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20 Healthy Cookie Recipes That Make the Perfect Treat

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20 Healthy Cookie Recipes That Make the Perfect Treat

If you want to satisfy your sweet tooth without sabotaging your diet, then you need to check out these 20 healthy cookie recipes

When a late-night craving strikes, it’s easy to reach into the cookie jar.

It’s no surprise, since so many of us crave sweets.

And even though you know you should be making “healthier choices,” you’ve got a hunch that eating a bowl of frozen grapes isn’t going to trick your brain into thinking it’s getting a real dessert.

Unfortunately, that can mean going in for a 500-calorie homemade cookie or, worse, a whole sleeve of double-stuffed Oreos.

Just like that, your macros have gone by the boards.

Well, you can throw out your stash of high-calorie cookies and turn to these healthy cookie recipes instead.

Whether you’re vegan, gluten-free, or Paleo, you’ll find a healthy cookie recipe here that’s not only delicious but can fit your macros, too.

Enjoy!

PB2 Cookies

PB2 cookies recipe Picture courtesy of Eat Healthy Eat Happy

These are classic peanut butter cookies done light – and no one will know the difference. PB2 peanut flour has a concentrated peanut flavor, so the flavor isn’t diminished at all by leaving out the fat.

The missing oil is replaced with applesauce to keep these low-fat cookies soft. And this recipe can be made vegan or not, in case you’d rather use an egg in place of the ground flaxseed.

Serves 12

Ingredients

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

1 tsp. vanilla

1 Tbsp. ground flaxseed + 3 Tbsp. warm water

1/4 tsp. salt

1/3 cup brown sugar

1 1/4 cups PB2

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 61

Protein: 4 grams

Carbs: 10 grams

Fat: 1 gram

  GET THE RECIPE

Banana Bread Cookie Sandwiches

Banana Bread Sandwich Cookies Picture courtesy of Imma Eat That

These chocolate chip cookie sandwiches are perfect for a celebration – even if you leave off the sprinkles. If you brought them to a bake sale, they’d fly off the table, but these are cookies you won’t want to share.

The cream cheese frosting is lightened up with Greek yogurt, and to make it sugar-free, you can replace the powdered sugar with vanilla whey protein powder.

Serves 6

Ingredients

Frosting:

6 Tbsp. cream cheese, room temp.

1/4 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt

2 1/2 Tbsp. powdered brown sugar

Banana Bread Cookies:

8 Medjool dates, pitted

1 1/4 bananas (about 2/3 cup mashed)

1 1/3 cups whole-wheat flour

3 Tbsp. brown sugar

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 274

Protein: 6 grams

Carbs: 51 grams

Fat: 7 grams 

  GET THE RECIPE

Protein Oatmeal Cookies

High Protein Healthy Oatmeal Cookies Picture courtesy of The Healthy Foodie

The classic oatmeal cookie makes a great base for a nutritious snack. If you keep the oats and sub protein powder for the flour, the result is a delicious cookie that’s soft and chewy. Add even more protein by leaving out the egg yolks, using all whites.

This recipe is finished with raisins, cranberries, and walnuts, but you can leave them out in favor of other healthy cookie mix-ins like nuts and seeds.

Serves 18

Ingredients

1 cup whole-wheat flour

2 cups rolled oats

3 scoops WHEY+ vanilla protein isolate

3/4 tsp. baking soda

3/4 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg

1 cup unsweetened applesauce

3/4 cup egg whites

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 cup raisins

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 126

Protein: 8 grams

Carbs: 18 grams

Fat: 3 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Dark Chocolate Brownie Cookies

avocado healthy cookie recipe Picture courtesy of Laurenda Marie

Eating a whole brownie can be a commitment – and over 300 calories. Get the same rich chocolate flavor in these super soft brownie cookies, which have a hidden ingredient.

Blend up an avocado before adding it to the cookie dough, and you won’t even notice the flavor, just the richness. If you mash the avocado instead, it won’t impact the awesome taste, but green avocado chunks can give away the healthy secret in these fudgy chocolate cookies.

Serves 10

Ingredients

1 medium avocado, ripe

1/2 cup coconut sugar

1 large egg

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 cup dark chocolate mini chips

1 Tbsp. water

1/2 tsp. baking soda

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 150

Protein: 3 grams

Carbs: 21 grams

Fat: 8 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Want to know how to build muscle and lose fat eating delicious foods like these?"Dieting" doesn't have to suck. You CAN eat foods you like and have the body you want!

Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies

lemon cookie recipe Picture courtesy of Where You Get Your Protein

These cookies couldn’t be easier to make, and nobody will know they’re vegan. You need ten basic ingredients, including poppy seeds or chia seeds to replace the eggs.

And if you don’t have lemon extract, get bright flavor from a teaspoon of lemon zest instead. You won’t even need to buy extra ingredients since you’ll already have fresh lemons to juice. Just be sure to zest the peel first, then juice the fruit.

Serves 24

Ingredients

1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup coconut sugar

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. poppy seeds

1/3 cup coconut oil, melted

1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 Tbsp. pure maple syrup

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 tsp. lemon extract

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 81

Protein: 1 gram

Carbs: 12 grams

Fat: 3 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Gingerbread Protein Cookies

gingerbread man cookie Picture courtesy of Protein Buff

Craving cookies every day from Thanksgiving to Christmas? These gingerbread men will satisfy the need for holiday sweets without going overboard on the macros.

They’re made with a mix of whey protein and regular flour, so you get the best of both. Molasses and spices will give these crisp cookies a taste of the season. Decorate with whey protein icing, candy pieces, and sprinkles – or leave them off to enjoy ginger cookies year-round.

Serves 25

Ingredients

1 cup white whole-wheat flour

1 cup unflavored whey protein powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 cup butter, room temp.

1/3 cup blackstrap molasses

3/4 cup granulated erythritol

4 packets stevia powder

1 large egg

1 egg white

1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. ground allspice

1/4 tsp. ground cloves

2 candy canes, crushed (optional)

4 tsp. colored sprinkles (optional)

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 90

Protein: 4 grams

Carbs: 17 grams

Fat: 5 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

High-Protein Oatmeal Raisin Cookie-Cake

oatmeal raisin protein cookie Picture courtesy of Power Hungry

When you can’t decide between cookies or cake, try this high-protein dessert for one. This looks like a sugary iced cake, the kind you’d get in a bakery or find individually wrapped in plastic, but the base is white beans, rice protein, and oats.

Drizzle the top with melted white chocolate, or make a protein icing by stirring non-dairy milk into whey protein powder until it reaches the desired consistency.

Serves 12

Ingredients

1 can (15 oz.) white beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

1/2 cup vanilla rice protein powder

2 1/2 Tbsp. coconut sugar

2 Tbsp. almond butter

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp. salt

1 cup rolled oats

1/4 cup raisins, coarsely chopped

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 110

Protein: 7 grams

Carbs: 16 grams

Fat: 2 grams 

  GET THE RECIPE

Chunky Monkey Quinoa Breakfast Cookies

chunky monkey quinoa breakfast cookies Picture courtesy of Simply Quinoa

Turn your favorite ice cream flavor into a healthy breakfast cookie. These have the same winning combo of bananas, walnuts, and chocolate chips. But unlike the indulgent frozen dessert, these clean-eating vegan cookies are sweetened with dates.

Serves 16

Ingredients

1 Tbsp. ground flaxseed + 3 Tbsp. water

1/2 cup peanut butter

1/4 cup pure maple syrup

1 medium banana, mashed

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup quinoa flakes

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 cup dark chocolate chips

1/4 cup chopped walnuts

2 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped

1 Tbsp. chia seeds

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 120

Protein: 4 grams

Carbs: 13 grams

Fat: 7 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Almond Flour Shortbread Cookies

almond flour shortbread cookies Picture courtesy of King Arthur Flour

Shortbread cookies are simple, but the small list of ingredients means they tend to have a lot of butter. When you use ground almonds to replace flour, there’s enough oil to cut down the amount of butter too.

The final result is even more flavorful – a slightly nutty shortbread with a lighter texture and more micronutrients.

Serves 12

Ingredients

1 cup almond flour

3 Tbsp. butter, softened

3 Tbsp. powdered sugar

1/8 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 87

Protein: 2 grams

Carbs: 4 grams

Fat: 8 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Double Chocolate Protein Cookies

double chocolate protein cookies recipe Picture courtesy of iFoodReal

Whey protein provides awesome nutrition no matter how you serve it. Yet when you mix it into a baked treat like cookies, the result can be dry and spongy.

Luckily there are a lot of ways to resolve that, including mashing soft fruit like avocado and bananas to replace the usual butter.

Serves 14

Ingredients

1/2 large avocado, mashed

2 medium bananas, mashed

2 scoops WHEY+ vanilla protein isolate

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3 Tbsp. dark chocolate chunks

1/2 cup rolled oats

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 86

Protein: 5 grams

Carbs: 11 grams

Fat: 4 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Chickpea Thumbprint Cookies

Vegan Chickpea Thumbprint Cookies Picture courtesy of The Colorful Kitchen

Since thumbprint cookies have fruit in the middle, they may seem healthy, but the traditional recipe is actually a butter cookie. And unless you choose an all-natural fruit spread over a super sweetened jelly, you’re going to be eating a sugar and fat bomb.

This healthy thumbprint recipe uses chickpeas and peanut butter instead for a nutritious PB&J cookie.

Serves 12

Ingredients

1 can (15 oz.) chickpeas

1/2 cup peanut butter (or nut butter of choice)

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1/4 cup agave syrup

1 tsp. baking powder

Pinch of salt

1/4 cup rolled oats

1/2 cup 100% strawberry fruit spread

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 146

Protein: 4 grams

Carbs: 20 grams

Fat: 6 grams 

  GET THE RECIPE

Coconut Macaroons

coconut macaroon cookie Picture courtesy of Protein Pow

Traditional macaroons are really easy to make with just a handful of ingredients. To turn the classic coconut cookie into a protein-packed treat, you don’t need to change the recipe too much, especially since the original already uses egg whites.

Replace the small amount of flour with a scoop of whey protein powder, and choose unsweetened coconut to control the added sugar, or leave it out altogether with an alternative like erythritol.

Serves 4

Ingredients

1/4 cup liquid egg whites

1/4 cup (1 scoop) WHEY+ vanilla protein isolate

1/4 cup granulated erythritol (or sugar)

7/8 cup unsweetened desiccated coconut

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 176

Protein: 8 grams

Carbs: 17 grams

Fat: 13 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Spiced Chai Tea Protein Cookies

spiced chai tea healthy cookie Picture courtesy of Protein Treats by Nicolette

Who says you can’t have cookies in the middle of the day? These spiced tea cookies are perfect for an afternoon snack. The oats and protein powder will keep you full until dinner, while the spiced chai and honey will pair well with your midday coffee or cup of tea.

Serves 15

Ingredients

1/2 cup coconut oil, melted

1/4 cup pure honey

1 Tbsp. loose chai tea leaves

1 large egg, room temp.

1 1/3 cups oat flour

1 scoop WHEY+ vanilla protein isolate

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. ground cardamom

1 tsp. baking soda

Dash of salt

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 125

Protein: 3 grams

Carbs: 11 grams

Fat: 8 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Vanilla Chocolate Cookie Dough Protein Balls

vanilla chocolate cookie dough bites Picture courtesy of The Big Man’s World

Shrink down a black and white cookie into these sweet protein snacks. You’ll still get a mix of chocolate and vanilla flavor, only they’re bite-sized and icing-free.

And instead of being made with basically just sugar and flour, these no-bake cookies have complex carbs from ground oats, protein from whey isolate, and rich flavor from nut butter or even Nutella.

Serves 12

Ingredients

Vanilla Cookie Dough:

1 cup oat flour

2 scoops WHEY+ vanilla protein isolate

2 Tbsp. almond butter (or cashew butter)

Pinch of sea salt

1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk (more if needed)

Chocolate Cookie Dough:

1 cup oat flour

2 scoops WHEY+ chocolate protein isolate

2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder

2 Tbsp. almond butter (or homemade Nutella)

Pinch of sea salt

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (more or less as needed)

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 134

Protein: 11 grams

Carbs: 13 grams

Fat: 5 grams 

  GET THE RECIPE

Flourless Pistachio Cookies

Flourless Pistachio Cookies Picture courtesy of Nutrizonia

These cookies have a base of ground oats and pistachios, but that’s not the only reason they’re green.

Avocado can replace the butter or oil in cookies, which adds a healthy fat from a whole food source. These gluten-free cookies are decadent, yet only contain nutrient-dense ingredients, especially if you use a raw local honey.

Serves 12

Ingredients

1 medium avocado

1/4 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. rose water (optional)

1/2 cup oat flour

1/4 cup pure honey

1 cup crushed pistachios

6 cardamom pods (or 1 tsp. ground cardamom)

2 oz. dark chocolate (or white chocolate)

1 Tbsp. crushed pistachios (optional garnish)

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 125

Protein: 2 grams

Carbs: 14 grams

Fat: 7 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Chocolate Chip Cream Cheese Cookies

chocolate chip healthy cookie Picture courtesy of Chocolate-Covered Katie

These chocolate chip cookies are satisfying, but don’t need any butter or white flour. Instead, start by grinding oats for the base, and then use just a touch of cream cheese and coconut oil for super soft cookies.

The dough comes together quickly, although it’s best chilled before the cookies go in the oven. Keep the individual cookie dough balls in the freezer for up to a month, and you can bake one whenever you get a craving.

Serves 12

Ingredients

1/3 cup + 1/4 cup oat flour

1/8 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/4 cup dark chocolate chips

1/4 cup granulated xylitol

3 Tbsp. full-fat cream cheese (or Tofutti)

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 Tbsp. coconut oil, melted

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 58

Protein: 1 gram

Carbs: 6 grams

Fat: 3 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Healthy Green Tea Sugar Cookies

Healthy Matcha Green Tea cookie Picture courtesy of Desserts with Benefits

These matcha cookies are delicious whether you add the cream cheese filling or not. If you’re in the mood to make sandwich cookies, mix three tablespoons of honey and three teaspoons of matcha into a package of light cream cheese.

Without the filling, these cookies won’t contain added sugar, yet still deliver big on the taste of vanilla green tea. For more healthy indulgences, pick up The Naughty or Nice Cookbook, which includes cakes, pies, and even French macaron cookies.

naughty or- nice cook book

Serves 14

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups oat flour

1/2 cup granulated erythritol

1 Tbsp. matcha powder (or more to taste)

1 tsp. double-acting baking powder

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 cup coconut oil, softened

1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk, room temp.

2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 tsp. natural butter flavor

1 tsp. stevia extract

30 drops almond extract

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 113

Protein: 1 gram

Carbs: 17 grams

Fat: 9 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Sugar Detox Pumpkin Cookies

low carb pumpkin cookie Picture courtesy of What’s That Smell?

Cookies don’t have to be carb overload, and achieving that doesn’t require a sugar substitute. Pumpkin puree already tastes amazing, so it’s a great base for a healthy dessert.

When mixed with eggs and richly flavored coconut, pumpkin doesn’t even need flour or sweetener to turn into awesome cookies. A little ground cinnamon – or pumpkin pie spice, if you have it – makes these a great fall dessert.

Serves 12

Ingredients

1/2 cup pumpkin puree

2 tsp. coconut oil

2 large eggs

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 Tbsp. coconut flour

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 78

Protein: 2 grams

Carbs: 3 grams

Fat: 7 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Cookies

chocolate peanut butter healthy cookie recipe Picture courtesy of Cooking Up Happiness

Baking with whey protein can change the flavor, but if you use an ingredient like peanut butter to soften the cookies, you’ll never know they’re flourless.

And you can make chocolate cookies that taste similar to a peanut butter cup. Eating a couple of these, in comparison, nets a fraction of the fat and over double the protein of a package of Reese’s.

Serves 12

Ingredients

1 large egg

1/3 cup creamy peanut butter

1 tsp. vanilla extract

2 Tbsp. agave maple syrup

1 Tbsp. brown sugar

1/2 cup (2 scoops) WHEY+ chocolate protein isolate

1 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder

Sea salt (optional topping)

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 74

Protein: 6 grams

Carbs: 5 grams

Fat: 3 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

Mini Cashew Cookies

cashew cookie Picture courtesy of Skinny Chef

These cookies may be small, but the rich flavor and healthy fats will fill you up. And with a whole cashew on top of each one, plus a touch of powdered sugar, these mini cookies are enticing enough to belong on any dessert platter.

They’re also a great option for the holidays since they’re not too much dessert to enjoy after a big meal.

Serves 48

Ingredients

3/4 cup reduced-fat creamy peanut butter

3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed

6 Tbsp. vegan buttery spread

2 egg whites

2 tsp. vanilla extract

3/4 cup whole-wheat flour

1/3 cup ground flaxseed

1/4 cup rolled oats

1 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. ground allspice

1/8 tsp. ground cayenne

48 whole cashews (about 1/4 lb.)

1/4 cup powdered sugar

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

Calories: 70

Protein: 2 grams

Carbs: 6 grams

Fat: 4 grams

  GET THE RECIPE

What did you think of these healthy cookie recipes? Have anything else to share? Let me know in the comments below!

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I'm Mike and I'm the creator of Muscle for Life and Legion Athletics, and I believe that EVERYONE can achieve the body of their dreams.

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  • Thanks for stopping by and checking out my article. I hope you enjoyed it.

    Feel free to comment below if you have any questions. I do my best to check and reply to every comment left on my blog, so don’t be shy!

    Oh and if you like what I have to say, you should sign up for my free weekly newsletter! You’ll get awesome, science-based health and fitness tips, delicious “guilt-free” recipes, articles to keep you motivated, and much more!

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    Your information is safe with me too. I don’t share, sell, or rent my lists. Pinky swear!

  • MarkH

    Hey Mike, just wanted to let you know, the link for the coconut macaroons redirects to the wrong recipe.

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