Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies #creativecookieexchange

When the weather gets that distinctive "Fall" nip in the air and I finally have to drag out the jacket for morning recess duty, I know it's definitely time to start thinking about the heartier "comfort" foods out there. Breakfast-wise, there's nothing more warming and stick-to-your-ribs than oatmeal - and if you're anything like me, the only way to make a breakfast (and/or bedtime snack) worthy bowl of that is to add fruit and chocolate!

My current favourite combination whenever I whip up a big ol' bowl of oats is dark chocolate chips, cocoa and mashed banana. That way, there's no need for sugar or milk at all - the rich creamy texture from the stirred flakes and fruit is almost risotto-like, and nothing short of decadent. When it came time to thinking about making a "comfort food" cookie for this month's #creativecookieexchange, I knew exactly where to turn for flavour inspiration! I found the perfect base recipe for my cookies on Your Homebased Mom, and not only did I bump up the dark chocolate flavour with bittersweet couverture dark chocolate wafers, I was even able to add the "creamy" component I love in it's hot cereal form by using a hint of cream cheese. One of my favourite "extras" to toss into any cookie, especially ones with whole grains, is flaxseed - it is such a subtly nutty ingredient that really amps up the other flavours, not to mention packing a boatload of nutrition too!

Banana Oatmeal Cookies

I wish I could go as far as to say these cookies fit the bill as breakfast fare, but let's face it... they're still cookies. Better for you than a storebought, cardboardy behemoth pastry, for sure, but a treat to savour and have for dessert. Besides, when you need comfort food, you're not necessarily concerned about the bottom (or waist) line at the time, are you?

Like I said, I'm participating in the #CreativeCookieExchange this month, started by Laura from The Spiced Life and Rebecka from At Home with Rebecka.  Each month they decide upon a different theme or ingredient, and then an ever-growing gang of baking bloggers whip up their own spin on the topic! This month is Comfort Food Cookies, and the offerings look stunning!

What cookie says comfort food to you? If you are a blogger and want to join in the fun, contact Laura at thespicedlife AT gmail DOT com and she will get you added to our Facebook group, where we discuss our cookies and share links. You can also just use us as a great resource for cookie recipes--be sure to check out our Pinterest Board and our monthly posts (you can find all of them here at The Spiced Life). You will be able to find them the first Tuesday after the 15th of each month! Also, if you are looking for inspiration to get in the kitchen and start baking, check out what all of the hosting bloggers have made:

Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes 34
¼ cup non-hydrogenated shortening
¼ cup full fat cream cheese, softened
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup brown sugar
3 large, ripe bananas, mashed
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cup old fashioned oats (not instant)
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp ground flaxseed
2 cups dark chocolate wafers (couverture is best)
  1. Preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment or foil.
  2. In a bowl cream together the shortening, cheese and the sugars.
  3. Beat in the bananas and vanilla.
  4. Mix in flour, oats, baking soda, salt, spice and flaxseed.
  5. Stir in chocolate chips.
  6. Drop by spoonfuls onto baking sheet and flatten slightly with wet fingers.
  7. Bake for 8-10 minutes. 
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 154.5
Total Fat: 6.6 g
Cholesterol: 2.0 mg
Sodium: 106.7 mg
Total Carbs: 23.5 g
Dietary Fiber: 2.5 g
Protein: 2.6 g

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