So it’s about 11pm, I’m bashing my head on my desk from manic essay writing and I just need to procrastinate and get away from my desk for a little bit. I flick through some baking blogs, looking frantically for a baking fix, a recipe that I won’t have to run to the shops for. All I could think about to minimise my search was the extremely ripe avocado sitting in my fridge, and a total craving for chocolate. My answer? Chocolate avocado cookies! Crisis averted, and they were kinda healthy, so I could munch on them relatively guilt free while I completed my essay too. Perfect.
I have to admit, I was skeptical of using an avocado in these cookies. Wouldn’t they make them taste funny? How would the batter even work? Avocado is great on a bit of toast sure, but baking with it was a whole new level to me. The avocado was ripe past eating point, kinda the equivalent to a black banana, so I didn’t see any harm in giving these a whirl and saving that poor lone fruit. Plus, it meant a bit of creativity could occur, so of course I added some cinnamon to these too (how could I not) while topping them off with a swipe of nutella just completed them for me. The actual cookies are dairy and egg free, so if you omit the nutella, these are vegan, which is even better!
Avocado, believe it or not, makes these cookies super fluffy. Even the actual batter was quite fluffy and light, almost mousse-like. You could probably have omitted the baking soda and vinegar and serve it up as a healthy vegan chocolate mousse actually…
It might be better to use a food processor to mash the avocado, but as I don’t have one, I wouldn’t know. I went old school and mashed it up with a fork, because there’s nothing wrong with that. It gives a good texture nevertheless, avocado is creamy enough to not matter if its not completely mashed. Just try to be as thorough as you can, as you will get a speckled effect anyway, so its better to try minimise that.
You can find the original recipe from Healthy Vittles and Bits here. I wasn’t going to mess around with this recipe too much as it was unfamiliar territory, so I haven’t changed too much. This is how I made them:
1 medium ripe avocado, mashed
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup plain flour (wholemeal would make this even healthier, if you have it)
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda (or baking soda)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp white wine vinegar/apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp golden syrup/honey (honey for non vegans is a good substitute if you don’t have golden syrup)
1 tbsp applesauce
Optional: Zest of 1 orange (I used this as I was just experimenting with flavours)
Optional – 1 cup dark chocolate chips
About 1tsp Nutella for every cookie (omit and replace with a vegan friendly chocolate frosting for a vegan version)
Firstly, preheat your oven to 180C or Gas Mark 4 and line a cookie sheet with baking parchment.
Mix together your mashed avocado, the sugar/sugar substitute and cocoa powder until well combined.
Then mix in the cinnamon, vanilla and bicarbonate of soda, before lastly adding in the vinegar and flour. Mix until combined and you should have a fluffy, chocolatey mixture that you can spoon or scoop (I use an ice cream scoop for equal sized cookies) onto your baking parchment. These cookies don’t spread, but make sure they are evenly spaced and not too close together so that they cook properly. Also make sure that you flatten them a little, otherwise the centres won’t get a chance to cook.
Cook for 10-15 minutes, depending on the size of your cookies. They might seem very soft once they come out of the oven, but they firm up once they have cooled for a few minutes. You will be left with a fluffy, cakey cookie. Yum!
Needless to say, these cookies didn’t last much longer than a day. I got the essay done though, and got a first in it too. Success!
Love Sian xxx