If you’ve been following my blog for the past few weeks you’ll know that I’ve gotten a little obsessed with perfecting the perfect gluten-free ginger chocolate chip cookie recipe.  And since today was 87 degrees out, I of course felt right at home firing up the oven and “warming” up our apartment some more. (But believe me, these cookies ARE worth it!)

My cookie

Where today’s cookies differ from my past two attempts is in the texture and stability of the cookie (i.e.  they hold together when you pick them up, yet are not dry or “sandy” feeling on the tongue.)  The biggest difference of course is the almond flour I used.  I’m now a convert to the almond flour at Nuts.com.  The texture of their flour is extremely fine – almost powdery – and the result is cookies (and other baked goods) that appear very similar to the results you’d get if you used regular flour.  Yay for Nuts.com!   (Oh, and by the way, they also threw in a little bonus package of Chia seeds with my order…that’s what I call excellent customer service!)  I’ll be back to order more almond flour and other healthy products from them soon.

The almond flour instructions from Nuts.com say to replace the volume of flour in your recipe with the same volume of almond flour.  For the base of my recipe, therefore, I turned to an old standby from my kitchen library – The Great Big Cookie Book.

Their Tollhouse Cookie recipe (with my additions/changes) follows:


(Makes about 24 cookies)

Ingredients for my Magic Almond Chocolate Ginger cookies

1/2 cup unsalted butter (I use Kerrygold Irish butter from grass-fed cows)

scant 1/4 cup of coconut sugar

10 packets of Splenda sugar substitute

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 well-packed cup almond flour

1/8 cup coconut flour

scant 1 teaspoon baking soda

pinch salt

1 cup chocolate chips

1/4 cup chopped crystallized ginger

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. With an electric mixer, cream together the butter and the two sugars until the mixture is well combined and fluffy.
  3. In another bowl, mix the egg and vanilla extract, then gradually beat into the butter mixture. (The mixture will appear fairly liquid at this point.)  Stir in the almond and coconut flours, baking soda and salt until blended.
  4. Add the chocolate chips and chopped ginger, and mix to combine thoroughly.

chopped ginger and cookie dough

5. Place heaping teaspoonfuls of the dough 2 inches apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper.

cookies ready to go in the oven

6. Bake for 7-10 minutes, until lightly colored.  Let cool for 15 minutes on the cookie sheet before removing to a wire rack to further cool.

cookies fresh out of the oven

7. Drool, then enjoy.

Cookies and milk

A few notes…

  • I used to hate ginger (crystallized, or in any other form) as a child.  Now I love it.  If you’re not into ginger, leave it out.  (Another nice option would be to substitute chopped candied orange peel…and Nuts.com just happens to carry it!)
  • When working with almond flour in baked goods, increase the baking soda or baking powder by a 1/3 of a teaspoon. (My recipe has already accounted for this increase.)
  • 12 packets of Splenda = 1/2 cup regular sugar.  I used 10 packets because I wanted to try to cut down on the sugar.  I also used coconut sugar (supposedly less glycemic than regular sugar) instead of the brown sugar in the original recipe.
  • I added coconut flour since a small amount of this gluten-free flour tends to help firm up an otherwise wet cookie dough.  Using it also helps to stretch my almond flour stash…
  • I store these cookies in a sealed plastic container in the freezer.  That way they will keep longer while still having that just-out-of-the-oven fresh taste.  (Cookies “thaw” very quickly…heck, they’re even good frozen, too!)


  1. Helen Reich says:

    This sounds great. I’m not much of a cookie baker, but I can see making an exception for something like this. I would probably change a couple,things, but the whole concept sounds divine. We just hired two violists, which was a surprise, as there was only one opening advertised. Go figure. I was not on the committee, so don’t know any first hand details. We are doing Cosi wth Edo this weekend. The soloists sound excellent, and the staging is edgy……should be quite entertaining. Beautiful music, never played it before, I don’t think. Unfortunately, my body feels like it’s about to break in half.

    • Joana says:

      Hi Helen,

      The cookies are really good, although I might still try to lessen the sugar. (The crystallized ginger adds sugar, too.) I read that you can reduce sugar in recipes by about 25%. The tricky thing is that if you reduce the sugar too much the consistency of the cookie changes and it’s also liable not to brown. One substitution for a portion of the sugar apparently can be powdered milk. I might experiment with that….

      I’m glad to hear that the MSO hired two violists. I figure that with Wendy, me, Sara, Wei-Ting, and Larry gone you’ve been down 5 players, right? Who were the two new hires?

      I hope you are enjoying playing Cosi. I think the music is so sublime…

      And I hope you get some needed rest, too! xox – Joana

      On Thu, Sep 17, 2015 at 1:39 AM, JOANA MIRANDA STUDIO wrote:


  2. Helen Reich says:

    We hired Nicole Sutterfield and Beth Breslin. I think those are the correct names. One is currently in Santa Rosa, one in San Antonio. Erin will be thrilled to move to the back of the section with yours truly! Cosi just ended. Amazing vocalists, long opera. Gorgeous music, clever staging, quite entertaining. My back hurts……

    • Joana says:

      Hi Helen,

      For some reason I didn’t get notifications this time around of your comments (this one and the one about artsnacks.com). Anyway, I’m not familiar with either of the new viola hires, but I’m glad that you will have more support in the section. So you and Erin will now share a stand? Is Erin still using a special chair? Did you ever get to the bottom of your back/nerve disorder? I think of you whenever my back itches…;-)

      I didn’t know about Artsnacks, but at $20 per month, the price does seem pretty steep. I see a lot of monthly subscription “boxes” online these days. Makeup boxes seem to be very popular…I’m sticking with the freebies I get from Sephora when I make a purchase.

      XOX –

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