Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies with Walnuts

Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies with Walnuts

Being the mother of boys is a wonderful thing. I have never been a “girly girl” so perhaps God, in His infinite wisdom, knew I would be a better mother of boys than girls. Of course I might be saying the exact opposite if I had been blessed with girls. But there’s just something special about the relationship between mothers and sons and I am so grateful I have the opportunity to raise these two precious souls.

“…and she loved a little boy very, very much – even more than she loved herself.” – From ‘The Giving Tree’ by Shel Silverstein

Our boys like to get dirty. My husband and I have an ongoing joke about our differing views on the acceptability of how dirty they get when playing outside. G is a stickler for cleanliness and even though he knows it’s not a big deal, he cannot help but cringe when he sees the boys in the dirt or mud. Meanwhile I have always maintained – at least when being contrary with G – that “a dirty boy is a happy boy”. My point is when they are outside getting dirty it means they are using their imaginations and bodies. They are not just vegetating inside playing computer games (hey, computer games have their place). But even I was a bit mortified when I spied Nathaniel in the back yard recently.

He started out looking innocent enough. I thought perhaps he was planning on helping me garden. He likes to garden. So I figured he was gearing up to assist with planting or weeding or something productive like that. But no, evidently not. He had something much more important to attend to.

He was making mud pies, people!

Muddy Nathaniel double

“Whoa, I really am kinda dirty now. Maybe I shouldn’t have done this” I imagine him thinking. But no, he doesn’t care. I assure you he

Looking at his hands

And how can I resist this face? The only thing to do with a sweet boy covered in mud from head to toe is to kiss him on the cheek, while keeping a safe distance from his mud-covered parts, and hose him down.

Ready to get muddy

And maybe, after he’s cleaned up a bit, you can feed him chocolate chip cookies. Well, make that paleo chocolate chip cookies.

Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies with Walnuts

This recipe for grain-free chocolate chip cookies contains walnuts. But the walnuts are an optional ingredient. And, in fact, my Nathaniel can eat most nuts except for walnuts and pecans. So for him I leave them out. But the day I was testing this recipe, the boys had a good friend over who is not allergic to nuts. I asked their buddy Jonah to help in a couple of ways. First, he agreed to help with photos (that’s him holding the plate) with the promise of a couple of cookies. And he was also asked to offer his opinion on those cookies. It was my version of market research. And according to Jonah, who is one of my most favorite people in the world, by the way, these paleo chocolate chip cookies are awesome!

Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies with Walnuts

You will not miss “regular” chocolate chip cookies one bit.

Paleo CHocolate CHip Cookies with Walnuts

So make these cookies soon and share them with someone you love – boys OR girls. Who knows, you might get a mud pie in return.

Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies with Walnuts


  • 2 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon celtic sea salt
  • 1/4 cup palm shortening (or butter)
  • 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips (gluten, dairy, soy free)
  • 1/2 cup walnut halves (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Sift almond flour, baking soda and salt into a medium bowl. Set aside.
  3. In a stand mixer cream shortening and palm sugar together. Add the egg and vanilla extract and continue mixing.
  4. Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients in the stand mixer, continue mixing, stopping to scrape down the sides as necessary.
  5. Stir in the chocolate chips and walnuts (if using).
  6. Use a small cookie scoop or large spoon to scoop out balls of cookie dough – each cookie approximately 2 tablespoons. Roll into balls.
  7. Place on a Silpat or parchment paper lined baking sheet and flatten out the dough into the thickness you like – the dough does not spread when cooking.
  8. Cook for 10-12 minutes.

Makes about 2 dozen cookies

For a Paleo and Vegan version of paleo chocolate chip cookies check out this recipe. This particular version of chocolate chip cookies are even more like standard chocolate chip cookies in my opinion. The dough is drier and I didn’t need to use the cookie scoop to keep things from sticking together. I could literally roll the cookie dough into balls in my hands. The recipe also calls for somewhat different ingredients from my other version. So the one you choose to make my depend upon the ingredients you have on hand.

I hope you like them!

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23 thoughts on “Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies with Walnuts

  1. I tried these cookies and they were delicious and a hit with my whole family. I tried your biscotti recipe too and I just want to say I love your creative recipes. I greatly look forward to trying more!

  2. Hi Lea,
    Those cookies look yummy and your son is so beautiful but don’t tell him I said so :).
    Off topic, I was wondering if you have ever made communion wafers. Since I am gluten sensitive, I haven’t been eating the wafers at church but go through the motions, which I think The Lord will understand, don’t you? I would like to make some, though, and even our pastor says that he doesn’t like the ones we get. Any advice? Thanks.

    Julie Williams

    • Karla,
      It’s tough to make substitutions for almond flour in this recipe. Coconut flour is an alternative to almond flour but the proportions are very different. For instance a recipe may only require 1/2 to 1/3 as much coconut flour as other flours because it is so dry and absorbent. I have a recipe for Shortbread that uses nut free flours. Here’s the link: Paleo Tea Cookies I also have cake recipes that only use coconut flour – Chocolate Paleo Birthday Cake and Chocolate Paleo Snack Cake. You can find those under the “desserts” link under recipes on my homepage. My oldest son is allergic to nuts but he can have those recipes. I’ll use your question as motivation to come up with a nut free chocolate chip recipe!

  3. I just made these and had to sub honey for the palm sugar (1/4 cup) and I didn’t let the egg reach room temp but they were delish!!! I couldn’t stop eating the dough ( I know- raw eggs=bad but I couldn’t stop myself! haha Thanks for the recipe!!

  4. YUM! I’m making a third batch of these to take to Tough Mudder! So amazing!! I used Almond Meal because that’s what was in the kitchen and I used coconut oil, again because that’s what I had. But turned out great, just had to cook them for 20 minutes in a moderate oven.

    • I would say they are on the chewy side. It depends how long you cook them to some degree but I’ve never had them be especially crispy, probably because of the fat of the almond flour.

  5. Are there any substitutions for the palm shorting/butter. I haven’t been able to find any shortening in stores and I’m dairy intolerant. I’m guessing coconut oil won’t work?


  6. I’m using your recipe to bake cinnamon apple walnut cookies today. I’m sure they will turn out awesome, but the directions in the recipe are missing a few steps (like when to add the dry ingredients to the wet bowl). Luckily, I bake all the time so I wasn’t confused for long. But it may be an issue for those who are not familiar. Also, I’m assuming you mean 1/2 tsp sea salt?

    • Nel,
      Yes, it’s 1/2 teaspoon salt. This recipe has been posted for six months and is heavily trafficked and yet you are the first person to take the time to give me this important feedback. I’ve updated the instructions now to reflect those missing details. I really appreciate that you helped me (and others) out with this. You are right that lots of people need very specific instructions if they are not experienced bakers and we ALL need the right ingredient measurements! Thanks again and Happy Thanksgiving!

      • No problem at all! And the cookies turned out great! With cinnamon, nutmeg, dried apples and walnuts they reminded me of chewy oatmeal cookies. My family and friends couldn’t believe they were grain-free. My batter was a little wet (maybe because I used butter instead of palm shortening?) so I added a tsp of coconut flour to tighten the batter up. Can’t wait to make another batch for Christmas! Thanks again for the recipe!

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  8. I am wondering about substituting the sugar. I would like to use honey or even maple syrup. What amount should I use since it is a wet ingredient, the same as the dry sugar?

    • Good question. The amount would not be the same because of the extra liquid. For this particular recipe I have only ever used the dry sweetener. But I do have another chocolate chip cookie recipe that uses maple syrup. You might want to check that out.

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