Saturday, November 12, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookies {Gluten, Dairy and Egg-Free}

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Me and chocolate chip cookies have a special relationship.  About a year ago, I was determined to create the perfect gluten, dairy and egg-free chocolate chip cookie recipe.  I had come across a few recipes that were pretty good, but the results just weren't quite what I was looking for.  I figured it couldn't be that hard to take a standard Nestles-style recipe and make it allergy friendly.  Famous last words.  I still don't know what the problem was that day, but I will tell you the results were dissapointing, disasterous, costly, exhausting and messy!  I baked all day long, trying this idea and that, sure that the next batch would be "it".  Well, at the end of the day my husband came home to a kitchen full of cookie attempts.  I must have made five or six different batches with NO SUCCESS!  Some came out as hard balls while others spread out like chewy lace.  I should have stopped and recognized that "today just isn't a good baking day," but when determination strikes sometimes you just keep going.  It wasn't until a few weeks ago, that I had the courage to try again.  And guess what?  My very first attempt yeilded a great cookie and a reasonably simple recipe.  Still don't know what went wrong that fateful cookie-disaster day, but I'm very pleased to have good recipe to share now!

Chocolate Chip Cookies (gluten, dairy and egg-free)

1 ¾ cup sorghum flour
½ cup potato starch (not potato flour)
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1½ tsp xanthan gum
2 TBSP flaxseed meal
1 ½ cups brown sugar
1 cup shortening (Spectrum Naturals organic vegetable shortening)
1 TBSP vanilla extract
cup applesauce
1 cup dairy-free chocolate chips (I use Ghiardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips)
Step 1- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together dry ingredients (flours, baking soda, salt, xanthan gum, and flaxseed meal).

Step 2- In a second large mixing bowl, combine wet ingredients (brown sugar, shortening, vanilla and applesauce).  Cream these wet ingredients together using a hand mixer or a stand mixer such as the Sunbeam.

Step 3 – Add dry ingredient mixture to wet and beat until well combined.  By hand, stir in chocolate chips.

Step 4 – Line cookie sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat.  Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto lined cookie sheet.  Bake at 325 F for about 14 minutes.  If you have cookie sheets baking on both top and bottom oven racks, switch them about halfway through cooking time.

 Step 5 – Let the cookies cool for just a few minutes on the cookie sheet, then transfer to a cooling rack.  What doesn’t get eaten right away, store in an airtight container.  Makes about 4 dozen depending on how much dough you (and your little helpers) sample.

A Note On Dairy-Free Chocolate Chips:  Although there may be other options that I haven't found yet, I know of two good choices.  Enjoy Life semi-sweet mini chips are the safest option as they are certified free of gluten, dairy, eggs, soy and nuts.  If you can't find those, look for Ghirardelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Baking Chips.  As far as I know, these aren't certified free of anything, but the ingredients on the package are "semi-sweet chocolate (sugar, unsweetened chocolate, cocoa butter, soy lecithin - en emulsifier, vanilla)" so I feel fine using these for my family.  Plus, they are really yummy!


  1. I just started eating gluten, egg and dairy free. I made these cookies the other day and they turned out great. My kids loved them and said they taste better then the cookies I used to make (the store bought packages). So thank you for the recipe :)

    1. Courtney - So glad you and your kids enjoyed them! That makes me happy! Thanks for taking the time to let me know.

    2. I would be interested to know if coconut oil worked as well and how much.

      Also, I saw that you tried so hard for this recipe but is there anything I can sub flax seeds for ?

    3. Christine - Usually you can substitute ground chia seed one-to-one for ground flaxseed. I haven't personally tried it, but I can't imagine it not working. If you try it, please come back and let us know of your results!

  2. What can i substitute for the vegetable shortening? 1/2 cup coconut oil??

    1. As you read in the post above, this recipe was a difficult one to come together. I tried many combinations of ingredients and this was the only one that worked for me. I haven't tried coconut oil, but it might be a good option. I really don't have any other suggestions for this one! If you try it with coconut oil, will you please report back so we can all learn from you? Sorry not to be much help. Thanks!

  3. If I just use regular flour, would it be in place of the sorghum and the potato starch and everything else would be the same? thanks!

    1. I have never tried this recipe with regular white flour, so I can't say for sure. But if you want to try it, then yes, replace the sorghum and potato starch with an equal amount of flour - and leave out the xanthan gum. Let us know how it turns out!

  4. Thanks, Paige, getting ready to make them now!

  5. Can I put leftover dough in the fridge? Our first batch just came out of the oven and we ate them warm and they were SO good!!

  6. Have you tried subbing for the potato starch? We have nightshade allergies, among others...

    1. Yes, you can easily replace the potato starch with tapioca starch. I think corn starch or arrowroot would work as well.


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