These low FODMAP cookies are the perfect combination of coconut, oats, and chocolate (plus some butter and sugar of course). They’re oh-so-delicious and don’t require any time in the oven! As an IBS dietitian, I find a lot of my patients who follow a low FODMAP diet still want something sweet. However, it can be difficult to find low FODMAP options at a bakery or grocery store. Even the most inexperienced bakers can make this classic sweet treat.
The real question – what did you call this type of cookie growing up? I called them haystacks, but I’ve also heard them called chocolate macaroons, no-bakes, cow patties, and boiled cookies. Whatever they’re called, they’re SO simple and taste amazing. Perfect for dessert – and if you’re looking for other desserts, check out our chocolate flaxseed pudding and low FODMAP carrot cake!
Are haystack cookies low FODMAP?
Growing up, we had these haystack cookies fairly often, so I used our family recipe as a guide to make this low FODMAP version. To be honest, haystack cookies are already fairly low FODMAP and this recipe didn’t need to be adjusted very much. Because these cookies don’t contain wheat flour or other high FODMAP ingredients like honey or raisins, they’re already pretty FODMAP friendly! I did adjust the milk, as the original recipe called for regular milk – I chose lactose-free instead. However, even regular milk would be considered low FODMAP in this recipe – as there is less than a teaspoon of milk in each cookie! Low FODMAP recipes don’t need to be complicated!
Is butter low FODMAP?
Although I used lactose-free milk for these cookies, I didn’t go out of my way to select butter that was labeled as lactose-free. Although butter is a dairy product, it doesn’t contain FODMAPs because the lactose (the natural sugar in milk) gets removed during production.
Keep in mind, butter is still high in fat and fat can impact gut motility when consumed in large amounts. Having 1-2 of these cookies should be well tolerated by most people, but more than this in a sitting could also affect symptoms.
Is coconut low FODMAP?
Shredded coconut that is commonly used for baking is low FODMAP in servings of 1/2 cup or less.
The FODMAP content of coconut products does vary depending on what it is. Coconut milk and coconut water should be limited to about 1/2 cup per sitting. Fresh coconut is low FODMAP up to almost 1 cup. Since coconut products vary in FODMAP content, we recommend checking an evidence-based low FODMAP resource such as the Monash University low FODMAP app.
How to Make These Low FODMAP Cookies
Although there is no baking required for this recipe, there is a boiling step. This is where the term “boiled cookies” comes from – a common name for haystack cookies.
Start by setting a medium pot over low heat and adding 1/4 cup butter, 1/4 cup lactose-free milk, and 1 cup sugar. Stir this mixture regularly until the butter has fully melted and the mixture is smooth. Bring the warmed milk, butter, and sugar to a gentle boil for 1-2 minutes, stirring regularly so that it doesn’t burn.
Add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and stir to incorporate. Then add 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut, 1½ tablespoons cocoa powder, and 1 cup oats. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, combine all ingredients until evenly coated. The mixture should be sticky and not too dry and crumbly. Remove from heat.
Prepare a cutting board or baking sheet with a layer of parchment paper. Using two spoons, form the cookies by picking up approximately 2 tbsp and dropping it onto the parchment paper. It will be a bit messy! Repeat this until you run out. Allow the cookies to cool so they can set (and won’t fall apart when you eat them). I like to put mine in the fridge to speed up this process. Serve cold.
Low FODMAP Chocolate Haystack Cookies (No Bake)
- ¼ cup butter
- ¼ cup lactose-free milk (or plant-based milk like almond milk)
- 1 cup white sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- 1 cup oats I used quick oats
- 1½ tbsp cocoa powder
- To a medium pot over low heat, add butter, milk, and sugar. Stir regularly until butter has fully melted and mixture is smooth. Bring to a gentle boil for 1-2 minutes, stirring regularly so it doesn't burn.
- Add vanilla and stir to incorporate. Then add coconut, cocoa powder, and oats. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, combine all ingredients until evenly coated. The mixture should be sticky and not too dry and crumbly. Remove from heat.
- Prepare a cutting board or baking sheet with a layer of parchment paper. Using two spoons, form the cookies by picking up approximately 2 tbsp of the mixture and dropping it onto the parchment paper. Repeat this until you run out. Allow the cookies to cool so they can set – I like to put mine in the fridge to speed up this process. Serve cold – enjoy!