Hello my darlings! This is Chef Tess here again with some amazing baking adventures! First, however, I have to share this picture of my son’s favorite lunch box.  Yes. If you’re not a child of the 1980s you probably don’t remember Colt Seavers (Lee Majors) and The Fall Guy…but my 10 year old son adores this show.  I used to drool over Lee as a pre-teen. That’s embarrassing to admit.   I think my son also gets that adoration from being the son of my dear crazy driving-Ace husband. Ace worshiped this dude when he was a kid and would jump off the roof  onto the hoods of cars and pretend to be The Fall Guy himself.  I never said Ace was smart as a kid…but…he had exceptional taste in lunchboxes.  

What does this have to do with baking? Well for one thing, I am a little more conscientious than most of the fact that I have to stack the deck a little more in my kids’ favor because of the genetic pre-disposition they may have been given by myself and my husband.  I won’t talk about how many lady-bugs I ate or the unintelligent things I did as a kid, but let’s just say I want them to use their brains more than I tended to do as a kiddo. If I can help that process, I’m ready to try anything! Its a tough world out there.  I also don’t want them to get picked-on by the other dudes at school who seem to always find the one with the weird lunch.  You know who you are ovo-lacto-soybean-loaf-eater. Oh how you long for regular white bread like the rest of the kids.  Well…there has to be a happy medium.  We can give them something healthy without it looking too green. We can become the new normal, right?

It’s easy to pack a lot of added chemicals and junk into a lunchbox.  There are plenty of unhealthy choices that can lead to fuzzy-judgement, peaks in blood-sugar levels, hyperactivity, and general goof-off-ism…Any cookie can do that.  When I’m packing cookies in their lunchboxes for school I want to pack it with snacks that will actually increase brain function! I can do that right? Snacks that have the benefit of protein, fiber, low-impact carbohydrates that will help them feel full longer and stay focused in class are few and far between. Not today.   Today…we win!   By the way, these cookies also come with me to work. Why? Because my fuzzy-brained goof-off-ism is just getting way out of hand. 

How to win.  Number one, we’re using the remarkable and beneficial Organic Coconut Sugar in our cookies instead of refined white sugar.  My other favorite is to use Honeyville’s natural granular erythritol in conjunction with the coconut sugar or as a sugar replacement all together. Erythritol has very little gastric issues associated with it. That makes me very happy. This gives the benefit of lower impact carbohydrates in the cookies without missing the sweetness.  

How to win. Number two, we’re going gluten-free and low carbohydrate with the benefits of cookies rich in vitamin E, protein, and packed with great flavor! This is through the magic and wonder of my favorite Almond Flour!  Three of these cookies will provide my boys with 44% of their needed vitamin E for the day. Vitamin E Keeps Your Brain and Body Razor Sharp! It can keep your mind almost a decade younger and has reportedly helped prevent dementia.  Just saying…it isn’t just for the kids!   Keep in mind, that even though almond flour is lower in impact carbohydrates, it is still pretty high in calories and fat. Even thought they are “good fats”, they still add calories. I use these cookies as an occasional treat. Don’t let them be the only source of goodness in the lunchbox. 

Behold…the Smart Cookies.  These are shelf-stable mixes you can prepare ahead of time and have ready in quart sized freezer bags.  I keep mine in the freezer because the almond flour is better stored that way. They’re “just add water” and easy to do.  You will love them. You’re kids will love them.  They’ll come home saying smart things like, “I didn’t jump off the roof today.”

Chef Tess Almond-Raspberry Cookie Mix

3 cups Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour
1/4 cup crushed Honeyville Freeze Dried Raspberries
3/4 cup Honeyville Organic Coconut Sugar or Granular Erythritol
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
2 Tbsp Honeyville Powdered Egg Whites
1/4 tsp Salt
2 tsp Vanilla Powder Flavor (Honeyville Local Stores)

Preheat Oven to 350 degrees.
Combine all ingredients well with 1/2 cup water.
1 Tbsp dough (14 grams each) lightly flatten 1/2 inch thick, 1 inch apart on baking sheet, lined with parchment paper.
Bake 10 minutes until golden brown.
Yields 30 cookies

Nutritional information (made with erythritol) :  Each cookie: 66 calories, 5 g fat, 0 g cholesterol, 1.25 g fiber, 2.76 g protein, 2.6 carbohydrates (1.5 carb Net carbs). 
Chef Tess Almond Brownie-Bite Cookie Mix

1 cup Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour
1 cup Honeyville Organic Coconut Sugar or Granular Erythritol
1/2 cup Honeyville Baker’s Cocoa Powder
1/4 cup Honeyville Powdered Whole Eggs

Combine all dry ingredients.
Add 1/2 cup cold water and mix until a thick dough is made.
Scoop by rounded Tbsp onto parchment paper and bake 350 degrees 10-12 minutes.
Remove from oven.
Allow bites to cool on baking sheet 10-15 minutes.
Keep in an airtight container.
Yields 30 cookies.

Nutritional information (made with erythritol): one cookie.  57 calories, 4.6 g fat, 2.6 carbohydrates, 1.6 g fiber, 2.5 g protein. 15 mg cholesterol.  1 net carbohydrate per cookie. 
There you go! Make some healthy and delicious cookies for their lunches. You are the “Unknown Stuntman” to help your children grow up to be amazing stars! Onward and upward!

Always My Very Best,
Your Friend Chef Tess