Bran Brownies & Granola Cookies & Nontraditional Oatmeal Cookies Recipes

If you love to bake holiday desserts but would like to up the health quotient and cut the calories in your sweet treats, here’s a way to wow your friends and family with some creative holiday baking.

Bran Brownies

The name sounds bland but the taste is bold and rich.

  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 very ripe bananas
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup oat bran cereal
  • 1 cup chopped nuts

Combine cocoa, coffee, water and the bananas and mix in a best countertop blender or large bowl with a hand mixer. Add the sugar, egg whites, and vanilla and mix well. Sift together the oat bran cereal then add to the mixture. Fold in the nuts. Pour into a 9” baking pan or 2-quart Pyrex dish sprayed with a non-stick cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Cut into squares, cool and serve.

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Granola Cookies

These cookies are crunchy good and good for you.

  • 1 ¾ cups granola
  • ½ cup oat bran
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup margarine, softened
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract or 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup dark seedless raisins (or 1 cup chopped dates, or carob chips)
  • ½ cup unsalted peanuts, coarsely chopped

Preheat over to 375 degrees. With the mixer at low speed, beat ingredients until mixed. Stir in raisins (or dates or carob chips) and nuts until well blended. Place on greased cookie sheet. Bake 13-15 minutes until lightly browned around the edges. Cool on a wire rack. Store in a tightly covered container.

Nontraditional Oatmeal Cookies

This cookie is a little healthier than the average oatmeal cookie, with the same great taste.

  • 2 very ripe bananas
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 container egg substitute
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 ½ cup instant oatmeal
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup evaporated skim milk
  • ½ cup chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray cookie sheet with cooking spray. Mash bananas with a fork or blend in a blender to a liquid. Place in a large bowl and mix the sugar, vanilla and egg substitute with the bananas. Mix together the flour, oatmeal, baking powder and soda. Alternately add the flour mixture and the milk to the banana mix. Add the nuts. Plop 1 teaspoon of batter at a time onto the sheet and bake for ten minutes, until the cookies are barely browned at the edges.

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