Healthy lactation cookies made with ingredients to help boost milk production and supply for breastfeeding. Vegan + gluten-free.
Before I was even pregnant, I remember looking up lactation cookie recipes to make for friends and I had a really hard time finding any recipes that were actually healthy and not loaded with sugar and white flour. So I created my own!
Knowing that some mamas need to be dairy-free + soy-free and/or gluten-free, I created a lactation cookie that’s vegan, gluten-free and still delicious! When recipe testing for these cookies, I made several batches to make sure they were perfect.
Lucky for me, this meant that I had plenty on hand to freeze as part of my pre-baby meal prep. I also had Isaac taste-test them just to be sure the flavor was good and he LOVED them too!
Spoiler alert: it is fine for men to eat these cookies… they won’t start lactating. But feel free to tell your hubby that they will make him lactate if you want to keep all the cookies for yourself. 😉 It can be our little secret.
I know women have vastly different experiences with this, so I wanted to go into it with an open mind, but also as prepared as possible. I researched which foods are best to keep your milk supply up and help with milk production. Here’s a little list of the foods I found:
Oats – One of the reasons for decreased milk supply is low iron levels. Oats are super high in iron so some studies have shown that oats help with milk production.
Barley – Whole barely is the richest dietary source of beta-glucan, a polysaccharide that has been shown to increase prolactin (aka the breastfeeding hormone).
Brewer’s yeast – It is packed with vitamin B, iron, zinc, magnesium and potassium. It has a lot of benefits, but you should check with your doctor before adding brewer’s yeast to your diet. It can interact with a variety of medications and can cause some unwanted side effects. You can learn more about brewer’s yeast in my lactation bites post.
Flaxseed – Flaxseed is high in omega-3 fatty acids (which are great for baby) and it also contains phytoestrogens that can influence breast milk production.
These lactation cookies have three key ingredients to help with milk production — oats, brewer’s yeast and flaxseed!
Can I Make Lactation Cookies in Advance?
Yes! Like I said, I ended up making several batches while recipe testing these cookies. See my storage tips below but the cookies are best stored in the fridge for freezer for more long-term storage.
I gifted a few to friends who had babies, but I also popped a bunch in a freezer bag and froze them until I was ready to enjoy. They held up just fine and I had peace of mind knowing I had some prepped for when I needed them.
They honestly saved me when Olivia was in the hospital for a few weeks after her heart surgery. I was pumping every 2-3 hours and these cookies were one of my favorite snacks! And I swear they helped with my supply.
Ingredients in Lactation Cookies
You only need 10 ingredients for these lactation cookies!
quick cooking oats and oat flour – as I mentioned above oats are known to help with milk production so they’re the perfect base for these cookies.
brewer’s yeast – almost every lactation cookie has brewer’s yeast because it’s one of the best foods to help with breast milk supply. It is packed with vitamin B, iron, zinc, magnesium and potassium.
cinnamon and sea salt – two flavor enhancers for these cookies.
coconut oil – we’re using this in place of butter. Feel free to swap this for melted vegan butter and if you don’t need the cookies to be dairy-free, you can use melted butter.
coconut sugar – I personally love coconut sugar but organic brown sugar works too
ground flaxseed – we’re using a flaxseed egg in place of a regular egg here, but you can use a regular egg if desired.
For these cookies, you’ll start by making your flax eggs by whisking together ground flaxseed and water. Prep two baking sheets by spraying with cooking spray or lining with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, mix together your dry ingredients: the oats, oat flour, brewer’s yeast, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. In a separate bowl, mix together the wet ingredients: the oil, sugar, flaxseed eggs and vanilla extract until smooth. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until just combined. Gently stir in the chocolate chips.
Take about a tablespoon of dough and round into a cookie, placing about two inches apart on the baking sheet. Press each cookie down with a fork a bit to make more of a cookie shape. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. The cookies may seem a little soft but don’t over bake or they’ll get too crisp. They will continue to set as they cool.
How to Store Lactation Cookies
Store these cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for 2-3 days, in the fridge for up to 10 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Make flax eggs by whisking together ground flaxseed with water. Set aside.
Spray two baking sheets with cooking spray or line with parchment or Silpat and set aside.
In a medium bowl, mix together oats, oat flour, brewer's yeast, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl mix together oil, sugar, flaxseed eggs and vanilla until smooth. Add dry ingredients into the bowl with the wet ingredients and stir until just combined. Gently stir in chocolate chips.
Using a spoon or cookie scoop, drop cookie dough by rounded tablespoonfuls about 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Press each cookie down with a fork a bit.
Bake for 10 minutes, or until golden brown. The cookies may seem a little soft, but do not over bake or they’ll get too crisp. Remove from oven and let cool on sheet for about 5 minutes or until they start to harden up a bit. At this point you can transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
Store cookies in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 10 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Eggs: If you don’t have flaxseed feel free to use 2 large eggs instead.
Quick oats: If you don’t have quick oats on hand, you can quickly process rolled oats in your food processor for 30 seconds or until they are the texture of quick oats.