Almond meal gets a bad rap sometimes, possibly because it doesn’t work well in recipes where you want a finer, lighter result. But it does work well in some recipes, and I’ve been experimenting to find out where it does work.
Here’s a batch of chocolate chip cookies using almond meal that delivers a crunchy sugar-based cookie. This recipe reminds me of the chocolate chip cookies I’ve made with whole wheat flour and brown sugar. It has a crunchy, grainy texture, along with the deep sweet flavor that brown sugar provides. I’m using an unrefined brown sugar called Demerara, so if you’re going to venture out with sugar, I recommend you use a high quality, unrefined brown sugar. It probably works well with other sugars, but I haven’t tried them yet. If you glance at my other cookie recipes, you’ll gather that I prefer honey and maple syrup for sweetening things. And of course, agave nectar is interchangeable with honey in almost all recipes.
One advantage to using almond meal is that you can whip up flour at a moment’s notice without needing blanched almonds. If you have organic almonds, even better because it’s really hard to find organic blanched almond flour, and it’s even more expensive than regular blanched almond flour.
I use almond meal from Trader Joe’s with this recipe just for convenience, but feel free to use any source for almond meal. For more on sources for almond flour and almond meal, see Baking with Almond Flour. And here are more cookies using almond flour.
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Ingredients (makes about 24 cookies)
- 2 1/2 cups of almond meal
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
- 8 tablespoons of unsalted butter, melted (or 1/2 cup of coconut oil or vegetable shortening, melted)
- 1/3 cup of Demarara (or other unrefined brown sugar)
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon of vanilla
- 1 cup of chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl and blend with a spoon.
- Add the wet ingredients and blend it well with a spoon.
- Drop about a tablespoon of batter in each cookie spot on the cookie sheets. Space them about 1 inch apart. Press them down to flatten into a cookie (they don’t spread when baking)
- Bake for 15 minutes, or until they are starting to brown around the edges.
- If you want them crunchier, leave them in the oven at 200 degrees F for about 20 minutes, or in a dehydrator on a fairly low temperature for about 2 hours.
- Cool and enjoy. Store in a sealed container.