Our home has always been an allergy friendly home with regards to food. Thankfully, neither my children or I have anaphalactic reactions to our “no-no” foods.
Of late, my middle son has been complaining of various physical and cognitive troubles. I went with my gut and took him in for a high level food sensitivity test**. A few years ago we completed allergy testing and as a result, omitted eggs, wheat, and certain cow’s milk products from his diet.
All of my children, despite their sensitivity to cow’s milk, have been able to tolerate good quality butter and cheese. That is until last week’s test results came in. It appears that my son can no longer tolerate any dairy including cow, goat, or almond varieties. Sigh.
So what does that mean for me, the mom and cook? More adjustments. In the grand scheme of things, these are minor problems to deal with. After a week of removing all of the problem foods, my son proclaimed that he had a pain free, achy free, acid reflux free week! He wasn’t as tired and was able to think more clearly. I am so very thankful for that. I can’t wait to see the improvements that will continue with more time!
There is one positive result in determining food sensitivities. They point us back to simple, pure food, food in its whole state, food that nourishes and heals, not just food that fills the belly. I’m thankful that my kids are all on board for these changes. They know what many adults struggle with: if you eat better, you’re likely to feel better. However, they are kids. There are times when they want a cookie; there are times when I want a cookie; there are times when all of us just want a cookie! We don’t make a steady diet of treats, but I am not opposed to the occasional sweet treat.
So today, as I stared at my pantry trying to figure out a new way to make a cookie that everyone could eat, one that was gluten free, egg free, and dairy free, my eyes met a can of black beans. Hmm. I wonder? Black beans. Cookies. I think I can make this work.
Now some of you may be grimacing at the thought of beans as the base for a cookie. My kids would grimace too. I decided I would need to do this experiment covertly. So while the kiddos were soaking up the beautiful weather, I got to work.
The results? Simply delicious, chocolate cookies. They are soft in the middle, with a slight crunch on the outside. You would never ever know there were beans in there…I promise…pinky promise! You won’t miss the butter, the eggs, or the gluten!
The verdict from my kids? “Awesome!” “The best cookies you’ve ever made.”
My kids do know me all too well, though. One asked, “So, Mom, what’d you put in these this time?” When I responded that there was a can of black beans in there, no one even flinched.
Now, I am not proclaiming that these cookies are healthy; they’re not. They are but an option for an occasional treat. However, they do boast less overall fat, less saturated fat, less cholesterol, and less sodium than traditional homemade cookies. They also have a good amount of potassium, iron, fiber, and protein.
For those of you who do not require a gluten free diet, you can opt to substitute regular, all-purpose flour in lieu of the sorghum flour. However, the use of tapioca starch (flour) is non-negotiable.
Chocolate Crinkle Cookies
yields 36 cookies
15.5 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/3 cup avocado oil (or mild olive, coconut, or canola oil)
1 teaspoon chocolate extract (or pure vanilla)
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 1/2 cups allergy friendly, dark chocolate chips, divided
1 tablespoon flax seeds
1 1/2 cups sweet white sorghum flour
1 cup tapioca starch (sometimes called tapioca flour)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a stainless steel baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
Drain and rinse the black beans. Please the beans, oil, and chocolate extract into a blender or food processor. Puree the mixture until smooth. Place the puree into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
Melt 1 cup of the chocolate chips according to package instruction. Pour the melted chocolate into the bowl and mix together until smooth.
Add in the granulated sugar and mix for one minute.
Sift together the sorghum flour, tapioca starch, cinnamon, and baking soda. Add into the bowl along with the salt and remaining chocolate chips. Mix together until all of the ingredients are incorporated and smooth.
Using a tablespoon size scoop, scoop out slightly heaping tablespoons of dough. Roll the dough between the palms of your hands to create a ball. Gently flatten the ball to 1/4″ thickness.
Place the cookies 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. Bake for 11 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow the cookies to sit on the tray for 5 minutes before transferring the cookies, with a spatula, to a cooling rack.
Once completely cooled store in an airtight container.
In between batches, cover the remaining dough in the bowl with plastic wrap to prevent drying.
** This is NOT an affiliate link; I do NOT receive any compensation for you visiting the Immuno Lab site or purchasing a test kit. I simply include the link because we have found that the results of these tests have been spot on in identifying problem foods for multiple members of our family. We found that the testing was significantly cheaper when conducted through our physician’s office than directly through the lab. Always Consult your doctor.