The holiday baking season is in full swing and I’ve totally caught the baking bug. It’s so easy to get swept up in the season and put our healthy lifestyles on hold until the New Year. Let’s work together so we don’t do that, okay?
Now I’m not saying you shouldn’t indulge at all during the holidays. My sister-in-law makes some of the best Christmas cookies and treats ever and I fully intend on eating some when we get to my husband’s hometown to celebrate Christmas. Not to mention the orange chocolate chunk cake my father-in-law makes. I’m getting excited just thinking about it.
I think allowing yourself to indulge during the holidays, even if it’s just a little, is part of having a healthy relationship with food. Too much restriction or deprivation isn’t good for your soul.
But. That doesn’t mean you should allow yourself to indulge all. December. long. Right?!
If you are craving some holiday flavors, but want something without any guilt, this is your recipe! Gingerbread “cookies” in the form of wholesome almonds and dates mixed with molasses and all the flavors of the season!
I find these just as satisfying (and addicting!) as the real thing. Meghan and Luke both love these and had so much fun eating the little gingerbread men. The great part is they can be a snack or a dessert! You have to love a treat that’s healthy enough to serve for a snack.
I used blackstrap molasses in these. It’s much stronger than refined molasses, so if you don’t like that flavor, you can use regular molasses rather than blackstrap. Just know that with that strong flavor, blackstrap molasses delivers a hefty serving of minerals and is one of the greatest plant sources of iron.
Healthy No Bake Gingerbread Cookies
Makes about 14 medium gingerbread cut-outs or more small squares
2 cups dates
1 1/2 cup almonds (I used dry roasted, salted almonds)
1 tablespoon blackstrap molasses
1 tablespoon raw honey
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
Put all ingredients in a food processor (or high-powered blender, just be careful not to over process them) and process until the dates and almonds are completely broken down and the mixture hold together when you press it between your thumb and finger.
Using your hands, press the mixture together and transfer it to a sheet of wax or parchment paper. Roll the mixture so it is approximately 1/4″ thick. I used a slightly damp French rolling pin to do this. You can also just press it out with your hands if you prefer. If the mixture sticks to your hands, get them slightly wet.
Use a gingerbread cookie cutter to cut the dough and transfer the cookies to the wax or parchment paper. Roll out excess dough to make more cookies. If you are short on time and the cuteness factor isn’t important to you, you can simply cut the cookies into squares. A pizza cutter would work great for this, or just use a knife.
I prefer these stored in the fridge, but they may be kept at room temperature as well. Enjoy!
Want more gingerbread/molasses flavored goodies? Try one of these: