Participating in a Sugar Study

   Rita’s class assignment – a Holistic Nutrition group study on the substitution of refined sugar products with whole foods – sounded interesting, but I REALLY need some sugar along with the caffeine to get going. My morning chai latte is useless without a tablespoon of sugar in addition to a packet of stevia sweetener (a serious sweet tooth here). As part of tracking results the study participants are registered at Food Prodigy which makes it easier for us guinea pigs to enter our food intake and allows Rita to keep up with each participant. The World’s Healthiest Foods is the class reference list where I found a group of natural sweeteners. Sucanat is evaporated sugar cane juice. Our local grocery store, HEB, has started carrying it in the bulk foods isle and I had purchased some for experimenting. Chai latte is just as good with Sucanat when replacing the white sugar!
   Several friends are also very interested in nutrition and Barb has not only agreed to participate in Rita’s study but she shared with me a recipe for Cinnamon-Pumpkin cookies that she had picked up at a lecture. There is always pumpkin in the cupboard, sometimes 2, 3, 4 cans depending on the season and also Sucanat – check, spices – check, buttery margarine sticks – check, raisins – check, eggs – check. One of these days I will get around to egg replacer so most of these goodies can be vegan as well as gluten-free. I added the bits of molasses, orange extract, coconut flour, and extra cinnamon. Only the cinnamon stands out but the other items contribute to ‘flavor layering’ which subtlety increases the yum factor.
   After I analyzed the nutrient profile to enter these into Food Prodigy for my tracking I realized that they have a pretty good health profile for a cookie!

Oven Ready!

Oven Ready!

Pumpkin-Spice-Raisin Cookies

3/4 cup margarine*
1 cup dried sugar cane juice**
1 teaspoon molasses
1/2 teaspoon orange extract
2 x-large eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin

1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup garbanzo flour
1/2 cup potato flour
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon coconut flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup raisins

   Sift all of the dry ingredients together and set aside. Put the margarine and Sucanat into a medium bowl and cream together adding the molasses and orange (or vanilla) extract. Beat in the two eggs and then the pumpkin. Stir in by hand the dry ingredients until all of the flour is absorbed. Add the raisins and mix well. Drop the cookies by scoop or spoonful onto your cookie pan. This dough does not spread during baking so pat them down to the size that you want. Bake at 375*F until lightly browned. Baking time depends on the size of your cookie.

   The bigger the cookie the better – my scoop is about 1.5 tablespoons and this made 40 cookies that took 14 minutes to bake. Parchment paper makes for less effort in placing the cookies on the pan and for removing them from the pan.

Analysis for one cookie:
Kcal 95, Protein 1g, Fiber 1g, Fat 4g, Carb 14g  
Vitamins A 15.4%,  C 0.7%,  Cal 0.6%,  Iron 3.9%,  E 4.0%                                   

* Earth Balance margarine non-dairy, no hydrogenation, no trans-fat, no cholesterol
** Sucanat is rich in minerals (calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium) trace elements (chromium, copper, zinc, and other) and vitamins.



  1. Ricki said

    These sound great! I don’t use any non-natural sweeteners any more and am happier with the results than I was with the “conventional” baked goods. Adding healthy ingredients like pumpkin to cookies seems like the right thing to do–and tastes soooo good!

  2. Recipe man said

    YUM!! this looks so good.
    i love pumpkin in any form sweet or not


  3. […] a tablespoon of coconut flour much like you would use vanilla to intensify other flavors as in my Pumpkin-Spice-Raisin Cookies .    Garbanzo bean flour is another favorite. I started using it with recipes from Erin […]

  4. […] a tablespoon of coconut flour much like you would use vanilla to intensify other flavors as in my Pumpkin-Spice-Raisin Cookies . Garbanzo bean flour is another favorite. I started using it with recipes from Erin McKenna’s […]

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