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Are Cookies Keto?

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FACT CHECKED
  Published on January 23rd, 2023
  Reading time: 4 minutes
  Last modified December 30th, 2022
Keto chocolate chip cookies

Nothing conjures up the image of childhood more than a tray of freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies coming out of the oven. If you’re one of those people who loves baked goods, especially cookies, you might find yourself craving them on the keto diet. Keto offers a bit of grace for those who still want to indulge their sweet tooth, but it requires getting creative with ingredients. 

Traditional cookies are not keto-friendly. However, modified keto cookies can be made using substitutions, and keto-friendly cookies can be found in many stores as well. Most keto recipes use almond flour or coconut flour, along with sugar substitutes like erythritol or stevia. If you plan to add some chocolate, make sure to use a keto-friendly variety. 

Are Cookies Keto-Friendly? 

As we mentioned, most cookies, whether store-bought or homemade, are not keto-friendly. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to make a keto cookie, and there’s nothing wrong with indulging in keto cookies from time to time. 

While most people would not place cookies in the category of healthy foods, they can be a good way to incorporate a bit of fat into your daily diet. Many varieties are made with butter or even cream cheese. If you are careful about what ingredients you consume, you can easily whip up a batch that emphasizes these positive characteristics of cookies and doesn’t weigh you down with overall carb count. 

Buying Keto Cookies at the Store

Buying cookies at the store might be an exercise in futility if you plan to stick to a keto diet. While some health foods like the Quest cookie are great store-bought solutions when you need a snack in a pinch, they are pricey and often have higher carb counts than homemade versions. 

To give you an idea, a package of Quest cookies typically has 4 to 5 grams of net carbs while some of the homemade versions we will talk about below have just 0.5 grams of net carbs per cookie. 

Making Your Own Keto Cookies 

If you intend to make your own keto cookies, you will need to invest in some baking staples. First up, you will have to forgo the traditional flour used in baking and use a keto-friendly flour alternative. You have two main options to choose: almond flour or coconut flour. Both should be found in the baking aisle of your local grocery store or you can make your own almond flour at home in a food processor. Oat fiber (not oat flour) and flax meal can also be used as flour substitutes, though they are less commonly called for in recipes for sweet baked goods.

Almond flour for keto cookies

How do you decide which type of flour to use? 

For the most part, coconut flour tends to produce drier cookies, which is great if you are looking for some crunch. On the other hand, almond flour is known for being heavier which ultimately makes a denser, moister cookie. If you are thinking of gooey chocolate chip cookies hot from the oven, almond flour may be the way to go. [1]

There is another benefit to almond flour as well: its overall nutrition. It is higher in fat than coconut flour as well as lower in carbs, which is ideal for those who stick to a keto diet. Almond flour also contains micronutrients like manganese, magnesium, copper, and phosphorus, as well as lots of vitamin E (an essential component of a healthy immune system). Along with these benefits it also offers plenty of fiber for gut health and can help reduce insulin resistance. [2]

To make keto cookies, you will also need to invest in some sweeteners that are keto-friendly, such as erythritol or stevia. Swerve brand sugars are also a great option if you need a keto substitute for traditional confectioner’s sugar or brown sugar.

Homemade Keto Cookie Recipes

Keto sugar cookies

While the most popular cookie is chocolate chip, you can really branch out if you will be making your own cookies at home. There are many keto recipes that you can sample to find the cookies that meet your taste preferences, from keto double chocolate chip (0.7 grams net carbs) to keto peanut butter cookies (0.5 grams net carbs).  

You can even combine the two together to get keto peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips. This recipe allows you to have three cookies while still coming in at 6 grams of net carbs total. Much like the other recipes that require chocolate chips, you may have to do a little searching to find chocolate that falls into keto guidelines. Look for packages that are marked as keto-friendly or sugar-free (but be sure to double check the sugar-free brands–not all sugar-free products will keep you in ketosis). 

Get fancier with your cookies at home with this recipe for cardamom keto snickerdoodles with maple bourbon caramel. The best part about this cookie is that it takes just 15 minutes to whip up a batch with about ten servings in it. You will have freshly baked gourmet cookies straight from the oven with only 1.1 grams of net carbs per cookie.

For more delicious and creative keto cookie recipes, take a look at our recipe library. You’ll find meringue cookies, sugar cookies, oreo cookies, no-bake cookies, and much more.

Keeping Cookies in Your Diet

The best news is that cookies do not have to be off-limits just because you are sticking to a keto diet. You can still indulge from time to time, though it may require a little more prep work than simply picking up a carton of Oreos. With some staple pantry items on hand, you can always put together a quick batch of cookies that will be delicious with a glass of (keto-friendly) milk while keeping your body in ketosis. Which recipe will you try out today?

References

1.

Hopkin, L., Broadbent, H., & Ahlborn, G. J. (2021). Influence of almond and coconut flours on Ketogenic, Gluten-Free cupcakes. Food chemistry: X, 13, 100182. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fochx.2021.100182

2.

Cornell University. (2021, February 22). Nuts about almond flour. CCE Suffolk County Family Health & Wellness. Retrieved December 19, 2022, from https://blogs.cornell.edu/ccesuffolkfhw/2021/02/26/nuts-about-almond-flour/ 

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