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Heart Healthy Dessert: Chocolate Chewy Cookies

You can find a significant number of recipes for "death by chocolate"-type cookies but not many for "heart healthy" chocolate cookies that actually taste good. That's probably because cookies are, by definition, a sweet treat, not something you would associate with heart health. Well, these Chocolate Chewy Cookies are a sweet treat, but they aren't too bad for you. You can enjoy one or two for dessert without having to worry too much about "death by chocolate." Instead of being loaded with saturated fat, the cookies include a mashed avocado, which is high in monounsaturated oleic acid, a "heart healthy" fatty acid. The cookies get deep, rich chocolate flavor from cocoa powder, and a bit of cinnamon adds interest. Brown sugar and an extra egg yolk keep the cookies soft and chewy. If you'd like, you can add some dark chocolate chips to the batter before baking the cookies. The chocolate chips will, of course, increase the fat and calories in the cookies, but taste ever so good...

Chocolate Chewy Cookies

Chocolate Chewy Cookies -- Makes 24+

1 1/2 cups of flour

3/4 cup of cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon of baking soda

1/4 teaspoon of baking powder

1/4 teaspoon of salt

1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon

1 large ripe avocado, peel and seed removed and mashed well

1/4 cup of canola oil

1 2/3 cups of brown sugar (preferably dark)

1 egg plus 1 egg yolk (save the white for something else)

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

1 teaspoon of butter flavoring

1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips (optional)

Sugar for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line cookies sheets with parchment paper or coat them with non-stick cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. In another bowl (or the food processor, if you'd prefer) combine until smooth the avocado, butter, brown sugar, egg, and egg yolk. Add the vanilla and butter flavoring. Stir in the flour mixture and the chocolate chips, if you'd like. Drop 2 tablespoons of dough for each cookie onto the prepared cookie sheets, spacing the cookies about 2 inches apart. Moisten your hands with water and, with damp hands, form the dough into disks about 1 1/2 - 2-inches in diameter and about 1/2-inch thick. Sprinkle the tops of the cookies with a little sugar. Bake the cookies for about 15 minutes, until they're puffed and little cracks appear in the tops. The cookies may seem a little underdone. Let the cookies cool on the cookies sheets for about 5 minutes and then remove the cookies to cool completely.

Heart Healthy Chocolate Chewy Cookies

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