Baked with juicy dates and a bite of fresh citrus, these whole grain tahini cookies are refreshing and delicious. They also happen to be vegan. What’s not to love?
Other than being a pretty delicious reason to raise myself up out of bed this morning, these tahini cookies aren’t too shabby on the nutritional front, either.
On the sweet side, yes, but they’re also made with whole grains, fruit, and tahini—which is simply the ground up paste of sesame seeds. Tahini makes pretty much anything more delicious (I use it to make sauces and dressings on the regular), and it’s also a good way to add more fiber, protein, and good-for-you fats to your repertoire.
The result of mixing sesame seed paste into this year’s holiday-cookie batter? A satisfying combination of pure deliciousness mixed with equal parts hearty and healthy.
And can we please also just talk about the flavor?
There’s no baked-good shortage this time of year, but hear me out, because there’s a reason these tahini cookies stand out from the crowd.
In a sea of peppermint and gingerbread, I want something different.
Real fruit. Something nutty. Maybe a dash of cinnamon. And you can never go wrong with the refreshing burst that is fresh citrus.
Oh, no. These are not your average holiday cookies.
The fact that they’re easily made vegan is like the (2-ingredient) chocolate sauce on top.
I almost forgot to mention the best part.
These babies are “one bowl.” Meaning you only need one big bowl (and a cookie sheet) to get the job done.
Cookies for breakfast and easier cleanup? It really is the most joyful time of the year. Isn’t it?
- ⅓ cup tahini stirred (see note)
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons orange juice, fresh
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2/3 cups pitted, chopped dates
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- ½ cup chocolate chips (vegan if desired)
- Chopped pistachios
- Grated orange peel
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and lightly grease a cookie sheet.
- Whisk tahini, maple syrup, orange juice, and vanilla in a large bowl.
Stir in flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Continue stirring until the mixture turns into a uniform ball of dough. Fold in chopped dates.
- Spoon out about 1 ½ tablespoons of dough and use your hands to shape into a round ball. Place on cookie sheet and press lightly with fingers or a fork to form a disc shape with the dough. Repeat with remaining dough, spreading at least two inches away from each other on cookie sheet. Place on center rack of oven and bake 13-15 minutes, or until bottoms are golden-brown.
- Remove from oven and cool on cookie sheet 5 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.
- Melt coconut oil and chocolate chips in small saucepan over low-medium heat. Whisk until blended and remove from heat. Transfer to a small bowl (one with a narrow, deep bottom is easiest for dipping).
- For chocolate-dipped: Once cooled, hold the upper half of a cookie in your hand and dip the bottom half into the bowl of chocolate sauce until fully coated. Place the dipped cookie on parchment paper and sprinkle with chopped pistachios and/or grated orange peel if desired. Refrigerate cookies to harden chocolate sauce if needed.
- For chocolate drizzle: Spread cooled cookies on parchment paper. Dip a small spatula into bowl of chocolate sauce and wave it back and forth over the cookies. Sprinkle chopped pistachios and/or grated orange peel on top if desired. Refrigerate cookies to harden chocolate sauce if needed.
Recipe tested with Ziyad brand tahini. If tahini is to thick to whisk, microwave 30 seconds to melt first.
This recipe was developed in a high-altitude environment. Cookies are less susceptible to altitude-related differences than other baked goods, but please feel free to send feedback if you try these out and happen to live closer to sea level.