Healthy Cookie Recipes - Vegan and Gluten Free

Vegan cookies, gluten-free cookies, wheat-free cookies...healthy cookie recipes are easy to make if you are willing to experiment with a few alternative quality ingredients. Agave nectar is the perfect sweetener for such baked treats. Not only because of its superiority to refined sugars, but also for its moisture-retaining qualities.

Healthy Cookie Recipes Can Be Made Without Sugar, Butter, Eggs, Or Milk!

Let's start with a solid base of ground nuts. We can use whatever fits best our personal preferences and budget. Pecans tend to be a bit more expensive than almonds and hazelnuts (filberts), walnuts are often on sale or available at a less expensive regular price. Always buy bulk, and halves and pieces are just fine. No need to get whole nuts since we ground them up anyway.

A good cookie recipe should include some fat. As we want to keep this healthy, nutritious, and acceptable for vegans, let's forget about the butter and choose instead almond, cashew, or peanut butter, or a combination thereof. If you don't like the flavor or price of nut butters, substitute with organic canola oil.

Great, but what about the flour if we want to make gluten-free cookies? The answer is: organic brown rice flour! Works like a charm and is much healthier than white flour.

Next up: which sweetener? As stated above, agave nectar is a great sweetener for baked goods. Similar to honey, it helps retain the moisture in cookies and cakes. It also blends quickly and easily with all other ingredients for a well-mixed batter.

To add flavor to this basic healthy cookie mix, use some vanilla or almond extract, ground cinnamon, crushed anise seeds, and a pinch of salt, of course.

And to add even more nutritional value, consider lightly toasted rolled oats, raisins, sesame seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin and sunflower seeds. My goodness...what to do with all that energy?

Why This Is An Easy Healthy Cookie Recipe For Vegan Cookies And Gluten-Free Cookies

We don't really need a recipe for these incredible power morsels of nutrition. It all depends on what we have on hand, or what we like to eat, or what we want to buy. Here is a simple recipe template utilizing the ingredients discussed above:

4 cups ground nuts
1 cup nut butter or 1/2 cup organic canola oil
1 cup organic brown rice flour
3/4 cups agave nectar
1 Tablespoon vanilla or almond extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon crushed anise seeds, cardamom, or other spices
1 teaspoon salt
Optional: 1/2 cup each raisins or toasted oats or seeds
The individual ingredient quantities don't really matter that much. The template is just a general guide line. Our goal is to mix a batter that holds its shape when divided into cookie-size balls. We might have to add a little water if the mix is too dry and crumbly. Or, we might have to add more brown rice flour to a wet and sloppy batter.

This is the best part: As we are not using raw eggs, we can taste our cookie batter before we bake it off! Add more agave nectar if you like it sweeter, more spices or seeds, until you are happy!

Important points for the baking process!

Place 2-inch balls on a parchment-lined cookie pan and flatten lightly with a fork (similar to making peanut butter cookies, dip the fork in cold water before pressing it on the cookie portions)
Use a fairly low oven temperature: 8-10 minutes at 300-325 degrees; agave nectar browns a little faster than sugar, so keep an eye on your cookies and don't let them get too dark on the bottom!
Remember, there are no raw eggs in our batter; we won't have to bake it completely through. A lightly "under-baked" interior is wonderful!
So, be adventurous and experiment with a variety of nuts, seeds, dried fruits, spices, and whatever you love in your gourmet vegan cookie. As long as you don't burn them black, they will always be good eating. And because they are so healthy and nutritious, they'll be good for you, too!

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Quick and Easy Appetizer Recipes and All Are Diabetic Friendly Too

Having a group of friends over and don't want to spend a lot of time making appetizers or snacks? Here are some quick and easy recipes for you. Choices include Ham and Cheese Roll with the unusual ingredient of Dr. Pepper. Quick and Easy Onion Cheese Dip has only 4 ingredients and needs to chill for an hour. Both of those recipes are great "make-ahead" party foods. The Easy Tuna Spread gives your party food a different taste with this Tuna mixed with cream cheese and salsa, etc.


8 oz American Cheese, grated
8 oz cream cheese
dash hot sauce
dash of garlic powder
1/2 cup very finely chopped nuts
1 tbsp Dr. Pepper
2 small pkgs shaved ham slices (ie Buddig)

Lay ham slices out in a pattern overlapping each other. Mix the other ingredients together until well blended and put over the ham. Roll ham up to make a log. Cover with more ham if needed to be sure all cheese is covered. Refrigerate until serving time. Cut into thin slices and serve with assorted crackers or party breads.


2 tubs (8-oz each) cream cheese spread
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup chopped green onions
2 tbsp real bacon bits

Mix all the ingredients together until well blended. Spread mixture into an 8-inch pie plate. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour before serving. Serve with an assortment of crackers.


1 pkg (8-oz) cream cheese, cut-up into pieces
3 tbsp medium hot salsa
1 tbsp dried parsley flakes
1 tsp dried minced onion
1 can (6 1/2-oz) can water packed tuna; drained and flaked

In a mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, salsa, parsley, and onion. Mix the ingredients together until well blended. Fold in the tuna. Serve with whole-wheat crackers or party rye bread.


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Easy Party Appetizers

Easy party appetizer recipes are the way to go if you are planing to have a party. They can be easily made and will allow you time to mingle and chat with your guests. They are a sure way to add some zing to your party.

Easy party appetizer recipes include; spiced nuts, sweet potato chips, cheese sticks, veggie pizza, cocktail sesame wafers among many others. These are easy to prepare and can be made at home. They eliminate the worries caused by complicated started dishes.

To make spiced nuts, add salt, sugar, cinnamon, butter, cloves, nutmeg vanilla and water in a saucepan. Put the saucepan on the stove and stir the mixture continuously for some time, Pour the contents of the pan onto a baking dish and allow to cool before breaking them in to small pieces. If you are to toast nuts, spread them evenly on a baking dish and bake for fifteen minutes.

To make sesame wafers, mix cheese and margarine on a frying pan, add flour , salt,grounded pepper, sesame seeds and finely chopped nuts. Mix these well until a soft dough is formed. Spread using a spoon on a cookie sheet and shill until firm. Cut out into slices and bake at 350 degrees Centigrade for twenty minutes. They are then ready to be served. You will however need to ensure that you choose the right starter dish that will go with the main dish being served. With these Easy party appetizer recipes, you are sure to have a memorable party

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Thyme Pizzettas (Manakeesh bi Zahtar_

Chef Kamal demonstrates how to prepare these delicious Thyme or Red Pepper Pizzettas. This recipe is featured in his cookbook, Classic Lebanese Cuisine, 170 Fresh and Healthy Mediterranean favorites. For additional recipes or information, please visit: www.cookingwithkamal.com and for speciality ingredients and gifts, please visit: www.shopkamal.com

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Snack Recipes : How to Make Toffee Popcorn

Start making toffee popcorn with one stick of butter, a quarter cup of white corn syrup and half cup of brown sugar. Make a sticky, but delicious toffee popcorn treat with help from a private chef and caterer in this free video on snack recipes. Expert: Merrilee Jacobs Contact: www.3hottamales.com Bio: In 2001, Merrilee Jacobs launched a catering business called Peasant Fare Catering. Filmmaker: Paul Kennamer

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Monkey See, Monkey Eat?

Have you ever sat down at a restaurant and said to yourself, "I'm only going to have..." only to find yourself eating just as much as everyone else? Chances are you have, and it's happened more than once.

Humans are highly social animals, we're also highly influenced by the cues of those around us, whether it be fashion, music, TV-- or food-- we often want what we see someone else enjoying.

So what happens when you let someone else's food decisions influence yours? If that person is in great physical shape and eats a clean diet rich in vitamins & nutrients, then you're in luck! But it's far more likely that you're surrounded by people who eat too much fast-food, super size everything and still make room for dessert. This type of eating will lead you down the path to obesity and adverse health conditions - even an early death.

So how do you help curb this potentially fatal habit of "monkey-see-monkey-do"? Simple: Become the Influencer. Instead of following what your friends, family and co-workers are consuming, set the tone yourself. By showing restraint you're not only exercising self-discipline, you're conveying the message to others that you control your hunger, not vice versa.

Instead of going out for dinner with your friend and ordering 2 appetizers, 2 entrees and 2 desserts, why not order 2 appetizers (preferably the healthy options), share an entree and a dessert. Not only are you eating less, you also have more time in between courses to actually talk! The other added benefit is you're saving money (which you can spend on those skinny jeans you'll be fitting into). All you have to say to your server is, "we're going to share the..." and the kitchen will split the meal for you. If that's not an option, still order the single item and ask for a share plate; you can split the meal at the table yourself.

Chances are you've already decided that you want to drink - but remember, Alcohol is empty calories. You may not think that drinking can be nearly the same as eating out, but here are some figures to consider:

1oz of 80 proof (40% alcohol) gin, rum, vodka or whiskey is 64 calories
3.5oz glass of wine is 85 calories
12oz bottle of beer is 153 calories

If you prefer mixed drinks, you might be in for a shock:

6.8oz Pina Colada is 526 calories, 3.9g of sugar AND 16.9g of fat!
3.5oz Whiskey Sour (1.5oz of liquor) is 162 calories and 13.6g of sugar

Maybe you'll just have a Red Bull & vodka? A can of Red Bull contains 110 calories and 27g of sugar(!!!), PLUS the 64 calories from the 1oz of vodka.

So instead of going out and drinking till you're cross-eyed, you have a couple and then switch to water, pellegrino or un-sweetened iced tea. There's nothing wrong with actually remembering what you did last night. Don't want to be labelled as the party-pooper? Offer to be the designated driver, or simply say "I'd rather be enjoying a drink poolside on vacation looking fabulous in my swimsuit." Remember, it's called a Beer Belly for a reason.

At Home/With Family:
We already know that child obesity is an epidemic sweeping across the planet. Why not be the positive change in your family's life by showing them you can eat less and still enjoy your meal. Not only should you try and prepare all your meals yourself (so you know what's going into them), but take the time to enjoy what you're eating. It's not a race to see who can finish the fastest and almost everyone has a PVR, so it's not like you'll miss your favourite show. Instead of racing for seconds-- or dishing out more food on your kid's plate-- wait 10 minutes and see if you're still hungry. It's takes the body time to send the signal to your brain that you're full. You can always pack up what's left and take it for lunch the next day-- another easy way to avoid eating out!

Taking control of what you put in your body is the first step to nutritional wellness and weight management. Avoid the peer-pressure and social cues to eat unhealthy or to excess by visualizing your end goal. Imagine how much better you'll look in 6 months by breaking these habits now - don't be afraid to share your goals with others, help them make goals for themselves too.

Remember, YOU want to be the Influencer.

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The Simply Delicious Banana Bread Recipe

There are a number of mouth-watering and easy to make recipes that people can have during breakfast. One such popular dish is the banana bread recipe whose origin lies in Australia. It is quite tasty and does not need much time to prepare. Both children and adults can enjoy this dish during breakfast.

It is also quite popular in continents like North America. But the residents of Australia are really fond of it. The benefit of the dish is that it is filling as well as appetizing. As a matter of fact, the bread used in North America is thicker than the bread used in Australia. Not everybody knows the right way to prepare banana bread recipe. It has an irresistible sweet taste and flavor that make people crave for it. It can be eaten with coffee or tea.

The banana bread recipe became popular in USA in the early part of the 20th century and it was found in various recipe books in that time. Baking at home gained popularity in the 1960s and people tried making banana bread at home instead of going to the cafes.

It is quite easy to make banana bread at home. The main ingredient to make this recipe is banana. This needs to be mashed properly. The bread making process also necessitates fermentation of the main ingredient. Earlier yeast was used in making bread but for banana bread recipe baking soda is used. The thick batter that will turn into the bread should be kept in a thick rectangular pan. Generally egg is used for making banana bread but the vegetarian people can use yogurt or tofu.

At first a person needs to mix sugar with butter until the mixture becomes fluffy and light. Thereafter, the mashed bananas need to be added to the mix and stirred so that all the ingredients blend well together. Next, one needs to add the vanilla extract. The eggs need to be beaten in a separate bowl. When it is done, the egg needs to be added to the banana batter. The dry ingredients in the recipe need to be added to the egg mixed batter thereafter.

One need a 9x5 inch sized rectangular baking tray for baking the banana batter properly. The baking tray needs to be well greased with butter. The optimum baking temperature for the banana bread recipe is 350F. One should ideally bake the batter for one hour and should check the progress of baking in the time with the help of a toothpick. After the baking is done one can keep the banana bread on a wire rack. This will make it cool down. The bread can then be sliced with knife and served with tea.

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Save The Cascade People's Center Pt. 6

Hi all, How would you like to help Cascade keep its doors open in 2009 while enjoying a delicious meal? Now you can! Southlake Grill has graciously donated its space and food for a fundraising dinner for Cascade on Monday, December 8th. For $30, you can enjoy appetizers, dinner, and dessert with other Cascade supporters. Sounds pretty good, huh? We think so too...Money will be collected at the door, but we'd like people to RSVP ahead of time to give us a head count. The details: What? Fundraising dinner for Cascade People's Center Where? Southlake Grill (Corner of Thomas and Pontius, across the street from Cascade) When? Monday, December 8th at 6:30 pm Why? Because you love Cascade People's Center and good food! What else? Tickets will be $30 at the door and will get you appetizers, dinner, and dessert. Please RSVP ahead of time. If you have questions, or to RSVP, please call the Center at (206) 587-0320 or email Nick at ndemas@lcsnw.org. Spread the word and we'll see you there! -- Holly Smith Youth Program Coordinator Cascade People's Center (206) 587-0320

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