Loaded Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake Squares

This month's theme for Recipe Redux is small bite desserts, a theme I totally love - and not because I think you should only have a few bites of desert. I say eat what you need to feel satisfied! But me, I've realized over the years that I'm much more of a savory person. Give me noodles and cheese and spicy food and I'm waaay happier than I am with a cookie or cake. 

I always encourage my clients when they eat something sweet (which usually they've viewed as off-limits), to slow down and enjoy the flavors - give yourself permission to savor it! When you eat something with a side of guilt, usually it's eaten very quickly with no attention to how it tastes. No wonder the craving won't go away! You haven't really enjoyed that taste you were looking for! 

When we eat something enjoyable (hello sweets!), we experience something called diminished pleasure response. They've actually done studies on people's brains examining how the pleasure center lights up when eating favorite foods. The first bite is REALLY REALLY pleasurable, but each successive bite tastes less and less delicious. Until eventually it no longer tastes good. Call me crazy, but I promise it happens. Yes, even to gooey, fresh from the oven, chocolate chip cookies. 

So basically I like small bite desserts because being more of a savory person, I really don't want much more than a few small bites! These loaded chocolate chip cookie cake bites did the trick for me. They're more cake-like than cookie-like in texture, but still a little denser and more cookie-like than a fluffy cake. I threw in all my favorite cake mix-ins, but feel free to choose your own! 

Loaded Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake Squares

Makes 32-ish

I used gluten free all purpose flour because that's what I had on hand, but you could just use regular all purpose flour or a blend of white and whole wheat flour in equal amounts and be fine! 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons coconut sugar or regular sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla 
  • 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk
  • 2 1/2 cups gluten free all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup peanuts
  • Crunchy sea salt, for topping

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 

In a large bowl using an electric beater, blend together butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in egg, then beat in vanilla and coconut milk until combined. 

In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Beat into butter and sugar mixture in three batches until fully incorporated. With a large spoon, stir in coconut, chocolate chips and peanuts. 

Spread mixture evenly in a buttered baking dish and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake for 26-28 minutes until golden and the center is cooked through. Let cool, then cut into small squares. 

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