Happy almost Halloween! I don’t know about you, but since having kids Halloween is a bit of a dreaded holiday for me. All that sugar, chemicals and dyes in the junk that passes as ‘treats’ this time of year gives me anxiety lol. My kids and I have an agreement that I buy their candy so they can go buy better stuff (like books!), but I feel bad that they are ‘missing out’ when their friends are gobbling down the garbage, so hence I came up with something they can enjoy…with a little bit of Halloween spirit.
Disclaimer: I am probably the least artsy/crafty person you know, and I pulled these off easily so no prior cookie decorating experience required! These delicious, moist cookies are gluten-/grain-free, paleo, vegan, sugarless, low glycemic and have a good dose of sneaky fibre (something that most kids are definitely lacking this time of year!). My daughter said these were the best things I’ve ever made, and she actually likes this vegan version better than when I made it with eggs.
First thing, you’ll want to make 4 flax eggs. If you’ve never done it before, it’s super easy. 1 tbsp of finely ground flax (use your coffee grinder and grind it yourself if possible as ground flax goes rancid easily) mixed into 3 tbsp of water is all you need per ‘egg’. You let it sit about 10 minutes before using it in your recipe. Mix your dry ingredients together and in the bowl with your flax eggs you’ll add your vanilla, coconut oil, and non-dairy milk (use coconut, hemp or rice milk for nut-free) and mix. Combine wet into dry and mix until combined.
Then on a parchment lined cookie sheet, make 12 cookies, about 1/2″ thick. You’ll want to use wet hands to minimize cracking. These cookies don’t change shape when baked so make them the size and shape you want your finished cookies to be. If you want them to be more uniform you can use the trick I learned. Line a regular sized mason jar lid with saran wrap, pack the dough into the lid and then push the sealer gently to pop out the cookie. They are still slightly too thick just like this so flatten them out a bit using wet hands.
Wait to turn on your oven (350 F) until now so your cookies have a few minutes to sit and let the flax really do it’s magic before baking. Bake for 12 minutes. As soon as you take them out, place 3 chocolate chips (pointy side down) into the top of each cookie and press gently so it becomes flush with the top of the cookie. Let them cool on the cookie sheet for 10 minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely before the next step (use a spatula to gently lift them off parchment).
As they are cooling you can start to melt your remaining chocolate chips in a double boiler until smooth. If you are using the sugarless chocolate chips I used, then you may need to add 1-2 tbsp of non-dairy milk to get it to a stir-able consistency. Once it’s ready then spoon it into the corner of a ziploc bag and cut a tiny hole right at the tip of the corner and use this as your icing bag (or if you already have an icing bag and tiny tip then save your ziplocs for something more important). Paint on little spider legs being as Martha Stewarty as you like. (Once you do a cookie or two the rest go a lot quicker!).
Store in an air-tight container for up to a week. If you need to stack them then wait until the spider legs have hardened before doing so.
- 4 tbsp finely ground flax (grind your own in a coffee grinder if possible)
- ¾ c water
- 1⅓ c coconut flour, sifted if necessary
- 2 tsp xanthan gum
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ⅔ c Lakanto
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ c coconut oil, melted and let cool slightly
- ¾ c + 1-2 tbsp non-dairy milk (use coconut, hemp, rice etc for nut free)
- 2 tbsp Frontier vanilla flavour, or vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp healthy chocolate chips - I used this brand as it's sugarless, but otherwise find the darkest chips you can find
- icing bag and fine tip, or sturdy ziplock bag
- Mix your flax eggs by mixing 4 tbsp ground flax with ¾ c water. Stir well and let sit at least 10 minutes.
- Begin melting your coconut oil to just barely melted and then let cool for a few minutes.
- Meanwhile mix coconut flour, xanthan gum, baking soda, Lakanto and salt.
- Once your flax eggs are ready then add the coconut oil, non-dairy milk and vanilla and stir to combine. Pour your wet into dry and mix until combined.
- Shape into about 12 cookies, approx ½" thick on a parchment lined cookie sheet (using wet hands to minimize cracking). Cookies will not change shape with cooking so make them the size and shape you want. See writeup above on how to make them more uniform if desired.
- Now turn on your oven to 350 so the cookies can sit for a few more minutes to let the flax do it's magic.
- Bake for 12 minutes.
- Remove from oven and immediately place 3 chocolate chips face down on the top of the cookie and press gently so they become flush with the top of the cookie. Let cool on cookie sheet for 10 minutes then, using a spatula, gently remove from cookie sheet and transfer to drying rack.
- As they are cooling, melt the remaining chocolate chips in a double boiler over med-low heat (or make your own using a heat safe glass bowl in an inch or two of boiling water in a saucepan). Melt until smooth and stir-able. If necessary slowly add a tiny bit of milk at a time until smooth (while still over med-low heat).
- Let cool slightly and then spoon melted chocolate into the corner of a strong ziplock bag and squish into the corner to remove air pockets. Cut a tiny hole right at the tip of the corner of the bag and use that as your icing bag, if you don't already have one.
- Paint the legs on the cookies and let the melted chocolate completely harden before stacking cookies.
- Store in an airtight container up to a week.