Friday, December 19, 2014

Healthier Red Velvet Cookies

I am staunchly in the red velvet fan club - I have been for years, since my mom first started making it from a recipe out of the TV Guide. Rich, slightly sweet and with a hint of tang from buttermilk, the red colour only seemed to intensify the decadence of a slice.

This year, I decided I would bring one of my favourite flavours to some of my friends with special dietary needs. These cookies are gluten free, vegan and refined sugar-free, but also "fake food" free - packed with the rich flavours and textures of pureed beets and kidney beans. Soft with just a tiny hint of chew freshly cooled, they disappear fast from the bake table - I had to save some aside this year so that my "eat anything and everything" guests wouldn't steal them all before my allergic friends could have a bite! I even made a batch of these for my Home Ec kids at school (using coconut milk in place of almond due to allergies, and served them without mentioning the "secret" ingredients - if possible they were gobbled up even faster! To me, that shows proof positive that a box of these will be a hit with any audience - and with the bulk of holiday fare packed full of junk, it's always nice to have a lighter option in your back pocket!

Healthier Red Velvet "Cake" Cookies

Shared with Gluten Free Fridays #122

Healthier Red Velvet Cookies
Makes 16
1 ½ cups kidney beans, drained and rinsed
4.5 oz fresh beets, roasted, peeled and diced
¼ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp butter extract
1 tsp liquid stevia extract
½ cup xylitol
¼ cup raw sugar
⅔ cup cocoa powder
¼ cup coconut flour
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp sea salt
1 tsp vinegar
  1. Combine the kidney beans, beets, almond milk, extracts, xylitol and sugar in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth.
  2. Add the cocoa, coconut flour, baking powder, salt and vinegar and puree again, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  3. Wrap dough (which should be about like a thick, scoopable muffin batter) in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 36 hours (or freeze up to 1 month).
  4. Preheat the oven to 350F and line cookie sheets with SilPat.
  5. Scoop dough onto the prepared cookie sheets, flatten slightly and bake for 18 minutes, or until the cookies are no longer wet or shiny looking but slightly soft in the centre.
  6. Let cookies cool completely on the pan before moving them.
  7. If not serving them immediately, store in the fridge in a covered container up to 1 week.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 73.9
Total Fat: 5.9 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 81.2 mg
Total Carbs: 17.9 g
Dietary Fiber: 4.1 g
Protein: 2.2 g