Vegan Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

By Alexandra Caspero on September 18, 2020
Life Changing Cookies! These healthy chocolate chip cookies are a MUST save.
Makes 24 Cookies

Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies. These nutty, chocolatey cookies are nutrient-dense and packed with a variety of nuts and oats. 

Refined-sugar-free, gluten-free, AND vegan. I highly recommend saving this recipe!

Is it hyperbole to call these dark chocolate chip cookies life-changing? I don’t think so.

After spending the past week with my adorable, light-of-my-life, 2-year-old niece Caroline, I was on a mission to create a healthy dessert that we both could feel good about eating.

While I’m not a purist when it comes to my sweets, I do like to take a nutrient-dense approach most of the time. I want to feel good about what I’m putting in my body, desserts included!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Of course, this same notion applies to feeding the little one as well.

So, I made these. Life-changing dark chocolate chip cookies. Gluten-free, flour-free, vegan, and naturally sweetened. Delicious for me and healthy for her!

Let’s make them.

Ingredients for Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

Here is what you’ll need for these life-changing, dairy-free and grain-free cookies. 

  • Chopped walnuts and chopped pecans. Along with the oats, this is the base for the grain-free cookies instead of using flour. 
  • Baking powder
  • Old-fashioned rolled oats
  • Salt
  • Cornstarch. You can also use arrowroot starch, this is essential for binding the cookies together and don’t recommend skipping it. 
  • Ground flax seeds + water to make a flax egg.
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil. I prefer the fruity taste of olive oil here, but any oil will work. 
  • Vanilla extract
  • Maple syrup
  • Dark chocolate chips. If you have a hard time finding dark chocolate chips, then I recommend chopping up a candy bar into dark chocolate chunks. You could use dried fruit instead for a more wholesome treat, but I will always favor chocolate.

How to make a flax egg for cookie dough

When I bake with my niece, I refuse to use any type of egg product since I know those little fingers will find themselves in the raw batter at every opportunity. Using a flax egg will help bind all the ingredients together without carrying any food illness risk. 

If you haven’t used a flax egg in baking before, it’s simple. Whisk together 1 tablespoon ground flax meal with 3 tablespoons water and let sit until gelled. Since flaxseed meal is mostly soluble fiber, it will absorb the water creating a viscous jelly that can be used in any recipe that calls for eggs.

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Tips For Making Homemade Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

I’m very excited to share this dark chocolate cookie recipe with you all. However, because they are a bit different than regular chocolate chip cookies I highly recommend learning my tips and tricks for perfect grain-free cookies. 

Here are a few of my tips and hacks for when it comes to making these vegan oatmeal cookies so they turn out delicious every time.

  • Use a variety of nuts instead of flour. I’m using a base of almonds, pecans, and oats to create a flour-like consistency. I don’t have anything against flour and my pasta focused diet is the furthest thing from gluten-free, but I wanted to pack as much nutrition into each bite as possible. Out with the refined grains, in with the fiber-filled oats and protein-packed nuts.
  • You don’t need dairy! Nuts lend a buttery richness without using a drop of dairy.
  • You will need to use a food processor to get the consistency right. If the chunks of nuts or oats are too large, they won’t hold together and you will end up with granola cookie crumbles. Delicious in their own right, but not the effect we are going for here. Although, I will admit that I ended up crumbling the last of the cookies into a cup of yogurt for the best 3 PM pick-me-up snack I think I’ve ever had.
  • For liquids, I’m combining olive oil and 100% pure maple syrup. Don’t be tempted to use breakfast syrup as it won’t work. Those syrups contain too much water to work in baking and you will be left with a burnt, sticky mess!

vegan chocolate chip cookies

Step by Step Instructions for Making Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

Start by preheating the oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly grease a baking sheet and set aside.

Pulse walnuts and pecans in a food processor and pulse until finely ground (you may need to alternate in batches depending on how large your food processor is). You don’t want it to be butter, but it should resemble fine crumbs. From there, transfer nuts to a large bowl and place oats in a food processor and pulse until a fine flour forms.

Place the oats into the bowl with the nuts along with the baking powder, salt and cornstarch. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the ground flax seeds and water and let sit until gelled, about 5 minutes. Add the oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract to the flax seed bowl and whisk together.

Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Gently fold in the milk chocolate chips.

Using a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop (or measuring cup), scoop out dough and gently press together and flatten with your hands. They might crumble a bit but should form into a cookie once pressed together.

Scoop and Bake

If you mixture is too wet to form into balls, then I recommend chilling it in the fridge for 20 minutes to harden slightly. 

Using a 2 tablespoon scoop, scoop the batter and form into balls using your hands so they don’t fall apart while baking. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet or a baking sheet linked with parchment paper and cook for 15 minutes until golden brown, though I recommend checking after 10 minutes. 

Let cool for at least 10 minutes on the cookie sheet, then remove and place on cooling racks or the like until completely cooled. 

vegan chocolate chip oatmeal cookies

What To Serve With Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

These are the best tasting, most scrumptious, and healthiest chocolate chip cookie recipe you’ll ever have! They’re refined-sugar-free, flour-free, and made with nuts. Get your oven started because these babies need to be baked ASAP!

Once they have cooled down, they can be stored in an airtight container. It’s best to store them at room temperature when possible as the sugar will harden and make it difficult for you to enjoy a warm chocolate chip cookie with your afternoon cup of tea or coffee.

Caroline dunked her cookie into a glass full of cold almond milk and she was in heaven. The next time we made these, we made a cookie sandwich with dairy-free vanilla ice cream. So yummy!

I hope you enjoy these dark chocolate chip cookies as much as we do. If you try it, make sure to come back, leave a comment and rate it. Your feedback helps others and seeing you make my recipes makes my day!

More Vegan Cookie Recipes:

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healthy vegan chocolate chip cookies

Healthy Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 24 cookies 1x
  • Category: cookies, dessert
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: vegan, gluten free, flour free, refined sugar free
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Life Changing Cookies! These cookies are a MUST save. Gluten-free, vegan, refined sugar free, flour free and DELICIOUS. Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies.


  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 24 cookies 1x
  • Category: cookies, dessert
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: vegan, gluten free, flour free, refined sugar free
  • Diet: Vegan
  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 24 cookies 1x
  • Category: cookies, dessert
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: vegan, gluten free, flour free, refined sugar free
  • Diet: Vegan
Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 2 cups pecans, chopped
  • 1.5 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 3/4 cup vegan dark chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly grease a baking sheet and set aside.
  2. Pulse walnuts and pecans in a food processor and pulse until finely ground (you may need to alternate in batches depending on how large your food processor is). You don’t want it to be butter, but it should resemble fine crumbs.
  3. Transfer nuts to a large bowl and place oats in a food processor and pulse until a fine flour forms.
  4. Place the oats into the bowl with the nuts along with the baking powder, salt and cornstarch.
  5. In a separate bowl, whisk together the ground flax seeds and water and let sit until gelled, about 5 minutes.
  6. Add the oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract to the flax seed bowl and whisk together.
  7. Stir the wet flax-oil mixture into the nut and oat mixture and stir to combine. Gently fold in chocolate.
  8. Using a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop (or measuring cup), scoop out dough and gently press together and flatten with your hands. They might crumble a bit but should form into a cookie once pressed together.
  9. Place on lightly greased baking sheet and cook for 15 minutes until golden brown, check after 10 minutes.
  10. Let cool completely before serving.

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 Life Changing Cookies! These cookies are a MUST save. Gluten-free, vegan, refined sugar free, flour free and DELICIOUS. Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies. | www.delishknowledge.com

Meet Alex Caspero

Alex Caspero is a Registered Dietitian, New York Times Bestselling Plant-Based Chef and mom of two. She aims to cut through the nutrition noise by providing real-life, nourishing tips for body and mind. Learn more about Alex.

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    1. Michelle McKinley
      February 4, 2022 AT 3:25 pm

      Wow! I tried these last night and they are incredible!! Thank you so much for sharing your recipe with us.

    2. Rebecca
      August 18, 2021 AT 3:35 am

      What age range is this suitable for? 🙂

      1. Alex
        August 18, 2021 AT 8:28 am

        Hi Rebecca– since they do contain maple syrup, I’d recommend from 2+

    3. Lori
      May 30, 2017 AT 9:09 am

      I hate to use the “c” word – but any idea of the number of calories per cookie?

      1. Alex
        May 30, 2017 AT 12:52 pm

        Hi Lori- The “c” word 🙂 I’m not sure of the calorie count on these as I don’t count them. However, you can use Spark People or My Fitness Pal to easily calculate it!

    4. Jenna
      October 2, 2015 AT 6:43 pm

      How many does this make?

    5. Katie @ 24 Carrot Life
      September 25, 2015 AT 2:55 pm

      You really can’t go wrong with chocolate chip cookies! These look healthy enough to eat for breakfast, right?!

      1. DK
        September 28, 2015 AT 1:16 pm

        Right. That’s actually my ulterior motive in all of this. Cookies I can eat for breakfast 🙂

    6. Athletic Avocado
      September 23, 2015 AT 1:04 pm

      these indeed do look life changing, especially with the walnut and pecans ground into flour! amazing 🙂

    7. Lisa @ Healthy Nibbles & Bits
      September 23, 2015 AT 7:56 am

      LOVE the textures going on in those cookies! Where can I get a cute cooking assistant like that? I would have my little nephew help, but he would probably just throw the batter all over the ground or stick it into his mouth!

    8. Caitlin
      September 20, 2015 AT 8:59 am

      my goodness, these look amazing! these are being made asap!

      1. DK
        September 20, 2015 AT 4:37 pm

        Awesome Caitlin! Let me know how you like them!

    9. Elizabeth Shaw
      September 19, 2015 AT 6:39 am

      I second Meme 🙂 Drooling as we speak! And Caroline, what a cutie pie! I for sure would have a kitchen helper everytime if my nieces were closer! Oh gosh, now I’m remembering our cake fiasco of 2011 :)! Let’s say the birthday cake for their uncle may have been part oil – part saliva hahaha!

    10. Meme Inge
      September 18, 2015 AT 2:57 pm

      AHHHH I’m having a really hard time containing my excitement!!!!! These look incredible! xo