Within the desert region of Indio, California, you’ll find an oasis of date palms that has supplied most of the dates in the United States for the past century. I borrow the natural sweetness of these dates, along with the rich flavors of walnuts and dark chocolate, to flavor these healthier cookies. Pack them into a lunch box or picnic basket, or serve them with fresh fruit or sorbet the next time you host dinner guests.

Yields 20 cookies

Indio Date, Walnut and Dark Chocolate Cookies
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  • 1/2 cup soft dairy-free margarine spread, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons egg replacer
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup diced dates
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips or broken dark chocolate pieces


  1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF.
  2. Mix together margarine, vanilla, and honey in a small bowl.
  3. Combine the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, and egg replacer in a separate bowl.
  4. Add the flour mixture to the margarine mixture and mix well to form a crumbly dough.
  5. Stir in the walnuts, dates, and chocolate chips.
  6. Shape the dough into walnut-sized balls and place about 3 inches apart on a baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.


*These cookies store very well in an airtight container in the freezer.

Nutritional Information per cookie: Calories: 122 Carbohydrate: 16 g Fiber: 2 g Protein: 2 g Total fat: 6 g Saturated fat: 1 g Sodium: 82 mg Star nutrients: Magnesium (7% DV), manganese (6% DV)


Note: recipe is from Plant-Powered Diet by Sharon Palmer, RDN

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