COOKIES. I think I could do without all other baked goods if I had to. Is there really anything better than a buttery, crispy, chewy cookie??
Normally, in cookie rankings, I’d say chocolate chip every day all day. But come Christmas time, I can’t get enough of these chewy, spiced, molasses gems. NOTHING smells better while baking and the texture! Chewiest, tenderest, sugar-crystaly-est cookie ever. So good. And the dark brown sugar/molasses and spice flavor is so deep and strong. CHRISTMAS in your mouth. It sounds weird and a little gross but it’s just true. In my house we call them ginger cookies but I’m realizing they were originally called Molasses Cookies … found them years ago on pinterest from Always With Butter and have never looked for another version.
There is nothing added in or taken out to make these more macro-friendly. They are what they are, and if and when I want, I make one fit! And it doesn’t have to be derailing.
Someone will judge me for this (and maybe should) but do you want to know when I’m most likely to fit a cookie in? For breakfast! I’ve said this before, but for dessert, I need something that will last me a while. Otherwise, I will most definitely go reaching for something else. If I planned cookies for dessert I would need like 5 to fill my dessert-eating-experience quota and those macros would hurt. So I always plan and log something lengthy and satisfying for dessert like my mighty muffin sundae or my staple giant bowl of ice-cream topped with whatever fits (cereal, pretzels, cocoa bar in a jar, peanut butter, toasted almonds, toffee, bananas… you name it. I know I have a problem.) For me, the macros can stretch a lot farther than with a baked good, and then I’m not tempted to go grab one more. (Especially since building my sundae is a JOB.)
But in the MORNING, I don’t feel that same trigger to eat five cookies. And I’m not a big breakfast eater anyway. There’s not enough time to enjoy it! I just like to grab something quick on the way out the door to the gym sometimes. So it might be a piece of toast with cottage cheese…. or a handful of these random soy crisps I’m obsessed with for snacking, or nothing. Or sometimes a cookie out of the freezer!
I don’t see a cookie as a dessert anymore, but as a yummy snack! In place of my protein bar…. or obviously in place of breakfast. And what I love about this is I can honestly have them in my house all the time. I can find the time in my food diary where it fits and can bump something else out and decide if it’s worth it or not. If it is, it can be a daily thing. It doesn’t have this control over me like like I’m gonna have to throw in the towel and eat them all. Not when you know you could log a couple every day if you really want. And that’s on TOP of the nightly sundae. This is why I love macros.
What I’m almost never gonna do is bake a high protein macro treat. Maybe I’ll find one I love some day and change my tune. But I’ve yet to find anything that compares in size and flavor to the chocolate mighty muffin I love so much, so I leave the macro treats to that. Also I’ve found that when I experiment with “macro-friendly baking” the numbers are not that far off of a real cookie, especially if you are just having one. For instance, these cookies are 5 fat and 19 carbs for a 1 ounce cookie. From my experience, most energy balls of the same size end up ringing in around 5 fat and 10-12 carbs. Those 7-9 carbs are no big deal to me. I’ll admit, if you do plan to eat three cookies, it’s true that three energy balls could save you over 20 carbs and that’s something. If you’re cutting and your carbs are really low, those balls might be worth it. But generally, I’ve got to keep my fats low, but the carbs are not as hard to come by… and while there’s tons of “healthy” treats out there filled with nut butters that are DELICIOUS— they’re gonna be just as high in fat… so they just don’t do me much good. And I’d rather eat my protein in normal food than sneak it into treats…. And anything low fat is kind of eh. Right? Like I’d rather just eat something yummy on toast than something that looks like a brownie but tastes like a root. or a bean. or WHEY. ew.
ANYWAY– long way of saying. Cookies will always fit in my world. I’m less likely to have a stack of pancakes or big bowl of oatmeal before the gym because I don’t feel like it’s worth it to me that early. But a cookie!? This makes me feel alive. That sounds like a joke and I should include a sarcastic emoji, except that I’M SERIOUS! This makes me feel like I can bake delicious treats with my kids like I’ve always done and enjoy the fruits of our holiday-kitchen-labor…. and it just makes a normal little dent in my diary in place of something else.
Macro-counting longevity. WIN.
My Favorite Ginger-Molasses Cookies
- 2 1/4 cups 281g flour
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 3/4 cup 170g butter, soft
- 1/2 cup 100g dark brown sugar (light is just fine, I just love almost everything with the richer flavor of dark.)
- 1/2 cup 100g sugar + additional for rolling
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/3 cup 113g molasses
- Pre-heat oven to 375F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment.
- Mix together dry ingredients and set aside
- Beat butter for 2 minutes.
- Add both sugars and beat together.
- Add egg, vanilla & molasses.
- Gradually add in dry ingredients.
- Scoop out balls and roll in plain sugar.
- Bake for 9-10 minutes