These lightly-sweet flax cranberry breakfast cookies are a perfect, healthy option for hectic weekday mornings.
Ready in 25 minutes
If you haven’t quite picked up on it yet, I’m a big, fat breakfast cookie lover. I love how easy they are to make (you can bake a batch is less than a half hour). I love that they are a handheld breakfast that is full of nourishing yumminess. I love that they make breakfasts (and snacks, I love them as snacks, too) feel like a special treat. I mean, c’mon, you’re eating cookies. For breakfast. And it’s good for you! Win.
If you’ve never whipped up a batch of breakfast cookies before, they definitely aren’t your standard sugar-bomb cookie. Heck, they aren’t even your standard sugar-bomb muffin or scone. These suckers are lightly-sweet, packed with healthy whole grains, and sweetened using natural sweeteners. They really are a sweet treat you can feel good about having with your morning coffee. Or tea, if that’s what makes your mornings happy.
One of my favorite quick and easy breakfasts when I was working in an office was to snag a breakfast cookie or two, plus a hard-boiled egg, and then whip up a green smoothie to drink it the car on my commute (using the awesome individual blender cups that come with my blender). It was a super speedy, super nourishing breakfast that covered all my healthy eating bases. I was getting in whole grains, lean protein, tons of healthy fiber, fruits, and veggies. And thanks to the joy of food prepping, it took me about five minutes to put together in the morning.
Breakfast cookies are endlessly adaptable, but this particular version is all about nutty flaxseeds and chewy, tart, dried cranberries. I know some folks aren’t too keen on the flavor of flax, but I personally love it—I think it adds a really nice depth and richness to foods. Plus, it’s insanely good for you! Flax is an excellent source of healthy fiber (and a lot of us don’t get enough fiber), plus it’s a great source of plant-based omega-3s (those things you keep hearing about on the news).
One caveat with flaxseeds—you gotta grind ’em! I sprinkled whole seeds on top of these cookies as garnish (because they’re cute and add a nice crunch), but eating them whole won’t do you much health-wise. The little tiny seeds have a very strong outer coating that almost always goes through the digestive system intact, meaning your body doesn’t get any of the nutrients. Make sure you grind your flaxseeds before using them (I use this coffee grinder), and if you buy pre-ground flaxmeal, make sure you stash that stuff in the fridge or freezer. Ground flaxseeds tend to go rancid pretty quickly, so the best method if you don’t go through a ton of flaxmeal is to buy whole seeds, and grind them as you need them.
When it comes to breakfast cookies, I think it’s important to keep them as “clean” and “real food” focused as possible—that’s why I always use whole wheat flour in them. If whole wheat flour ends up being a bit too cardboard-y for your tastes, try using white whole wheat flour. It tastes a lot more like the all-purpose flour you’re used to, but it’s still 100% whole grain. Enjoy!
- ½ cup melted coconut oil
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup unsweetened applesauce (recommended: Musselman's)
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- 1½ cup whole wheat flour or white whole wheat flour (recommended: King Arthur)
- 1 cup rolled oats
- ¼ cup flaxmeal (ground flaxseeds)
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- Pinch of salt
- 1 cup dried cranberries (recommended: Paradise Meadow)
- Whole flaxseeds for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat, set aside.
- In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add in the coconut oil, eggs, vanilla, applesauce, and maple syrup. Mix on medium until well-blended.
- Add in the flour, oats, flaxmeal, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Mix on medium until well-blended.
- Fold in the dried cranberries using a wooden spoon.
- Drop rounded tablespoonfulls onto the prepared baking sheet, leaving about an inch between cookies. Sprinkle whole flaxseeds on top.
- Bake in preheated oven for 12-15 minutes, or until golden brown and solid. Let cool for five minutes on baking sheet, then transfer to a wire baking rack to cool completely.