Okay so some of you may be scratching your heads right now. For multiple reasons. First you are looking at this cookie and thinking there's no way its healthy. Well I am here to tell you as far as cookies go this is a healthy alternative in a big bad way. Plus it's delicious. In a big bad way. Secondly those who know me are now wondering if they have come to the right blog. I am usually Miss Sugar Pants. But today calls for Lunie to put away her sugar jar and help support World Diabetes Day.
When Carolyn of All Day I Dream About Food put out the word she was helping raise awareness for World Diabetes Day I knew I wanted to help. After we spoke and I was all signed up I must admit I kind of wondered if she'd bumped her noggin a little bit. I'm not normally known for low sugar or low carbs. So I was a wee bit worried about participating. Carolyn assured me I could do this and with her help I decided to jump in with both feet.
Now since I'm known for over the top sweets I did not want to take the easy way out. I could have made a salad or main dish. But that's not how I roll. I wanted to challenge myself to see if I could tackle a healthier sweet. I looked around the internet for recipes for inspiration. Some of the major websites out there really do not have great healthy options for diabetics. I was sort of surprised what kind of recipes I was coming across. I found a cookie recipe I loved but it was just not healthy enough for my liking. Not for a day like today. So I went to a friend's site, Mellissa of I Breathe I'm Hungry. Mellissa is amazing when it comes to healthy, great tasting, low carb food. I knew what I wanted to make. I still had cherry cookies stuck in my brain. Colour me happy when I found the exact cookie I had been scoping out on Mellissa's site. I knew her Chocolate Cherry Walnut Cookies were what I wanted to make. One small problem though, I don't buy some of the ingredients Mellissa uses. So I did what most of us do and did some substituting to my own taste and what I had stocked in my pantry. I tweaked her version a little bit and these cookies are what I ended up with. They are delicious and I'm a picky gal. So if I am sitting here scarfing them at midnight they must be good.
I really wanted to get into the spirit of this and do something to help. While I don't have diabetes I know many people who do. My best friend had gestational diabetes when she got pregnant with her first child. I remember sitting up at the hospital with her. She was so worried about her health. They spent 10 years trying to have children, and when she finally got pregnant her health went pretty wonky. Watching her go through that broke my heart. I remember her picking her finger and counting everything she ate. It is quite an adjustment for anyone suffering from it. And wicked serious too. The stats on diabetes are frightening.
The American Diabetes Association states that 25.8 million children and adults in the U.S. have diabetes. 7 million of them are undiagnosed. I cannot even fathom this. The numbers are scary. 79 million people are prediabetes. Adults with diabetes are reported to have heart disease death rates about 2 to 4 times higher than those people without diabetes. The risk of stroke is also 2 to 4 times higher. It can cause blindness, kidney disease, nervous system damage, and amputation. This scares the heck out of me. I am not going to lie folks, you all know I love sugar. So these numbers and risks scare me. It makes you think about all those affected by it. And all those who are will be.
I admire Carolyn for her commitment to this cause. She is such an inspiration to so many of us. I've never met a more supportive blogger. She stops by here and I know she can't eat the food I'm posting most of the time. But she pops in any way to say hello and comment. It always touches me when she does that because I would imagine it's difficult for her to pop in to a blog that posts recipes high in sugar content. She's just a sweetheart of a lady with a ton of heart and an abundance of courage. I'm so happy to help her in raising some awareness today.
I hope this recipe is as diabetic friendly as I planned for it to be. I struggled a bit with some ingredients but hopefully with all my tinkering I've got it right. I hope Carolyn can try it out herself.
See notes for substitutions depending on diet!
- Preheat oven to 325.
- Mix your dry ingredients in a large bowl.
- Mix your wet ingredients in a medium bowl.
- Add your wet ingredients to your dry ingredients and mix well.
- Drop spoonfuls onto a parchment lined cookie sheet.
- Place in oven and bake for about 8 to 10 minutes depending on the size of your cookies.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool.
- Serve with a big old chocolatey, cherry, pistachio smile!
I made one batch using coconut sugar. Coconut sugar is questionable for diabetics. It has a lower glycemic index but sugar is still sugar. I posted the non-coconut sugar version but if you're not diabetic and looking for more sugar in the cookie the coconut sugar is the way to go. Mellissa used date sugar which I've never used but bet it's fabulous.
Mellissa's recipe used whole wheat flour. Since I am not allowed whole wheat flour due to IBS and diverticulitis and diabetic diets can warn to watch wheat I used white flour with a small mix of cake flour. The reason I used the cake flour was Swerve recommends it when baking. So I wanted to give it a try. I liked the result. If you aren't concerned about wheat and want a healthier cookie feel free to use whole wheat flour. Possibly even coconut flour, I've not tried that but it could work.
If you are watching your calories feel free to cut back the pistachios and cherries. I figured the indulgence was worth since it was a cookie.
As you can see you can totally play around with this recipe to adapt it to your diet and lifestyle. It's a great recipe to tweak and have fun with!!
Can I just say how much I love these cookies. They are so good hot out of the oven. I tried a few different versions. For one I doubled the yogurt for a more moist cookie. What was odd is I liked the drier version. But I wanted to play around with different ingredients and tweak to my own taste. I have to say my job is not a hard one. Being a cookie taste tester not such a bad gig. Especially when the cookie in question is a fairly healthy cookie.
I encourage you all to stop by Carolyn's blog, All Day I Dream About Food. She has some helpful information on diabetes you are going to want to read. Carolyn is also giving away a blue Kitchenaid Stand Mixer, blue is the colour of diabetes awareness. So make sure you swing by her blog to say hello, get some info and enter the giveaway.
I am lucky enough to have received a sample pack of Swerve. I've actually never tried it until now. I really liked working with it. The information says to bake it a little lower than a recipe made with sugar which is why I adjusted my oven to 325 instead of 350 degrees. Worked like a charm. I really don't think anyone would guess these cookies were not made with sugar. The taste was bang on. So two enthusiastic thumbs up for the Swerve products.
This is the fabulous package I received to try out. Now one of my very lucky readers gets to win this same package. It's filled with swerve products and fun baking items as well. I was so impressed with the kit. It was like Christmas morning here the day it arrived. If you want to snag yourself one too here's what you need to do:
Leave a comment saying what you want to try making when you win your awesome swerve kit!
1. Follow me by email and leave a separate comment saying you did so, as well as your email address in case you win!
2. Like Swerve on Facebook and let me know you did so in a separate comment!
3. Follow Swerve on Twitter and let me know you did so in a separate comment!
Giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents. Winner will be drawn by random.org on Wednesday, November 21 at midnight. Good luck.
Please remember I need your email address in order to contact you. Also remember one comment per entry! Thanks and good luck.
Thank you so much to Carolyn for allowing me to join the cause today. I am honoured to be a part of this.
Thank you to Swerve for the awesome gift they sent me and the awesome gift they will be sending one lucky reader!
Toodles and smoochies! xx