During my one of my trips to visit my parents, while waiting in line to board the flight at the airport gate, the flight attendant in charge of scanning tickets made an announcement over the loudspeaker. As he explained that there was a small issue with our plane that the crew wanted to fix before takeoff, those of us in line glance around at each other… That did not sound reassuring!
We continued to stand in the gate’s lounge, anxiously wondering whether the flight would be cancelled, but the flight attendant shared an update twenty minutes later. The crew was ready for us to board!
Completely relieved, we hustled to get on the plane, and with an A-section boarding pass, I easily snagged a window seat on the Southwest flight. I stared out the window as the plane sped down the runway and took off into the sky, and I smiled as I watched the sun slowly dip below the clouds, turning the horizon a rosy pink. The sunset view was a nice perk of the delayed flight!
Eventually, I pulled out the latest Food Network Magazine and slowly flipped through the issue. I grew really excited as I read the middle featured pages… They had devoted an entire section to different flavor twists on classic chocolate chip cookies!
Back at home, I felt inspired to put my own little spin on my classic chocolate chip cookies… Which resulted in these healthy honey chocolate chip cookies! They’re supremely soft with plenty of chocolate chips, yet unlike many of the recipes in my magazine, these contain no refined flour or white sugar — and they require zero chilling time either!
That’s definitely my kind of cookie! 😉
KEY INGREDIENTS TO MAKE HEALTHY HONEY CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
Let’s go over what you’ll need to make these healthy chocolate chip cookies! I’ve learned a lot about the science of chocolate chip cookies over the years, so I’m going to share that information with you to ensure your cookies turn out with the perfect taste and texture too!
Flour. You’ll start with white whole wheat flour. Yes, such a thing actually exists — and it’s not a combination of white (aka all-purpose) flour and whole wheat flour! Instead, white whole wheat flour is made by finely grinding a special type of soft white wheat (hence the name!), whereas regular whole wheat flour comes from a heartier variety of red wheat. This gives white whole wheat flour a lighter taste and texture, which lets the soft texture of these cookies truly shine!
Hint: The difference between white whole wheat flour and regular whole wheat flour is similar to the difference between red and green grapes. Same health benefits, just a different color and slightly different taste!
Tip: I’ve also included my top recommendations about how to make these honey chocolate chip cookies gluten-free in the Notes section of the recipe!
Cornstarch. That might sound like a strange ingredient for cookies… It’s generally used to thicken sauces and soups! However, cornstarch is also a great addition to your cookies. This is because it absorbs moisture (just like in sauces!), which keeps your cookies nice and soft. It also prevents the formation of really long gluten strands. Long gluten strands create a really tough texture… So adding the cornstarch helps keep these cookies chewy instead!
Butter. We’re only using a small amount of melted butter in these cookies! You can’t completely omit the butter… That leads to bready textures, rather than soft and chewy. And if you used softened butter and tried to beat it with the honey, that would incorporate more air into the cookie dough. More air leads to a crispier texture. Using melted butter yields the perfect soft and chewy texture!
Tip: Coconut oil or stick-style vegan butter also work, if you’d like to make your healthy honey chocolate chip cookies dairy-free!
Sweeteners. Based on this recipe’s name, I’m sure you can guess the first one… It’s honey! However, because of honey’s liquid consistency, using pure honey would add way too much liquid to the cookie dough, which would make your healthy chocolate chip cookies turn out cakey or bready. They’d also spread like crazy on the baking sheet — basically into one giant cookie blob!
To combat that issue, you’ll use half honey and half liquid stevia. Stevia is a plant-based, no-calorie sweetener that contains nothing refined or artificial (aka it’s clean eating friendly!), and it’s also highly concentrated. You just need ½ teaspoon — and that definitely prevents us from adding too much liquid to this cookie dough!
Tip: Many stevia brands and products have different sweetness levels, so they’re not necessarily 1-for-1 substitutes for each other. For the best results, I highly recommend using the same liquid stevia that I do! This is the liquid stevia that I use because I love its sweet flavor and don’t notice any strange aftertaste like with some other stevia products. You can find it at many health-oriented grocery stores, but I buy mine online here because that’s the best price I’ve found. (And you’ll use it in all of these recipes of mine too!)
Chocolate chips. Yes, I actually learned some nerdy things about chocolate chips that I want to share with you! I actually use a combination of dark chocolate chips (I love these!) and miniature chocolate chips (I’m obsessed with these!) in these honey chocolate chip cookies. The dark chocolate chips provide a big burst of chocolate, while the mini chocolate chips ensure that every bite contains at least one morsel of chocolate.
And the reason I love both of those particular chips? They melt much better than other brands, which makes these healthy honey chocolate chip cookies taste even better when they’re fresh from the oven!
But I’m getting ahead of myself…
HOW TO MAKE THE BEST HONEY CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
We still need to talk about how to make the best healthy honey chocolate chip cookies! This recipe is easy and straightforward, but I still have some tips for you to make sure your cookies turn out perfectly soft and chewy.
Measure correctly. I know, I know… I say this ALL the time — but it’s that important! Make sure you measure all of the ingredients correctly. This is key, especially for the flour and honey.
For the flour, use this method or a kitchen scale. (← That’s the one I own!) Too much flour will make the dough dry, and that leads to cakey, bready, or dry cookies. If it’s measured correctly, your healthy honey cookies will turn out perfectly soft and chewy!
For the honey, I recommend using tablespoons, rather than a scale. Fill that tablespoon all the way to the brim! The meniscus (the nerdy science term for the top surface of the honey!) needs to at least be level with the lip of the tablespoon, if not slightly above, to ensure you add the full amount.
Tip: If you’d rather use a kitchen scale to measure the honey, then you’ll need to convert the measurement to grams using honey’s density before doing so. Do NOT measure by liquid ounces! You’ll end up using the wrong amount if you use liquid ounces, and that will ruin the texture of your cookies.
No chilling required. Great news — you can bake these cookies as soon as you’ve mixed up the dough! And that just means you get to eat your honey chocolate chip cookies that much sooner. 😉
Transfer + flatten the cookie dough. The cookie dough is a bit too sticky for shaping with your hands, so use a spoon and spatula to transfer it to your baking sheet instead. (I use this mini spatula. Isn’t it cute??)
These cookies don’t really spread, so you’ll need to flatten those mounds of cookie dough before popping them in the oven. They look the same before and after baking — just no longer raw!
Do not overbake. This is my #1 secret for soft and chewy cookies! Remove them from the oven a minute or two earlier than you’d expect, when the centers still feel a little soft and underdone. The heat from the hot baking sheet will continue to cook the centers all the way through while you let them rest before transferring them to a wire rack — without overbaking the outsides or edges!
If you pulled your cookies from the oven later, when the centers felt firm and fully baked all the way through, you’d actually end up overbaking your cookies. The heat from the baking sheet would continue cooking the cookies, so they’d turn out cakey, bready, or dry.
But if you remove them when they still feel a little soft, your healthy honey chocolate chip cookies will turn out perfectly chewy — just like “regular” cookies!
FAQS ABOUT HEALTHY HONEY CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
Are these honey chocolate chip cookies gluten-free, low calorie, low fat, clean eating, or sugar-free?
Yes! As written, the recipe is naturally clean eating, low fat, low calorie (compared to “traditional” recipes!), and contains no white sugar. I’ve also included gluten-free and dairy-free options for these honey chocolate chip cookies in the Notes section of the recipe!
What can I substitute for the white whole wheat flour?
Whole wheat pastry flour is the perfect substitute! Regular whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour also work really well. You can also try oat flour, but be really careful when measuring it because it tends to be a bit more absorbent than wheat-based flours.
Can I substitute something for the cornstarch? Or omit it?
I haven’t tried substituting anything for the cornstarch, so I’m not personally sure. You’re welcome to omit it, but your cookies won’t be quite as soft and chewy. (See the “Cornstarch” header in the “Key Ingredients to Make Healthy Honey Chocolate Chip Cookies” section above for more info!)
What can I use instead of the liquid stevia?
I’ve shared a few alternatives in the Notes section of the recipe, so check there!
My cookies turned out cakey or bready. Why is that?
The main culprits are too much flour, not enough honey, and overbaking. See the “Measure correctly” and “Don’t overbake” headers in the “How to Make the Best Honey Chocolate Chip Cookies” section for more info!
What’s the best way to store these honey chocolate chip cookies? And how long do they last?
Store them in an airtight container. If stored at room temperature, they’ll keep for at least three days (if not longer!). If stored in the refrigerator, they’ll keep for closer to a week, possibly longer. These honey chocolate chip cookies freeze really well too!
Time to enjoy your batch of freshly baked cookies! And when you make your own, remember to snap a picture and share it on Instagram using #amyshealthybaking and tagging @amyshealthybaking IN the photo itself! (That guarantees I’ll see your picture! 🙂 ) I’d love to see your healthy honey chocolate chip cookies!
Healthy Honey Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 1 cup (120g) white whole wheat flour or gluten-free* flour (measured like this)
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 tbsp (28g) unsalted butter or coconut oil, melted
- 1 large egg white, room temperature
- 1 ½ tsp nonfat milk, room temperature
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp (45mL) honey
- ½ tsp liquid stevia (see Notes!)
- 2 tbsp (28g) dark chocolate chips
- 1 tbsp (14g) miniature chocolate chips, divided
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, stir together the butter, egg white, milk, and vanilla. Stir in the honey and liquid stevia. Add in the flour mixture, stirring just until incorporated. Fold in the dark chocolate chips and ½ tablespoon of miniature chocolate chips.
- Drop the cookie dough onto the prepared baking sheet using a spoon and a spatula. Flatten to no more than ½" thick using a spatula. (The cookies don’t spread much, if at all!) Gently press the remaining miniature chocolate chips into the tops. Bake at 325°F for 9-11 minutes. Cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
View Nutrition Information + Weight Watchers Points
You may also like Amy’s other recipes…
♡ The Ultimate Healthy Soft & Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies
♡ Healthy Practically Flourless Chocolate Chip Cookies
♡ Healthy Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies
♡ Healthy Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies
♡ Healthy Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
♡ Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
♡ Healthy Coffee Chocolate Chip Cookies
♡ …and the rest of Amy’s healthy cookie recipes!