Tag Archives: cookies

Filled with color and flavor Ricotta Cookies

 

Photo: Cranberry Ricotta Cookies

I’m a big fan of ricotta cheese. I use it a lot in my cooking, whether as a lasagna layer, an add-in to quiche, or to add sturdiness to my baking. It has a mild flavor, but it brings fluffiness and texture to your cooking. It can elevate the simple to something more elegant. I don’t have the same fondness for cottage cheese, so I often substitute ricotta.

However, this cookie recipe actually is a ricotta original. The cookie is like a sugar cookie with a light, fluffy center. I added chopped cranberries to it for specks of color and a bit more taste; however, it isn’t needed if you prefer to leave them out.

About the flour combination I used, these work well for me, but you don’t have to use them. You can choose coconut flour (use about 1/2 the amount called for and add egg whites to add moisture and help the lift), almond flour, soy flour, or any other low carb flour you like. The carb count may come out a little higher, but you should be below 2 net carbs per cookie with most low carb options.

I recommend using Swerve Confectioners’ Sugar, but you can use Splenda and process it in a blender to powder it. It will use at least two cups of Splenda to make one cup of powdered sugar. Alternately, you can dip the warm cookie in a plate of granulated sugar substitute of your choice or sprinkle the sugar over the tops.

Cranberry Ricotta Cookies

1/2 cup Butter, softened a bit
1 cup White Sugar Substitute
1 Egg
8 ounces Ricotta Cheese
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1-1/2 cups all-purpose Low Carb Flour
1/4 cup Almond Flour
1/4 cup Vanilla Whey Powder
1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 tablespoon Sprite Zero or Diet 7-Up
1 cup Cranberries, chopped

Icing:
1/3 cup Milk
1/2 teaspoon Butter
1 cup Swerve Confectioners’ Sugar
1/2 tablespoon Lemon Extract

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Either grease two cookie sheets or cover them with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, cream one-half cup of butter, vanilla, and sugar together. I like to start with cut and slightly softened butter, so the beater doesn’t throw it all over the counter. Beat in the egg and the ricotta cheese.

In a separate bowl, add the flour, almond flour, whey powder, baking powder, and baking soda and whisk together. Add a little at a time to the ricotta mixture, beating on low. Add 1 tablespoon of the Lemon soda of choice.

If the dough is too thick to pull together, add a tablespoon of water and mix until it is easy to work with. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto the prepared cookie sheet. Leave at least an inch between each cookie.

Bake 8 to 10 minutes until just turning brown around the edges. Let cookies cool on the baking sheets.

Make the icing by adding half-and-half and 1/2 teaspoon butter to a microwavable bowl and cook for 20 seconds to heat the liquid and melt the butter. Add lemon juice and mix. Stir in the confectioners’ sugar until smooth. It should be about the consistency of gravy.

Use a spatula or spoon to spread a layer of icing over each cookie.

Makes thirty cookies.

Image: Nutrition Information

A Bar Cookie for the Holidays

Photo: Cranberry Nut Chewy Bars

Winter is arriving soon in the northern hemisphere, but many of us have already experienced the cold, snow, and icy winds that come with the season. Of course, it also means the holiday celebrations are already in full swing.

This yummy bar cookie recipe is just the thing to have with a hot cup of cocoa. I adapted a chewy chocolate chip bar one to use the red berries in it. Since it is meant to be a chewy bar, be careful to not overcook it. Depending on your oven, you may want to check it at 18 minutes rather than 20 and work your way up to perfection. I’ve overcooked the edge some, so I can say it still tastes delicious, but it doesn’t have the chewiness the center does. By the way, if you feel inclined to add sugar-free chocolate chips to the recipe, they would make it extra yummy.

More holiday recipes will be coming in the next week. I’ve got my mind set on making ricotta cookies this weekend and maybe a cheese ball.

Photo: Sweets By the Season book cover
Great low carb recipes for delicious desserts and other times.

By the way, if you’re looking for a great collection of holiday sweets to make, check out my book, Sweets By the Season which has over 55 delicious dessert recipes for any occasion. Most of these low-carb-adapted recipes are not on this web site. Click on the image to go to a universal link of available sellers.

Cranberry Ricotta Nut Bars

1/2 cup Butter, melted
1 cup Sugar Substitute
1 Egg
2 teaspoons Almond Extract
1 cup low carb All-purpose Flour
1/4 cup Almond Flour
1/4 cup Vanilla Whey Protein Powder
1/4 cup Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 cup Cranberries
1/3 cup Pecans, broken into pieces

Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a 9×9-inch baking pan with nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, stir together melted butter, sugar substitute, almond extract, and egg until well combined.

Add flour, almond flour, whey powder, baking powder, and baking soda into a bowl and whisk to combine. Stir flour mix into wet ingredients and mix until fully combined.

Stir in cranberries and nuts and pour into prepared pan. Bake 20-25 minutes until lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Makes 12 bars.

Image: Nutrition Info for Cranberry Bars

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Done 2 Ways, and a Product Review

 

A 48 ounce tub of Breyers CarbSmart Vanilla front of packLast week, I wrote about my quest to find some low carb ice creams other than CarbSmart, which our local grocery stores carry only in vanilla, even through three other flavors are available (chocolate, peanut butter, and smooth mint). When I asked one of our local stores to please carry other flavors, not just of CarbSmart but of other brands, I was told I could order a case, but they don’t have room on their shelves for many choices.

But I digress. I found other lower carb options at three of our local stores and sampled a couple of more.

Halo Top frozen dessert is probably the lowest carb ice cream ProductImage_WEB-MintChip-190620asubstitute on the market with most of their flavors coming in around 1 net carb. I tried their mint chocolate chip, which was very good although being sugar-free means it is harder than ice cream and needs to thaw for about 5 to 10 minutes before you can scoop it out. I’ve opened two of their cartons and both had a frozen lump of the product with lots of space around it within the container. They are supposed to hold two cups but I don’t think they do. Two of my ice cream scoops equal 1/2 cup and the mint had three servings in it. Halo Top comes in 26 different flavors sold in pint cartons. Of course, my  trio of grocery stores had about six different flavors between them. I would give this a rating of 4 stars. It tastes good, no after taste, but it isn’t as creamy as CarbSmart, and it seems a little shy on the stated quantity.

The other one I tried is Enlightened Frozen Desserts. This is a really good diary-free ice cream substitute, but it also contains more sugar than the others, so it comes in around 8 to 10 net carbs per serving. If you have enough carbs to spare, then this is a terrific option. I tried their Salted Caramel bars and their Chocolate Mint Swirl bars, and they are delicious. You don’t miss the cream in these at all, and there is no aftertaste. They make an amazing 32 different flavors and are available at a reasonable price in pint cartoons. Again, our local stores stock a few of their flavors. I give this one a 5-star rating, right up there with CarbSmart, except for the higher carb count.

So, if you are on a quest for ice cream substitutes, you might try one of these options. If you can get CarbSmart, it is made with cream, and delicious with only 4 net carbs per half cup.

How About a Recipe?

Now, since I haven’t posted a recipe in the past two weeks, here’s one that comes from a keto site for Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Fat Bombs. This is an almond flour dough that is eaten uncooked, so it is like eating cookie dough, sort of. The almond flour leaves it a little grainy, and it doesn’t taste totally like cookie dough to me. On the plus side, the flavor is pretty good, and one fat bomb makes a satisfying quick treat that boosts your carb burner with the fat content.

 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Fat Bombs

Photo: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Fat Bombs

The recipe is simple and is pretty much exactly as it is on the keto site I borrowed it from, except I rephrased it a bit. For one thing, the ingredients don’t have to be termed keto-friendly. Most of the sugar-free are. I used Hershey’s Sugar Free Chocolate Chips. I also used Splenda granulated which is almost fine enough to be confectioner’s sugar, but if you want to take it to a powder, you can do it in your blender.

1 stick Butter, softened
1/3 cup Confectioners Sugar Substitute
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Salt
2 cups Almond Flour
2/3 cup Sugar-Free Chocolate chips

In a large bowl, add softened butter and beat until it is light and fluffy. Add in the sugar, salt, and vanilla and beat until mixed into the butter.

Add the almond flour, a little at a time, and mix until it is completely moistened. You may have to finish it off by hand. My mixer balked before the flour was completely mixed in. Stir in the chocolate chips. Place plastic wrap over the bowl and refrigerate for about twenty minutes.

Line a baking pan with parchment paper or waxed paper. Use a 1/2 tablespoon measure or a cookie scoop to form the dough into half-balls, flat on the bottom, and place on the paper. Put them in the refrigerator for another twenty minutes to firm the balls up, then put in a plastic bag and store in the ‘fridge until you are ready to snack on one. They will keep for about a week or you can freeze them for up to a month.

Makes about 36 balls.

Nutrition Info: ChocChip Fat Bombs

Make Those Bombs Cookies

Image: Chocolate Chip Cookies

Now, as I mentioned, I wasn’t too enthused with these as a raw dough ball, so I decided to turn them into cookies. It’s an easy change, and I even added the egg after the rest was mixed. Ideally, if you’ve decided to make cookies, you’ll mix the egg in with the sugar and vanilla. These cookies are about the best chocolate chip cookies I’ve made. They are firm, yet soft in the middle and have a wonderful flavor. I had expected them to spread on the pan, so I only patted them down a little, but they held up through the cooking. If you want yours a little flatter, then press them down to the size you want.

1 stick Butter, softened
1/3 cup Confectioners sugar substitute
1/2 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 Egg
Pinch of Salt
2 cup Almond Flour
2/3 cup Sugar-Free Chocolate chips
1/4 cup Chopped Pecans or Walnuts (optional)

Prepare two baking sheets by lining with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, add softened butter and beat until it is light and fluffy. Add in the sugar, salt, egg, and vanilla and beat until mixed into the butter.

Add the almond flour, a little at a time, and mix until it is completely moistened.  Stir in the chocolate chips. Place plastic wrap over the bowl and refrigerate for about twenty minutes.

Use a one-tablespoon measure or cookie scoop to form the dough into half-balls, flatten on the bottom, and place on the paper, allowing 2 inches between cookies. Press down slightly to spread the dough. Place in the refrigerator for another twenty minutes to firm up.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F.) Bake the cookies for 12 to 15 minutes until lightly browned on top. Remove and let cool for 15 minutes or more. Almond flour is delicate and will break if you try to move the cookies while they are still hot.

Once they cool, enjoy or you can store in a plastic bag for a few days. Makes 18 delectable cookies.

Nutrition Info: ChocChip Cookies

If you try these products or these recipes, please leave me a message. I’d like to know how you like them or if you disagree with my opinion. Everybody’s taste buds are different.

Rugalach for the Holidays

Photo: Close up of rugalach

Just a little late for the Jewish holiday, I made a batch of low carb Rugalach cookies. These are simple to make, although a little time-consuming, and make a delightful cookie for the holidays. After my first batch, I plan to make a few minor changes to the next batch I make, but I wanted to get this recipe up before I do that. I cut down a little on the chocolate used, and this recipe reflects that.

Rugalach Cookies

FOR THE DOUGH:
4 ounces cream cheese, cut into 4 pieces
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into 4 pieces
1 cup low carb all-purpose flour *

FOR THE FILLING:
1/2 cup raspberry jam, apricot jam or marmalade
3 tablespoons sugar substitute
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup chopped nuts (I prefer pecans, but you can use walnuts or almonds)
1/3 cup chopped cranberries
2 ounces sugar-free chocolate, finely chopped

FOR THE GLAZE:
2 tablespoons egg whites
1 teaspoon cold water
2 tablespoons sugar, preferably coarse sugar

For this recipe, I used Dixie Carb Counters All Purpose Low Carb Flour rather than their biscuit mix. Tova Foods also has an All Purpose Low Carb Flour as does LC Foods. I have not tried this with Almond Flour, but I believe it would work fine since it is mixed with cream cheese.  You will need to make sure the dough is chilled well or it will break easily.

Make the dough first. In a food processor, place the softened cream cheese pieces and the softened butter pieces. If you use unsalted butter, add 1/4 teaspoon salt. Pulse until the cream cheese and butter are blended together. Add the flour and pulse several times to mix it in. Scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula as needed to get all the flour mixed in. Pulse until the dough forms large curds.

You can mix it with a hand mixer also, but don’t let the dough form into a ball on the blades.

Turn the dough out into a bowl and gather it into a large ball. Divide it in half, shape each into a disk, wrap in plastic, then put into the refrigerator to chill for at least two hours.

Before you begin rolling the dough out, make the filling. Heat the jam over low heat or in the microwave until it liquefies. Mix 2 tablespoons sugar substitute and cinnamon together in a small bowl and set aside. Chop the cranberries in a small food processor. In a microwavable bowl, add 1 tablespoon of water and 1 tablespoon of sugar to the cranberries. Microwave for 40 seconds. Stir well.

Ready two baking sheets.

Pull one disc of dough from the refrigerator, place a sheet of parchment over the breadboard, and sprinkle low carb flour on it. Roll out the dough into a circle about eight or nine inches in diameter. If it is too firm to roll easily, let it sit for about 10 minutes. Spoon or brush about 1/2 of the melted jam in a thin layer over the dough and sprinkle 1/2 of the cinnamon sugar over the top. Scatter 1/2 of the nuts, 1/2 of the cranberries, and 1/2 of the chopped chocolate over the jam. Cover the filling with a piece of waxed paper and gently press on it to push the filling into the dough. Remove the waxed paper, Slide the disk onto a baking pan and put the pan in the refrigerator to chill while you roll the second disc and repeat the steps.

Pull out the first pan when you put the second pan in, then cut the original dough into quarters, like you would a pizza. Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter for this. Try to get it separated evenly. Now, cut each wedge into three triangular slices. Starting at the outside edge, roll the dough toward the middle to form a crescent cookie and tuck the end tip under the dough on the baking sheet, curving the cookie a little. Repeat with each triangular shape, cutting each of the quarter wedges into three triangles.

Pie cut for 12 slices.

Repeat with the second round of cookies. Put the shaped cookies in the refrigerator or other cold place on their baking sheets  to firm up for at least 30 minutes before baking.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F.) Position the racks in the oven to divide it into thirds.

Before baking the cookies, mix the egg white and water together and brush over the tops of the cookies and sprinkle the granulated sugar substitute over each.

Photo: One dozen rugalach cookies

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom racks and turning them from the front to the back of the oven about mid-way through the baking. Remove when they are golden brown. Transfer to a cooling rack until they are just warm or at room temperature.

Makes 24 cookies.

Nutrition information per cookie:
Calories:102.2 Fat: 8.9 g Net Carbs: 1.0 g Protein: 3.3 g

Lemon Cookies Made Easy

Like the taste of a lemon cookie? Want an easy way to make them in a low carb version? Read on…

Adapted a little from the version on the Atkins Diet site, these cookies are simple to make and taste really good. I made a couple of little changes to my version, starting with the flour. The original called for almond flour and coconut flour. I opted to use Dixie Carb Counters All Purpose Flour for the main flour and used the almond flour in place of the coconut flour, but you can use whichever low carb flour you prefer. I did try it with coconut flour, but it tends to give the cookie a slightly gritty texture and adds a bit of bitterness to the taste. I also omitted the vanilla as I prefer to taste the lemon more.

So here’s my revised recipe for…

Yummy Lemonade Cookies

2 large Eggs
1 tablespoon unsalted Butter, melted
1/4 cup granular Sugar Substitute (xylitol)
1 tablespoons Lemon Juice
1 tablespoon Sugar-free Lemonade Mix
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract (optional)
1 TeaspoonLlemon Zest (Optional)
1 cup Low Carb Flour
1/4 cup Almond Flour (or other low carb flour of choice)
1/4 teaspoon Baking Powder

Preheat oven to 325 degrees (F.) Line a cookie pan with parchment paper or a Silpat mat.

Melt the butter. In a small bowl, add the eggs and whisk until blended. Add the butter, sugar substitute, lemon juice, Lemonade mix, zest, and vanilla (if you are using). Whisk all together. In a separate mixing bowl, add the low carb flours, baking powder, and salt and mix together. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir together. You may need to add water if it is not getting all the flour moist. You want it wet enough to pull all the flour together, but the dough should be fairly stiff. Mix with your hands if you’re having trouble getting the flour mixed in.

Take a tablespoon of the dough and roll into a ball and place on the cookie sheet. Repeat with the rest of the dough. It will make 15 or 16 cookies. Flatten the top of the cookies a little. This cookie will not spread out in the pan.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the cookie is slightly browned around the edges. I prefer to under cook a little to keep it moist. Remove and let cool for about 5 minutes. Sprinkle the cookies with powdered sugar substitute or put the powdered sugar in a bowl and roll each one in it. Enjoy.

Nutrition Information per cookie (15 per recipe):
Calories: 54.3 Fat: 4.2 g Net Carbs: 1.4 g Protein: 2.9 g

Note: This count is using DCC All Purpose Flour and Almond Flour. Most low carb flours will be in this range.