Sweet Sundays: Maple Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies (Gluten-Free and Vegan)


As mentioned last Friday, I have found a new love in The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook. But beyond the obviously wholesome collard greens recipe and balsamic roasted beets that I first trialed, there are some “healthified” dessert recipes in that book, which should not be ignored. I started with the Coconut Cashew Cookies, but since my husband is not a huge coconut fan and he likes his dessert on the sweeter side, I made a few modifications. The result: Maple Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Maple Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies - dairy-free, gluten-free, egg-free, and vegan

These have a unique but addictive flavor that is maple-rich. Once allowed too cool, they are very cohesive, particularly for gluten-free AND egg-free gems, yet they still have a nice thick, cookie dough-esque texture (not cake-like in the least bit!) that I simply adored. Like all recipes in The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook, these cookies are free from refined sugars, and made with “whole food” ingredients.

Just so you know – I did try to “gluten” these cookies in a second batch, since I know that many of you don’t have a problem with wheat (all of the recipes in The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook are gluten-free), and may not have the flours and xanthan gum on hand. I replaced the brown rice flour with whole wheat pastry flour and removed the xanthan gum. I kept the starch since these are egg-free. The cookies worked, but just weren’t as good in my opinion; they were a wee bit too sweet and spread a bit more. I actually really like them the gluten-free way.

Maple Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies - dairy-free, gluten-free, egg-free, and vegan

Special Diet Notes: Maple Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies

By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, soy-free, peanut-free, vegan, plant-based, and vegetarian.

Maple Cashew Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • ¼ cup tapioca starch or flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup coconut oil, softened
  • 6 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons palm sugar, evaporated cane juice (sucanat) or brown sugar (I used palm sugar)
  • 2 teaspoons warm water
  • ¼ to ⅓ cup chocolate chips
  1. Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
  2. Place the nuts in your spice grinder (or food processor) and pulse until you get a powdery /coarse flour-like consistency. It is okay if a few little cashew bits remain, but if you go too far with the grinding, the cashews will turn into a nut butter.
  3. In a mediume bowl, combine the cashew flour, brown rice flour, tapioca, baking powder, xanthan gum, and salt. Briefly set aside.
  4. In a mixing bowl, blend the oil, maple syrup, sugar, and water. Blend in the flour mixture until you get a nice dough. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  5. The dough may seem a bit sticky / greasy, but I still found it fairly easy to loosely shape into balls and place on the cookie sheet (I line mine with a silicone baking mat). If the dough is just too much to handle, pop it in the fridge for about 10-15 minutes, it will firm up quickly. Flatten the dough balls a bit – these cookies don’t spread much as they cook, so what you see is what you get.
  6. Bake the cookies for 12 minutes. Remove them to a wire rack to cool for at least 15 minutes. If your husband’s greedy hands try to pop them off the baking sheet while hot, they will be crumbly, but they do firm up quite a bit as they cool.

About Author

Alisa is the founder of GoDairyFree.org, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.

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