One of the first jobs I had in high school was working at a daycare. I was one of the leads in the afternoon preschool room, but eventually started working with toddlers and babies. It was an AMAZING learning experience for the future and I loved every minute of it. After high school I took up a few nanny jobs, which allowed me to essentially become a part of a new family.
Anytime I babysat on the weekends, I’d have baking parties with the kids. Everything from chocolate chip cookies to brownies and cake. Oh and this banana bread was always a favorite. One afternoon I decided to make the kids these healthier monster cookies without all the excess butter and sugar. I wanted them to have a treat that still felt like a real deal kind of cookie, but had more protein, complex carbs and healthy fats.
The verdict? The kids LOVED them! In fact, they started calling them ‘dinosaur’ cookies instead of monster cookies (cute, huh?). When I would babysat every other Saturday, they’d beg me to make this monster cookie recipe. In all honesty, I kinda forgot these cookies for a few years so that’s probably why I never gave you the recipe.
But finally, here we are! I’m sharing this chewy, healthier monster cookie recipe with you today in hopes that you’ll make it soon. Perfect for Halloween, too!
Ingredients in healthy monster cookies
These delicious flourless monster cookies use super simple ingredients that you probably have in your pantry. Of course, I still kept the chocolate chips and candy pieces because it’s not a monster cookie without them. I also added nuts for some additional flavor and healthy fats and shredded coconut for amazing texture. Feel free to get creative with the mix-ins, too! Here’s what you’ll need:
- Peanut butter: use an all natural, drippy peanut butter that’s made just with peanuts + salt. You can also use an all natural crunchy peanut butter or any nut or seed butter you’d like.
- Butter: for a little extra moisture. You can use regular butter, vegan butter, ghee or coconut oil.
- Brown sugar: the delicious molasses flavor of brown sugar makes these cookies irresistible. You can also use coconut sugar.
- Eggs: you’ll need 2 eggs for this recipe. I also think that flax eggs will work fine, just note that they’ll be a bit more fragile.
- Vanilla: for a little boost of flavor.
- Oats: be sure to use rolled oats (not steel cut) and feel free to use a gluten free kind.
- Cinnamon: I like to add a pinch of cinnamon for a cozy flavor but this is optional.
- Baking soda: so that these cookies bake properly.
- Mix-ins: I packed these babies with chocolate chips, M&M’s, shredded coconut and chopped pecans. But you can really add any mix-ins you like!
If you don’t want to use M&M’s try using the Little Secrets candy instead. They’re really, really good and don’t use any corn syrup, dyes or artificial flavors.
What makes these monster cookies healthy?
- They’re packed with protein & healthy fats: peanut butter makes up most of this recipe so you get in protein & healthy fats for a little nourishment without using tons of extra oil. Each cookie has almost 5g of protein — whoo hoo!
- They’re flourless: that’s right, these healthy monster cookies are made without any flour. The peanut butter and oats hold together very, very well even without any traditional flour. They’re also gluten free as long as you use certified gluten free rolled oats!
- They have a boost of fiber: the rolled oats in these cookies adds a wonderful boost of fiber for a super satisfying treat.
Customize your healthy monster cookies
- Make them vegan: try using a flax egg to make these vegan! They just might be a little more fragile so let them rest on the baking sheet a bit longer before removing them. You’ll also need to use dairy free/vegan chocolate chips and vegan chocolate candies instead of M&M’s.
- Reduce the sugar: if you’re watching your sugar intake, I have instructions for easily reducing the brown sugar. You can also used an unrefined sweetener like coconut sugar, and can always leave out the candy pieces.
- Choose your fav add-ins: traditional monster cookies have both M&M’s and chocolate chips in them, but you can feel free to add your favorite nuts, dried fruit, or even do a chocolate drizzle. YUM.
How to store and freeze monster cookies
- To store: feel free to keep these healthy monster cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for 1-2 days, then transfer to the fridge or freezer.
- To freeze: make sure the cookies are completely cooled, and then transfer them to an airtight container lined with wax or parchment paper or freezer-safe bag before storing them in the freezer for up to 2 months. I like to place them in a single layer to avoid any cookies breaking. Once ready to eat, simply thaw out at room temperature and enjoy!
More healthy cookie recipes to try:
I hope you love these healthy flourless monster cookies! If you make them be sure to leave a comment and a rating so I know how you liked them. Enjoy, xo!
Healthy Flourless Monster Cookies
Incredible healthy monster cookies packed with peanut butter flavor, chocolate chips, coconut, chocolate candy pieces and nuts. These flourless monster cookies are a wholesome take on a childhood classic you know and love! Easy to make and great for customizing.
- Wet ingredients:
- 1 cup natural creamy or chunky peanut butter (only peanuts + salt)
- 2 tablespoon melted butter or ghee (melted coconut oil will also work)
- 2/3 cup packed brown sugar or coconut sugar (can also reduce to 1/2 cup with good results!)
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Dry ingredients:
- 1 cup gluten free old fashioned rolled oats
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- Optional: ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- For the mix ins:
- ¼ cup M&M’s, plus ¼ cup more for topping cookies
- ¼ cup dark chocolate chips
- ¼ cup chopped pecans or walnuts
- ¼ cup unsweetened shredded coconut (not the big flakes)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl mix together the wet ingredients until smooth: peanut butter, melted butter/ghee, brown sugar, eggs and vanilla extract.
Next stir in the oats, baking soda and cinnamon. Finally add in all of your mix-ins: M&Ms, dark chocolate chips, nuts and shredded coconut.
Use a large cookie scoop to scoop rounded balls of dough onto prepared baking sheet, leaving 2 inches of space between them to spread. Add a few M&Ms on top of each dough ball. If you like fat cookies, do not flatten the dough. If you like thinner cookies, use your hands to gently flatten the tops of the dough before baking.
Bake for 10-13 minutes until edges are barely golden brown. Allow cookies to sit on cookie sheet for 5-10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling. This is an important step. Enjoy!
To make vegan: I suggest using a flax egg; they just might be a little more fragile so let them rest on the baking sheet a bit longer before removing them. You'll also need to use dairy free/vegan chocolate chips and vegan chocolate candies instead of M&M's.
To make nut free: Try subbing in sunflower seed butter or pumpkin seed butter. Sometimes sunflower seed butter causes baked goods to turn green FYI; they'll still be good to eat though.
To store: feel free to keep these healthy monster cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for a few days, then transfer to the fridge or freezer.
To freeze: make sure the cookies are completely cooled, and then transfer them to an airtight container lined with wax or parchment paper or freezer-safe bag before storing them in the freezer for up to 2 months. I like to place them in a single layer to avoid any cookies breaking. Once ready to eat, simply thaw out at room temperature and enjoy!