Wholegrain Tollhouse Chocolate Chip Cookies – Gluten Free, Vegan, & Sugar-Free

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Wholegrain Tollhouse Chcoclate Chip Cookies - Gluten Free & VeganI had no intention of trying to craft a new cookie recipe.  Really.

Don’t get me wrong, we l.o.v.e. chocolate chip cookies.

But I am trying so hard to limit my calories a bit, and having tempting baked goods around isn’t all that helpful, if you know what I mean!

But after a long weekend, we were really craving a cookie.

I could have used one of THREE chocolate chip cookie recipes already have up on my blog, but then I wouldn’t be experimenting and discovering new and delicious ways to push the envelope a bit!

You are the beneficiaries of my impromptu online cooking school!

So I started with a recipe I know too well (in my head actually): Tollhouse Chocolate Chip Cookies.  I added a bit of this, splash of that, and then test run a single cookie in the oven.  It fell completely flat, so I tweaked some more, and did another single test run….this time they were perfect.  But as I often do…I didn’t keep good notes of what I did, so I knew I couldn’t post on it yet.  While it was still fresh in my brain, I set about recreating one amazing cookie..again….just for you guys!  Maybe my taste-buds are warped, but in texture and taste…these are a VERY close (but much healthier) cousin of the original.  Enjoy!

INGREDIENT NOTE:  Even if you are not gluten free, these flours are very worth a try!  Than can easily adds loads of nutrition to any recipe and can subbed for all or part of wheat flours in any recipe, so give them a try!  Chia seeds and coconut oil also hold all sorts of goodies for your body and blend in nicely in almost any recipe!

Yield: About 24 smallish cookies @ 108 calories, 6.6 g fat, 13.3 g carbs, 1.7 g fiber, 5.8 g sugar, 1.3 g protein

Wholegrain Tollhouse Chcoclate Chip Cookies - Gluten Free & Vegan

Wholegrain Tollhouse Chocolate Chip Cookies - Gluten Free, Vegan, & Sugar-Free
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
  • Wet Ingredients:
  • ¼ cup coconut oil
  • ¼ cup favorite vegan margarine , butter, or palm shortening
  • 6 tablespoons palm sugar (or other granulated brown sugar)
  • ½ teaspoon-3/4 teaspoon Nu Naturals Liquid Stevia or Vanilla Stevia, OR 4 tablespoons NuNaturals Baking Blend Stevia -NuNaturals is not corn free in blend forms, they also use oat fiber in some blends from oats that are not certified gluten free. You could use 4 tablespoons more palm sugar too.
  • 2 tablespoons chia meal (flax meal and chia meal are normally mostly interchangeable, I tried the recipe with flax and it totally missed the mark texture wise (and they were crumbly). If you use it, I would suggest gelling it with the wet ingredients before adding the dry, and increasing to 3 tablespoons).
  • 3 tablespoons favorite milk (I use SO Delicious unsweetened coconut milk)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Dry Ingredients:
  • ½ cup teff flour
  • ½ cup gluten free oat flour (remember you can make your own by whirring rolled oats in a coffee grinder or high speed blender!)
  • ¼ cup tapioca starch (or any starch)
  • 1 teaspoon guar gum or xanthum gum (omit if using the baking blend, it already has gum in it!)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup favorite chocolate chunks (I tried my homemade stevia sweetened chocolate in a few cookies, and it melts a lot more than regular chocolate chips, but is still very tasty! I will post on that when I perfect it)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat the coconut oil, butter, and sugars until creamy.
  3. Add in the remaining wet ingredients and beat until creamy.
  4. Mix your dry ingredients together and mix well with the wet.
  5. Add in your chocolate chips.
  6. Drop batter onto a cookie sheet, a generous tablespoon or so, about 3" apart. Bake in a preheated oven for about 8 minutes, or when turning just golden around the edges (because of the teff flour, you have look carefully as they are a darker cookie). Do not overbake! Let set for a minute or two on the cookie sheet then remove to a cooling rack.



Wholegrain Tollhouse Chcoclate Chip Cookies - Gluten Free & Vegan


This recipe was shared with Make Your Own Monday, My Meatless Monday, Natural Living Monday, Motivation Monday, Mostly Homemade Monday, Tasteful Tuesday, Fat Tuesday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesday, Hearth & Soul, Traditional Tuesday, Organic Aspirations, Tuesday Greens,GF Wednesday, Frugal Days Sustainable Ways, Well-Fed Wednesday, Real Food Wednesday, Healthy 2Day Wednesday, Wheat Free Wednesday, Wildcrafting Wednesday, Whole Foods Wednesday, Full Plate Thursday, Thank Your Body Thursday, Tasty Traditions, Pennywise Platter, Simple Lives Thursday,Healthy Vegan Friday, GF Fridays, Whole Foods Friday,


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When her third child was born with severe food allergies, Tessa took to the kitchen to figure out how to feed her family well. Always up for a culinary challenge, their journey has taken many twists and turns! Lots of Paleo, and lots of top 8 free. Good food for families, that's what she's about!

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38 comments on “Wholegrain Tollhouse Chocolate Chip Cookies – Gluten Free, Vegan, & Sugar-Free
  1. Amber says:

    These are GORGEOUS! Just mouthwatering Tessa. Thank you for making another batch to share with us. It’s nice to know you also forget to write things down. I always picture you in your kitchen with a clipboard or something, your baking is just always spot on. I must confess I do the same thing when it comes to cookies. I NEVER write down the recipes and I make cookies several times each week. I just throw whatever in there. Can’t wait to try these bad boys! :-)

  2. I made the best chocolate chip cookie back in January. I was ready to share it, but my husband said that they were so good that I needed to sell the recipe or cookie. So, I didn’t share it. And, guess what? I didn’t write it down either. Pooh!!! Now, I have no idea how I did it. Perhaps I’ll just stick with one of your many cookie recipes. Thanks!

  3. Jana says:

    Oh my gosh, this is a must have recipe for my files. Thank you! Jana

  4. Laura says:

    You did it again Tessa-another amazing cookie recipe! I am a cookie monster myself so I think I’ll be whipping this recipe up this weekend and dipping it in some homemade almond milk. Thanks friend!

  5. Cara says:

    Thanks so much for a cookie recipe without rice flour. I had extensive IgG and IgE allergy testing done and am sensitive to rice, along with most other GF substitutes. This is the first recipe I’ve seen that uses flours I can have without restrictions.

  6. It sounds absolutely delicious! I haven’t made cookies in ages. Mostly because like you I don’t really like having them around. Temptation and I are intimidate. These look worthy of trying.

  7. zosia says:


    The Nu Naturals baking blend is NOT gluten-free; therefore, I don’t think you can say that these cookies are gluten-free. It contains OAT fiber.

    Here is an e-mail from Nu Naturals sent to a friend of mine who inquired about its gluten content:

    “Our Baking Blend contains NO Wheat. It does contain Oat fiber. We make every attempt to source gluten free ingredients in our MoreFiber product, however some oats are more toxic to some people, regardless of purity. Oats may have only a trace amount of gluten & the gluten portion is in the protein part of the kernal. The oat fiber is basically gluten free, however not labeled as certified GF. Reactions to higher fiber foods are many times the same as those of a celiac gastrointestinal reaction. Oats are in a unique position because of the occasional cross-reactivity of averin with celiac antibodies. If any of our consumers have concerns, they can use any of our other GF products.”

  8. Miz Helen says:

    These are just wonderful cookies that we would just love. They need to be in my cookie jar. Hope you are having a great week end and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  9. April Harris says:

    You created a wonderful, healthy version of a classic here! It’s lovely they are so allergy / special diet friendly as well!

  10. I found you via a blog hop. These look yummy & I love the cutback of sugar! Thanks for sharing & drop by anytime! 😉

  11. Hi, you have been seleted as the featured post for this week’s Creative Corner Hop. Your cookies look delicious! I hope you will come back and link up again this week.

    Cherished Handmade Treasures

  12. Niv says:

    Hi , this looks like a great recipe. Any idea what would be a good substitue for teff flour.


    • I am very partial to teff..bu t lots of flours should work in it’s stead niv. Have you checked out my baking/flour tips page….many are similar to teff. I would say oat or brown rice as first choices. I buy my flour in bulk from teffco, it $20 for 5punds delivered. $63 for 25 pounds delivered…..which I share with a couple of friends. Teff is more absorbent than most other flours….s start with a wee bit less of others maybe a tablespoon less.

  13. trulyblessedmama says:

    Hi Tessa,

    Perhaps you can help me – I found your blog (this recipe) while searching for a whole grain vegan gluten free cookie option for my son (I’m so over white this and white that!) so thank you for this! I tried this recipe last night and tonight and both times my batter is very wet. Tonight I ended up adding an additional 3/4 cup of oat flour, 1/4 cup of teff flour and 1 1/2 TBS of both palm sugar and honey granules (I’m using instead of stevia). They weren’t quite as flat as last nights but still nothing like yours in the picture. I just can’t figure out what I’m doing wrong! My coconut oil is at the bottom of the jar so it’s kinda liquidy and I’m grinding my teff in the coffee grinder – those are the only things I can think of that maybe aren’t quite the same. The flavor of your cookie is fabulous – I just can’t get it to look like a cookie! Thoughts? Thanks!

    • Are you using chia meal or flax meal? Grinding your own teff will be a chunkier texture, for sure, and will likely not absorb as much liquid. Coconut oil should be solid at room temp…if yours just liquid, this could be contributing. You could do an allowed butter instead there. I have also never used honey granules…so not sure how those perform. When you added more flour…did they still fall? If you let me know what you can/can;t do, I could help with other suggestions too. Lets get this figured out!

      • trulyblessedmama says:

        Thanks so much Tessa!
        We predominately follow a plant based diet for health reasons, no GMO’s and 90% organic. My son is now 2 1/2. I cut out wheat and dairy when I was nursing because all he did was scream and scream and in two days he was like a new baby. Around 18 mos we added it back in and he appeared fine. Stupid me, with the other health issues going on (ear tubes, removal of tonsils and adenoids and diagnosis of rare chromosomal anomaly) I didn’t realize that perhaps some of that was occurring or being contributed to because of the reflux which I only just discovered at his swallow study is still occurring and causing irritation in his throat (the therapist mentioned it was in the surgery notes). So we’ve gone gluten free again. I’m working on the dairy – really we consume very little of it anyway- maybe a little as a garnish on a soup and that’s all we’ll have for the day. He’s still refluxing though even on the days when he eats nothing of either food. *sigh*

        Anyway, back to the cookies- sorry for that rant! I’m using chia seed that I’m grinding into meal in the grinder. I’ll definitely pick up some new coconut oil (or use coconut butter since I know I’ll be trying another batch tonight and I think the coconut oil gives the cookie a great flavor) and I won’t grind the teff this time. I’m not sure why I did that!? Honey granules are basically crystalized honey (here’s a link to what they look like: http://www.fromnaturewithlove.com/soap/product.asp?product_id=GRANHONEY)

        I figured I would replace the stevia with the honey granules. I’m not opposed to using stevia – I use it in my drinks all the time but haven’t really ventured down the path of cooking with it although I recently discovered a superb stevia by Kal that tastes just like sugar – I just know that 4 TBS of that though would not be good in the cookies! Is that portion of sweetener more for taste or does it actually contribute to the consistency of the cookie?

        When I added more flour they still came out pretty flat. At least this time they “hardened” up after sitting there awhile. The first batch I couldn’t even get off the parchment paper! Thank you so much Tessa for helping me get it figured out – I really want these to work for us – they’re delicious…even when they’re flat! LOL!

        • You certainly don’t have to apologize for a rant…unlike the likely majority around you, I GET it!!

          You need the teff flour, not the wholegrain. Do you have teff flour?
          The stevia blend i use is for flavor. How about instead of honey granules you use palm sugar or some other granulated sugar? Try sticking as close to the original recipe, as I am having a hard time seeing what is going wrong. I even made these again last night to be sure…and they turned out great, but I was following the recipe exactly.
          Are you sure your baking soda is fresh? Add some vinegar to it and it should foam vigorously, if not, it is bad.
          And you are using half earth balance too with the coconut oil?

          • trulyblessedmama says:

            I don’t have teff flour – I have whole grain teff. Do you think that’s what is messing it up? Can I not just grind the teff to get teff flour? I was thinking that’s why I ground it in the first place – I recall having a previous experience with teff – didn’t love it in the wholegrain form so I ground it.

            Baking soda is good – just checked and I didn’t use any earth balance with the first two batches – just the coconut oil. I did buy new coconut oil tonight so hopefully tomorrow I can give it another go with the solid coconut oil, use palm sugar or sucanut instead of stevia and maybe grind the teff until I can get teff flour.

            When I mix everything except the milk I get a nice creamy mixture – I keep thinking “it’s perfect until I add the milk!” then I add the milk and the flour and that’s when it all gets too wet. And adding all that extra flour made them dry.

            I’ll let ya know what happens tomorrow! Thanks for all the help Tessa and your patience with me!

          • using all coconut oil might be the issue too…it is a different beat in cookies and I have had issues with using all coconut oil in the past in my cookies.I am not a huge fan of whole grain teff either…even though I want to be! I am hopeful of finding a recipe that changes my mind since it is so darn good for you!
            I just tried grinding my own teff flour….it is not nearly as fine as the flour. Grinding you own works well with soft grains/seeds/nut, but even after 30 seconds, the teff I ground was quite gritty. This is very likely the issue. Can you get a bag of teff? If not, I would use more oat flour or grind some raw buckwheat groats, or even brown rice or sorghum instead.
            Don;t forget, the whole reason I started this blog at all was to HELP people, so this is really my pleasure. I appreciate you taking the time and not giving up and working with me!

  14. trulyblessedmama says:

    I’ve never felt so incompetent in my baking abilities before (and I’m not an inexperienced baker!!) UGH! (Please DO NOT take that personally!) I’m just frustrated but determined to make it work because the flavor is too good to pass up!

    So in the first batch yesterday I used teff flour (you are right – it is much much finer then grinding it yourself) and the new jar of coconut oil – the only replacement I made was for the stevia. For that I still used the honey granules (I kinda wanted to see if it was the teff or the honey granules). Well they were mega flat when they came out and I couldn’t even get them off the baking sheet without falling apart. So definitely not using honey granules again!

    Started another batch with high hopes thinking surely it’s the honey granules then. Again, mixed everything to a T, this time using more palm sugar in place of the stevia. I even put the coconut oil in the fridge to make sure it was good and solidified. Batter was still fairly wet (to the point that you just KNOW they are going to spread when they start baking). Got them in the oven and they’re still flat – not nearly as bad as they were in the first batch but the consistency is definitely not like that in your pictures. It’s more of that flat cookie that’s pretty smooth looking with exception of the pock marks in it. That’s the best description I can come up with! I wish I could post a picture!

    So I got online and was trying to find out what exactly is in the stevia baking blend (It concerns me that I can’t find any ingredient information) but while I was on Amazon I saw a reviewer mention that the baking blend thickens things and helps them bind. So if that is the case and based on all these failed experiments I’d have to say that you really need the stevia blend to make this cookie work otherwise the batter is just too wet and it yields a very flat cookie that you may or may not be able to eat. I’m going to try one more experiment today – using palm sugar instead of the stevia and I’m going to take out the milk cause I think that’s where things start going awry in my case when not using stevia. I’ll let you know how it comes out!

    • stevia baking blend by Nu Naturals has maltodextrin, oat fiber, tapioca, acacia gum, guar and xanthum gums. After reading those ingredients more carefully,m there is a definite binding happening there with the gums and other ingredients. So lets try this, use the palm sugar. Leave the milk out (definitely not for flavor, only texture). bake ONE cookie as a trial. I do this sometimes with a picky recipe. Next step would be to skype or do facetime together so you can show me the batter on screen!! I do have 4 other chocolate chip cookie recipes too, all good in their own way too, and easily adapted to healthier oil/sugars. I am so sorry you are struggling so terribly with this!! How maddening! Also worth noting that if you use coconut oil entirely, I find that I have to let them completely cool to bind and not crumble.

    • stop the presses, I am doing a mini batch using the ingredients I just mentioned and only coconut oil….wait for me to finish before you start!

    • OK, so I am pretty sure it is the all coconut oil. I kept making alterations…think this will work (it did for me!):
      -First I doubled the starch and added an additional 1/4 cup oat flour (you could teff too, whatever)I didn’t play with this, but I would leave the milk out and try and see if that took care of it.
      -I added a 1/2 teaspoon guar gum.
      -(this was the fifth thing I did after the 4th cookie was till coming out flat,)I had an instinct that the coconut oil was melting too fast and spreading out too far, so i chilled balls of cookie dough in the freezer for 10 minutes and then baked.
      -All the cookies were extremely crumbly until I froze them to solidify the coconut oil, then they were more normal.

      I think using half Earth balance makes a big difference in this recipe as is it is written. I am also going to work with using just stevia liquid since it is more commonly available and more allergy-friendly! Will keep you posted!

      My kids are thrilled I am doing all these experiments with cookies!

    • trulyblessedmama says:

      Update: I used sucanut in place of the stevia. I mixed all the wet together minus the milk. Added the flour mixture and blended. The batter was definitely firm so I added 1 TBS of milk and it immediately reached a more cookie dough consistency. I was happy with it.

      Popped them in the oven and they just came out a few minutes ago. Consistency wise they look more like your cookies in the picture but they are still pretty flat. They are crumbly – you can’t pick up the whole cookie and bite into it – it falls apart but the taste is still good.

      So unfortunately I’m out of ideas on why they don’t puff up and why they fall apart. I know egg would help with binding – we eat them occasionally but I prefer to avoid them if I can.

      Thanks Tessa

      • trulyblessedmama says:

        Ooops! Sorry Tessa! I didn’t see your previous post.

        Thanks so much for adjusting the recipe! YEA!! I’m so excited!

        Yes, I agree – I think the coconut oil was definitely playing a role in making the cookies flat (they were also greasy). I also meant to tell you I misspoke in my earlier post (that happens when the kids are badgering me while trying to think and type!) but I’ve used half earth balance half coconut oil every time I’ve made these. Funny – hubby said this morning “Why don’t you refrigerate the dough” and I kinda blew him off! Oops! Sorry hubs. :-(

        I don’t have guar gum – do you think xanthem gum would work? I’ll try them again tomorrow if you think I can use xanthem gum since I have that on hand. Otherwise I’ll have to order some.

        LOL – Yes, my family is also enjoying the experiments too – as disastrous as they’ve been – they don’t seem to mind! I threw away the remaining few cookies tonight and hubs was seriously upset! Well if I can get them right tomorrow I’m sure he’ll be thrilled.

        Fantastic! I can’t wait to see what you come up with using the liquid stevia. Thanks so much Tessa for all your ideas, input and especially for working out the recipe for me and the rest of us non baking stevia users! :-) I really appreciate it and I’m excited to try this again!

  15. Tammy Eakes says:

    These look so yummy! I can’t wait to try this recipe. I have been trying to create a good cookie recipe for several weeks now. I’ve decided creating new recipes is not my thing! LOL I found you on the Thank your body Thursday hop. My link is http://noskinnies.com/blog/2013/5/7/sexy-shoulders-with-vine-video-30-minute-challenge-day23.
    I hope you’ll check it out! thanks!

  16. Miz Helen says:

    Tessa, I really NEED this cookie! Thank you so much for sharing this awesome recipe with Full Plate Thursday. Hope you have a very special Mothers Day Weekend and come back soon!
    Miz Helen

  17. What delicious, and yet good for you too, cookies! I agree, whether one is gluten free or not, your Wholegrain Tollhouse Chocolate Chip Cookies would be perfect!

  18. Becky says:

    I like that you boosted the health factor with the chia seeds. Thanks for sharing on Tuesday Greens!

  19. Hannah says:

    Oh myyyyyyy being SF ad GF I think I am in love now, thank you! I featured your recipe this week at Eco-Kids Tuesday! Hope you stop by again today!

  20. Oh wow Tessa, these cookies look great! Thanks for sharing at Gluten Free Fridays!

  21. Nicole says:

    O.MG. I just baked a double batch of these badboys and man are they good. may i suggest you change the 4 tablespoons to 1/4 of a cup. i doubled it and my arm was killin’ me after measuring 16 tablespoons of butters.

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My name is Tessa, and I have learned to cook without almost all major allergens! I have a focus on making family foods as healthy as possible. Real food is my obsession. Gluten free, casein free, vegan, Paleo, sugar free: I have a little of something for anyone with restrictions., Take a peek, you're sure to find something delicious, and if you need any help, I am always willing to help you tweak things to YOUR tastes and dietary needs!

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