Apple-Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies

I come from a family of cookie fans. The members of my family like all kinds of cookies and, consequently, I make dozens of flavors. Like many Americans, chocolate chip cookies are a favorite. Runner-up favorites include double chocolate chip, gingersnaps, spritz, almond, and oatmeal cookies.

One problem for me is that I’m not a fan of raisins. I don’t want raisins invading my oatmeal cookies. Coconut, chocolate chips, and dried cranberries are fine. Breakfast cookies are a relatively new product, and I decided to make oatmeal cookies. They would be like eating breakfast and dessert at the same time.

When I checked the pantry, however, I didn’t find any plain oatmeal. There was a box of instant, sugar-free oatmeal with dried apples and cinnamon and I decided to use it in a basic cookie recipe. I also decided to reduce the sugar and fat, and add more vanilla. (I adore vanilla!)

Crisco has less fat than butter, according to the manufacturer, so I decided to use a butter-flavored baking stick instead of butter. Although I’ve used Spenda Blend for baking, I haven’t seen this product in stores lately. I decided to make my own blend with brown sugar and Splenda. Would these changes, including the instant oatmeal, work? The only way to find out was to test the recipe.

The cookies were really good, especially right out of the oven. Yet they were different. For one thing, they were thinner than other oatmeal cookies, and had less texture. I could taste the apples and cinnamon, a happy surprise. And I admit it, I’d eat these cookies for breakfast and other meals. The next time I make this recipe I think I’ll add another quarter teaspoon of cinnamon.

Once the cookies start to brown, they brown quickly, so watch them carefully. Don’t over-bake these cookies. Apple-Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies freeze well.

INGREDIENTS

1 butter-flavored Crisco baking stick (or 1 stick of butter)
1 cup Splenda sugar substitute
1 cup dark brown sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon reduced sodium salt
3 packets instant, sugar-free apples and cinnamon oatmeal

METHOD

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Tear off a large piece of wax paper and set it on the counter.
2. In a large mixing bowl, cream Crisco, sugar substitute, brown sugar, eggs, and vanilla together. Beat until light-colored and fluffy.
3. Turn mixer speed to low. Slowly add flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Beat until well combined.
4. Turn off mixer. Add instant oatmeal and incorporate with wooden spoon.
5. Drop rounded teaspoons of dough onto ungreased baking sheet.
6. Bake about 10 minutes, or until cookies are light brown.
7. Let cookies cool for 20 seconds. Carefully transfer to wax paper to finish cooling.
8. Store cookies in airtight container. Makes about 50 cookies. Enjoy!