Tuesday, November 4, 2014

AIP Chewy "Chocolate" Chunk Cookies (grain-free, egg-free, nut-free, dairy-free)

This girl likes her cookies.

So when I found out that I would need to start following the autoimmune protocol (AIP) to help heal a leaky gut, my old-standby of Seriously Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies were a no-go.

I can tell you, it is not easy to follow this protocol. Although these cookies are good, they were still created as a treat in a way of eating that seems so limiting. Something to help everyone feel a bit more "normal" while living in a world where they can't eat normal. In the real world of convenience foods (even the paleo/"clean" ones), restaurants and anything else created to help simplify real food for the majority of people, there are ingredients that someone on AIP cannot have. Paprika is in EVERYTHING. And even if it doesn't say paprika, for some reason "spices" and "natural flavors" are perfectly acceptable ingredients list items, which pretty much translates to me as "don't even bother."

So having been AIP just over a month now, I feel the need for normalcy. I'll be honest and say I've cried a few tears in my kitchen. I've sobbed while washing the thousandth dish that week since I am literally cooking every dang day. I know I am not alone.

And I just want a cookie.

(did you just picture me on the floor, pounding my fists on the ground, having a tantrum??)

Out of desperation, comes yumminess for you guys as well. I hope you like it!

xo -  Tonja



Chewy "Chocolate" Chunk Cookies
AIP * grain-free * egg-free * nut-free * dairy-free

Make 8 cookies
* arrowroot may be substituted, however I made them both ways and all testers agreed the tapioca was a better "mouth feel"
** if you tolerate chocolate, feel free to substitute Enjoy Life chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium sized bowl, combine tapioca flour, coconut flour, gelatin, coconut sugar, salt and baking soda.

In a small bowl, melt the palm shortening and then stir in the maple syrup and vanilla.

Add the liquid mixture to the flour mixture and stir until well combined.

Mix in the homemade carob chips (or chocolate chips) and let cool (or pop in the refrigerator for 10 minutes).

Divide batter into 8 equal portions and roll each portion into a ball. Place the dough balls onto a parchment lined cookie sheet and flatten to about 3/4" tall.

Bake for 10 minutes or until edges are golden brown.

Let cool on the cookie sheet for about 5 minutes before putting on a cookie rack to cool completely (but I won't tell anyone if you just gobble them up right away).




Carob Chunks
cocoa-free * dairy-free

Make 2 cups


In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the palm shortening and coconut butter. Add in the coconut sugar and stir until dissolved (most likely it will not dissolve completely, but hey, we can try). Remove from heat and stir in the carob powder, vanilla and sea salt.

Pour the mixture into a parchment-lined 8x8 baking dish or pan and put in the freezer for 20 minutes.

Remove from the freezer and using a sharp knife, cut the mixture into chocolate-chip sized chunks (the mixture should still be fairly soft and easy to run a knife through). Return to the freezer to completely harden.

Once ready to use for the first time, using the pre-cut lines, break the "chocolate" into separate chunks.

Store extra in an air-tight container in the freezer.

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78 comments:

  1. You are awesome!!! you had a fantastic idea
    I Don't tolerate coconut butter so do you think that I could substitute it for coconut oil?
    thanks

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    1. Coconut oil isn't going to work well in the carob chips as it melts too easily.

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  2. Hey Tonja! Are you familiar with the AIP Recipe Roundtable? It's a weekly event, where bloggers link up AIP-friendly recipes, to help us all from getting in a food rut. I would love it if you joined us. You just click the blue button at the bottom of the post to add your recipe, and readers will be directed back to your blog to read it. A new Roundtable goes live every Wednesday night. Here's this week's link: http://www.phoenixhelix.com/2014/11/12/paleo-aip-recipe-roundtable-51/

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    1. You sure did, and your recipe was chosen as the reader favorite and is featured at this week's Roundtable. Thanks for linking up! Please join us any time you have an AIP-friendly recipe!

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  3. Bonjour and merci for your recipe! Is the palm shortening mandatory?

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    1. Some people have subbed coconut oil, but since it melts easier, I've found many have ended up with super flat cookies that all run together. I'd sub lard if you can.

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  4. Thanks so much for this awesome AIP cookie recipe. I am so excited to make it for my 11 year old who is starting an elimination diet for 3 weeks. Do you think this would work as a pizookie too? YUMMY!

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    1. Yes! I think it would be perfect as a pizookie! If you're on Instagram, be sure to tag us if you post it!

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  5. Looks great!! Do you think the organic vegetable shortening that Brittany Angell uses would be a good sub for the palm shortening? That's not the same as palm oil, right? :)

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    1. YES! It's the same thing actually. That's why it took me forever to find it in the store the first time. The label says vegetable shortening and I knew I didn't want that… RIGHT?! But if you look at the ingredients it says "palm oil". I think I linked it up in the ingredients list as well to our Amazon store.

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  6. thank you for this recipe!! I was skeptical that these would be worth the effort since my experience with AIP baked goods has not been amazing . . . but these are deeply satisfying. They're higher in sugar than most of the treats I make, but I think they are worth it. They have a heft and a chewiness that other AIP cookies are lacking, and I love that (if you add as much salt as the recipe calls for) they are wonderfully sweet and salty. They almost taste like peanut butter chocolate chip cookies (which in my book is a good thing!). I made a double batch and it worked great and they freeze and thaw beautifully. Now I'm tempted to adapt the recipe to make a spicy, chewy ginger molasses cookie. Yum.

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    1. Next time you freeze some dough, try rolling into balls first and then dip them in melted chocolate or the melted carob chips to make little cookie truffles. I haven't done it yet, but I know others have and they loved them! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! -Tonja

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  7. These cookies look absolutely scrumptious! I'm so happy to have found you through some mutual blogging friends on Instagram. I've been having fun checking out your site and look forward to including links to some of your recipes in my meal plans to subscribers. I hope it brings lots of new friends your way! I still have much to learn and have been interested in the autoimmune protocol, so it looks like I've come to a wonderful, warm place to learn more! Thank you! :)

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  8. When you recommend palm oil, please, please, please let readers know that they should use sustainable palm oil, such as Spectrum Organic Palm Oil (available at Amazon and Walmart).

    Here is the problem with general palm oil, summed up succinctly:
    "
    "The industry is linked to major issues such as deforestation, habitat
    degradation, climate change, animal cruelty and indigenous rights abuses
    in the countries where it is produced, as the land and forests must be
    cleared for the development of the oil palm plantations. According to the
    World Wildlife Fund, an area the equivalent size of 300 football fields of
    rainforest is cleared each hour to make way for palm oil production. This
    large-scale deforestation is pushing many species to extinction, and
    findings show that if nothing changes species like the orangutan could
    become extinct in the wild within the next 5-10 years, and Sumatran tigers
    less than 3 years."
    ~ http://www.saynotopalmoil.com/Whats_the_issue.php

    Zoos are trying to save the orangutan from extinction by publicizing to consumers the need to choose products using only sustainable palm oil:
    wallet card from the Philadelphia Zoo
    http://www.philadelphiazoo.org/Unless/palmoilwalletcard.pd

    Thank you! - a fellow AIP'er

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  9. I have been wanting to try this recipe for some time now but I only have the green can of gelatin which I do not believe will work. Would a flax egg or chia egg work as a substitute, and is one better than the other for this? If so, is 1 flax/chia egg the correct amount? Thank you!

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    1. No, the green can won't work. You can give the flax/chia egg a shot. I think someone who CAN have eggs subbed 1 egg in the recipe and it seemed to turn out fine. Tag us on Instagram if you try it and it works!

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  10. Excellent cookies! I did sub and egg for the gelatin. Our whole foods didn't have the red label gelatin. This cookie reminds me of the cookies my mom used to make when I was growing up. YUMMY!!

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    1. I am so glad the egg worked for you and that you loved them! -Tonja

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  11. Wow! Not too many AIP baked treats have both great flavor and texture, but this one hits the mark! Even my relatives who don't subscribe to any diet liked these cookies. The "chocolate" chunks are very tasty, and even though they are not really chocolate, they are close enough to fill this need for an aip recipe (not to mention tasty even on their own). Have you ever tried subbing in raisins for the chunks? I thought it might make for an "oatmeal" cookie that way. Anyway, well done on this recipe! Cheers!

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    1. Thank you! And I think they'd make an EXCELLENT oatmeal raisin cookie! If you're on Instagram, make sure to give us a tag @flametofork so I can see! -Tonja

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  12. Mine spread A LOT and made one giant cookie :P. probably b/c I subbed butter for the palm shortening. Is the shortening what helps it keeps it's shape? I don't bake often, so I don't want to buy a tub of shortening; is there a good substitute?
    They were too sweet for me, but my family liked them-they tasted like a florentine cookie!

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    1. You can chill before baking and they won't spread!

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    2. It says to melt the palm shortening and coconut butter, so should I not melt anything if substituting with butter or coconut oil?
      Thanks!

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    3. There is no coconut butter in this recipe. It calls for palm shortening. If you are substituting with anything else, I can not give you recommendations as I did not make this recipe to use those fats. Your spreading is most likely because you did substitute a fat. Shortening is more firm at room temperature than butter so you can't expect it to act the same. If you sub an ingredient, you are taking the risk with the results :) -Tonja

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    4. Oops sorry! I don't know where I read coconut butter!

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    5. I'm confused! Reading the recipe, it DOES have Coconut Butter... "Carob Chunks
      cocoa-free * dairy-free

      Make 2 cups

      1/2 cup palm shortening
      1/2 cup coconut butter"

      Your comment above, "There is no coconut butter in this recipe. It calls for palm shortening. If you are substituting with anything else, I can not give you recommendations as I did not make this recipe to use those fats. Your spreading is most likely because you did substitute a fat. Shortening is more firm at room temperature than butter so you can't expect it to act the same. If you sub an ingredient, you are taking the risk with the results :) -Tonja" Hummmmmm..... It does call for Coconut Butter, so Elle was correct about it....?????....

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  13. I love, love, love this recipe - this has helped save my AIP. I'm saving some of the dough to mix in vanilla coconut 'ice cream.' Second time I halved the maple syrup and sugar and it was still plenty sweet for me, and used coconut oil instead of shortening (chilled before baking). Tip to others using coconut oil - you either want to chill not too long or shape cookies before chilling, because they're very hard to form if they've chilled too long. Mine really didn't spread at *all,* after chilling, so I should have actually flattened them more before baking!

    Gorgeous cookies - I really didn't expect they could be as good as "real" cookies and they blew me away. The taste is fantastic. Thank you so much for the recipe!!

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  14. Is coconut sugar aip approved? If not, what can I substitute please?

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    1. As far as I know it is! That's why it's in this recipe :D -Tonja

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  15. Made these twice and the flavor is awesome!
    Question about the dough though - when you mix in the melted palm shortening, what is the general consistency of the entire dough? For me, it's still been quite crumbly, so I've had to add a bit more liquid (like melted shortening) to get it cohesive enough to roll up. I don't even try to flatten the rolled up balls otherwise they'll fall apart and crumble, so they end up looking more like cake pops than flat(ter) cookies, but the taste is still amazing! I've reviewed the measurements of all the ingredients and I'm doing it correctly, just curious how yours get to be so flat :)
    Thanks!

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    1. What brand of coconut flour do you use? I've heard stories of the Nutiva brand or whatever is sold at Costco not being of the same consistency so not working the same. I only use Bob's Red Mill and it seems to be a finer grain and absorb better. Let me know! - Tonja

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    2. Good question! I bought it through a co-op so I'm not entirely sure, but I wonder if I should just use less of it, since it's such a dense flour! Thanks!

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    3. I think the problem is it isn't ground as fine …. so it might weight more per measurement than what I use. Maybe try just a little less :)

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    4. You can sift your coconut flour to get a lighter consistency. I think it has less of that sandy texture when sifted.

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  16. I just started AIP and am staying away from all sweeteners. After years of pain, low energy, and numbness, I am starting to feel better that ever and scared to go back to that. So I substituted carob powder for the coconut sugar. And I used pureed pumpkin instead of maple syrup. I added powdered ginger to the mix, and used coconut milk to add moisture until it formed a dough. I had to skip the carob chips for now because I don't have the coconut butter or palm shortening on hand (used coconut oil for the dough instead). With all these substitutions I had no idea what to expect, and I was desperate cause no other baked/pancake recipe has worked for me. This turned out awesome! I want to go buy the manna and shortening now and try it again with the carob chips. The texture is perfect. It's springy, soft, and chewy, but solid enough that it's not falling apart and feels like a "real" cookie in my hand. It's not sweet of course, but I guess cause I've been off sugar for a few weeks, it tastes kind of sweet to me. The coconut milk (made from coconut cream and water) and the pumpkin may have added the touch of sweetness. I am not sure what it is about your recipe - maybe the flours you used? (I had to use arrowroot for the tapioca) but this is a diet saver lol. I will be playing around with it and trying some of the variations I saw listed here. Thank you so much! I feel you with the crying over washing dishes and cooking constantly!

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  17. This looks delish! Looking forward to trying it soon! I was curious though if you had suggestions for those of us AIPers who are sensitive to coconut products? :]

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    1. I'm sorry, I don't. But I know others have posted lots of options so just look around! -Tonja

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  18. Hi, I can't get Palm shortening where I am. Is there anything I can substitute with?

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    1. That's a hard substitution. You need something with a similar melting point. I'd order online (Amazon or Thrive) or maybe try lard. -Tonja

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  19. Violet age 7. .Ilike Howe it is sweet and the feel is crunchy,this is the best and only chocolate aip cookies

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  21. Just tried this recipe as a raisin cookie. It's definitely got the looks, but they are way too salty for me. I usually use 1 teaspoon of baking soda and 1/2 a teaspoon of salt in recipes that make 40 cookies, so that much salt in 8 cookies left a baking soda taste in my mouth. If I make them again, I'll be reducing the salty stuff by half for sure.
    I'm 4 weeks into AIP, and I too can't believe how much cooking and dishes this is taking! It makes a girl reluctant to try anything that might not work out, but persevere we must!

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    1. weird! I use Redmond Real Salt so maybe a different salt has a higher sodium content. -Tonja

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  22. I made this recipe last night with a few modifications but they literally turned out AMAZING!It has been probably more than a year since I have had a 'real' chocolate chip cookie since being on the AIP and then paleo diet. I have not included nuts back into my diet and I had a hard time finding a nut free "good" looking cookie. I recently bought some tigernut flour and wanted to experiment so this is what I did.

    I used about a half a cup of tigernut flour instead of the coconut flour as well as half arroowroot for some of the tapioca.

    I also left out the coconut sugar and just used the maple syrup.

    Because I can tolerate chocolate, I used some organic fair trade chocolate chips as well.

    Otherwise I did everything the same.
    THEY TURNED OUT AMAZING! Maybe it is because I haven't had a real cookie in so long, but they were plenty sweet for me (probably owing to the natural sweetness of the tigernut flour)

    Thanks so much for this awesome recipe!

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    1. You're welcome! Glad they worked out for you! -Tonja

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  23. I know this is an older post, but I just need to say thank you... thank you... thank you!

    I am on day 3 of my AIP diet journey, and let me tell you it has been the longest 3 days of my life. Haha.
    I just made these cookies and they were so good and gave me so much hope that I can indeed get through this (as long as I can have these cookies at LEAST once a week).

    I started this diet in hopes to clean up my gut and help control my Hashimoto's disease, it is posts like this that are going to help me through, so thank you again!

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  24. These are AMAZING. I've made them numerous times and am endlessly grateful to have a delicious treat while following the AIP lifestyle. Thank you... Off to make some more!

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  25. Another late comment, but a question for anyone who might still be reading these.

    I followed the recipe precisely, no subs, and used Bob's Red Mill coconut flour. As one other reviewer said, the 'dough' was so crumbly. I added 2 Tbsp. of homemade coconut/tigernut milk so that at least I could form balls (which crumbled quite a bit when I pressed them down). The baked cookies were like hockey pucks: dense and bone dry, like there was too much tapioca flour (not coconut flour, really--I've baked quite a bit that). Sadly, I had to throw them away--pretty much inedible. I had Nutiva palm shortening in the pantry so used that (rather than Spectrum). Maybe that was the cause of the downfall?

    Virtually everyone else seems to have had such good results. I'm disappointed. Any suggestions? Thanks.

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    1. I think different coconut flours can cause different problems - some seem to be drier or coarser than others. Coconut flour is a super dry flour so usually that IS the issue. This recipe has been all over the place with successes, but most people haven't had an issue so I am not sure what to recommend! -Tonja

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  26. Yummy--I just tried this recipe for the first time tonight--instead of palm shortening and homemade carob chips (will try to make soon) I used soy free Earth Balance buttery spread and Enjoy Life mini-chocolate chips. I am certain this version will be in heavy rotation in my kitchen,thanks for sharing!

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  27. Hi! Firstly, thank you so much for this recipe. 5 months in on AIP, this recipe saved my sanity! I first made the cookies with raisins, as the carob chips were so good, I wanted to eat them separately! (I call them my 'crack'...LOL...a little extra sea salt and it replaces my dark chocolate with sea salt addiction prior to AIP!). My only question is this...the first time I made the carob chips, they turned out perfect. The following three times (don't judge! LOL) they have sort of separated in the freezer, with a light yellowish fat layer on top. I'm following the recipe verbatim, but can't figure out what's going wrong...or why it worked the first time? Anyone else have this issue?

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    1. My guess is maybe they cooled more slowly and therefore the fats had time to separate before becoming solid.

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  28. Oh my gosh! Thank you thank you thank you! These were delicious and such a nice treat after over 2 mos on the autoimmune diet!

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  29. These are THE BEST! The only way to make them any better is if you came up with a version of these as a single lady cookie so I don't make a whole batch and want to eat them all up in a day😉

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    1. Roll into balls and flatten slightly and put in the freezer on a cookie sheet until frozen. Then put in a bag or container in the freezer and just pop them out a few at a time to bake :D

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  30. Since I tolerate cocoa could I sub cocoa powder for the carob in the carob chip recipe? Thank you!

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    1. If you tolerate cocoa, I'd just buy Enjoy Life chocolate chips :D

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  31. I made the carob chips before Christmas and have been "snitching" some from the freezer over the holiday. But I finally found the time today to make the cookies. They are so good!! I swear this is the closest thing to a gluten based cookie I've tasted and I've been on AIP for 16 months. Love, love, love them!! And I have a ton of carob chips left!

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  32. Oh, wow! I made these for the first time today and I am ashamed to admit that I ate 5 already! Thank you so much! They are awesome!

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  33. I confess that many times I scroll past the "story" and go right to the recipe when I'm looking at blog posts (maybe because I spend ALL MY TIME COOKING and I don't have time to read much of anything!) I read yours though and I'm so glad – I feel exactly the same way that you do! THAT DARN PAPRIKA!!! And I'm so excited about the carob chip recipe! Thanks for sharing your thoughts too!

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  34. I feel like I could have written your post...bless you for this recipe...I am on day 15, and seriously just dreaming about a treat...I tried a few this weekend...they all were just...well...not good. So I went into this recipe with trepidation...and BAM...these are amazing!! My 14 year old said, and I quote, "These are better than the regular cookies you used to make" Thank you!!

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  35. Wow these look great! Have you tried substituting tapioca flour for cassava?

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  36. Made these this afternoon, first the carob chips, then the cookies. Everything came out exactly as described and pictured. I can't believe the result - it's amazing!! Both taste and texture are terrific! Best AIP cookies I've made - they taste as good as any pre-AIP chocolate chip cookies I used to make. Thank you!!!

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    1. PS - I made them for my birthday :-)

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  37. Have you ever tried to combine butter with coconut oil when using these ingredients as replacements for palm shortening? I think it's not a bad idea?

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  38. These are amazing! Delicious and such excellent texture. BEST nut-free egg-free grain-free refined-sugar-free cookies I've tried! It's hard to source sustainable palm shortening here, so I used 50 grams of coconut oil instead, and refrigerated them before baking, and they kept their shape - yay! Thanks so much for sharing your recipe!

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  39. I tried this recipe and loved it! I do have a few questions though. Has anyone tried freezing these? If so how do I get the best results? Do you cook them first then freeze? Also do you warm them back up or just let them thaw? I'm new at this whole batch cooking stuff.

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  40. I froze raw cookie dough and let it thaw for just a few minutes before baking and they were awesome.

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    1. Thank you! I'll try that

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  41. Can honey be used instead of coconut sugar to make the carob chunks?

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  42. I made these the other day and Oh. My. G-d. They are to die for. I'm not usually one to follow recipes exactly, I like using things I have on hand or making substitutions for ingredients I don't like. So the first time I tried this recipe, I used cassava flour instead of tapioca and a different collagen I had in the pantry. They didn't get gooey at all, so it was a failure.

    So I broke down and ordered the red can of collagen and begrudgingly used the tapioca flour the next time. The only change I made was cutting the amount of coconut flour in half because I hate coconut flour and replacing the other half with more tapioca flour.

    That lasted two days in my house. By sheer force of will, because I could have gorged myself in every last one in a single sitting.

    Amazing. Now I'm going to have to make several batches and freeze them to bake as needed, as mentioned above.

    I cannot thank you enough for this recipe. Bowing down to you, madam, you are a genius!

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  43. I made these the other day and Oh. My. G-d. They are to die for. I'm not usually one to follow recipes exactly, I like using things I have on hand or making substitutions for ingredients I don't like. So the first time I tried this recipe, I used cassava flour instead of tapioca and a different collagen I had in the pantry. They didn't get gooey at all, so it was a failure.

    So I broke down and ordered the red can of collagen and begrudgingly used the tapioca flour the next time. The only change I made was cutting the amount of coconut flour in half because I hate coconut flour and replacing the other half with more tapioca flour.

    That lasted two days in my house. By sheer force of will, because I could have gorged myself in every last one in a single sitting.

    Amazing. Now I'm going to have to make several batches and freeze them to bake as needed, as mentioned above.

    I cannot thank you enough for this recipe. Bowing down to you, madam, you are a genius!

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  44. Sub for coconut flour? On AIP but very allergic. Thanks!

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