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Granola Breakfast Cookies - Food Gypsy

Granola Breakfast Cookies

Cookies for breakfast? Relax Mom, they’re vegan, wheat-free, low sugar, low fat, Granola Breakfast Cookies.  But nobody needs to know they’re healthy!

In my years in the kitchen at Nova Scotia’s Dragonfly Inn, my cookies were so popular with guests, I made them for breakfast!  Big on grains, dried fruit and nuts, they’re packed with nutrition, unfortunately they’re also heavily on the butter, sugar and gluten side of things.  This week I looked at a way to update that recipe and make it more belly friendly to all the foodie special interest groups.

Found a recipe very similar to mine with a few little differences and made it may own with a few little twists:  the fat is olive oil instead of butter, the glue is apple sauce instead of eggs, the flour is spelt instead of wheat, they’re not gluten-free, but they are wheat-free if you’re watching your grains. Their unofficial name at our house is – Hippy Dippy Granola Breakfast Cookies – nod to my tie dyed ways.

Spelt, barley, flax & oats - Food Gypsy

I love to bake with olive oil, it’s fruity flavor adds an extra dimension to baked goods, and dam if it isn’t good for you.

In this recipe I’ve used rolled barley as well as steel cut oats, because I wanted that full-on granola taste and a bump in nutrition (barley is a good source of iron) but you can substitute one for the other without consequence.  Use whatever dried fruit you happen to have or toss in chocolate chips or carob bits instead.

Gypsy Note:  Let’s chat a minute about substitutions, shall we?  This is a VERY flexible recipe. A great way to clear the pantry of all the little bits of things not used in other baking.  Leftover nuts, seeds, dried fruit and/or grains, so use anything you want.

The important thing to remember is to respect the ratios and the technique. Toast raw nuts and coconut for that extra crunch.  No spelt flour?  Use All Purpose or your favourite gluten-free flour.  So long as your moisture content (olive oil & apple sauce) is the same, your results should terrific. Create your own groovy granola mix!

Consume without guilt, while wearing Birkenstocks and wool socks.

Almonds, coconut, sesame seeds & sunflower seeds - Food Gypsy Olive oil, apple sauce, vanilla & brown sugar - Food Gypsy

Mix flour, oats, barley, flax & leavening agents - Food Gypsy Mix the wet with the dry then add the toasted & the fruit - Food Gypsy

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Granola Breakfast Cookies - Food Gypsy

Granola Breakfast Cookies

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Big on grains, dried fruit and nuts, these Breakfast Cookies are packed with nutrition, healthy fats, natural sugars. As an added bonus, they’re vegan and wheat-free.


  • 2 tablespoons raw almonds, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup spelt flour
  • 1 cup steel cut oats
  • 1/2 cup of rolled barley
  • 2 tablespoons flax seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon (kosher) salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
  • 2 tablespoons dried apricots, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons dried pear, chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 325⁰F (160⁰C) and line two cookie sheets with parchment paper or a silpat mat. On one parchment lined cookie sheet, toast almonds, sesame seeds, coconut & sunflower seeds in the pre-heated oven for about 5 minutes, watch for coconut to be lightly brown. (Toasting is not imperative, but it gives the cookie some added crunch, and yumminess.)
  2. In a medium bowl blend together spelt flour, oats, barley, flax, baking soda, baking powder & cinnamon with a spoon or spatula.
  3. Create well in center of dry ingredients, add sugar, olive oil, apple sauce and vanilla, mix with spatula until well blended. Fold in the toasted ingredients, along with dried fruit.
  4. Scoop dough with a tablespoon to form uniform mounds on prepared sheet, about 2 inches apart. If the cookies look too high, use a wet finger and gently press to form flat disks. Bake at 325⁰F (160⁰C) for 12-15 minutes or until golden and crisp around the edges.
  5. Place tray on cooling rack and allow cookies to cool for 5-10 minutes. (These cookies are very moist, moving them before they’ve cooled will cause breakage, and you’ll be forced to eat them.) Once cool and firm, shift cookies off the sheet onto a wire rack to cool completely.


Keep your Granola Breakfast Cookies in an airtight container on the counter for up to 3 days. IF you have leftovers, they freeze beautifully for lunches and on-the-go snacks.

Did I mention they’re good for you?! For the hippy in you from the hippy in me. Peace out.

  • Prep Time: 25 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Cuisine: American

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Cori Horton

Fearlessly cooking in her home kitchen just outside Ottawa, Canada; Cori Horton is a food photographer, food marketing consultant, recipe developer and sustainability advocate. A Cordon Bleu trained chef, Cori spent five years as the owner of Nova Scotia's Dragonfly Inn and now shares all things delicious - right here.

This Post Has 7 Comments

  1. These looks delicious, and it’s great to know they don’t have lots of calories in like normal cookies, which makes me feel less guilty about eating them.

  2. These look wonderful, I haven’t seen a breakfast cookie like this before.Nice and healthy and great to start the day.
    Kind Regards
    David Head

  3. I see that you use olive oil instead of butter. Does it really change the consistency of the recipe or can you do this a lot?

    1. Hi Jane –
      Yes, you can substitute olive oil (or any oil) for butter in recipes, it’s a great way to get more monounsaturated fat in your diet. Rule of thumb: use light, or mild type of olive oil for baking, especially savory breads and sweets; cakes, cookies, and other desserts. The extra filtration helps the light oils withstand a higher-heat.

      Depending on your oil, you may have to add a bit of flour (or binding product in the case of gluten-free baking) if the batter is too loose and runny. Sometimes this takes a bit of experimentation, try it with your favorite recipes and see what works for you. I find using certain types of oil (olive, peanut, avocado) also gives baked goods a lovley sheen.

      Happy baking… and thanks for reading!

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