Date-Sweetened Almond Butter Cookies

by Jessica Mishra on April 30, 2012

I have recently been trying to cut down on my intake of sweets. I have been off refined sugar for a while (except for the occasional treat), but I do still enjoy maple syrup, coconut sugar, and some other natural sweeteners here and there. My acupuncturist mentioned the other day that it seemed I had an excess of heat in my body, and overly sweet foods can exacerbate this imbalance. Traditional Chinese Medicine principles stress the importance of balance in the body, and one area they look at is whether your body has an excess of heat or cold.

I do enjoy a small sweet treat after my meals at times, so I decided to create a recipe that was sweetened only with fruit. I used whole dates in this recipe, thus all the lovely fiber and other nutrients are still in tact. Dates are a good source of iron and potassium, along with several other vitamins and minerals. The dates, paired with the cinnamon and ginger in these cookies, give them a complex and delectable flavor. You will also notice that I used several flours. This was more of a “clean out the pantry” kind of endeavor, but they all worked quite nicely together in the end! If you don’t have all of these flours on hand, don’t worry, you can experiment with other gluten-free flours and the cookies should still turn out quite well.

I love the combination of textures that come with a frosted cookie, but I didn’t want to add much more sugar. So for the frosting, I simply used the thick and delightfully rich (and full of medium chain fatty acids) part of the coconut milk. I think you will really enjoy these cookies!

Date-Sweetened Almond Butter Cookies


  • 15-17 Medjool dates, pitted and soaked in boiling water (reserve a little of the soaking water)
  • 2 tablespoons flax meal or ground chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup hot water
  • 1 cup almond butter
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 cup quinoa flour
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4-1/2 cup coconut flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Allow dates to soak in enough boiling water to cover them for 15 minutes. Carefully remove dates from soaking water and add them to a food processor. Process until they turn into a paste. You may need to add a small amount of the soaking water if they are not blending easily.

In a small bowl, add 1/4 cup hot water to the flax meal or ground chia seeds. Stir with a whisk until the mixture turns into a gel. Add this mixture to the food processor.

Add the almond butter, coconut oil, and vanilla and almond extracts to the food processor as well. Process until all ingredients are well combined.

In a large bowl, mix the quinoa flour, brown rice flour, cinnamon, ginger, sea salt, and baking soda. Now add in the mixture from the food processor. Mix well. Slowly add in the coconut flour until you have a batter with a consistency that is not too sticky. Form the batter into balls, flatten with your palms, and place on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Place cookies in the oven for about 15 minutes. When done, cookies should be firm to the touch and slightly brown on the bottom. Allow to cool before frosting.

Whipped Coconut Cream Frosting


  • 1 can of full-fat coconut milk (the Thai Kitchen brand seems to work best)
  • cinnamon (optional)
  • vanilla powder (optional)

Place the can of coconut milk in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes – 1 hour. Once the can is cold to the touch, remove and open. Scoop only the thick part of the coconut milk out into a bowl, and leave the liquid behind (save for smoothies or other recipes). Add a sprinkling of cinnamon and vanilla powder to the coconut cream. Whip the cream by hand with a whisk until light and fluffy.

Use your whipped coconut cream on berries or other fruits, or top your cookies and baked goods with it. Full of healthy fats that will regulate your metabolism, help to balance hormones, and assist with weight loss.  Better than regular whipped cream for so many reasons. Enjoy!

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