We can’t decide what’s more exciting: when Santa delivers heaps of goodies while we’re sleeping, or when Girl Scout cookies arrive on our doorstep after weeks of sugar-filled anticipation. Thin Mints, Samoas, Tagalongs… nothing tastes quite like ‘em—or satisfies our sweet tooth so successfully.
The only downside to our beloved Girl Scout cookies is that they’re nearly impossible to eat in moderation. And though the bite-sized treats don’t have quite the same affect as polishing off a family-sized ice cream sundae (no judgement—food comas are totally worth it from time to time!), they aren’t exactly green smoothies either.
To get more nutritional bang for your buck, we’ve rounded up nine healthier recipes inspired by your favorite cookies. From frozen yogurt pops to peanut butter shakes to no-fuss fudge, these bites (and sips) will make you forever think outside the cookie box.
Wake and (don’t) bake with this recipe. Simply mix and microwave coconut oil, corn syrup (we like using honey or maple syrup instead), and sugar, add shredded coconut and oats, pack into a pan with a spatula, drizzle with melted chocolate, and cool in the fridge for at least two hours. The end result: Twelve amazing granola bars that you can snack on all week long.
Hello, probiotics. By using kefir in place of yogurt, you’ll get extra healthy bacteria, calcium, and protein. With only five ingredients (kefir, shortbread, toasted coconut, chocolate, and caramel), these pops are a cinch to make and a delight to eat. Tip: To save time, use store-bought toasted coconut. Just make sure there isn’t added sugar!
More like energy bites than actual cookies, this vegan and gluten-free snack is the perfect thing to grab before a workout or for on-the-go breakfasts. Made with dates, almond butter, unsweetened shredded coconut, dark chocolate, sea salt, and vanilla, they’re a great way to celebrate Samoas without fear of sugar overload. For a full meal, pair the cookies with a banana or latté.
Frozen Thin Mints are pretty awesome. What’s even moreawesome: Thin Mint-flavored freezer fudge. With heart-healthy almonds, real mint, plenty of cacao, and natural sweeteners like maple syrup, this healthy dessert provides as many nutrients as it does delicious flavors. Bonus: Keeping it in the freezer means it will last that much longer!
It can be tough to find Paleo desserts that taste as good as the originals, but this recipe does just that. Made with gluten-free flour, grass-fed butter (or a vegan substitute), egg, Himalayan sea salt, and maple syrup, these cookies will make you consider going full-on caveman (if you haven’t already). For an extra-decadent treat, pile dairy-free ice cream in between two of the chocolate crisps.
There’s nothing thin about this delicious smoothie. The combination of Greek yogurt, spinach, and almond milk actually make it pretty darn thick, and dark chocolate chips, fresh mint, and maple syrup make it taste like a cookie milkshake—but won’t leave you overly full or bouncing off the walls with a sugar high. To make it even creamier, add a quarter of an avocado or vanilla protein powder.
Another Paleo cookie recipe FTW! The shortbread layer is made from coconut flour, sugar, raw honey, vanilla extract, and palm shortening, and the coating consists of almond butter and a dark chocolate coconut sauce. Sure, it’s fun to cook these buttery bites all the way to completion, but we can’t help ourselves from taste-testing a few by dunking them in the melted chocolate before we coat and cool the whole batch.
This smoothie bulks things up with two surprise ingredients: cottage cheese and pudding mix. With only two steps and four ingredients (plus water and ice), it’s the perfect recipe for those in need of an instant munchie. Go ahead and top with whipped cream—it may be a departure from the classic cookie, but just trust us on this one.
This vegan dessert proves that you don’t need milk and butter to make a delicious sweet treat. What these cookies lack in butter and dairy, they make up for in serious flavor (and health benefits). We like making half a batch with dark chocolate and the other with milk chocolate topping—that way even the vegan naysayers are pleased.