I had a bumper crop of squash this year - all from two plants! So we are overflowing with yellow squashes and zucchini and I need to come up with things to do with them. We've had lots of zucchini bread and muffins! I'll be making more for the freezer - they will be great on school mornings. But I was also informed the other day by my almost 6 year old son that "chocolate chip cookies make the house more fun". So I thought I'd see if I could find something to combine the two. I wasn't thrilled with any of the recipes I found online, so I came up with something on my own. I have a very old Betty Crocker cookbook with a cookie recipe called "Jubilee Jumbles", that we have used in our family for years, for the base of applesauce and persimmon cookies. I thought that recipe might just be the perfect place to start and adapt from.
I thought that making a somewhat 'healthy' cookie would result in something that was 'good', but not amazing. And I was ok with that. But I have to say - I think these cookies are amazing! I was shocked at how good they taste. Unless you take them apart and look for it, you would never know that there was zucchini in these. They are delicious! (and I ate way too many!).
So here is the recipe I came up with. This is a double recipe, I wanted to do half with chocolate chips and half with raisins. So feel free to split this in half if you want. This is the first time I've made this exact recipe, so I think it probably could still be tweaked. You could probably get away with a little less sugar, or experiment with different kinds of sweeteners. I used all whole wheat flour and whole rolled oats because I wanted it to be a little healthier - but AP flour would work well too. And maybe the oil could be cut back a little too - or add in some applesauce to replace it. But for a first attempt - I think this is a great starting point!
Zucchini Oat Cookies
4+ cups shredded or grated zucchini
3 cups brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup vegetable oil
2 Cups whole wheat flour (plus a little extra if needed)
3 1/2 cups old fashioned rolled oats (plus a little extra if needed)
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup raisins and/or dried cranberries
Combine zucchini, sugar, eggs, vanilla and oil first and let sit for a few minutes. Mixing the zucchini in first helps draw the water out of it. Next, combine dry ingredients (except chocolate chips and raisins). Mix wet and dry together well. I split my dough in half to two bowls, mixed the chocolate chips in one bowl, and the raisins in the other. At this point, depending on how juicy your zucchini was, you may need a little more flour and/or oats. Mine was a little loose - more like a batter than a dough, because the squash I have grown this year has been some of the juiciest I've ever seen. So I added about 1/2 cup more whole wheat flour to the chocolate chip mixture, and about 3/4 cup more oats to the raisin mixture. This made them more like a cookie dough consistency. I also added another teaspoon of cinnamon to the raisin dough, because I like my oatmeal raisin cookies to have lots of cinnamon.
Drop by spoonfulls onto a cookie sheet and bake! I did 12 - 14 minutes at 325 convection - but in a non-convection oven I think 350 would be about right.