Sugar & Gluten Free Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies
I absolutely love the flavour combination of hazelnut and chocolate! The thought of Nutella, Baci chocolate or a chocolate and hazelnut gelato combo gets my mouth watering and if you're the same then you're going to absolutely love this recipe. Think of a flourless chocolate hazelnut cake but just smaller and much easier to make. These sugar free & gluten free cookies are soft and chewy with a little crunch from the toasted hazelnuts on top of the cookie. Give it a try and see how you like it.
I have used xylitol in this recipe as the sugar replacement as it tastes and bakes like sugar, with no aftertaste. This is my preferred sugar alternative to stevia or monk fruit but if I had to choose between stevia and monk fruit, I would go for monk fruit. Sometimes monk fruit impacts the texture of the final product so you might need to test it out first and see how you go.
So, what is xylitol you might ask? The non-scientific answer is that it’s a naturally occurring sugar alcohol found in most plant material and is a common ingredient used in sugar free chewing gum, candies and oral care products. Typically, xylitol is processed from the birch tree or corn, but I always go for 100% birch xylitol. Xylitol has 40% less calories than sugar and doesn’t raise blood sugar levels, making it a popular sweetener in low carb products. There is a lot of information about xylitol on the web, take a look if you’re not sure about whether it suits your dietary requirements.
Not so worried about the sugar then just swap the xylitol with caster (superfine white) sugar.
Okay, here’s how to make it.
What you’ll need:
3 cups hazelnut meal
1/4 cup good quality Dutch cocoa - I use Van Houten Cacao
1 cup xylitol
3 lightly beaten egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup crushed hazelnuts to top the cookies
How to make it:
- Mix hazelnut meal, cocoa, xylitol in a bowl until well combined.
- Add the vanilla essence to the lightly beaten egg whites and whisk through.
- Add egg white mixture to the hazelnut mixture and combine until it forms a soft dough – the mixture will be on the slightly sticky side.
- Roll into balls in the palm of your hand – in terms of sizing you can make then any size you like, I normally work on 1½ tablespoons for sizing. Slightly flatten and place the cookies onto a cookie tray lined with baking paper. Sprinkle cookies with the crushed hazelnuts.
- Place in a pre-heated oven at 180°C or 350° F for 20-25 minutes.
- Cool and store in an airtight container and will keep for a few days if they last…
I hope you enjoy these!