There are cookies and then there are chocolate chip cookies. Oscar the Grouch and I have more in common than I would like to admit, but, like him, I have never met a chocolate chip cookie I didn’t like. Though I have had some that, sadly, didn’t like me.
Those would be traditional chocolate chip cookies with gluten, lots of sugar and butter and dairy from the chocolate. The older I get, the cleaner my diet gets. And that’s a good thing, right? But, seriously, I refuse to give up my adoration for the beloved chocolate chip cookie which makes me feel like a kid again. And reminds me of my favorite grandmother who lovingly baked cookies for me as often as she could.
My Chocolate Chip Cookie Obsession
Over the years, I have shared countless chocolate chip cookie recipes with you, dear readers. From the Real Deal Chocolate Chip Cookies of 2013 to the Better than Toll House 2014 version to the nut-free variety in 2015 that calls for tahini.
Scanning back a few years to 2011, I made these cookies for my birthday. Then there was this 4-ingredient chocolate chip cookie that stole my attention for a while in 2014. I tested new ideas in 2018 when I made these vegan blondies that are chocolate chip cookies in a pan and then there were these almond butter chocolate chip cookie sandwiches to celebrate my birthday in 2017.
I think we can see a pattern here. I am a chocolate chip cookie fiend. My favorite way to celebrate my summer birthday is with a chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwich. It’s how I celebrated again this year–and when I first tested today’s recipe out on friends with great success.
Comparing 2018’s Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookie to the Updated 2019 Version
My new favorite chocolate chip cookie incarnation hails from the new Love & Lemons Everyday cookbook. It’s a twist on the Paleo chocolate chip cookie recipe I shared in 2018, but better.
Last year’s favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe leans exclusively on almond flour for the base, while this iteration incorporates the welcome addition of almond butter and almond flour. It also calls for only merely two tablespoons of coconut oil and a half cup of coconut sugar. The old one relies on lots of coconut oil and maple syrup for moisture and sweetness.
Both recipes depend on a flax egg, which keeps it vegan. But this new iteration adds a welcome sprinkle of flaky sea salt before baking to give it a sweet and salty profile that makes it soar.
The result of a few tweaks makes this new chocolate chip cookie stand out from the crowd of countless (see links above) chocolate chip cookie recipes I have made over the years. This one is golden and chewy, yet tender and flavorful. And not too sweet, which is everything I want in a cookie. It bites like a serious cookie but knowing it’s gluten-free, Paleo and vegan give us permission to have two cookies.
The Cookie Taste Test Reviews
To ensure it wasn’t just me being a chocolate chip cookie freak, I tested these cookies out again at a ladies luncheon and they all flipped. They couldn’t believe the cookie was gluten-free, Paleo and vegan! Begging for the recipe, one friend even asked me to make her a batch and she would pay for it!
When a table of nine talented and accomplished women are all gushing over this bite-sized cookie you brought to celebrate a few birthdays, this was the approval I needed to validate this new chocolate chip cookie as the real deal. The winner. The one. The only. At least for 2019, or until I strike the next best chocolate chip cookie recipe.
Flourless Almond Chocolate Chip Cookies
These chocolate chip cookies are nearly mirror images of the real deal. But these have zero gluten, zero dairy and are paleo. Even staunch gluten lovers will go crazy for these bite-sized chocolate chip cookies that save the day when the sweet tooth strikes, but when you are still trying to be good. Fortunately, these are very good!
For the flax egg
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
For the dough
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil softened but not melted
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- 1/4 cup almond butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
- 2 cups almond flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup dairy-free chocolate chips I use Enjoy Life brand
- Maldon salt for garnish on each cookie before baking
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
In a large bowl, add the ground flaxseed and water and let thicken for 3-5 minutes.
Once the flax is congealed, add the coconut oil, water and coconut sugar and stir well to combine.
Add the almond butter and vanilla and stir again.
Then add the almond flour and vanilla and stir until it comes together and there are no remaining signs of the almond flour.
Add the baking soda and blend again thoroughly to combine.
Fold in the chocolate chips.
Use a 2-tablespoon cookie scoop to scoop the dough and place on the cookie sheet. With damp fingers, press each ball down slightly and sprinkle with flaky sea salt.
Bake for 10-13 minutes or until the edges are just starting to turn brown.
Cool on the pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
When the cookies are cooled, they can be stored in an airtight container or frozen.