'Tis the Season for Heart-Healthy Cookies
By Liz Moore, RD, LDN
It’s hard to imagine the holidays without the chance to indulge in some
favorite festive cookies. So whether you’re baking up a few batches for a
cookie swap — or giving them as gifts — why not try some delicious recipes
featuring healthier ingredients that can also benefit the heart?
Dark chocolate can help lower blood pressure and is a potent antioxidant.
It’s also been shown to decrease the risk of developing cardiometabolic
disorders, a combination of risk factors that can lead to heart disease and
diabetes. And bananas are high in potassium, which helps control blood
pressure by lessening the effects of sodium.
As with all treats, it’s important to enjoy in moderation. So, start baking
— and start sharing — because everyone loves scrumptious cookies at the
Dark Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies
2 cups rolled oats
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
1/4 cup skim milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pre-heat oven to 350°F.
Mix together oats, bananas, applesauce, walnuts, dark chocolate chips, skim
milk and vanilla extract. Scoop evenly-sized tablespoons and place evenly
onto a cookie sheet. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until slightly brown.
Total calories per serving: 120; Total fat: 4.5g; Saturated fat: 1g; Trans
fat: 0g; Total cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 4mg; Total carbohydrates: 18g;
Total fiber: 3g; Sugar: 5g; Protein: 3g
Almond Butter Balls
1 cup almond butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/8 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp confectioners’ sugar
Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix almond butter, sugar, egg and cinnamon together
Scoop evenly-sized spoonfuls and drop evenly onto a cookie sheet. Bake for
about 8-10 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle confectioners’ sugar over
Total calories per serving: 95; Total fat: 6g; Saturated fat: 0.5g; Trans
fat: 0g; Total cholesterol: 8mg; Sodium: 5mg; Total carbohydrates: 9g;
Total fiber: 0.5g; Sugar: 6g; Protein: 2g
Mint Chocolate Cookies
These cookies are a "treat" — be mindful of portion. Simple
ingredients, but high in fat.
1 stick unsalted butter
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup flour
2 Tbsp mini dark chocolate chips
1 peppermint candy cane, crushed
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Using a mixer, blend the sugar and butter, then stir in the flour.
Scoop out about a teaspoonful and form into a ball. Place on cookie sheet
and flatten, using a fork. Spread chocolate chips and crushed peppermint
evenly over top of all cookies.
Bake for about 15 minutes or until lightly brown.
Total calories per serving: 144; Total fat: 8.5g; Saturated fat: 5g; Trans
fat: 0g; Total cholesterol: 20mg; Sodium: 2mg; Total carbohydrates: 15g;
Total fiber: 0.5g; Sugar: 7g; Protein: 1.5g
Elisabeth (Liz) Moore, RD, LDN, is our resident guru in heart-healthy
. She is a registered dietitian for BIDMC's CardioVascular Institute (CVI)
and sees patients in BIDMC's outpatient nutrition clinic and the CVI's
Cardiovascular Health and Lipid Center. Moore received her BS degree in
human nutrition from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.
Above content provided by the CardioVascular Institute at Beth Israel
Deaconess Medical Center. For advice about your medical care, consult