This recipe for Apple, Walnut, Dark Chocolate Oat Cookies came to life during my first year of grad school. Although I could barely find time to sleep, I somehow still managed to procrastinate on homework by cooking and baking. Bustling around the kitchen, creating something with my hands, with a finished product to show for my work, there was a sense of relaxation and purposefulness in cooking. It was definitely a reprieve from staring at my computer, reading articles, and working on projects.
What made the baking process so much fun, aside from the fact that it allowed me to avoid homework, was that one of my roommates, Adrienne, loved to bake as well. We were always experimenting with different cookies, adding coffee, or chocolate candies. As we baked, we’d make each other taste the dough, inquiring how it tasted. Adrienne always used to ask, “Did I add enough chocolate?” To which I responded, “There’s no such thing as enough chocolate. Add more!” Keep that in mind as you bake. Always add more chocolate.
This Apple Walnut Dark Chocolate Oat Cookie recipe is a healthier version of my Apple Oat Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies. Although this batch of oat bites is healthier, I don’t make it unless I have an occasion. Otherwise, I will eat the cookies, by myself. Cookie Monster! Whenever I bake oatmeal cookies, there are a few general rules that I follow. 1) Use old fashioned oats instead of instant. The bigger oat flakes give each bite more texture and potential crunchiness. 2) Don’t add a lot of sugar. The apples in these cookies add just enough sweetness. 3) Add dark chocolate, because dark chocolate is amazing. Lastly, enjoy every crumb!
1 cup whole grain oat flour or all-purpose flour
2 large apples, peeled and chopped (1 pound)
4 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons cinnamon (for the apples)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 cups old fashioned oats
1 tablespoon cinnamon (for the dough)
1 cup dark chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Peel and dice the apples. Add the apples to a frying pan with butter, and cook on medium-high heat. Let the apples cook until they become tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Add the brown sugar and cinnamon. Cook the apples for a few more minutes and then remove from heat.
In a small bowl, mix the flour, cinnamon, salt, and baking soda.
In another bowl, beat the eggs and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients. Mix. Add the cooked apples, chocolate chips, oats, and walnuts. Mix until all of the ingredients are well incorporated.
Scoop the dough into 2-inch balls, pressing each ball flat (these cookies don’t rise much, so whatever shape you press them into is the shape they’ll hold). If the dough is a bit too crumbly, you can add a tablespoon of your favorite nut butter.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly browned.