Are Vegan Cookies Healthy?
Veganism is widely accepted as a healthy lifestyle, but even the healthiest lifestyle doesn’t preclude delicious desserts. It’s not always easy to make desserts with dietary restrictions in mind. Take it from me, I was gluten-free for a time, and it was damned difficult to make something taste like a cookie without flour. That said, vegan dessert recipes are a little easier to manage. It's certainly easy to make vegan cookies delicious — but will your vegan cookies be any healthier than conventional cookies? For that matter, are vegan cookies healthy at all?
What Are Vegan Cookies?
There are two main types of vegan cookies: no-bake cookies and nut-free cookies. Of course, you can make a vegan no-bake cookie with some straightforward ingredients. But these days, it seems that no-bake cookies are more or less accepted as a necessary evil, which really cuts down on the recipe possibilities.
Still, you can get by with this type of cookie, and these can be especially great as a cookie for kids. Nut-free cookies are often referred to as protein cookies and are a little trickier to find. You’ll want to be careful with these, as any sugar is nut-free. You might also have to be a little careful of gluten-free baking. To my knowledge, there is no flour-free flour. It’s just not there. Once again, though, you can get by with this type of cookie.
First, let's discuss what a cookie is. A cookie is made up of two components: sugar and flour. The simplest way to explain this is to think of a cookie as a combination of cake and dough. There's a combination of ingredients in your typical brownie — flour, sugar, butter, egg and vanilla — but in the cookie, the flour is substituted for an equal mix of flax meal and brown rice flour (from foodmies.com).
The flax and rice flours are both nut-free, making it easy for people with nut allergies. Flax and brown rice flours also have a lower glycemic index than both white and wheat flour. As well, they are both gluten-free. One of the main differences between a regular cookie and a gluten-free or vegan cookie is cooking time.
Are Vegan Cookies Healthy?
Chocolate vegan cookie recipes are probably the most well-known vegan cookie recipe type. With most of the ingredients you’ll need readily available at the grocery store and vegan-friendly shortening readily available in the baking aisle, baking these vegan chocolate chip cookies shouldn’t be difficult.
But are vegan chocolate chip cookies actually healthy? That depends. First of all, “healthy” isn’t the same as “healthy for you” or “good for you.” By that standard, milk would be healthy because it’s an excellent source of calcium and protein. But that’s not the point here. “Healthy” foods should be enjoyed in moderation and should be eaten in the context of an overall healthy diet.
Well, the short answer is “probably not,” in that any animal-derived fat — in this case, butter — will be going into a vegan cookie. The problem, however, is the assumption that there is no difference in nutrition between a regular cookie and a vegan cookie.
Consider the following points: 1. Vegans tend to consume fewer calories than the average person. Their average intake is around 1400 calories per day. Even assuming no other differences in caloric intake, the vegan standard for cookie intake is not that lower than the average American cookie intake of approximately 2000 calories per day. So the vegan cookie will definitely not be calorie-dense, but it will most likely be lower in fat and calorie content than the average American cookie.
Let’s talk about the nutritional composition of a standard serving of cookies. This is a little tricky because when you say “cookie,” we think of a small chocolate-based bite. But “cookie” is a term that encompasses most packaged cookies. Even something called “shortbread” is made of flour, sugar, and butter — all really unhealthy things. So we need a more specific definition.
A typical serving of cookie is 4 tablespoons or roughly one serving of 1 cookie. I’ve seen nutritional labels that say the serving size is “4 tablespoons” — I guess the label maker did a little math to inflate the calorie count and lower the saturated fat content. Of course, all calories are bad calories, so we’ll need a scale for portion sizes. One tablespoon of cookie has 16 calories and a mere 0 saturated fat.
Vegan Cookies And Their Health Benefits
It's difficult to go into a vegan cookie recipe without making it a healthy food. But after careful consideration of the potential health benefits of vegan cookies and considering the potential health benefits of many conventional cookies, I believe the answer to this question is a little complicated.
As a foodie, I spend many time-consuming foods that are completely different from my own diet. For example, I’m thrilled to order a vegan cheese pizza from my favourite pizza shop, but eating pizza with pizza sauce seems a little out of the ordinary. I understand this, but it's a constant reminder that many people don’t consider animal products part of a balanced diet.
The idea of vegan baking isn’t unique, but it is fairly unique to non-dairy desserts. Soy-based products aren’t just for soy-milk alternatives, and when you add in the saturated fat content of some of the common oils used in traditional recipes (like palm oil), vegan baking offers a health benefit.
According to one site on vegan baking, you might be surprised to learn that vegan cookies can be healthier than traditional cookies. Yet another site explained that many cookies, when baked, can be nut-free, gluten-free, and egg-free and that many cookies require sweeteners and honey, which are sources of both sugar and gluten. Not all cookies are created equal, which might be surprising to some.
“Vegan” can refer to removing animal products — like dairy, egg, or honey — from the food or drink you eat. “Vegan” can also refer to the total elimination of those foods in an otherwise plant-based diet. If you're looking for health benefits from vegan foods, you're probably on the right track.
While vegan cookies may seem like the best, most health-promoting desserts around, that's not always the case. There are two primary types of vegan cookies — the first, vegan cookies made with almond flour. These are typically healthier than other types of vegan desserts but are not necessarily better for you. The second type of vegan cookies, most commonly seen on Pinterest and Instagram, are cookies made with coconut flour.
Where to Buy Vegan Cookie Recipes
There are lots of options for vegan cookie recipes. My favourite is The Whole Vegan Cookie Book. If you’re a cookie fan, it’s a great option. I’m currently in the process of putting together my own vegan cookie book. More on that later. You can eat cookies (or bread, ice cream, pizza, pasta) as a dessert. Or you can eat vegan cookies in a way that feels appropriate to you.
Even if you are eating plant-based desserts, sometimes it’s helpful to eat them with a variety of different foods, especially if you are cutting out a particular food group or a dairy food group. It helps your body sort through your cravings. I make sure to eat vegan desserts with a variety of different foods, particularly grains.
All of the recipes in this post are from Pillsbury. The Vegan Cookies Stephanie is trying to find the ingredients to make her parents’ vanilla cookies. They are delicious, but she needs to find a vegan replacement for the egg, plus she needs one more ingredient to make the whole recipe.
She’ll be visiting the grocery store and doing some experimenting. Vanilla Cookies Stephanie is trying to make a vegan version of her family’s famous vanilla cookies. To substitute the butter, she’ll use the organic margarine she already has in her fridge. Vanilla Cookies Stephanie is trying to make a vegan version of her family’s famous vanilla cookies. To substitute the butter, she’ll use the organic margarine she already has in her fridge.
How to Make Vegan Cookies?
You can make vegan cookies in several ways. You can make them out of scratch and bake them using standard recipes. You can also take my vegan chocolate chip cookies and make them out of a store-bought cookie mix. That way, you still get the delicious benefits of vegan chocolate chips, as well as using conventional baking methods.
The take-away? A vegan version of your favourite cookie is definitely possible, but there are also many alternatives. The only true way to get the vegan nutrients you need is to make your own cookies!
First, let’s talk about what makes vegan desserts healthy. In addition to no eggs and no dairy, vegan desserts also follow the rules for gluten and soy. Protein – Many vegan desserts are made with protein, specifically protein powder. The various varieties, often non-dairy, use casein, soy, peanut, hemp, etc., to create a nutty, filling bite.
Many vegan desserts are made with protein, specifically protein powder. The various varieties, often non-dairy, use casein, soy, peanut, hemp, etc., to create a nutty, filling bite. Omega 3s – Low levels of omega 3s in diets are associated with a higher risk of death. Vegan versions often boast higher levels of omega 3s. Low levels of omega 3s in diets are associated with a higher risk of death.
Let's be clear upfront: veganism doesn't necessarily preclude delicious desserts. Some vegan desserts are naturally more healthful than others, especially if they're high in protein and antioxidants. But as a general rule, veganism doesn't preclude delicious desserts.
The vegan desserts you love are all true desserts. In this case, health is just one of many concerns. So with that in mind, here's my list of vegan dessert recipes that are healthful and delicious. These vegan cookies aren’t just good for you. They’re healthy in all the right ways. Even better, they’re easy to make. They can even be made gluten-free if you replace the flour with a gluten-free flour blend or reduce wheat flour.
How to Pick the Best Vegan Cookies
First things first: I’m not a chef, so my approach to baking might be suspect, and I don’t have access to specialized equipment. That being said, I do know one thing: cookies taste delicious, so I’m not going to rip apart recipes and criticize every single ingredient.
I’m just here to tell you which vegan cookies are most delicious and easy to make. The rest is your call! Unfortunately, cookies don’t have to be limited to a small number of ingredients. (There are even gluten-free, vegan cookies!) The three ingredients in the list below are the heart of every good vegan cookie. They’re the batter, the glaze, and the crumb.
Before we get into the nitty-gritty, let’s do a quick overview of how to determine the nutritional status of a food item. According to Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ), one of the best ways to gauge the nutrition of a food item is to look at its My nutrient profile (MnQ).
The good folks over at FSANZ have a neat bit of pie chart data visualization on My nutrient profile, which can be used to see the nutritional values for food items quickly. Here’s an example of the data for a typical cookie: 1g of fibre 5g of protein 39g of carbohydrate 0g of sugar Here’s an example of a gluten-free version of the same cookie: The key difference between these two cookies is that one has gluten (wheat flour), and the other doesn’t.
I try to look for the “healthiest” options whenever I make vegan cookies, but that means I have to be vigilant about what I choose. Here are a few questions I ask myself when I want to pick out a vegan cookie recipe. If you’re looking for the healthiest option, the basic rules are: go for milk or an egg-free, peanut-free, soy-free, or nut-free recipe. For a chocolate chip cookie recipe, use a brown sugar-free recipe (instead of the refined sugar version). Instead of using egg, use something else (such as whole eggs or oatmeal). Instead of flour, use something else (such as oat flour).
The Best Vegan Cookies You Can Buy
A sweet but healthy vegan cookie made with dates and cashews makes a colourful sandwich. There's also an orange-flavoured cookie made with dates and orange zest. These vegan chocolate chip cookies are the best vegan cookie you can buy. They are soft, sweet and flavorful.
No sugar, no flour, no oil — these cookies taste like chocolate chip cookies with a healthier twist. They are a healthy alternative to regular chocolate chip cookies, and they are a paleo alternative to classic chocolate chip cookies. They are not only fun to make but healthy, too. Perfect for breakfast or anytime you need a sweet snack. These vegan oatmeal chocolate chip cookies are chocolatey and rich, and they taste like they’re made with brown sugar, but they are not.
While all vegan cookies are made in some form of plant-based product, a few are indisputably better than others. Without a doubt, these vegan cookies are the best you can buy. Note: All the following vegan cookies contain whey. Most great vegan desserts don't leave me feeling like I’m missing out.
Instead, I’m left smiling, full, and thrilled that my sweet tooth isn’t going hungry. Vegan cookies are no exception. These vegan cookies will leave you feeling just as good. They’re moist, tender, and delightfully flavorful, and thanks to the inclusion of brown rice flour, they're also low on the glycemic index. Most vegan cookies are made with flour, but these are made with brown rice flour.
Why Are Vegan Cookies Better?
While both versions of a vegan cookie will satisfy your cookie cravings, only the latter will satisfy your health needs. There's not much health in a cookie loaded with sugar and flour, plus processed sugar or artificial flavouring. It might take a little more planning, but a health-conscious vegan cookie is well worth it.
That's not to say that it's always easy to find a healthy vegan cookie, but chances are you can easily find a cookie that meets your dietary needs and tastes great. A vegan cookie is a vegan cookie. We don't need to change the recipe to avoid causing them to taste different from traditional cookies. Even if the recipe doesn't use refined sugar, the nutritional content will change.
The most obvious benefit to vegan cookies is the absence of animal ingredients. The FDA, the American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Association, the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the United States Department of Agriculture agree that vegan and vegetarian foods are healthy and good for you.
Since vegan cookies don't contain any animal-based ingredients, they are often more nutritious, too. Unsaturated fats — especially monounsaturated fats — help lower your risk of heart disease and type II diabetes, and whole grains are the basis of an entirely plant-based diet. In addition to not containing animal products, vegan desserts are often made with pure, unprocessed ingredients, like organic flour and organic baking soda.
One of the biggest misconceptions about vegan baking is that there are no eggs or dairy involved in cookies. You don't realize that vegan baking doesn't necessarily limit your flavour options in the least. According to the Culinary Nutrition Society, one of the main nutritional benefits of adding eggs is giving cookies a deeper, richer flavour.
Eggs in your vegan cookie recipe can also give your dessert a rich, thick texture that is difficult to replicate in a vegan recipe without adding more oil to the mix. So not only can you make delicious cookies with your vegan cookie recipe, you can make cakes, muffins, biscuits, quick bread and even lasagna without eggs. Once you realize the myriad of benefits that eggs provide, you'll never look back.
Vegan Cookies vs Conventional Cookies
Although a vegan diet is generally considered healthier than a typical diet, certain foods aren’t part of it. For starters, let’s consider cookies. Cookies contain both flour and dairy. For this reason, a veggie cookie is almost always a vegan cookie. Cookies that contain just flour are a little trickier. And that’s okay.
I don’t think many people buy vegan cookies just because they’re vegan. More importantly, they’re delicious. But you may find that you like a few things about a cookie that you wouldn’t like in a cookie that contains both flour and dairy. Bulk vs. Concentrate – As I discussed in the Wheat and Dairy section, various forms of wheat and dairy aren’t found in traditional cookie dough.
Okay, what the hell is a cookie anyway? There are lots of different kinds. But in the scope of things, all cookies taste the same, at least when you’re standing right next to the thing you’re buying at the store. If you can’t actually taste the difference between some of these cookies, then you’re probably eating sugar.
Let’s use the Pillsbury Cut Out Chocolate Cookie as an example. There is nothing healthy about it. It’s essentially a giant, melty chocolate chip cookie with a thin layer of chocolate on top. If you feel like you’re actually eating healthy food here, you’re probably lying to yourself. Now let’s compare it to a slice of vegan dark chocolate cake. Here we see a cake that is both healthy and delicious.
As with most healthy foods, vegan desserts aren't necessarily super nutritious or all that satisfying. I'd love to know your thoughts on the subject, and let me know your favourite vegan dessert recipes!
Look, we love dessert. It's why most of us wake up in the morning and don't take drugs. It's the one thing in life that really sucks us in and turns us into animalistic monsters. We eat dessert to add to the pleasure we feel at the end of an otherwise miserable day. These vegan cookie recipes are well-seasoned and sweet enough to make you forget about your day. They're perfect for enjoying a tall glass of your favourite non-dairy milk.
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