These chewy, perfectly spiced cookies are a classic around the holidays. We’ve recreated the traditional recipe for a gingerbread recipe that is both delicious and 21-Day Clean Program approved! The spices are arguably the most important aspect of a great gingerbread recipe. Not only to the bring a burst of flavor to each bite, but they bring a host of benefits as well.
THE SPICE OF LIFE
Cinnamon, an excellent source of antioxidants, comes from the oily part of the Cinnamomum tree. The bark of this tree contains all the important aspects that give cinnamon both it’s unique flavor and health benefits. One of the most well-known benefits of cinnamon is its ability to regulate our blood sugar. Additionally, the antioxidant content of cinnamon helps fight oxidative damage, helping to prevent disease, and even helps our skin. Look for “Ceylon” cinnamon, also referred to as “real cinnamon” (this is the highest quality).
Ginger, the star spice of these cookies, helps tremendously with gut-related issues. Ginger has been shown to decrease nausea, improve digestion, and decrease stomach pain. One of the reasons ginger is so helpful with digestive issues is that it helps stimulate saliva which is important for breaking down foods through digestive enzymes. Ginger also encourages the production of bile thanks to its phenolic compounds. Ginger is a diuretic, helping to encourage circulation, sweating, and toxin removal. This makes it the perfect addition during the holidays when eating and drinking can sometimes happen in excess.
VEGAN, LOW-GLYCEMIC AND DELICIOUS
We’ve replaced classic molasses with coconut nectar if you’re making these on your cleanse. Coconut palm sugar and nectar are lower on the glycemic index, meaning they won’t raise your blood sugar as rapidly as other processed sugars. Coconut nectar also has a dark hue, and a thick, sticky texture similar to molasses so you’ll find the same texture you love about gingerbread in this healthier version.
You’ll notice we’ve made a “flax egg” to make this recipe vegan and cleanse-approved. By combining ground flax with water, a gel-like substance is formed, which acts as a binder, so no eggs are needed. You’ll get the added benefits of flax, like heart-healthy omega-3s and fiber.
1 3/4 cups gluten-free flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
1/4 cup coconut nectar or molasses
1/4 cup ghee or coconut oil
1 tablespoon ground flax
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Step 1: Combine ground flax with 2 tablespoons water. Let sit for 5-10 minutes until slightly thickened.
Step 2: Add all ingredients except for gluten-free flour to flax “egg” and whisk until smooth, ideally with an electric mixture. Slowly add flour until fully combined. Mold into a ball, cover, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Step 3: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat dough with gluten-free flour and place between two sheets of parchment paper. Roll out dough until it is about 1/4-1/3 inch thick.
Step 4: Use cookie cutters to carefully cut shapes.
Step 5: Place cookies on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes.
Let cool and serve!
Recipe and photography by Kaitlyn Noble
If you like this recipe, you might also like These Almond Butter Cookies Are Paleo-Friendly