A Healthy Easter Sweet Treat
Easter is right around the corner and you know what that means… kids are going to be searching for Easter eggs and candy will be everywhere!
Holidays and family gatherings are often difficult because there are so many sugary temptations. That’s why I came up with a healthy sweet treat that you can actually feel good about eating!
Enter, these Carrot Cake Breakfast Cookies!
Cookies for Breakfast
Yes, you heard right! Cookies for Breakfast!
So what makes these cookies good for breakfast?
These cookies are filled with protein, complex carbohydrates and micronutrients – everything you need to fuel your body in the morning for a day full of Easter fun!
These Carrot Cake Breakfast Cookies contains whole grain oats. Oats are a great way to start the day because they are full of whole grains, fiber, antioxidants and are higher in protein and fats than other grains. The soluble fiber, beta-glucans, in the oatmeal have also been shown to help reduce cholesterol levels, reduce blood sugar levels, and promote healthy gut bacteria.
The protein in these cookies comes from the sugar free peanut butter, the chopped pecans, as well as the oats. Having a protein source in the morning allows for development and maintenance of lean muscle. Studies have shown that most breakfasts are generally lower in protein when compared to other meals, such as dinner. So having a good source of protein at breakfast can ensure that your lean muscle is maintained first thing in the morning.
Now for the the star of this cookie, the carrots! Carrots are high in Vitamin A, which doesn’t necessarily help you see in the dark, but it does help prevent vision loss. The beta-carotene in carrots have also been studied to show that it may reduce the risk of lung and colon cancer.
The other thing I like about these cookies is that I use stevia and honey for sweetness. You could also use another sweetener of choice such as monkfruit sweetener. I really wanted to reduce or have no refined white sugar in these cookies so that you did not have to worry about a sugar crash after eating these cookies!
A Bite Sized Version of Carrot Cake
I love to reinvent traditional foods and make it in a new way. These cookies are inspired by Carrot Cake. In addition to the carrots, I’ve also included the same spices, like cinnamon and nutmeg, as you would find in carrot cake. That way you get all the same flavor of carrot cake, but without having to actually make a cake!
In this recipe, I used dried apricots, instead of raisins, which would traditionally be found in carrot cake. But you could really use any dried fruit that you like. I’ve even used craisins in one batch!
And did I mention the frosting?! Carrot cake is not complete without a little cream cheese frosting, so I had to add it on top of these cookies too. The frosting recipe is very versatile so you could use dairy or non-dairy cream cheese. This frosting is also sugar free – I used stevia to sweeten it and vanilla extract to give the frosting a gourmet flavor.
I hope you try this recipe! It’s such an easy one-bowl recipe, and it saves you from making a big cake this Easter!
An easy one-bowl Easter sweet treat that you can feel good about eating. Even at breakfast!
- 2 cups old fashioned oats
- 2 carrots, grated
- 1/2 cup sugar free peanut butter
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1.5 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 cup dried fruit such as raisins, apricots etc.
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 oz cream cheese or Neufchatel softened to room temperature
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp stevia or monkfruit sweetener
- 1/2 tbsp water
Preheat the oven to 350 deg F. Prep a cookie sheet with a non-stick mat, or spray on your favorite non-stick spray.
In a large bowl, add peanut butter and honey. Mix well.
Add in the oats, carrots, vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg, dried fruit and water. Mix till thoroughly combined. The mixture should hold together when pressed with your fingers.
Take large tablespoons and roll into a ball in your hand.
Place the balls on the cookie sheet and use your hand to press the ball into a flat cookie shape, about 1/2″ thick.
Repeat steps 4) and 5) with the remaining mixture.
Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden brown.
Allow the cookies to cool completely before frosting.
In a small bowl, mix all ingredients together with a whisk till smooth and drizzle-able.
Drizzle frosting on the cooled cookies, or use a piping bag or resealable bag with a small piece of the corner cut off, to pipe frosting on the cookies.
Store cookies in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
*** Did you get your FREE copy of my Secretly Healthy Sweet Treats E-book? Download it right now! ***