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Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Sugar Free Lactation Cookies (Or adventures with Brewer's yeast)

Last night, my dear husband had to attend to a "ministry emergency" as I like to call it when something comes up and interrupts our plans. It's wonderful sharing life with so many people, but sometimes, it's hard when some of those people are hurting.

After Dennis left, I stayed home with my 2 babies and did the two things that come naturally to me when I'm sad or stressed: I prayed for all those involved, and I baked.

I started by making a couple of loaves of my sourdough bread, because my original plans of going to the grocery store didn't pan out, and we didn't have anything in the house for breakfast. Then, I decided to try to figure out a way to put the brewer's yeast I got from Vitacost (I love me some!) to good use.

Have you ever tried Brewer's yeast? I ordered some along with a giant bottle of fenugreek because both are supposed to help increase milk supply when breastfeeding. I've taken fenugreek before, and it makes me smell like maple syrup. I consider that a bonus. :)

Brewer's yeast was new for me. I read the nutrition facts and found that it contained protein, b vitamins and magnesium, which are three things I need more of. I thought I may have found my new favorite supplement.

Then, it tried to kill me. Three times.

The first night, I stirred it into some orange juice, and   Dennis turned to me and said: "What are you drinking, it smells like throw up."
It tasted like it, too. I choked it down, though.

The next morning, I decided to just shove a spoonful into my mouth and chase it with a large glass of water. Terrible, terrible idea. The yeast turned into glue in my mouth. I spent the next few minutes gagging, rinsing, and spitting. I even pulled the toddler move of trying to scrape the offensive stuff off my tongue.

Evil Brewer's Yeast!
You'll soon see how stubborn I am, as I tried again the next day to get the offensive stuff down. I stirred a spoonful into my oatmeal. I took one bite and threw it away. That says a lot. I don't throw food away unless I'm afraid it's going to kill me. You can ask my husband.

Finally, last night, on day 4, just when I was about to give up, I looked up a recipe for "lactation cookies" that I remembered seeing back when I was nursing Izzy. I found a recipe, but of course it had lots of sugar in it and sugar doesn't sit well with me, so I "revamped" the original recipe a bit.

I didn't really expect them to turn out good, but as I was stress-baking anyway, I went ahead and gave it a go.

Lo and behold, they were very tasty! Healthy and tasty, even!

Here's my lovely sugar free lactation cookie recipe:

11/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon

3/4 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup butter
1 cup flax seeds
3 Tablespoons brewer's yeast
2 tsp vanilla
4 bananas (mine were previously frozen and then thawed, this usually makes them mushier, which might make a difference)
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups oats (I used "old fashioned" oats, not instant)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a bowl

beat peanut butter, bananas, butter, flax, brewer's yeast and vanilla until creamy

add the eggs

gradually beat in flour mixture, then oats

spoon onto a baking stone or baking pan

bake for 10-12 minutes

I'm so glad I figured this out, because fall weather makes me want to bake, but most fun baking involves lots of sugar. These are healthy for anyone, by the way, not just women who are breastfeeding. :)

This post was shared at Scratch Cookin' Tuesday, Real Food Wednesday, Fat Tuesday


  1. I think I tried the same brand of Brewers yeast before or after our second child, it was disgusting! But I had a neighbor that put it on popcorn to add flavor and protein. Not to long ago I came across nutritional yeast at my co-op in the bulk bins and decided to get a small amount to try again. I loved it on popcorn and so did my kids. Now I'm curious about the differences between the two kind of yeasts.

    1. Hmm, I'll have to try some nutritional yeast next time I make a order. I wonder what makes one tasty and one terrible? I don't think I want to try putting this Brewer's yeast on popcorn!

  2. I just made these. I think they need walnuts to disguise the flax a little and help the texture seem appropriate. Next time I make them I'm going to try it with over ripe bananas like I do with banana bread.
    Thanks for the recipe!