You won't believe how delicious these Healthy Banana Oatmeal Cookies are! Made with dates, applesauce, ripe bananas, and oats, these cookies satisfy your sweet tooth yet make a perfectly balanced snack or breakfast.
Naturally-sweetened, gluten-free, and vegan-friendly, these Banana Oatmeal Cookies are full of fiber and nutrients and only require 5 ingredients to make.
Why These Cookies are Healthy
Wouldn't it be nice if we could eat warm cookies out of the oven morning, noon, and night?
I am right there with you! And that is why I know you will love these Banana Oatmeal Cookies, as they are healthy enough to even enjoy for breakfast!
These cookies contain no oil, no sugar, no dairy, no nuts, no corn, no gluten, and are made with whole grains and fruit. But do NOT let the list of healthy ingredients scare you off.
They are still moist, tender, chewy, and perfectly sweet. And while Banana Oat Cookies do not have the traditional buttery richness of a traditional Oatmeal Raisin Cookie, these healthy cookies certainly satisfy your sweet tooth and are a wholesome treat perfect for any time of the day!
Notes on Ingredients
- Bananas: The riper the banana, the sweeter the cookie! So this is the time to use up those brown bananas.
- Dates: Be sure to purchase WHOLE DATES as chopped dates have been coated in cornstarch and sugar. If you can't find dates, feel free to use raisins in their place. The cookies won't be quite as sweet, but still delicious.
- Applesauce: Be sure to use unsweetened applesauce or homemade applesauce to keep these cookies refined sugar-free.
- Oats: You can use quick cook oats or old-fashioned oatmeal for this recipe. Be sure to use certified gluten-free oats if you have a gluten sensitivity/allergy.
These Banana Oatmeal Cookies are incredibly easy to make, in fact, they are one of the first recipes my kids made all on their own.
- Soak the dates. Dates can be a bit hard when taken out of their packaging, but if you soak in hot water they soften up perfectly and are much easier to blend into the cookie batter. I recommend soaking the dates in hot water for at least 10 minutes. If you soak longer than 30 minutes, the soaking liquid becomes sweet and is a fabulous addition to pancake batter, used to sweeten coffee or oatmeal.
- Process the batter. Add the oats, bananas, dates, applesauce, vanilla, and cinnamon to a food processor fitted with an s-blade to blend the cookies. This helps give these cookies a more cookie-like consistency.
- Portion out an equal amount of dough. It is important that all of your cookies are the same size so that they bake evenly. Use either a small cookie scoop or tablespoon measuring spoon, scoop out cookie dough using the onto a baking sheet. Use your hands to roll into small balls and then slightly flatten. These cookies won't spread, so you don't have to worry about spacing them out far apart.
- Bake until golden. Bake the cookies in a preheated oven until the tops are nice and golden.
- Cool. Allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes and then remove to a cooling rack and cool completely before enjoying.
How to Store
Once your cookies are baked, cool completely, and then place them into an airtight container. You can store these cookies at room temperature for up to 24 hours, after that store them in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. They can also be frozen for up to 3 months in a freezer-safe storage container.
- Banana Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies: Add 1 cup of chocolate chips to the batter for a decadent surprise.
- Sweet Potato Oatmeal Cookies: Add ⅓ cup sweet potato puree, ¼ cup dried cranberries, and a pinch of nutmeg to the batter. No other changes need to be made.
- Raisin Banana Oat Cookies: Replace 1 cup of the dates with 1 cup of raisins. This variety is also delicious with the addition of ½ cup chopped walnuts.
This is a great recipe to use frozen bananas. Simply microwave 3 frozen bananas until completely defrosted and mash well. There is no need to drain off the sweet liquid that may form after heating the bananas.
Banana Oatmeal Cookies are very chewy and soft. If you would like a more traditional texture, process the cookie dough until the oats and dates are completely broken down and combined into the bananas and applesauce.
Yes! The cookies will have a bit more texture, but instead of using a food processor, finely chop the dates after soaking and then mix them together with the applesauce, mashed bananas, oats, and cinnamon.
These cookies contain no oil so it is best to bake them on a nonstick pan or a pan lined with parchment paper so they don't stick the pan.
More Recipes Using Dates
I often find it is more cost-effective to purchase a large bag of whole dates than it is to buy in smaller amounts. They can be stored in an airtight container for up to 6-8 weeks once the package has been opened. While perfect in this recipe for Banana Oatmeal Cookies, they are also fabulous in many other recipes.
If you gave this Healthy Breakfast Cookie a try, I would love for you to leave a comment and review below.
Healthy Banana Oatmeal Cookies
- 1 cup whole, pitted, dried dates
- 3 ripe bananas mashed well
- ⅓ cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 2 cups oats quick or old fashioned
- Soak dates in 1 cup hot water for at least 10 minutes to soften (and up to 3 hours). Drain dates from soaking liquid.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- In a food processor fitted with a metal s-blade, pulse the bananas, applesauce, dates, and cinnamon together until well combined. Add in the oats and pulse until just combined.
- Drop the cookie batter by rounded tablespoons onto a nonstick or parchment-lined cookie sheet. Roll each cookie into a ball and then gently flatten. Space the cookies out by ½ inch.
- Bake for 13-15 minutes or until just golden.
- Remove cookies from the oven and let cool on the cookie sheet on a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Remove cookies from the tray and cool completely.
This post was originally published in 2017 but was updated in 2020 with new tips and a video.