Taste Test: Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Mixes
Making your own gluten-free flour blends takes time and patience to get the hang of. And we get that some folks just aren’t great in the baking department. Sometimes it’s OK to call upon premade gluten-free mixes to get the job done — and save you lots of grief! Numerous gluten-free chocolate chip mixes have been popping up on market shelves. We gave them a whirl, and here’s what we found.
The chocolate chip cookie mixes were rated from a scale of 1 to 5 (5 being highest). The ratings are based on taste and mouthfeel, along with nutrition (specifically calories, fat, fiber and sugar). Each of the cookies was made as instructed on the package and baked for the amount of time specified. The nutrition information is per prepared cookie.
Per serving (1 baked cookie): Calories 65; Fat 6 g (Saturated 4 g); Sugars 9 g; Fiber 1 g
Our Take: Everything in this ingredient list is pronounceable. This mix is made from certified gluten-free oat flour and is sweetened with cane sugar and molasses. The warm cookie is moist and chewy and as close to the real deal as you can get. The price is reasonable. As with all gluten-free mixes, there is a slight grainy mouthfeel, but overall, it’s a mighty tasty cookie.
Per serving (1 baked cookie): Calories 124; Fat 7.5 g (Saturated 0.5 g); Sugars 8 g; Fiber 2 g
Our Take: Purely Elizabeth makes wonderful products, and this gluten-free cookie mix is no different. The cookies are made from millet flour, almond flour and garbanzo-fava bean flour. The mix contains chia seeds (hello, extra Omega-3s!). The mouthfeel is more of a nutty whole-grain flavor and not like a traditional chocolate chip cookie — but that may be just what some folks are looking for. Each cookie does have more fiber than some of the others, with 2 grams. The price, however, is on the steeper side.
Per serving (1 baked cookie): Calories 150; Fat 7 g (Saturated 4 g); Sugars 6 g; Fiber 0 g
Our Take: Pamela’s is another darn good-tasting chocolate chip cookie, if you like them soft and chewy! They do taste very close to the real deal, but this brand has more calories (not sugar, though!) than some of the other brands. If you substitute applesauce or nonfat plain Greek yogurt for part of the 7 tablespoons of butter that is called for, you can easily cut back on the calories and saturated fat. As for the ingredient list, it's a bit longer than that of some other brands, but overall they do pay attention to what goes their mixes, as indicated by the non-GMO soy lecithin and aluminum-free baking powder.
Per serving (1 baked cookie): Calories 100; Fat 4.5 g (Saturated 4 g); Sugars 7 g; Fiber 1 g
Our Take: Not only are all Zemas Madhouse foods free of gluten, they’re free of the top eight allergens, including egg, milk, peanuts and wheat. This cookie mix is made from sorghum flour, millet flour, teff flour, tapioca flour and flax seed meal. The manufacturer also recommends mixing it with applesauce and oil instead of loads of butter. But the flavor isn’t that of a traditional chocolate chip cookie. The mouthfeel is very grainy, and it's not as flavorful as the other varieties.
Per serving (1 baked cookie): Calories 169; Fat 7 g (Saturated 5 g); Sugars 13 g; Fiber <1 g
Our Take: Although Glutino has a pretty short list of ingredients for its chocolate chip cookie mix, the calories and sugar per cookie are higher than any of the others. The texture is gummy, and the flavor is bland, so this is not our favorite of the bunch. The box recommends using 1 stick of butter (1/2 cup) in the mixture, but you can easily cut it by swapping part of the butter for applesauce or nonfat plain Greek yogurt, as mentioned above.
Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. She is the author of The Greek Yogurt Kitchen: More Than 130 Delicious, Healthy Recipes for Every Meal of the Day.