Skinny Cranberry Macadamia Butter Cookies

20180616_125839When you think of the terms skinny and cookie, you don’t typically associate them together. For those trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, however, it is imperative to find recipes that do just that. In a constant battle to avoid unhealthy foods yet allow the occasional sweet treat, sometimes we have to get creative. These cookies are a product of that creativity.

20180616_125954Inspired by a classic, the old-fashioned peanut butter cookie, these treats replace peanuts with a Hawaiian favorite, macadamias. To make these cookies not only unique but also healthy, I began by completely eliminating butter from the recipe. That’s right, no butter, no oil. The base of the dough is actually created by pureeing the macadamias into a nut butter, similar to the role peanut butter plays in a peanut butter cookie. The natural oil from the macadamias is enough to hold the dough together and keep it moist, allowing butter to be left out of the equation entirely. So don’t be fooled into thinking I forgot to add it to the ingredient list just because the title has the word “butter” in it (and yes…this conversation has happened before).

20180616_130407Although removing butter from the recipe will drastically cut the calorie and fat content of the cookies, it doesn’t necessarily make them healthy. To boost the nutrition content of the cookies, I elected to swap out all-purpose flour and replace it with white whole-wheat flour. Lastly, I added some dried cranberries to provide a boost of antioxidant power and chewy texture. The bits of cranberries not only provide a nutritional boost to each cookie, but a tartness that really complements the sweet and subtle flavor of the macadamias. These cookies are thick, satisfying, taste fantastic, and they’re far more nutritionally balanced than a traditional cookie (74 calories, 2 g. fat, 1 g. protein, 1 g. fiber per serving). If you love peanut butter cookies and want to taste a more exotic take on the original, give these delightful little bundles a try!

20180616_130112*NOTE: This recipe should yield approximately 30 cookies. Each serving consists of 1 cookie.

 

Skinny Cranberry Macadamia Butter Cookies

 

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup Macadamia Nuts
  • ½ cup Granulated Sugar
  • ½ cup packed Light Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 large Egg
  • 1 ¼ cups White Whole-Wheat Flour
  • ½ tsp. Baking Soda
  • ¼ tsp. Salt
  • 1/8 tsp. Ground Nutmeg
  • ½ cup Dried Cranberries
  • 1 tbsp. Granulated Sugar

 

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°. Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Place macadamias in a food processor and pulse until smooth, approximately 2 minutes, scraping down the sides as needed. DO NOT move on to step three until the texture is smooth like creamy peanut butter, otherwise the dough will be dry and crumbly.
  3. Combine macadamia butter, ½ cup granulated sugar, and brown sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer (or large bowl). Beat with a stand (or hand) mixer on medium speed until combined. Add vanilla and egg and beat well.
  4. In a separate large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture and beat until combined. Stir in cranberries. Chill dough for 10 minutes.
  5. Divide chilled dough into 30 equal portions and roll each portion into a ball. Place remaining tablespoon of sugar in a small bowl. Lightly roll the top of each cookie ball in the sugar and place, sugar side up, on the prepared baking sheet, leaving an inch between each cookie. Gently press down on the top of each dough ball to flatten.
  6. Bake cookies, 1 sheet pan at a time, for 9 minutes or until golden. Remove cookies from pan and cool on a wire rack. Repeat with remaining cookies & enjoy.

 

PHOTOGRAPHY & STAGING: PETER MENDOROS

 

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEES PATISSERIE 2018

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Ginger Lemon Pinwheel Cookies

20180101_144943Happy New Year everyone! I hope you all had a very enjoyable holiday season full of good food and quality time spent with family and friends. As we welcome 2018 we all have likely set goals or resolutions for the new year. For me it is to continue the resolution I set last year, which is to always keep progressing by trying new things out of my comfort zone. As simple as these cookies may seem, they certainly fit the mantra of pushing myself.

20180101_144922.pngYou see, I am a drop cookie person. I hate waiting for cookie dough to chill in the refrigerator because I love raw cookie dough. Therefore, the longer it hangs out in the fridge the more of it disappears before it ever has a chance to hit a baking sheet. Once the dough is adequately chilled then you have to flour counters and rolling pins and despite your efforts you still end up with a mess of dough stuck everywhere.  Although I tend to avoid the rolled out cookie dough types, I decided these pinwheels would be the newest addition to the holiday table along with the regular offerings. I used sheets of plastic wrap to roll out both batters to reduce mess and clean up. Although these cookies do require a patient baker, they are not as challenging as they appear. Things went a lot smoother than envisioned (even with a 4-year-old kitchen helper) and I was really impressed with the results. These cookies are a great combination of flavors and make for a beautiful cookie!

20180101_144906

Ginger Lemon Pinwheel Cookies

Ginger Dough Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup Unsalted Butter; softened
  • 1/3 cup packed Brown Sugar
  • ¼ cup Molasses
  • 1 Large Egg Yolk
  • 6 oz. (1 1/3 cups) All-Purpose Flour
  • ¾ tsp. Ground Ginger
  • ¾ tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. Salt
  • 1/8 tsp. Ground Nutmeg
  • Dash of Allspice

Lemon Dough Ingredients:

  • 5 tbsp. Unsalted Butter; softened
  • 2/3 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Large Egg White
  • 1 tsp. Lemon Extract
  • ¾ tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 6 oz. (1 1/3 cups) All-Purpose Flour
  • ¼ tsp. Salt

Preparation:

  1. To prepare ginger dough: Place the butter and brown sugar in a medium bowl and beat with a mixer at medium speed until well combined. Add the molasses and egg yolk and beat until well blended. Combine flour, ginger, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and allspice and stir with a whisk. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and beat at low-speed just until combined. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill at least 30 minutes or overnight.
  2. To prepare the lemon dough: Place the butter and granulated sugar in a medium bowl and beat with a mixer at medium speed until blended. Add the egg white and beat until blended. Beat in the lemon extract and vanilla. Combine the flour and salt. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and beat at low-speed just until combined. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill at least 30 minutes or overnight.
  3. Unwrap chilled ginger dough and roll between sheets of plastic wrap into a 13 x 8 1/2 inch rectangle. Chill dough for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, unwrap the lemon dough and roll between sheets of plastic wrap into a 13 x 9 inch rectangle. Chill dough for 10 minutes. Carefully stack ginger dough on top of lemon dough, leaving a 1/2 inch border along one long edge. Starting with the long side without a border, roll up dough, jelly roll style. Seal the edges but do not seal the ends of roll. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°. Unwrap dough. Cut with a sharp knife into 40 slices that are about ¼ inch thick. Reshape the rounds, if necessary, or return dough to chill in the freezer. Arrange slices 1 inch apart on baking sheets. Bake, 1 batch at a time, for 8 to 9 minutes or until set and lightly browned. Cool on wire racks.

PHOTOGRAPHY & STAGING: PETER MENDOROS

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEES PATISSERIE 2018

Easy Coconut Cardamom Macaroons

20171215_124810With the holidays comes a lot of shopping, a lot of baking, and a lot of rushing to get it all done. Although you envision a table full of different types of desserts, time may not always be on your side. If you need a easy cookie recipe to bulk up your offerings without wasting too much precious time than look no further than these coconut cardamom macaroons.

20171215_124340Flavored with vanilla and cardamom, these macaroons have an exotic sweet flavor that will surprise the taste buds of those expecting a traditional coconut macaroon. The coconut gives them their chewy, dense texture and the combination will be a surprisingly simple addition to your dessert table!

20171215_124430As a bonus to great ease and flavor, each cookie is only 3 grams of fat and 82 calories, making them a smart yet indulgent choice for the health conscious. This recipe will yield approximately 15 cookies. If you are baking the macaroons ahead of time, be sure to cool them completely on a wire rack then store in an airtight container for up to one week.

Easy Coconut Cardamom Macaroons

Ingredients:

  • 2 Large Egg Whites
  • ¼ cup Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1/8 tsp. Salt
  • 1/8 tsp. Ground Cardamom
  • 1 ½ cups flaked Sweetened Coconut

 

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 325°. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Place egg whites in a medium bowl and lightly beat with a whisk. Add sugar, vanilla, salt, and cardamom and stir well with a whisk until foamy. Add coconut and toss well to combine.
  3. Loosely pack coconut mixture into a 1 tablespoon size measuring spoon. Turn out coconut mixture onto the prepared baking sheet (about 15 cookies). Bake for 20-23 minutes or until evenly golden. Remove from oven and cool on the pan for 3 minutes. Remove cookies from pan and cool completely on a wire rack. Enjoy!

 

 

 

RECIPE ADAPTED FROM: ANN TAYLOR PITTMAN
PHOTOGRAPHY & STAGING: PETER MENDOROS

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEES PATISSERIE 2017

Vampire Bat Cookies

20171030_124439Happy Halloween! This year has been a very busy one so far and with that I have had limited time to brainstorm new ideas and recipes to share. I could not pass up sharing some Halloween delights with you so I whipped up these vampire bat cookies with my oldest daughter.

To make these you will need a bat cookie cutter, your favorite sugar cookie recipe, 1 box royal frosting mix (such as Wilton’s), piping bags (I prefer disposable for easy clean up), 3 round #2 piping tips, and gel food coloring (black, white, & orange).

20171030_124526First, prepare your cookie dough or buy cookie dough and cut into bat shapes. Bake and allow to cool completely. Meanwhile, prepare the royal icing to stiff but pipable consistency and seperate into portions, 2 larger portions for white and black, and a smaller portion for the orange (as you will use much less). Dye each portion with food color and allow to rest at least 4 hours. For the blackest black I allow mine to sit 24 hours for the color to fully develop, otherwise you will end up with gray bats or you will have squid ink by adding too much dye to the icing.

20171030_124518Once the icing has developed and the cookies have cooled completely begin decorating your bat cookies. Pipe an outline around the bats in black to prepare the cookies for flooding. Set aside a bit of 20 second (stiff) black royal icing for detailing later then make the remaining black icing into flooding consistency by adding water. You will be at the right consistency when you can draw a line through the icing and by the time you count to 10 the line has disappeared. Flood the bats with black icing and allow to set. I allowed mine to set overnight to prevent the black color from bleeding to my white icing details but if you do not have that long to wait ai recommend you at least wait 6 hours but preferably at least 12. Much of it depends on your climate and humidity levels as to how fast your icing will set.

20171030_124153Once the black icing has dried and set you can pipe face details on the bats in white icing. I had my oldest daughter help me so ours vary between male and female bats. She wanted cute eyelashes for the female bats but you can decorate .them however you please. Allow a few minutes for the white to set then pipe the wing details in orange. To give depth to the eyes use the reserved black stiff icing to pipe an eyeball. Once all is dry you will have cute vampire bat cookies that adults and kids can both enjoy! Have a fun and safe Halloween everyone!

 

PHOTOGRAPHY & STAGING: PETER MENDOROS

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEES PATISSERIE 2017

Spicy Mexican Shortbread Cookies

20170501_150058Cinco de Mayo is tomorrow and there will be festivities all across America and Mexico to celebrate. Whether you want to bring a dish to a party you’re attending or simply desire to serve some Mexican inspired cuisine at home to family then I have just the dessert for you.

20170501_150014Spicy Mexican Shortbread Cookies combine different elements of Mexican cuisine into one delicious cookie, making them the perfect dessert addition to any party table or family dinner. The cookie base features the rich combination of cocoa and cinnamon with a hint of spice from cayenne pepper, all reminiscent of Mexican hot chocolate. The icing is designed to replicate the flavors of dulce de leche and compliment the cookie without conflicting with its complex flavors. Lastly, the sweet and salty pecan topping adds a crunchy texture to an otherwise extremely delicate shortbread cookie base.

20170501_150119Whether you plan to make these cookies as a last-minute treat for Cinco de Mayo or enjoy them at other times of the year, you can’t go wrong with this stellar combination of pecans, chocolate shortbread, and dulce de leche flavored icing!

Spicy Mexican Shortbread Cookies

Cookie Ingredients:

  • 6.75 oz. (1 ½ cups) All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/3 cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • ¼ tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. Salt
  • ¼ tsp. Cayenne Pepper
  • ½ cup Unsalted Butter; softened
  • ½ cup light Olive Oil or Vegetable Oil
  • ¾ cup Powdered Sugar

Icing Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp. Unsalted Butter
  • ½ cup packed Light Brown Sugar
  • ½ cup 1% Low-Fat Milk
  • 1 ¼ cups Powdered Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

Nut Topping Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp. Light Brown Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Sea Salt
  • 1 tsp. Unsalted Butter; softened
  • ¾ cup Chopped Pecans

 

Preparation:

  1. To prepare cookies, combine flour, cocoa, cinnamon, salt, and cayenne pepper in a bowl; stir with a whisk.
  2. Place ½ cup butter in the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large bowl if using a hand mixer). With stand or hand mixer set to medium speed, beat until light and fluffy. Gradually add oil and beat 3 minutes or until well blended. Gradually add ¾ cup powdered sugar and beat well. Add the flour mixture and beat at low-speed until well blended. Form dough into a long uniform log, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill for 30-45 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 325°. Meanwhile, unwrap chilled dough from plastic wrap and slice into ¼ inch thick slices. Bake for 20 minutes (DO NOT turn off oven after last tray of cookies is removed). Cool 1 minute on baking sheet. Remove from baking sheet and cool completely on a wire rack.
  4. Meanwhile, prepare the icing. Melt 2 tbsp. butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add brown sugar and milk; cook 1 minute or until the sugar dissolves, stirring constantly. Bring mixture to a boil then reduce heat and simmer 3 minutes or until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Add powdered sugar and vanilla, stirring with a whisk until smooth. If mixture is too thin, add more powdered sugar until icing is thin enough to drizzle over cookie.
  5. To prepare nut topping, arrange pecans on a small baking sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until toasted. While pecans toast, combine 1 tsp. brown sugar, sea salt, and 1 tsp. butter in a medium bowl. Once pecans have finished toasting, add hot pecans to butter mixture. Immediately toss pecans well to coat. Cool completely.
  6. To assemble cookies, drizzle 1 tsp. of icing over each cookie then sprinkle with chopped pecans. Enjoy!

 

RECIPE ADAPTED FROM: JENNIFER BRUMFIELD
PHOTOGRAPHY & STAGING: PETER MENDOROS

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEES PATISSERIE 2017

Skinny Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

IMG_20160627_113132Chocolate chip cookies are a simple, traditional treat that almost guarantees to please every sweet tooth. Although chocolate chip cookies are wonderful as is, they also make a great base for additions that can lure in the adventurous or be made to cater any specific taste. Toasted coconut is one of these many options that is quite hard to beat. There is just something about the combination of chocolate and coconut that tastes divine together (hence my love of Mounds candy bars). In fact, if a Mounds candy bar were turned into a cookie, this would be it.

20160627_154819Given that these cookies feature two ingredients (coconut & dark chocolate) that are not as bad for your health as once thought, they make the perfect guiltless treat. Sure, as with any treat that lacks essential nutrients, they are in fact deemed a treat. However, not all treats are created equal and these certainly will not set you back as bad as many others without sacrificing taste. By toasting the coconut before adding it to the batter, the cookies take on a unique texture of both crisp and chewy. When you are not getting hit with bursts of intense dark chocolate flavor, the cookie has a hint of nuttiness lent from the toasted coconut. So if you want a spin on a classic, try this cookie and I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

Note:

  • This recipe yields approximately 20-25 cookies, providing you use a level tablespoon to measure. You can make the cookies bigger or smaller, however keep in mind there will be changes to texture, baking time, and nutritional information.

Skinny Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients:

  • ¾ cup Flaked Sweetened Coconut
  • 4.5 oz. (1 cup) Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • ½ tsp. Baking Powder
  • ¼ tsp. Baking Soda
  • 1/8 tsp. Salt
  • ¾ cup Light Brown Sugar; packed
  • ¼ cup Unsalted Butter; softened
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 2 oz. Premium Dark Chocolate Baking Chips (such as Ghirardelli 60% Cocoa)

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Arrange coconut in a single layer on a small baking sheet. Bake coconut for 5-7 minutes or until lightly toasted, stirring once. Set aside to cool. Keep oven preheated to 350°.
  2. Meanwhile, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir with a whisk until blended. Place sugar and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl. Beat with stand or hand mixer on medium speed until well blended. Beat in the vanilla and egg. Turn the speed down to low and add the flour mixture, mixing just until combined. Gently stir in the toasted coconut and chocolate by hand.
  3. Coat baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray and drop dough by level tablespoons 2 inches apart. Bake cookies for 10 minutes or until edges just begin to brown, rotating pans halfway through baking. Let cookies rest on pan for 5 minutes then remove from pan and cool completely on a wire rack.

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION

(1 Cookie)

 

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Weight Watchers: 3 Smart Points, 2 Points Plus, or 2 Traditional Points

 

RECIPE ADAPTED FROM: JACKIE MILLS
PHOTOGRAPHY & STAGING: PETER MENDOROS

 

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEES PATISSERIE 2016

Skinny Caramel Apple Oatmeal Cookies

20160426_102122As the days creep closer and closer to 90° here in Florida I begin to miss the cooler, humidity free temperatures of winter. What makes summer even harder to grasp is this year we had a very mild winter with only a handful of very cold days. I quite honestly feel robbed of my favorite time of year. In order to make up for the loss I decided to make a classic cooler weather combination in spring.

20160426_101906Growing up, one of my favorite sweets to eat in fall was the caramel apple. A local candy shop in my hometown makes the best caramel apples and to this day I have yet to find a location that has made them better. The problem is those apples are seasonal treats and once the season is over (October/November) the decadent apples disappear for another year. The memories of eating these apples were brought up a few weeks ago and I have been craving them ever since. Of course I couldn’t even get one if I wanted to because they are not in season but perhaps I could replicate the flavors I was craving and fool my body into thinking I had been reunited with my childhood favorite. An even better idea was to implement those flavors into a skinnier option than a typical dessert.

20160426_102135This recipe makes approximately 4 dozen cookies so if you do not want that many at a time I recommend freezing some of the dough to bake in the future. After taste testing a few of these my father also suggested that the flavor and texture of the dough would make a great snack bar. If you have a snack bar pan it may be worth the try although I have not personally given this a go yet. Packed with oats, chopped apple, and decadent caramel, these cookies bring the flavors of fall year round. At less than 100 calories a cookie they also leave you feeling a bit less guilty.

Skinny Caramel Apple Oatmeal Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 6.75 oz. (approximately 1 ½ cups) All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 ½ cups Old-Fashioned Rolled Oats
  • 1 tsp. Baking Powder
  • ½ tsp. Baking Soda
  • ½ tsp. Salt
  • ½ cup Granulated Sugar
  • ¾ cup Light Brown Sugar; packed
  • 6 tbsp. Unsalted Butter; softened
  • 2 tsp. Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1 Large Apple; peeled, cored, & quartered
  • ¾ cup Caramel Baking Bits (Kraft)
  • Parchment Paper

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or a slip mat and set aside.
  2. Place quartered apple pieces in a food processor. Pulse until apple is finely chopped, about 5 pulses. Measure out ¾ cup of the chopped apple and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl place the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir with a whisk until combined.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or large bowl), add the granulated sugar, brown sugar, and butter. Using a stand or hand mixer set to medium speed, beat the mixture together until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and egg, beating again until combined. Turn the mixer down to low speed and gradually add the flour mixture, beating until just combined. Fold in the chopped apple and caramel bits until evenly combined.
  5. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto the prepared baking sheets. Flatten dough mounds slightly with the palm of your hand. Bake for 9 to 10 minutes, rotating pans halfway through the baking time. Cool cookies on baking sheet for 3 minutes. Remove cookies from baking sheet and transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for 3 days.

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION

(1 Cookie)

SkinnyCaramelAppleOatmealCookiesNutritionLabel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weight Watchers: 3 Smart Points, 2 Points Plus, or 1 Traditional Point

 

RECIPE ADAPTED FROM: HELEN WORTHINGTON
PHOTOGRAPHY & STAGING: PETER MENDOROS

 

ALL REMAINING CONTENT © HONEYBEES PATISSERIE 2016