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Healthier Apple Spice Cookie with Pecans is a moist, soft, and cake-like cookie. Made with chopped apples, pecans, and Fall spices. They are so good it is hard to enjoy just one.
My family has an apple spice cookie that has been handed down for several generations. I decided to adapt this recipe with the addition of whole wheat pastry flour and olive oil to make it more heart-healthy,
Try this healthy version of Apple Spice Cookie with Pecans.
Healthy Food Swaps
Most baking recipes call for all-purpose flour. A healthier alternative is using whole wheat flour.
Whole wheat flour includes fiber and bran from the original grain. It provides more nutrition and the fiber helps moderate blood sugar levels.
Pure whole wheat flour is milled from hard red wheat. It is strong flavored and its texture is grainy. It works in many recipes but is not ideal for this cookie.
When I decided to start adapting recipes to whole wheat I learned about whole wheat pastry flour that is made from white wheat.
Now you may be thinking pastry flour sounds like something that would be associated with all-purpose flour. But that is not the case.
I also substituted olive oil for shortening in the original recipe. This swap decreases the amount of saturated fat.
When substituting olive oil for butter or shortening, you will need less oil. I generally decrease the amount of oil by 25% of the butter or shortening a recipe would need.
This recipe calls for milk. You can substitute almond or another alternative milk if you prefer.
If you are allergic or don't like nuts, a great substitution is golden raisins or chopped dried apricots.
- all-purpose flour
- baking powder
- brown sugar, sugar
- milk, olive oil, vanilla
- cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, salt
Preheat oven to 375F.
Mix dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Flours, baking powder, spices, and salt.
Mix wet ingredients together in a second bowl. Whisk eggs in a separate bowl. Add oil, milk, and vanilla.
Add sugars to the wet ingredients. Mix until well combined.
Combine wet ingredients with dry ingredients until a dough starts to form.
Stir in chopped apples, and pecans.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Drop 2-inch spoonfuls onto the baking sheet. Leave space between cookies.
Place baking sheet on the bottom rack of the oven and bake for 10-12 minutes.
Remove and cool on a wire rack.
These cookies are perfect with a cup of milk or coffee for a quick snack.
Frequently Asked Questions
Whole wheat pastry flour is a whole grain flour made from white wheat. It is milled with all the whole grain components including the bran and germ.
So you get the fiber and nutrients that are processed out of all-purpose flour.
Whole Wheat Pastry Flour has a finer texture, lighter color, and milder flavor than regular whole wheat flour milled from red wheat. This makes it great for baking.
Whole wheat pastry flour has a lower gluten content than all-purpose flour, therefore it is not a good flour replacement for baking bread.
These cookies are moist and cake-like. Store in an airtight container between sheets of parchment paper for 2-3 days.
For longer storage, freeze between sheets of parchment paper in a freezer-safe ziplock bag for up to 3 months.
Healthy Dessert and Snack Recipes
Looking for more Healthy Baked Snack and Dessert Recipes? You might like one of these.
Whole Wheat Cookie with Chips and Pecans - cookies that are crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. They calm the craving for something sweet.
Easy Carrot Cake - moist and flavorful cake. Made with healthier ingredients, it is a dessert you can enjoy for Easter brunch or any day of the year.
Tender and Healthy Blueberry Muffins - fluffy muffins with a tender crumb and full of delicious fruit flavor.
August 2021 Update: Minor updates to the recipe card. Organized blog post with ingredients, preparation details, and FAQs. Updated images.