Refined Sugar-Free Cut-Out Cookies
Who doesn’t love testing cookies? I mean, batches and batches of sweet deliciousness as I perfect the perfect cut-out cookie. Sweet enough to satisfy your sweet tooth, hearty enough to stand up to rolling and the cookie cutters, and tender for a delightful bite! And I’ve nailed it! I love baking, and these Refined Sugar-Free Cut-Out Cookies are on my list to bake again and again (perhaps for every holiday)!
Why Refined Sugar-Free?
In a whole-food, plant-based (WFPB) diet, many people significantly reduce or remove sugar (and salt and oil) from their diet. Sugar, salt, and oil have their own health ramifications (read this post from Nutrition Studies for more information). While I have not given up sugar 100%, I like to create recipes and eat recipes that use less processed or natural sweeteners. So, why not a cookie?
Sweetened with Dates
These delightful cookies are sweetened with dates. I warmed my dates in the microwave and then used my food processor to “cream” them with my walnut butter. This creamed date and walnut mixture yielded the perfect fluffy whipped texture, and then it was time to fold in my dry ingredients.
In this recipe, I used whole spelt flour (which has a 1:1 substitute for wheat or all-purpose) and oat flour. I have become especially partial to spelt flour because it is a light and airy flour with whole-food properties. Spelt is an ancient wheat grain (sorry gluten-free friends), and I opt for whole-grain flour. Adding the oat flour added a slightly heartier chew (but oat flour also makes for a drier dough, so you may need less liquid if you are using all spelt flour).
Refined Sugar-Free Cut-Out Cookies
Let’s talk cookies! Rolling out the dough and using my antique cookie cutters was so much fun (even in my small kitchen). I also loved that this dough did not have to be refrigerated. One note, the more you handle your dough, the denser that batch will be (my last bunch, of “misfit” shapes, was a little chewier than the first batch), so take it easy on the second and third rolling and cutting of your dough.
- 1/2 cup Crazy Walnut Plain Walnut Butter
- 1/2 cup pitted medjool dates
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened soy milk
- 1/3 cup spelt flour
- 1/3 cup oat flour
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- In a small bowl, microwave dates and walnut butter for about 30 seconds until softened.
- In a food processor, process dates, walnuts, vanilla, and soy milk to a fluffy cream.
- In a large bowl, whisk flours and baking powder. Fold in date mixture and mix thoroughly*.
- Preheat oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- On a flat and lightly floured surface (I used spelt flour), roll out dough to 1/4" thick and use your favorite cookie cutters.
- Carefully transfer cookies to the parchment-lined baking sheet
- Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until cookies are browned on the edges and firm to the touch.
- Immediately transfer to the cooling rack and cool completely before decorating.
*If using less oat flour, you may need to add a little more spelt flour, dough should be firm and not sticky.
Repeat the rolling & cutting process until all dough is used - this is where too much handling may yield slightly chewier or dense cookeis.
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I let myself indulge a bit in my chocolate drizzle; I melted about 1/2 cup of mini vegan (oil-free) chocolate chips and drizzled the melted chocolate on my cookies. These cookies are delicious on their own but could be decorated with your favorite nut butter or jam for a refined sugar-free option.