Think outside the cereal box: Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies

26 Feb

Last week, I tuned into a webinar provided by the good folks at California Raisins. As a dietitian, I have to maintain credentials by completing 75 continuing education credits, and online webinars count as such. I had the pleasure of attending the raisin breakfast at the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo last October in Philadelphia, and the presentation really opened my eyes to raisin potential. Basically the punch-line was that raisins are more than ants on a log. In fact, the #1 most economical fruit in the United States boasts a good deal of potassium, fiber and calcium. Fun fact? As the sun naturally dries the grapes into raisins, potassium, fiber and calcium increase! While dried fruit often gets a bad rap as being a caloric trap, raisins have many benefits and, let’s face it, we need people to eat more fruit – no matter what form it comes in, right? My favorite fact that I gleaned from the presentation is that raisins can be used as an exercise recovery tool, much like those expensive sports beans, chews, and gels. They taste much better, and are much cheaper than the packaged foods advertised as runner’s must-haves. Chef nutritionist Michelle Dudash was one of the panelists, and illustrated possible ways to utilize raisins in cooking to add flavor and nutrition. I have been wanting to make Chef Dudash’s oatmeal breakfast cookies from her awesome book Clean Eating for Busy Families: and when she reiterated this recipe during the webinar, it served as just the gentle reminder I needed. Below is the recipe. If my hypothesis proves itself correct, these cookies would be excellent on the go with a latte, broken up into large chucks and served over yogurt, or tossed in your bag for your late morning snack. These versatile fiber-loaded cookies can be stored in an air-tight container for up to 1 week at room temperature, or up to 1 month in the freezer.

Some possible ways to incorporate more raisins in your life (adapted from California Raisins):
•Stews, chili
•Trail mix & granola
•Smoothies & sauces
•Snack bars
•Cookies & desserts
•Taco meat, meatballs, burgers
•Nut butter spreads & toppings
•Cheese pairing

Oatmeal Raisin Breakfast Cookies (adapted from Michelle Dudash, RD)
3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat flour (or mixture of white and whole wheat flours)
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 large egg
1/3 cup canola oil (or coconut oil)
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup low-fat milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup raisins (or any dried fruit of choice: cherries, apricots)
1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons slivered almonds (or any chopped nut of choice: cashews, walnuts, pecans, peanuts),
Preheat oven to 350*F and line two baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper. Assemble dry ingredients: oats, flour, cinnamon, baking soda. In a second bowl, whisk egg, oil, milk, sugar and vanilla extract. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet, and beat until dough is moistened. Add dried fruits and 1/2 cup nuts at the end of mixing. Drop scant 1/4 cup scoops of dough onto the pans at least 2 inches apart. Pat gently with waxed paper and top cookies with slivered almonds (or other nuts). Bake for 14-16 minutes, or until edges are golden brown. Cool completely on a wire rack.

One Response to “Think outside the cereal box: Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies”

  1. mom February 26, 2013 at 6:16 pm #

    they look delicious…will make them tomorrow…

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