Low Sugar Cinnamon Raisin-Spice Cookies Recipe — Registered Dietitian Columbia SC - Rachael Hartley Nutrition (2024)

These easy low sugar cinnamon raisin-spice cookies are naturally sweetened with a surprise ingredient - raisin paste! It gives these cookies a dense, chewy texture and sweet flavor without adding sugar. It also replaces eggs and butter, making these cookies vegan, and also gluten free with almond flour!

Low Sugar Cinnamon Raisin-Spice Cookies Recipe — Registered Dietitian Columbia SC - Rachael Hartley Nutrition (1)

By posting this recipe, I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the California Raisin Marketing board and am eligible to win prizes associated with this contest. I was not compensated for my time. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Yes, these low sugar cinnamon raisin-spice cookies are gluten free, vegan and made with no added sugar. They are also insanely delicious, dense, and chewy.

You may be doubtful such a cookie exists, especially the whole 'insanely delicious' part. Let me assure you, these cookies are all I've made them out to be...and more.

Low Sugar Cinnamon Raisin-Spice Cookies Recipe — Registered Dietitian Columbia SC - Rachael Hartley Nutrition (2)

What’s the Secret Ingredient for These Low Sugar Cinnamon Raisin-Spice Cookies?

What's my secret for making these low sugar cinnamon-raisin spice cookies? It’s in the name! A basic, pantry staple you probably already have on hand - raisins!

If you only enjoy raisins as a snack, let me tell you, you've been doing the raisin thing all wrong. Sure, a handful of raisins is a tasty option to tide you over between meals, and a sprinkle of raisins is a lovely topping for your oatmeal. But by far, my favorite use for raisins is as a sugar substitute in baking.

In this recipe for low sugar cinnamon raisin spice cookies, I use raisins to make a quick and easy paste to sweeten the cookies. With it’s moisture and sweetness, it replaces both butter and sugar. It’s definitely not the same consistency as regular cookies, but it’s got a texture that’s a little more granola bar like.

How to Make Raisin Paste

To make a sweet, raisin paste for these low sugar cinnamon raisin spice cookies, simply soak raisins in warm water for 15 minutes then puree in a food processor, adding a little bit of soaking liquid if needed to thin. The paste can be used to sweeten smoothies, oatmeal, on peanut butter sandwiches, to make condiments like barbecue sauce or dressing, and in baking, where you can substitute 2/3 cup raisin paste for 1 cup of sugar. You'll likely need to increase the dry ingredients too.

Low Sugar Cinnamon Raisin-Spice Cookies Recipe — Registered Dietitian Columbia SC - Rachael Hartley Nutrition (3)

Added Sugars vs. Natural Sugars

Although there's absolutely nothing wrong with using sugar in baking, I do love to experiment with fruit as a sweetener. Different sweeteners, whether it’s regular sugar, honey, maple syrup, or this raisin paste, all have unique properties - different flavors and textures - that can be fun to play around with in different recipes.

I often get questions about natural sugars, like that in fruit, vs added sugars.Natural occurring sugars, like those found in raisins, are sugars found in whole foods. They come in the package of a whole food, which provides nutrients like fiber (in fruit) and fat/protein (in dairy), which slow the release of sugar into the bloodstream. These whole foods contain other vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients.

Added sugars, on the other hand, are added to foods during processing and preparation. This includes refined sugars, like table sugar and high fructose corn syrup, but also unrefined sugars like honey and pure maple syrup.

While naturally occurring sugars are certainly more nutritious, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s healthier. I think of nutrition and health as being two separate concepts. Nutrition is solely about nutrition content, while health encompasses all the different aspects of health, including pleasure, access, mental health, situational needs, etc. And sometimes it’s healthier to just have regular ‘ole sugar!

Low Sugar Cinnamon Raisin-Spice Cookies Recipe — Registered Dietitian Columbia SC - Rachael Hartley Nutrition (4)

Kapeesh? Good. Now, back to the cookies.

To make these cookies, simply give all the ingredients a whirl in the food processor. That's right, you don't even have to dirty a bowl to make these babies. Everything comes together in a single food processor.

I was inspired by Christmas spice cookies when I made these, but you could always go the chocolate route. Simply substitute regular raisins and add in some cocoa powder to the mix and you've got a fudgy, deep chocolate cookie.

Recipe, images and text have been updated for this low sugar cinnamon raisin spice cookies recipe to give you the best possible content.

Makes about 25

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups California golden raisins

  • 3 cups almond meal

  • 2 tablespoons almond butter or cashew butter

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger

  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves

  • Large pinch of salt

Instructions:

  1. In a medium bowl, warm 3-4 cups of water in the microwave for 3 minutes. Add golden raisins and let them plump for about 5-10 minutes.

  2. Drain the raisins and transfer to a food processor. Blend until pureed, about 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and process until fully combined and blended, scraping down sides as needed.

  3. Using a spoon, scoop spoonfuls of batter and form balls. The batter is very sticky, so wet hands are helpful. Place them 2 inches apart on a well greased cookie sheet. Flatten with the back of a spatula.

  4. Bake at 325 for 15-20 minutes until the tops are golden. The bottoms have the tendency to brown, so you may want to check after about 15 minutes.

  5. Let cool a few minutes on the baking sheet, transfer to a wire rack to cool fully. Will keep in a covered container at room temperature for a few days, or store in the refrigerator for a week or so.

If you like these low sugar cinnamon raisin spice cookies, you might also like these other cookie recipes:

Low Sugar Cinnamon Raisin-Spice Cookies Recipe — Registered Dietitian Columbia SC - Rachael Hartley Nutrition (9)

Desserts, Recipe

Rachael Hartley

almond butter, baking, cookie, grain free, no added sugar, no refined sugar, raisins, Recipe

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Low Sugar Cinnamon Raisin-Spice Cookies Recipe — Registered Dietitian Columbia SC - Rachael Hartley Nutrition (2024)

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