Gluten-free Vegan Oatmeal Cacao Nib Cookies

image Oh yeah, AND raisins!

These are so ridiculously awesome. The cacao nibs give them a dark chocolate flavor you can smell from the oven all while being gluten-free and low sugar! A quick word on cacao nibs/cacao bean: coming from the Theobroma cacao tree,  sometimes wrongly labeled cocoa nibs/cocoa bean, which from my understanding refers only to the extracted butter or powdered stuff. The mayan word is: kakaw, they might be on to something, I mean, they’ve only been using the stuff for ever. Just sayin’

Gosh, you have no idea, but just writing about those cookies makes my mouth water, and of course they are already gone… (I see some more baking coming up in this girl’s future) They are chewy and fragrant and yes, the texture is somewhat different than regular oatmeal cookies, after all there are mostly oats in there (and they are made without gluten flour).

imageDark cacao nibs (essentially pieces of cacao bean) 

If you are cultivating your sweet tooth, please feel free to use more ‘sweet stuff’. The cookies here are getting some of their sweetness from the raisins, but they would be a perfect treat for my Dad, who doesn’t really like sweets. I am a big believer in flavor over just plain sweet, or salty for that matter; and these cookies fit the bill perfectly.



  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup millet flour*
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup cacao nibs
  • 1/4 cup flax meal
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup almond or other nut butter
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar, maple syrup or honey**

* I used millet because of its sweet, nutty flavor, but you could most likely use other gluten-free flours

**if using honey, the cookies are no longer vegan



  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF
  2. In a large bowl, combine first four ingredients (oats through cacao nibs)
  3. In a separate bowl, mix flax meal and chia seeds with the water, set aside and let rest for 10 minutes.Then stir in the agave nectar and almond butter
  4. Stir the flax mix into the bowl with the oats, add up to another 1/4 cup of water if dough looks too dry.
  5. Drop cookies by the rounded tablespoon onto a prepared baking sheet, and bake until golden brown on the bottom and just starting to turn golden on top, about 8 to 11 minutes.

Makes about 30

imageCopyright © 2012 Simple Healthy Homemade. All rights reserved

Chocolate Coconut Rounds


There they were, sitting timid in the middle of my fruit basket trying to pretend they were not there. Overripe bananas, like the poor step child in an old fairy tale. Since I only like to eat them when they are still a little green, these brown things in my fruit basket are definitely not my thing. But over time I have come up with various ways to use them up, using them for smoothies, pancakes or baking, after all they do provide a great source of natural sweetness without adding sugar. And yes, I have to admit before I did that, sometimes they would get thrown out. So that’s why they are scared. But fret not bananas, I have something yummy to turn you into 🙂

What do you do with your past prime bananas? Any favorites?

This recipe is grain and sugar free, the only sweetness comes from the banana, so it isn’t your traditional cookie, if you like things sweet, you might want to add 1/4 cup of sugar or some stevia. These are more like a piece of 70% cocoa chocolate, flavorful but just subtly sweet.

And without further ado here is how to make them:


  • 1/2 cup egg whites (about 4)
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed with a fork
  • 2 cups unsweetened, shredded coconut
  • 1 cup ground almonds, natural not blanched
  • 6 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup almond butter (cashew butter or other nut butter would work as well)
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 dash of salt


  1. Combine shredded coconut, ground almonds, coconut flour and cocoa powder in a bowl
  2. Add the mashed bananas
  3. Melt the coconut oil together with the almond butter and stir until smooth, add to bowl
  4. Add the egg whites
  5. Mix until everything is fully incorporated
  6. Divide dough into two portions and between wax paper, work each one into a roll of about 1 1/2” to 2″ diameter.
  7. Place in the freezer for about 1 hour or until nice and solid.
  8. Preheat the oven to 350°F
  9. Remove one roll from the freezer, and slice into rounds 1/2″ to 3/4″ thick, place ona  lined cookie sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
  10. In  the meantime, repeat the same with the other roll.
  11. Let the rounds cool down on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.


Copyright © 2012 Simple Healthy Homemade. All rights reserved

Cocoa Post Workout Recovery Drink


I am not a big believer in supplements, protein powders and bars, thinking that most anything you need, you can get from proper nutrition. I resort to recovery drinks and an occasional protein bar, if I really don’t have the time to have something real. And since many of  y clients always ask me what to take, and what to do, I decided to share this post workout recovery drink with you. Can you add a scoop of protein powder? If you like, sure. But the mainstay of this is the D-Ribose. Ribose is a special carbohydrate that is used in the body for energy production in the cells as it plays a critical role in the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is the energy unit that fuels our cells and bodies. It  provides energy needed for short burst of power movements during physical activity, is needed to help our muscles squeeze, heart pump, brains think and countless actions that we don’t consciously control.

Ribose provides a raw material to facilitate ATP production. Many doctors believe that at least part of the problem with chronic illnesses, such as fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue, is a lack of energy production to keep the organs, like the muscles and brain, happy. If the muscles have adequate energy available = less stiffness and cramping. This is similar to having enough money in the bank. If the money is gone, and the roof springs a major leak, no funds are available to fix it. In the end, the whole house is affected. Similarly, if the muscles are undernourished and energy production is down, the muscles will tighten, causing pain. Tight muscles can often pinch nerves, causing greater pain and starting a vicious cycle. One of the main goals of ribose supplementation is to improve symptoms by aiding energy production.

As I said, I generally don’t supplement, but after an extra hard workout, with a full day still ahead of me, I might help myself out a bit by having one of these!


  • 1 cup milk (almond milk is fine, if you are vegan)
  • 1/2 tsp D-Ribose powder
  • 1 tbsp almond butter
  • 1 tsp cocoa powder
  • (optional 2 tsp chia seed, for added protein and fiber, but will turn this in to bubble tea)


Put everything (except chia seed) into a blender or shaker and mix well. Add chia seed, if using and enjoy!

Copyright © 2011 Simple Healthy Homemade. All rights reserved