Low-Fat Christmas Cookies
Santa Snowflakes are meringues, made with egg whites and
sugar beaten until stiff and then baked in a very low oven. With no butter,
margarine, or oil and an absence of egg yolks, the recipe’s only fat comes from
crushed nuts and miniature chocolate chips. The cookies contain no flour and
are gluten-free. The cookies are white with tiny ridges and bumps. The light,
puffy texture is reminiscent of snowflakes, hence their name.
Prep time: 20-30 minutes
Bake time: overnight
Makes about 60-70 drop cookies
2 egg whites, room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
½ teaspoon almond flavoring
1 cup finely crushed pecans or almonds
1 cup semisweet miniature chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 375º F. Line baking sheets with parchment
- Separate egg whites from egg yolks, being careful not to
break yolks. Set yolks aside to use in another recipe.
- In a dry, medium bowl on very high speed, beat egg whites
until stiff peaks form. Peaks will be bright white when stiff. You can set
beaters in mixture, lift them out, and egg white peaks will remain formed.
- Continue to beat egg whites at a high speed as you gradually
add granulated sugar, about 1-2 tablespoons at a time. After sugar is
incorporated, blend in almond flavoring.
- Use a rubber spatula to gently fold in nuts and miniature
chocolate chips to the meringue.
- Drop meringue by scent teaspoonfuls onto prepared baking
sheets, about 1 inch apart.
- Place baking sheets in the oven. Turn off oven. Leave cookies
in the oven overnight.
- In the morning, remove baking sheets from the oven. Cookies
will be crisp and dry. They will slip easily off the parchment paper. Store
them in an airtight container.
A Special Tip from
Before preparing Santa Snowflakes – or any other meringue –
double check bowls, beaters, and spatula to make sure they are completely clean
and dry. Both egg whites and sugar molecules attract water. Water inhibits
proteins from breaking down as egg whites are beaten. That’s why plastic, wet,
or greasy bowls and beaters often prevent meringue from forming stiff peaks.
Wipe bowls and utensils with a wedge of lemon to remove any traces of grease
and dry thoroughly with a paper towel before beginning to make meringue.
The Elf Recommends More Yummy Low Fat Cookies
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