Black Forest CookeisChocolate and cherries are the foundation of the classic dessert Black Forest Cake. Now you can enjoy the same flavors in a delicious cookie that can surprisingly be served to family and friends who want gluten-, grain- and dairy-free treats.

This easy-to-make recipe was created by Carol Kicinski, a professional recipe developer, editor in chief of Simply Gluten Free Magazine and TV chef. Kicinski explains, “They are something between a macaroon and a brownie made better with ruby-red maraschino cherries.”

In fact, maraschino cherries can add color and flavor to a variety of baked goods, so it’s wise to keep a jar or two in your pantry for when you’re ready to bake.

Gluten-Free Black Forest Cookies

Ingredients

2¼ cups blanched almond flour*

¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt

½ cup vegetable oil

½ cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 large eggs (“Mom” prefers cage-free eggs)

¾ cup semisweet chocolate chips

1 cup maraschino cherries, patted dry and quartered

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350°. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Combine the almond flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in mixing bowl. Whisk together oil, brown sugar, vanilla and eggs. Add to dry ingredients; mix well. Stir in chocolate chips and cherries.

Using teaspoon or small (#60) ice cream scoop, spoon dough onto the prepared baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake for 11 minutes or until the cookies are firm. Cool on pans for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Makes 2½ dozen cookies.

*Grind your own almond flour: Pulse about 3 cups sliced almonds in food processor until it reaches the consistency of flour. Yield: about 2¼ cups almond flour.

For delicious recipes from The National Cherry Growers and Industries Foundation, visit www.nationalcherries.com. Or go to www.simplygluten-free.com for more gluten-free advice and recipes.

*Recipe and image courtesy of NAPS.*