Whole grain emmer and oatmeal cookies with chocolate chips and tart cherries {vegan}

I swear these are some of the best cookies I have ever made. One of my favorite things has been to add freshly milled whole grain flour to my baked goods - like with these einkorn shortbread cookies and my Kamut lemon and blueberry loaf.

I recently got some emmer wheat berries from AncientGrains.com - a new source of grains for me. My usual go-to, Breadtopia.com, had been having some low stock on some of my favorite grains, so I got some spelt and emmer berries from here. Emmer, like spelt and einkorn, is considered an ancient grain, which has not been hybridized for thousands of years. I enjoy trying the unique flavors of different wheat varieties, whether ancient or modern. This was the first time I had bought emmer berries, and after baking a great loaf of 100% emmer sourdough, I was ready to test them out in a baked good.

For these cookies, I started with freshly milled emmer flour and whole rolled oats. I used Miyoko's vegan butter, the absolute best for vegan baking, in my opinion. To sweeten them, I used all brown sugar (no white sugar), as well as a touch of molasses, to keep the cookies soft and chewy. I find that so many vegan cookies can be too crisp, and I wanted these to maintain a soft, chewy texture. Finally, I flavored them with vanilla, cinnamon, dried tart cherries, and chocolate chips. It's safe to say that these will be on the rotation for a while.

Ingredients (for 18 cookies):

1/2 cup vegan butter (1 stick or 1/2 a block of Miyoko's)

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 tbsp molasses

1 tbsp ground flax seeds

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/4 cup nondairy milk (I used oat milk)

220g emmer flour, or substitute whole wheat flour, spelt flour, or white flour

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp baking soda

3/4 cup rolled oats

1/3 cup dried tart cherries or raisins

1/3 cup chocolate chips

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.

  2. In a stand mixer or large mixing bowl, mix on medium speed or by hand until light and fluffy. Add the brown sugar and continue to mix until well combined.

  3. Add the molasses, ground flax seeds, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt and continue to mix until well combined. Add the nondairy milk at this point and mix until combined.

  4. In a separate bowl, whisk the emmer flour (or whole wheat flour), baking powder, and baking soda. Add the oats to the main mixing bowl and mix for about 30 seconds until incorporated. Next, add the dry ingredients, half at a time, stirring each time until well combined. Finally, add the chocolate chips and dried cherries, and stir until incorporated.

  5. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Roll the dough into balls slightly larger than golf balls. The cookies will spread in the oven, so separate them well. Slightly flatten each cookie with your fingers before baking.

  6. Bake at 350 F for 12-14 minutes, until just starting to brown. Leave on the pan for 3-5 minutes after removing from the oven for the cookies to solidify. Then, use a spatula to lift the cookies and cool on a wire rack. Once cooled, these will stay chewy for at least 5 days in an airtight container.

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