.

Whisk together the flours, almond meal, baking soda, baking powder, and xanthan gum. 

Next mix that with the coconut oil, honey, almond extract, egg, and milk. Whisk just until smooth.

Pour the fruit mixture into a baking pan greased with coconut oil.

Drop the flour batter by large spoonfuls evenly over the fruit mixture.

Bake for 25-30 min.

Recipe adapted mostly from here.