This Lactation Cookies Recipe is packed with ingredients that promote milk production for nursing moms! These oatmeal chocolate chip cookies are vegan, gluten-free, and so nutritious!
Anyone can enjoy this lactation cookies recipe — whether you’re a breastfeeding mama or not! Just like my no bake lactation bites, Trevor absolutely loves these too.
My intent, however, was to make a cookie for nursing moms that not only helps promote milk production, but is also relatively healthy AND tastes amazing.
Well, my friends, I promise you, you will not be disappointed!
As a breastfeeding mom, I always have these ingredients on hand. Whether you need help increasing your milk production or not, they’re the perfect healthy cookie to satisfy any sweet tooth!
- Chia Seeds and Water – make up a chia “egg” which helps bind the cookies together. Chia seeds are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, fiber, iron, and calcium.
- Coconut Oil – adds just the right amount of moisture and chew to the cookie. Some breastfeeding moms (and their babies) are sensitive to dairy, so I wanted to keep these cookies dairy free by not using butter. Use a refined coconut oil, if desired, to avoid a strong coconut flavor.
- Coconut Sugar – provides a rich, warm sweetness. Feel free to use brown sugar instead.
- Vanilla Extract – adds warmth and flavor depth.
- Old Fashioned Oats – we’re using both whole oats and ground oats which gives the cookies their structure and chewy texture. Oats are also high in iron and may help increase milk supply.
- Brewer’s Yeast – this is a byproduct of brewing beer that is actually dried and used as a nutritional supplement to help improve milk production.
- Flaxseed Meal – provides an extra boost of nutrition. Flax seeds contain phytoestrogens which also may help to boost milk supply.
- Cinnamon – provides a mild, warm spiciness.
- Baking Soda – prevents the cookies from becoming too dense as they bake.
- Salt – cuts the sweetness and brings out other flavors.
- Dark Chocolate Chips/Chunks – use dairy free, if necessary. Semi-sweet chips, milk chocolate chips, or your favorite chopped chocolate will work too!
How to make
This healthy, nutritious, and super yummy treat requires just 15 minutes of prep — perfect for busy moms!
- Mix chia seeds and water in a small bowl then set aside in the fridge for 15 minutes. This is your chia “egg”.
- In your stand mixer bowl, beat together coconut oil and coconut sugar until creamy.
- Add in chia egg and vanilla extract and beat again.
- Beat in whole oats, ground oats, yeast, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt then stir in dark chocolate chips/chunks.
- Use a large cookie scoop to scoop out 16 dough bites onto two different baking sheets lined with silicone mats.
- Press down onto each cookie dough ball using the heel of your hand to slightly flatten to 1 inch thick.
- Bake at 350ºF for 10 minutes, cool for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to fully cool before serving!
What oats to use
I recommend using old fashioned oats for their chewy, hearty texture.
Quick cooking oats may work but might not hold together as well. You cannot use steel cut oats, because the texture is hard when uncooked.
Why are my cookies flat?
- You didn’t chill the dough. Chilling the dough for at least 30 minutes before baking the cookies helps prevent them from spreading as they bake. Don’t skip this step!
- You under-measured your oats. If you don’t have enough oats to bulk up the cookie, they will spread too much.
- You didn’t use old fashioned oats. Quick cooking oats *may* work, but they’ll likely result in a thinner, flatter cookie.
- Your baking soda was expired. Baking soda is a leavening agent which lightens up the cookies and prevents them from getting too dense. If it’s old, it won’t work like it should. Make sure it’s fresh before you use it.
What is brewer’s yeast?
Brewer’s yeast is a byproduct of grain fermentation that’s dried and used as a nutritional supplement.
It’s a probiotic, a plant-based superfood, and contains loads of vitamins and minerals like vitamin B, iron, zinc, magnesium, potassium, and galactagogue which is a substance that is said to promote healthy lactation.
The amazing thing about brewer’s yeast is it’s a healthy superfood for everyone, not just lactating mothers. It’s said to help with respiratory problems, digestion, blood sugar levels, healthy skin, energy levels, a healthy immune system, and more!
Which foods can help with lactation?
Brewer’s yeast is not the only ingredient in these cookies that helps promote healthy lactation. There are other more common ingredients that do the same!
- Brewer’s yeast. See above for more information!
- Flaxseed Meal. Flax seeds contain phytoestrogens which are said to help promote milk production. They also are high in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids which help strengthen a baby’s immune system and prevent allergies.
- Oats. Old-fashioned oats are high in iron and contain a compound called prolactin which is a hormone instrumental in milk production.
Do lactation cookies really work?
The results are different for everyone. Some notice a difference in just a couple of days while others go a little bit longer before they notice anything.
Some people don’t respond to the lactation cookies and that’s okay too. Worst case scenario is you’re just snacking on these otherwise nutritious and yummy cookies! They can’t hurt…and they taste good too. 😉
Can anyone eat lactation cookies?
Yes! While a few of the ingredients do help promote healthy milk production, those same ingredients are packed with other nutrients and vitamins that are healthy for everyone!
How to store
Leftover lactation cookies will last up to 1 week at room temperature, 2 weeks in the fridge, and 3 months in the freezer.
Cookies aren’t your thing? Check out my healthy no-bake lactation bites instead!
Lactation Cookies Recipe
Equipment for this recipe
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1/2 cup coconut oil room temperature (not melted)
- 3/4 cups coconut sugar can also use brown sugar
- 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cups old fashioned oats left whole (use certified gluten free, if necessary)
- 1 cup ground old fashioned oats spoon and leveled (use certified gluten free, if necessary)*
- 1/4 cup debittered brewer’s yeast
- 1/4 cup ground flaxseed meal
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips/chunks use dairy free, if necessary
- Maldon sea salt optional for garnish
- Line 2 baking sheets with silicone baking mats and set aside.
- Mix chia seeds and water in a small bowl. Set aside in the fridge for 15 minutes to gel. This is our chia “egg”.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, beat together coconut oil and coconut sugar until creamy.
- Add in the chia egg and vanilla extract and beat, again, until combined.
- Beat in whole oats, ground oats, yeast, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt.
- Stir in dark chocolate chips/chunks.
- Use a large cookie scoop to scoop out 16 dough bites — place 8 onto each prepared baking sheet.
- Press down onto each cookie dough ball using the heel of your hand until they slightly flatten on the top — they should be 1 inch thick.
- Chill dough for 30 minutes in the fridge.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, then bake for about 10 minutes.
- Remove from oven and sprinkle with optional maldon sea salt.
- Cool before transferring them to a wire cooling rack and enjoying!
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*Note: Nutrition information is estimated and varies based on products used.