These 3 ingredient oatmeal cookies are low in fat and packed with whole grains, and they’re ready to eat in less than 15 minutes flat. The perfect on-the-go breakfast or after-school snack!
These naturally gluten free cookies are soft and chewy, and just sweet enough to satisfy a bit more than a piece of fruit. Sometimes, you just need something to sink your teeth into, and these cookies are perfect for my kids when they come home from school and sports.
Why 3 ingredient cookies?
I’ve been developing gluten free recipes since late 2004, and I’ve been hooked on the challenge ever since my very first gluten free carrot cake. At this point, between 5 gluten free cookbooks and hundreds of blog recipes, sometimes I feel like I’ve done it all.
Of course, I certainly haven’t done it all. There are many more recipes to develop, but sometimes the most creativity comes when we have more and more restrictions. I loved getting the recipe for 3 ingredient Nutella cookies juuuust right.
When I decided to limit myself to 3 ingredients for another cookie recipe, I also decided to make things more interesting by making them hearty and healthy, too. My 3 children aren’t allowed to graze on food all day long, but they do come home from after-school sports dying of hunger (!).
So I need something to tide them over without ruining their appetites for dinner entirely. Making dinner isn’t my favorite thing to do every day, so if I’m going to go to the trouble of making it, they’re going to be hungry enough to eat it! And I’ve also always found that a hungry child is a more flexible, forgiving child if the meal isn’t exactly the stuff of their hopes and dreams. ?
I know that many of you have other dietary restrictions and preferences (and so do some in my family, like my currently dairy-free, soy-free daughter). So if you scroll down, you’ll find my best guesses about how these cookies could be modified.
Watch this 30-second video of me making 3-ingredient cookies.
Just push play ▶️ below and watch just how easy it really is. Then make your own!
Ingredients and substitutions
These cookies are already gluten free and dairy-free quite naturally. We’ve already covered whether you can eat oats on a gluten free diet. Since this is such an incredibly simple recipe, substitutions are incredibly difficult, but here are my best-educated guesses.
Egg-free: Oof. When a recipe has only 3 ingredients and one of them is eggs, those eggs are doing some heavy-lifting in the recipe. The eggs here are a binder and provide a bit of lift—and also the only fat in the recipe.
You could try replacing the yolks with some shortening, or virgin coconut oil (melted and cooled), and the whites with aquafaba (the liquid from a can of chickpeas). I don’t think a traditional egg substitute, like a “flax egg” or a “chia egg” would work here.
Oat-free: The whole rolled oats in this recipe mostly provide physical structure, so you could perhaps replace them with some mixed, chopped raw nuts. Can you tell I’m not optimistic, though?
The ground oats provide almost a net for the rest of the ingredients, so they would most likely best be replaced by an actual flour, like blanched almond flour. I do not recommend quinoa flakes for the whole oats. They’re just too fragile.
Dates: The dates provide sweetness, fiber and are thick and sticky. You can try replacing them with another dried fruit, perhaps, like dried apricots for a different flavor profile.
3 Ingredient Oatmeal Cookies
2 1/4 cups (225 g) certified gluten free old fashioned rolled oats
1 cup + 2 tablespoons (200 g) pitted medjool dates
2 eggs (100 g, weighed out of shell) + 2 egg yolks (50 g), at room temperature
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper and set it aside.
In a blender or food processor, place about 3/4 of a cup (75 g) of the oats and grind into a powder. Transfer the ground oats and remaining whole oats to a medium-size bowl and mix to combine. In the same blender or food processor, place the dates, eggs and egg yolks and blend or process until mostly smooth. Add the date mixture to the bowl of oats and oat flour and mix to combine well. The dough should be thick.
Scoop the dough out by the tablespoonful and place on the prepared baking sheet in portions about 1 1/2-inches apart from one another. With wet fingers spread each into a disk about 1/4-inch thick. Place in the center of the preheated oven and bake until set in the center, about 8 minutes. The cookies are set when they are no longer shiny. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.