These nut butter cookies are a great recipe for the Lifestyle Level of either the Strength Training Program or Cardio Endurance Program.
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- 1 whole egg
- ¼ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup nut butter of any kind (crunchy peanut butter, smooth almond butter, cashew butter, etc.)
- toppings of any kind (chocolate chips, shredded coconut, dried fruit, etc.)
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Whisk together coconut sugar, whole egg, vanilla extract, and salt until smooth.
- Add nut butter, mixing until smooth. PRO TIP: room temperature nut butter will be much easier to mix in.
- Fold in any toppings that you'd like (If using cocoa powder, mix very thoroughly until no clumps remain).
bowlwith a cloth and put in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to firm.
- On a parchment lined baking sheet, use a mini ice cream scoop or a tablespoon to form dough balls and evenly space them out. PRO TIP: be careful not to pack the dough balls too tightly - be gentle with them for a more tender finished product.
- Using a fork, flatten the dough balls into a cookie shape.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes until firm and edges are golden brown.
- Let cool completely before moving from the cooking sheet.
- For fun variations try adding cocoa powder to your peanut butter cookies, coarse sea salt sprinkled on top of your chocolate chip almond butter cookies, or toasted shredded coconut and dried currants to your cashew butter cookies.
* my favorite variation of nut butter cookies is mixing in black onyx cocoa powder into peanut butter cookies and finishing them with a sprinkle of coarse sea salt. They taste like Oreos dipped in peanut butter!
The name of the game is self-control
The worst part about this recipe is that it requires some self-control. Not only is it high in sugar (yes, coconut sugar does still classify as a sugar), but nuts should be eaten in small amounts. The recommended serving size for nuts (and seeds) is 1 – 2 tablespoons per day. They are such a dense source of nutrition on all fronts, which is awesome, but hard on the digestive system if eaten in large quantities.
Is that really just a snack?
A commonality I’ve noticed when working with clients is that they overdo it on the nuts and seeds. People see them as a quick and healthy snack option and it’s a default staple for them. There is nothing with this; but I often ask them, “what do you classify as a snack?” 1 – 2 tablespoons is roughly the size of the inside of your palm – that is a snack. Sitting there eating handful after handful is called a meal and is a signal that it’s time to go find some real food. By the way, this also includes nut butters!
Another question I ask is, “how many times a day are you reaching for nuts as a snack?” If the answer is more than once, there are other issues to address such as eating balanced meals so you stay full longer and don’t need that quick pick-me-up.
As you know, I’m not one to talk about calories or grams because I think there are more intuitive ways to determine the proper food choices but nuts and seeds are tricky, so for the sake of comparison, I’m going there.
Proper serving size PER DAY: 1 oz (approx. 1-2 tablespoons) almonds
Fat: 14 grams
Carbohydrates: 6 grams
Protein: 6 grams
1 cup of raw almonds (approx. 4 handfuls – don’t flinch, we’ve all done it.)
Fat: 71 grams
Carbohydrates: 30 grams
Protein: 30 grams
Showing you this is not to demonize nuts and seeds or deter you from eating them. This is to help you understand what a nutrition powerhouse they are and to start thinking of them as a garnish or small side, rather than the main dish. Because they’re so intense, they often lead to what we in the industry call “nut gut,” meaning that they can cause digestive upset due to their density.
So what does that mean for cookies?
Bottom line, these cookies are addictive. I’m not telling you to enjoy them in moderation because I’m a jerk. I’m saving you a stomachache (I know from experience) and, as always, want to tell you the “why” to my recommendations!