Monday, April 24, 2017

Carrot cake cookies with dates and coconut flour

We’re all different when it comes to food, and judging how good or bad a certain dish is, it’s totally subjective, as most things are anyway.

We are all unique and so are our tastes, our likes and dislikes which vastly depend on the foods we grew up eating, our everyday diet, the level of sweetness, saltiness, bitterness, etc. we can tolerate and are used to, and of course how educated our palate is and how accepting we are or can be to different ingredients and combinations.
Many people also have dietary restrictions, self-imposed or due to health issues, so it’s only understandable that every single one of us judges foods and flavor combinations differently.

I don’t have any dietary restrictions but my goal is to have a balanced diet that includes every single food group. I try to eat sweets in moderation but since I have a sweet tooth and most of the times tend to go for the calorific and extravagant desserts, I try to keep the balance and make some more healthy desserts and sweets as well.

I love to experiment and play around with different ingredients, which is something that has always led me to new paths, new flavors and ways to combine them, like these cookies here, which seemingly are carrot cookies but they’re actually more than that because there’s coconut in there in the form of flour, there’s squidgy dates, maple syrup and all kinds of spices. It’s like carrot cake but in cookie form, of the gluten-free kind.

The cookies may look rough around the edges and not picture-perfect, but they are delicious. They’re wonderfully chewy around the edges and cakey in the center, they’re not too sweet, with that characteristic caramel sweetness from the dates and maple syrup, and are very aromatic from the warming spices that have a gentle rather than aggressive taste. The coconut flour, which is finer than desiccated coconut and brings a texture to the cookies I particularly love, gives a delicate coconut flavor to them, while the carrot brings sweetness and earthiness.

The next day they are a bit softer, more cake-like and the flavor of the spices is more pronounced, and dare I say I like them more then? Yes, I do. They are perfect with my morning or afternoon coffee.

Carrot cake cookies with dates and coconut flour

I used Medjool dates that are juicier and have a strong caramel flavor. If you can’t find them, use another kind of date. Just make sure they’re soft and juicy and not dried out.

Yield: about 20 cookies

75 g coconut flour
1 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
¼ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp ground cardamom
¼ tsp ground coriander
¼ tsp ground ginger
125 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
65 g maple syrup
1 medium-sized egg, lightly beaten with a fork
95 g pitted dried dates, chopped into small pieces
60 g grated carrot

Special equipment: box grater, fine sieve, electric hand-held mixer, cling film, baking sheet, baking paper

In a bowl, sieve the coconut flour, baking powder and all the spices.

In a medium-sized bowl, add the butter and maple syrup and beat using an electric hand-held mixer on high speed until pale, creamy and fluffy. With the mixer running on medium-low speed, add the egg little by little and once you’ve added it all, beat on high speed until fully incorporated and you have a fluffy mixture. Add the flour mixture into the butter mixture, add the chopped dates and grated carrot and using a stiff silicone spatula, stir to combine all the ingredients well. Make sure the dates are evenly distributed in the dough.

Cover the bowl with cling film and place in the refrigerator for 2 hours or until the cookie dough is firm enough to be shaped into cookies.

Preheat your oven to 185°C.
Line a baking sheet with baking paper.

Take the bowl with the dough out of the fridge and using the Tablespoon measuring spoon, scoop spoonfuls of the dough and roll them between your hands tightly to make a ball. The dough will feel a bit crumbly but it will hold. Also make sure each ball has dates in it.

Place each ball on the prepared baking sheet, spaced apart, and then gently flatten each ball to about 1 cm thickness. Place the baking sheet on the low rack of the preheated oven and bake the cookies for 10 minutes, the transfer to the middle rack and bake for a further 3 minutes or until they start to color around the edges. Be careful not to burn them because they catch easily.
Remove the baking sheet from the oven and leave the cookies to cool on the baking sheet.

They taste even better the next day and you can keep them for up to 4 days in an airtight container, at room temperature.


  1. As usual, a lovely post. I love carrot cake so your post caught my eye. I've never seen coconut flour in our local store, but then I've never looked for it. I've gotta to make these. Carrot Cake Cookies - Yum.

  2. Pretty photos . I will try this one and report back! My son has over 10 food allergies including wheat, nuts and soy so this looks like a good treat. Helen

    1. Thanks Helen. Look forward to hearing how you liked them!

  3. YUM!These look so tasty, and are so different than your typical cookie. Definitely need to try these soon!

  4. Great work, Magda. I've never used coconut flour and it seems ideal for this cookie---which I'd like to make soon!

    1. Hi Nancy! Long time no see! Thank you very much. Coconut flour is very nice. It needs to be used carefully though because it absorbs a lot of moisture and may dried out baked goods. In this recipes, it's fantastic!