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Zucchini Oat Breakfast Cookies



Locally grown zucchini season is here! You can expect to see these guys tucked into your PIP boxes over the upcoming weeks, so it’s time to think about creative ways to use them up! Sliced and grilled, chopped and roasted, cut into zoodles, baked into bread -- zucchini is as versatile as it is abundant this time of year.



We're always on the lookout for grab-and-go breakfast options for these busy summer days. These Zucchini Oat Breakfast Cookies can be prepped ahead and enjoyed throughout the week alongside a hot or iced coffee, or as a mid-afternoon snack. They’re full of texture and flavor, spiked with bright orange zest and warm spices, and studded with lots of nuts, seeds, and dried fruit. They’re tender and chewy, not too sweet, and packed with fiber and healthy fats to keep hunger at bay. And, of course, they’re a delicious way to make use of a perfectly imperfect zucchini!



We’d love to see how you're enjoying this season’s zucchini! Don’t forget to tag us @perfectlyimperfectproduce on social media if you post a pic of these cookies or any of your zucchini creations!



Zucchini Oat Breakfast Cookies


Active time: 15 Min.

Total time: 40 Min.

Servings: 12 large cookies


Ingredients:

1 Perfectly Imperfect medium zucchini

1 Perfectly Imperfect small banana, mashed

½ cup peanut butter, or nut/seed butter of choice

¼ cup ground flaxseed

¼ cup honey

¼ cup packed light brown sugar

Zest from Perfectly Imperfect orange

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground ginger

½ teaspoon salt

2 cups quick cooking oats*

1 cup assorted nuts, seeds, and dried fruit (i.e. ¼ cup chopped nuts, ¼ cup sunflower seeds, ¼ cup dried cherries, ¼ cup chopped dried apricots)


*Not instant oats. You can substitute traditional rolled oats for the quick oats. The texture will be chewier, but still delicious!



Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a half sheet pan with parchment paper.


Grate the zucchini on a box grater. Wrap the grated zucchini in a clean tea towel or paper towels and squeeze over the sink to remove as much moisture as possible. You should have about a heaping cup of grated zucchini once squeezed dry; set aside.


In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the mashed banana, peanut butter, ground flaxseed, honey, brown sugar, orange zest, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, and salt. Stir in the zucchini, followed by the oats. Mix until just combined, then fold in nuts, seeds, and dried fruit.



Drop ¼ cup batter on the sheet pan and press into a 3-inch circle (the cookies will not spread in the oven). Repeat for remaining batter (you can fit about 8 cookies on a half sheet pan). Bake for 25 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through, or until golden brown. Allow to rest on the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely. Will keep for up to 2 days in a sealed container at room temperature or up to a week in the fridge.


By Carolyn Hodges, MS, RDN