In case by now you’re wondering if I’m obsessed with creating these Low Sugar Melt-Away Cookie varieties, the answer is obvious that of course I am obsessed. After two attempts at creating this here orange flavored variety, I have definitely decided that of all the flavors – orange is my new favorite.
Why two attempts, you ask? Oh well. I just burned the first batch, that’s all. Guys, it is so weird what happens to cookies when you put them in the oven, walk away, and then forget that there is actual life going on outside your office door. So weird. Someone should have warned me about this. We can’t even leave cookies unattended in a 350° oven for 27 minutes. Did you know that???
Set a timer much, Laura?
You know what? Just…I know, okay? I should have set a timer. I used to have one of those clicky, clicky, clicky timers but it got dropped four too many times so its spinner stopped spinning. Then Matt got me a digital timer that was persnickety and sometimes decided to shut itself off because it was selfish and couldn’t care less about the company coming over to eat in exactly 52 minutes. After a few months of this behavior, I declared it to be faulty and went to the store to purchase another one just like it. It, however, had the same exact issues as its brother and that is what tipped me off that maybe that brand couldn’t be trusted.
After that, I decided I could just use the timer app on my phone. This is a great idea except that it takes so many difficult and tedious steps to get to the point of actually setting the timer (find phone, turn phone on, unlock screen, find timer app, open timer app, think about how much time has elapsed since I started this whole process so I can figure out how long to set the timer at this point, so on and so forth). Also, I really hate to touch my phone when I have egg white on my fingers.
I think you can all see now how challenging it has been to accurately time my baked goods. I have mostly resorted to trusting my nose to be my timer. Typically, cookies and casseroles smell “just right” when they are ready to come out of the oven. What more do I need?
Oh yeah, just someone to remind me that I am actually baking cookies in the first place.
So the first batch burned. They were edible, just really, really crispy and not at all picture worthy. Over the weekend, I tried again. Oh my goodness, I will (go to the trouble to) set a timer from now on. It is worth it to pull the perfect cookies out of the oven when they are perfectly perfect in every way.
Easy Low Sugar Orange Melt-Away Cookies
- 1 cup melted butter
- ½ cup sucanat or raw sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- The juice of one medium-sized orange
- grated orange rind
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3 cups of whole wheat pastry flour (give or take)
- Stir together melted butter and sugar.
- Add eggs, vanilla, orange juice, and baking powder.
- Grate orange rind into the mix for extra flavor.
- Stir in flour until a solid ball of dough forms.
- Drop teaspoon-sized balls of dough onto a cookie sheet, about an inch apart.
- Bake in a 350° oven for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are lightly browned.
In other scatterbrained related news – the second time I made these cookies, I was talking to a friend and didn’t realize until later (like 9 hours later) that I hadn’t put eggs into the mixing bowl. These still turned out to be my favorite cookies. So eggs in this recipe? Take ’em or leave ’em. These turn out fine either way. This is further proof that I can’t talk and cook at the same time. Like you needed more proof.
Want to try the other varieties of these cookies?
Hey, just curious. What kind of timer do you use??
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Thank you for zesting your orange! You knew I’d be looking to see if you did in your new recipe! :)
Of course!! I’m loving it!
If I use honey for the sweetener, how would you suggest I modify the recipe? Can I use whole wheat flour that is not pastry flour? I’m looking forward to making these. Thanks so much
I’d just cut the honey to 1/3 cup instead of 1/2 cup sucanat/sugar and not change anything else. Yes, this recipe will work with regular whole wheat, but I’ve found the cookies to be more dense and less “melt-away” when not using pastry flour. :)
Store-bought pastry flour or fresh milled soft white wheat flour? Thank you!
I just press the home button on my iPhone and say “set timer for __ minutes”. It says “ok, __ minutes and counting”. Very easy!
Hi Laura, what are your thoughts on coconut sugar? Would it work in this recipe?
I’ve done very little research on coconut sugar, but as far as whether or not it would work in this recipe, I believe it should!
Okay, silly question, but how do you zest an orange?!?! I have tried way too many times and ended up zesting my fingertips instead, every.single.time. These sound delicious, but I refuse to zest anymore until I get expert advice. Is it a special tool or a secret technique for only those initiated in the zesting club?
I avoided zesting too, until my friend (who sells Pampered Chef) surprised me with a PC Zester at Christmas this year! I don’t have any great advice for you other than investing in a nice zesting tool is worth it. In the meantime, you can still make these cookies with just the orange juice and not the zest. It’s just yummier with the zest!
A couple of tips:
It’s easier to zest whole fruit so zest things before you cut them or juice them.
Get a good zester (they are useful for many things like hard cheeses, nutmeg, and garlic too) and then do it gently. You want to get as little of the white pith as possible since it’s bitter.
kim t. says
You have to try lime next. I’ve not tried your low-sugar recipe yet, but regular lime melt away / tea cookies are sooooooo good. I don’t think i’d skip the zest if you can help it, it adds so much punch!
This Westbend triple timer is my favorite. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0000CFTWS?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_search_detailpage
I have used it for 15ish years, though I must clarify that I have bought several of these in that time (multiple kitchen mishaps and five children). I have tried others but keep going back to this one. With three timers, I can have multiple things going at the same time. It counts up, it counts down, it has a clock, different beeps for each timer, a magnet, a clip that turns into a stand. When the timer goes off, if you don’t get to it right away, it automatically starts counting up, so after about 50 seconds it stops beeping but continues counting, so I can see that it took me two additional minutes before I actually got to the oven.
The only thing is, be prepared for the clip to break off when you drop it. And if you have it on the fridge by magnet, hold on to it while pushing the buttons, because the magnet is on center but start/stop button off to the side. It will fall off the fridge easily if you press buttons without holding it, leading to the clip breaking off. I finally have figured all this out and adjusted my expectations and was not quite so heartbroken when the clip broke off this time. Being extremely careful, this most recent one lasted about three months before the clip broke off when my daughter dropped it on the floor.
I now have two, one that stays in the kitchen always under threat from mommy’s it’s clip/magnet/stand still intact, and one that moves around the house for speed drills, timeouts, to be in my pocket, etc. This was a great idea that my husband had, to get two, and well worth $11.50 each. Please get one or two (or more) and hopefully you’ll like it as much as I do!
(Who knew I cared so much about a timer? But I really don’t know how we would function without two of these…)
I love your recipes and stories! Thank you for all your hard work. Zesting is definitely worth it.
Just a suggestion…zest before you cut the fruit, it’s a lot easier to zest something before you cut it! :-)
This “you don’t need the eggs” thing is rocking my world! My daughter is allergic, and I’ve had so-so luck with replacements – I never thought of leaving them out altogether! I always thought you needed them as a binder. Do you think this will work with other recipes too?
I have wondered about that too, since these cookies turned out so good without them! I feel like leaving eggs out of cake wouldn’t work. But for other cookies…maybe!!
I LOVE these because I can easily get all those ingredients here. I also added little cranberry bits to mine. Obviously this ups the sugar but they are heavenly. Thanks for the awesome recipes!
Thank you Laura. I did use the honey and they were delicious. I made the lemon flavored cookies and they were so good. I used a lot of lemon though, I didn’t measure how much, just so it tasted really lemony. :) I want to make them again today, but this time add lemon zest. I’ve never zested before. How much lemon zest would you recommend? How much orange zest did you use in your orange cookies? Thank you so very much. You are such a sweet person, AND an excellent cook. :)
I don’t know how to really measure zest. Usually I just zest as much of the outside of the orange as I can and call it good. It’s plenty! And delicious. :)
Karen Sue Goins says
I am diabetic. Learning a lot. Do I use the same for Agava as sucanat? The melt away cookies. 1/2 to 1/2? When I tried recipes before they are too soft or uncooked? I want to try your cookies and cake recipes. I need help!!!????????????
Yikes, I don’t cook with agava so I’m not sure. I suppose you can spread the dough into a cake pan instead of making them into cookies as you experiment. Sorry I can’t be more help!
How can I pin your recipes? :)
If you hover over the pictures you’ll see a Pinterest button!