Choco Chaga Tahini Cookies (GF, DF) Recipe and all about Chaga Mushrooms

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I haven't baked spontaneously in what essentially feels like eons, but all I wanted the other night was something chewy and chocolatey without being overly sweet. I was just rummaging for whatever I had offhand and these just came together so quickly.

Knocked these Choco Chaga Tahini Cookies right outta the park the first go around: filled with raw cacao, chaga mushroom powder, tahini, collagen, oat flour, and date syrup, this cookie is actually kind of packed with good for you, immunity boosting nutrients! And it is SO GOOD warm with a glass of oat milk. 

For me personally, I love my sweets but this grandma bod is getting older and doesn't react well to sugar parties anymore. I get super lethargic, headaches, and feel bad enough to the point where 2 of these warm cookies + a glass of ice cold oat milk sounds a zillion times better to me than a conventional brownie with milk-- because I get all the happy feels from the milk and cookies combo without the repercussions. To keep things low-glycemic and to add some iron / potassium / magnesium , I also subbed in my favorite date syrup (from Just Date Syrup) for half the maple syrup needed!

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Now, let's talk about CHAGA for a hot sec. Super shrooms are all the rage now, but I have a special fondness for chaga mushrooms because of my dad. My dad used to brew chaga tea all the time because of his liver issues, and people used to think it was so weird-- mushroom tea?? It's laughable now because it's now everywhere as mushroom teas, coffees, etc. 

Chaga mushroom is an adaptogen (helps your body adapt to stressors, naturally, otherwise technically known as BRM [body response modifier]) with a lot of known and super powerful health benefits.

In eastern medicine, it is the go-to for immunity and anti-viral health issues-- it's also one of the forerunners of herbs/adaptogenic foods that are being studied for its role in activating the immune cells that combat the onset of cancer because of the betulinic acid (a phytochemical with anti-tumor activity) in it. The betulinic acid in chaga also has been shown to break down LDL (the not "good") cholesterol, and chaga also has extremely high levels of antioxidants. It's so powerful that it can be contraindicated for those going through certain cancer treatments (my dad had to stop drinking his tea during his type of chemo) and those on certain insulin medications with diabetes. When it comes to BRMs (aka adaptogens), you should always check with your doctor before starting a protocol with them, and start in small amounts to see how your body reacts!

Now onto the recipe we go!

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Choco Chaga Tahini Cookies

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Nut-Free

Ingredients

2/3 cup Oat Flour
1 1/3 cup Tahini
1/3 cup Date Syrup
1/3 cup Maple syrup
1/3 cup Collagen Powder
2 tbsp Cacao powder
2 tbsp Chaga powder
2 tsp Baking Powder
Pinch of Himalayan pink salt
Optional chia seeds or sesame seeds to garnish

1. Preheat oven to 350ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Combine all wet ingredients (tahini, date syrup, maple syrup) in a large mixing bowl and set aside. Combine all dry ingredients (oat flour, collagen, cacao, chaga, baking powder, pink salt) in a small mixing bowl.

3. Add dry ingredient blend to the large mixing bowl with the wet ingredient mixture, and combine thoroughly (a fork works best).

4. Roll dough into 1 inch balls with hands and flatten on baking sheet (optional: press sesame or chia seeds on top for garnish). Bake for 10 minutes and remove from oven-- transfer over to a wire cooling rack after a minute on the sheet. Serve and enjoy!

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