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October 18, 2019

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Pecan Cookies (Vegan)

by Anne Paddock

Everyone has their favorite cookies and one of mine is an oatmeal cookie.  Years ago, the recipe on the back of the cylinder-type container of Old-Fashioned Quaker Oats was the go-to recipe for oatmeal cookies. Back then, the recipe called for butter, refined sugar, eggs, all-purpose flour, and a scant amount of oats (about a half cup if I remember correctly).  Raisins added a chewy sweetness to the cookies which most people either loved or hated (I don’t know too many people on the fence about oatmeal cookies or raisins).

Nowadays I make oatmeal cookies without butter, eggs, refined sugar, all purpose flour, and raisins (dark chocolate chips just seem to add more flavor to the cookies along with chopped pecans that also add crunch) and they taste better (and are healthier) than the ones I used to make.

Instead of all purpose flour, I use whole grain oats, oat flour, and whole wheat pastry flour.  Maple syrup is used instead of  refined sugar, while 2 tablespoons of canola oil and 2 tablespoons of non-day milk replace the butter (not optimal but better than a stick of butter). For deeper flavor, cinnamon and pure vanilla extract are used. To leaven the cookie, a scant amount of baking powder, baking soda, and apple cider vinegar do the trick.

The following recipe is a variation of Oatmeal Raisin Cookies by Fran Costigan from her More Great Good Dairy Free Desserts cookbook. Fran is the professional pastry chef who figured out how to make great cookies, cakes, pies, and desserts without using animal products. Everyone who follows a plant-based diet owes her a mountain of thanks because her recipes are fantastic. They produce delicious treats that most people would never guess are vegan (a monumental feat).  Her 3 cookbooks (Great Good Dairy-Free Desserts, More Great Good Dairy-Free Desserts, and Vegan Chocolate) are always with me (and can be purchased on Amazon). Note:  if recipes for desserts were on a health data distribution curve with those made with butter or lots of oil, eggs, refined sugar, and all-purpose flour on the right while those made with no oil, eggs, refined sugar, and all-purpose flour on the left, Fran’s recipes would be one standard deviation from the left.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Pecan Cookies (makes approximately 10 cookies)


  • 1 cup whole grain rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 cup oat flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened on-dairy milk (I use unsweetened Milkadamia available through Amazon or Vitacost)
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup non-dairy chocolate chips (I use Pascha 85% available through Vitacost)
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans (optional)


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Line a large cookie sheet with a piece of parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, flours, cinnamon, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Whisk to blend.

In a small mixing bowl, combine the maple syrup, canola oil, non-dairy milk, vanilla, and vinegar. Whisk a few times to blend.

Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir to blend. Add the chocolate chips and pecans (if using).

Shape the cookie dough into 2-inch balls and slightly flatten to a thick disk or simply scoop a spoonful directly on the parchment paper lined cookie sheet.

Bake for 8-10  minutes, or until the bottoms are light brown and the tops are set.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. Transfer to a serving plate and watch them disappear.


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