Gingerbread Men.. that are indeed Gluten/Dairy/Egg/Starch/Soy free. What a mouthful! A really good mouthful.
When I think of gingerbread.. I think of soft, moist cookies. That's the version I grew up on..and am quite partial to. I actually looked forward to making the gingerbread more than the sugar each year.. something about the spicy dough put my taste buds in a trance.
This recipe duplicates those happy memories- except this version is about a trillion times healthier- lower in sugar, high in protein.. and GUILT FREE.
Before we bake- lets talk substitutions:
- Can’t have almonds? Make your own nut or seed flour using any other nut/seed of choice. I suspect that Hazelnut, Macadamias, Cashews or Sunflower seeds turned into flour would all taste great! To do this simply run the nut or seed in a high powdered blender or coffee grinder until you have a super fine flour. (If the flour is course- the recipe might not work as well.)
- Coconut flour WILL NOT work. (It never ever works as a replacement for Almond Flour!) And any of the grain based flours will NOT work. Stick to the nuts and seeds.
- For the granulated sugar you can use either Coconut Palm, or Sucanat. Though I have not tried it Granulated Maple Sugar might work too. The idea here is to use one that has a rich flavor. I used it to recreate that brown sugar taste that we all love in traditional gingerbread.
- In the recipe I call for molasses- that's the traditional ingredient. If you don't have any- you could also try using coconut nectar. Your cookies might not taste as rich..but they should still taste good!
- I do not recommend using xylitol or erythritol in this recipe for 2 reasons. 1) the texture may end up weird. 2) you'll lose that brown sugar flavor. Check out my (sugar free) sugar cookie recipe instead!
- 2 1/4 packed cups blanched almond flour
- 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar (powdered: see directions)
- 1 1/4 Tsp. Baking Powder (I use double acting)
- 2 Tsp. Ground Ginger
- 1 Tsp. Cinnamon
- 1/4 Tsp. Nutmeg
- 1/4 Tsp. Salt
- 1 1/2 Tbs. Applesauce
- 1 Tbs. Vanilla Extract
- 1 1/2 Tbs. Blackstrap Molasses.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place a sheet of parchment on a large cookie sheet.
- For a smooth textured cookie- place your palm sugar into a blender or coffee grind and grind it down just briefly. If there are any big chunks in the sugar, they may show up in the surface of the cookie. This will not affect the taste, and if you don't care.. feel free to skip this step.
- In a large bowl combine all of the dry ingredients and mix well.
- Stir in the wet ingredients (Applesauce, Vanilla and Molasses). Note: at first it may seem like your dough is going to be too dry- continue stirring and it will begin to get clumpy from the moisture. After a minute of stirring- use your hands to kneed to dough so that it comes together into a uniform ball of dough that holds together really well.
- Roll this dough out between two sheets of parchment and use cookie cutters to cut into shapes of your choice. (Note: I cut mine thick! a good 1/4 inch thick). Re-roll out dough and cut until all your cookie dough is gone. (I found after a few times being rolled out the dough started to get sticky.. if this happens feel free to use additional almond flour for dusting. Another trick is to wash your cookie cutter before you continue to use it.)
- Place all of the cookies on the lined baking sheet (they should all fit). And bake 12 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool before removing from cookie sheet.
Recipe yields 1 large cookie sheet full. Store at room temperature in a sealed container or in the freezer for another day.