Vegan means no animal products. No eggs, no butter, and no milk is often associated with no taste, especially in baked goods. This misconception is so wrong, and this vegan cookie recipe clearly proves it.
What's special about vegan baking? Vegan sweets are usually more wholesome than non-vegan ones. Another benefit is that the baker can safely taste "raw" batter, since vegan batter will never contain raw eggs. What a concept!
This cookie recipe was adapted from a Agave and Honey Oatmeal M&M Cookie Recipe from RecipeGirl.com (http://www.recipegirl.com/2009/01/20/agave-and-honey-oatmeal-mm-cookies/). The recipe is super versatile and can be changed to yield completely different cookies. Additional spices can be added to the recipe (i.e. nutmeg, cloves, ginger, cardamom, all spice, etc.), other liquid sweeteners can be fully or partially substituted for the agave (i.e. molasses, honey, brown rice syrup, etc.), the oats can be ground in a food processor for a "lighter" cookie, and mixtures of whole-grain flours can be used for more whole grain variety (i.e. buckwheat flour, millet flour, or brown rice flour can be mixed with the whole wheat flour).
Just as a side note, I used chocolate chips in my cookies (they're not 100% vegan). Carob chips are usually used as a vegan chocolate substitute, but I have never tried them. Raisins, dried cranberries, dried cherries, chopped dates, crystallized ginger, and other tasty add-ins could alternatively be used. Another exciting point about this recipe is that it only yields about 8 cookies. This is great for people who live alone and have nobody with which they can share their cookies. The 8 cookie yield can be beneficial towards people who are dieting and do not want too many sweets hanging around the house. For those people who want more cookies to snack on, this recipe can very easily be doubled or tripled.
Have fun and do not be afraid to alter the recipe to your liking!
SUPER DUPER VEGAN COOKIES WITH AGAVE, OATS, AND FLAX
-2 Tablespoons warm water + 1 Tablespoon ground flax
-4 Tablespoons (1/4 cup) agave nectar
-2 Tablespoons canola oil
-1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
-1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
-3/4 cup oats
-1/8 teaspoon baking soda
-1/8 teaspoon baking powder
-1/4 teaspoon salt
-1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
-about 1/4 cup chocolate chips,carob chips, raisins, or whatever is available
Preheat oven to 375 F, and line a metal cookie sheet with non-stick parchment paper.
Agressively whisk together flax and water in a small bowl for about 1 minute (this process brings out the healthy fats in the flax seed). Set aside to thicken.
In a separate bowl, mix together all dry ingredients. Whisk agave, oil, and vanilla into flax mixture. Slowly stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients, and stir until combined. Drop Tablespoon-sized dollops of batter onto the parchment paper-lined cookie sheet. Slightly flatten dollops.
Bake for about 10-15 minutes, or until golden brown and beautiful! Cool cookies on a wire rack and enjoy.