I have yet to meet a nursing mother who hasn’t worried about her milk supply at some point in her breastfeeding journey, and maintaining a full supply can often feel like a full time job. Breast milk quality is also a concern for many mothers, as breast milk is often the only sustenance a new mother’s infant receives during the first few months of life. Right from day one moms are working hard!
That’s why I created this nutritious, lactation cookie recipe to help new moms take a little break from all of that worrying! This recipe helps improve milk supply, but is also full of ingredients that are important for the health of breastfeeding moms. Not to mention that they taste delicious (I always have to set aside a small container for my husband!). You’re welcome to make any substitutions you desire, but there are a few ingredients that I recommend you try to leave intact to ensure that you get the full nutritional benefits from these cookies!
Oatmeal, nutritional yeast and ground flax seed are the three amigos of breast milk stimulation! Combining all three of these ingredients in one recipe is at the heart of why these lactation cookies work so well with increasing milk production. Many people like to substitute margarine for butter, but I would advise against this. Margarine is typically high in trans fats, which can replace good fats (such as omega-3 fats) in breast milk and in a developing baby’s body. Butter is a natural source of absorbable vitamin A, which can play a role in regulating a nursing mother’s thyroid and the development of the heart and vision of growing babies. Butter gets a bad reputation, but in this case you won’t be consuming enough for any health risks to outweigh the benefits.
Most of the other ingredients were chosen for their nutritional value. Pecans are a nutritional powerhouse, providing mom and baby with important vitamins and minerals like folic acid, potassium and calcium. Dark chocolate and cranberries are a dynamic duo for delivering cancer-fighting flavonoids, plus the cranberries help add a satisfying tartness to balance out sweeter ingredients. Just a quarter cup of pumpkin seeds contains about half of the recommended daily intake of magnesium, which aids in heart function, bone and tooth formation, and digestive health.
Shredded coconut offers fiber, iron, and protein, and acts as a natural sweetening agent in these cookies, which gave me an opportunity to decrease the amount of added sugar. Finally, a little cinnamon goes a long way in helping reduce inflammation in the body.
There you have it – delicious cookies, loaded with nutritional ingredients guaranteed to help a breastfeeding mama with her milk supply and overall health. Enjoy!
- ½ cup butter
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 1 cup flour
- 1 tbsp ground flax seed
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- 1 cup oats
- 3 tbsp brewers yeast
- ½ cup dark chocolate chips (70% or higher)
- ½ cup shredded coconut
- ¼ cup pecans
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
Makes 3 dozen cookies
Cookies can be frozen for up to 6 weeks
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Beat room-temperature butter with white and brown sugars until smooth and fluffy.
- Beat in egg and vanilla.
- Sift together flour, ground flax seed, brewers yeast, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.
- Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients in three stages, beating between each stage.
- With a wooden spoon, stir in oatmeal, dark chocolate chips, pecans, cranberries, pumpkin seeds, and coconut.
- Scoop a generous spoonful of batter onto an un-greased baking sheet and bake for 11 – 13 minutes.
- Allow the cookies to cool for several minutes before removing from the tray.