Soft and fudgy, super chocolatey cookies packed with crunchy walnuts (or almonds), melty chocolate chips, and gooey marshmallows. Inspired by the ice cream flavor, these Rocky Road Cookies are a symphony of textures and flavors that make them absolutely irresistible and straight up yummy, without the brain freeze! These cookies are gluten free, dairy free, and grain free! Plus, made with no refined flours or oils.
But First, Some News!
Before I dish the deets on this sweet new cookie, I wanted to share some news and explain my very long (and unexpected) hiatus from this blog and Instagram. Well, I opened a new business! I’m super excited about my business, moonbird bakery, where I offer seasonally inspired, ready-to-eat baked goods and baking mixes made with real ingredients! The grain free baking mixes are available to ship in the US and ready-to-eat baked goods are available for local (Costa Mesa, California) pick up. (But I hope to be able to offer shipping on these too in near future.) Please go check out my website moonbirdbakery.com and follow @moonbirdbakery on IG. I really appreciate your support!
And, on top of that, I recently started culinary school in pursuit of a degree in baking and pastry. So far, I am loving it. It’s a lot of work and time consuming, but it’ll mean more fun and amazing new recipes for the blog and moonbird bakery.
All this newness has been a balancing act but I’ve finally settled in and hoping to be able to post fresh new recipes on this site once a week. As a thank you for your support, and patience, please enjoy this embarrassing photo of me in my ill-fitting school uniform.
And now, cookies!
What Do These Rocky Road Cookies Taste Like?
I’ll be honest, I never liked Rocky Road Ice Cream growing up. To me, the too hard nuts and the chewy frozen marshmallows got in the way of the silky smooth chocolate ice cream. But, translate those same ingredients into a cookie, well, that’s a textural combination I can get behind! The chocolate cookies are deeply chocolatey and with an almost brownie-like texture. Super fudgy on the inside with crisp chewy edges. Then to rocky-road-ify the chocolate cookie we add in walnuts, or almonds if that’s more to your liking, chocolate chunks, and mini marshmallows. It’s a cookie combination PACKED with goodness and absolutely drool-worthy.
Here’s why you will LOVE these cookies!
- Soft and super fudgy, brownie-like, chocolate cookies.
- A delicious mix of flavors of textures.
- The classic Rocky Road add-ins but in cookie form and no brain freeze!
- Made with better-for-you ingredients.
- Super quick and so easy to make!
What Ingredients Are Used To Make Grain Free Rocky Road Cookies?
These paleo-ish Rocky Road Cookies are made healthier as they contain no refined flours or oils and no saturated fats. They are paleo(ish) because they are gluten free, grain free, and dairy free but the marshmallows contain some non-paleo approved ingredients.
Here’s a look at the ingredients you’ll need and some possible variations:
- Coconut Sugar – My go-to sweetener for refined sugar free baking is always coconut sugar. It behaves similarly to conventional white sugar, has a delicious natural caramel flavor, and leaves no weird aftertaste. I use and love Nutiva’s Coconut Sugar.
- Tahini – I love using tahini in cookies and cookie bars, it adds a wonderful dense chewiness. I recently tried out SoCo Tahini for this recipe and loved the quality and gently flavor, USE CODE FreshlyD15 for 15% off! See recipe notes below for subs.
- Avocado Oil – Helps crisp the cookies and adds a bit more moisture. Sub with olive or melted and cooled coconut oil.
- Egg – Brings the cookie dough together and helps the cookie puff. With only 1 egg you can likely use a vegan egg replacer, however, I have not tested this. Please let me know if you do!
- Vanilla – Adds delicious flavor
- Cassava Flour – The best flour for grain free baking! I use and love Otto’s.
- Tapioca Flour – Adds lightness to the flour mixture so the cookie does not feel too dense or overly floury.
- Baking Soda – The leavener in this cookie that helps the cookie puff and brown.
- Salt – To balance the sweetness.
- Chopped Chocolate – I use chopped dark chocolate but feel free to use chocolate chips if you prefer! My go-to chocolate is Theo’s Pure Dark 70% chocolate it’s excellent quality, plus organic and fair trade!
- Walnuts – You can use chopped walnuts or almonds! I prefer walnuts as they have a bit less of an assertive flavor and I love the pairing of walnut with the brownie-esque chocolate cookie.
- Marshmallows – Use your favorite brand of mini marshmallows! I use the Whole Foods brand, but Dandies mini marshmallows are a great natural, vegan, gelatin free option.
How Do You Make Healthier Rocky Road Cookies?
These grain and dairy free Rocky Road Cookies are SUPER easy to make. The cookie dough comes together in a breeze and they bake up quick! Chilling cookie dough always leads to a cookie with better shape and flavor, but, if you’re in a hurry for cookies, it’s not required. Here’s a look at the steps:
- Mix the wet ingredients together until thick and glossy.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet and Stir until just fully incorporated.
- Add the walnuts and chocolate chips and gently fold into the dough until just distributed.
- Scoop dough balls onto a parchment paper or silicone mat lined baking sheet. If the dough looks a little sticky or doesn’t hold it’s shape, place in fridge or freezer for a few minutes.
- Press 2-3 mini marshmallows into the cookie dough, along with additional chocolate and crushed walnuts if desired.
- Bake at 360 for 12-14 minutes. We bake these in a hotter-than-normal oven to give the cookies lift and limit spreading. It helps crisp the edges while keeping the center soft and chewy.
- Let cool and enjoy! These are really best warm, when the marshmallow is still gooey and the chocolate melty. These are also still incredibly delicious at room temperature OR even straight from the freezer.
Storage Tips: Keep in an airtight container at room temperature for a day or so, afterwards move to freezer for longer storage.
These classic-ice-cream-inspired-cookies are a dessert dream come true! A soft and fudgy cookie, melty pools of chocolate, crunchy bits of walnuts, and gooey marshmallows it’s summertime ice cream vibes meets cookie season. And I’m so excited for you to try them!
gluten free, dairy free, grain free (paleo-ish)
Check Out These Epic Cookie Recipes!
- Peanut Butter Stuffed Brownie Cookies (paleo, easily nut free)
- Healthy Brookies! (Chocolate Chip + Brownie Cookies)
- Pretzel & Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies (paleo & nut-free option)
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If you make this recipe, please spread the love by leaving a review or rating down below. And I’d LOVE to see and share your creation! Take a picture and tag me on Instagram @freshlydafna in your feed or stories and I will share on my account!
Healthier Rocky Road Cookies
Soft and fudgy, super chocolatey cookies packed with crunchy walnuts (or almonds), melty chocolate chunks, and gooey marshmallows. Inspired by the ice cream flavor, these Rocky Road Cookies are a symphony of textures and flavors that make them absolutely irresistible and straight up yummy.
paleo-ish (gluten free, grain free, dairy free)
- 3/4 cup coconut sugar (114 grams)
- 1/4 cup tahini (65 grams) sub other thin & drippy nut/seed butter
- 1/4 cup avocado oil (61 grams) sub olive or melted and cooled coconut oil
- 1 egg, large ideally room temp
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (31 grams) not cacao powder or cocoa mix
- 1/4 cup cassava flour (36 grams)
- 1/4 cup tapioca flour (30 grams)
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 cup chopped dark chocolate (70 grams) or chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or almonds (60 grams)
- 25-40 mini marshmallows
Heat oven to 360 (yes, 360) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Mix wet ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer, or a large bowl if mixing by hand, until thick and creamy. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
Add the dry ingredients and stir until just mixed, scraping down the sides of the bowl once or twice more during mixing to ensure ingredients are just fully incorporated, taking care not to overmix.
Add the walnuts and chocolate chips and, using a rubber spatula, gently fold into the cookie dough until just distributed. Be sure not to stir too much or the nuts may release some oil making the dough greasy.
Scoop 12-13 dough balls, a large (50 mm) scoop is helpful, 2 inches apart, onto the prepared baking sheet. If the dough balls seem to spread a lot once scooped or the dough is too sticky to scoop, pop it into the fridge or freezer for a few minutes to help the dough firm back up.
Press 2-3 marshmallows into each cookie dough, along with additional chocolate chunks and/or crushed walnuts, if desired.
Bake cookies for 12-14 minutes or until cookie edges are starting to turn a darker brown and the center has puffed. Bake for 12 minutes for a soft and just done cookie, 14 minutes for a firmer, fully baked cookie.
Let cookies cool on baking sheet for at least 5 minutes before transferring to wire rack. Enjoy warm in all their melty gooey glory or at room temperature!
A Note On Chilling: Chilling cookie dough always leads to a cookie with better shape and flavor. It's not necessary with this cookie but if your dough looks a bit sticky or spreading too much, pop the dough or baking sheet with cookie dough balls in the fridge or freezer until they are no longer sticky. Re-roll dough into a small ball before baking.
Storage: Store at room temperature in an airtight container for a day or so. Then move to freezer for longer storage. Delicious as a frozen treat or reheat in the microwave or toaster oven to enjoy warm!
Tahini - Use a thin and drippy tahini. I recommend the Whole Foods brand, Seed & Mill (a bit pricey), or the tahini I used in this recipe by SoCo (used code FreshlyD15 for 15% off)! You can sub for any other nut/seed butter with only 1 ingredient that is not overly thick. For best results, be sure to mix the nut/seed butter in the jar well before measuring. Do not use the compacted paste at the bottom of the jar.
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