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Paleo Almond Joy Cookies! Gluten Free, Dairy Free! So easy & delicious! Slap your mama good! www.thehealthnutmama.com

Paleo Almond Joy Cookies

Paleo Almond Joy Cookies! Gluten Free, Dairy Free! So easy & delicious! Slap your mama good! www.thehealthnutmama.com
Paleo Almond Butter Cups. Healthy, Easy & Delicious with no nasty ingredients! www.thehealthnutmama.com

My grandfather’s favorite candy bar when I was growing up was Almond Joy’s. Boy did I love them too! It’s a memory that I have not enjoyed since having my last one on Halloween 3 years ago.

I saw a video going around Facebook recently of a regular version of Almond Joy Cookies. I’m not sure if that was the name of them, but that’s what they looked like to me. I just had to re-create them in a Paleo version that we could eat. The only problem I had was making sweetened condensed milk.

So off to the internet to find out how to make Paleo sweetened condensed milk. It was one of those “slap yourself on the forehead moments”! Why didn’t I think of that! So Easy Peasy! My favorite way to cook!

Since I had all the ingredients, only 5! Wow! I went to work. So easy! These will definitely be a regular in our house!



To make Sweetened Condensed Milk

  • Pour 1 can full-fat coconut milk into small saucepanPaleo Almond Joy Cookies! Gluten Free, Dairy Free! So easy & delicious! Slap your mama good! www.thehealthnutmama.com
  • Add raw honey & stir
  • Simmer on low & stir occasionally until reduced (approx. 15-25 min.) or until the milk turns a slight beige in color, reduces & thickens) let cool. This could take longer than 25 min depending on how low you simmer.

To make Cookies

  • Preheat oven to 325*
  • Mix coconut, almonds, chocolate chips &  sweetened condensed coconut milk
  • Use an ice cream scoop, or spoon to scoop out round ballsPaleo Almond Joy Cookies! Gluten Free, Dairy Free! So easy & delicious! Slap your mama good! www.thehealthnutmama.com
  • Put on baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  • Wet fingers with water (to keep them from sticking)  shape & flatten the balls on top. You want to pack them tight so that it sticks together. Whatever shape you form is how they will turn out. You want them kinda thick, about an inch.
  • Bake for 15-20 min or until golden brown. (I think they stick together better if they cook about 20 min. depending on the size of cookie)
  • Let cool & store in airtight container. Enjoy! Remember, these are a crumbly cookie.


  • Be sure & let the coconut milk cool completely before mixing.
  • Once you scoop the mixture on the spoon or with an ice cream scoop, slide it off onto the pan. They will be crumbly, but after you fill the pan, wet your fingers & shape into desired shape & press flat on top. But leave thick.
  • Once done, remove from oven & let cool. I put them in the fridge to cool completely while on the pan. This helps to harden the cookie & makes it easier to transfer into the container.
  • If you think they are too moist, try adding a paper towel on top to absorb the moisture.
  • I had someone suggest, packing them in a greased (I would use coconut oil) mini muffin pan & they turned out perfect. (I haven’t tried that yet but sounds like a winner)
  • If you find they are still runny, next time put your coconut milk in the fridge ahead of time & drain the water off.

*Update- I tried putting them into mini muffin tins (as one reader suggested) with liners. They turned out perfect. I loved the size. I baked them for 20 min. (or until golden brown) then let them cool for about 10 min., then put then in the fridge for about 30-45 min.

For those who are having trouble getting them to stay together, this might be the solution. My daughter still likes them better on the pan. (I think it just looks more like a cookie to her.)

And if you like this recipe, be sure & check out my recipe for Paleo Almond Butter Cups! or Pin it for Later.

4.8 from 15 reviews
Paleo Almond Joy Cookies
Recipe type: Desserts
  • 1 14 oz. bag semi-sweet Enjoy Life Mini Chocolate Chips
  • 2 c. Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
  • ⅔ c. Sliced Almonds
  • 1 can full-fat coconut milk
  • 4 T. raw honey
  • dash or two of sea salt (optional)
  1. To make Sweetened Condensed Milk:
  2. Pour 1 can full-fat coconut milk into small saucepan
  3. Add raw honey & stir
  4. Simmer on low & stir occasionally until reduced (approx. 15-25 min. or until milk turns a light beige in color, reduces & thickens)
  5. Let Cool.
  6. To make Cookies:
  7. Preheat oven to 325*
  8. Mix coconut, almonds, chocolate chips & sweetened condensed coconut milk
  9. Use an ice cream scoop, or spoon to scoop out round balls
  10. Put on baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  11. Wet fingers with water (to keep them from sticking) & shape & flatten the balls on top. You want to pack them tight so that it sticks together. Whatever shape you form is how they will turn out. You want them kinda thick, about an inch.
  12. Bake for 15-20 min or until golden brown.
  13. Let cool & store in airtight container. Enjoy!


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  1. Dana says:

    These were an epic fail. I think there are some steps missing. The chocolate chips melted; didn’t look like your pic at all. After I cooked they never stayed formed so I put in refrigerator to harden. They are sticky. The second batch I’m making I cooked the milk and honey longer and letting it cool in the freezer before continuing with this recipe. I don’t know what you did differently but they don’t look like yours at all.

    • Renee' says:

      I went back & looked at my recipe. You are right, I didn’t add to let the milk cool. I have changed that now. So Sorry about that. They are a little difficult to hold together. Try using an ice cream scoop. I used a spoon, & packed it as tight as I could. Then I wet my fingers and shaped them on the parchment paper to the desired look. They don’t rise, so I left them pretty think. I’m so sorry you had this issue. Hopefully, they still tasted good.

    • anda says:

      Switch chips for raisins.
      When adding the milk and honey, adjust the quantity to form a dough.
      There are chips that melts and chips that don’t, each for a different purpose.

  2. Steph says:

    Made these tonight and they turned out great! A bit of a fall apart “cookie” but who cares, eat it with a fork!! Very delicious! I think the key is having a good, reduced “condensed” coconut milk and makin sure it is fully cooled down (I put mine in the fridge for a few minutes before putting the cookies together!) thanks for the recipe!

    • Renee' says:

      Hi Steph! Thanks for the comment! I’m glad you liked them. Yes, they are not your typical “cookie” texture. I have learned that if you cool the cookies & put in the fridge while still on the pan to get completely cold, they are less crumbly & can move to a container with less breakage. But, I’m with you, I could eat them with a fork!

  3. Tammy says:

    I made these last night… couple of comments. 1) They are very yummy! 2) I added some vanilla to the milk mixture as well 3) I sent hubby to the store for shredded coconut.. he came back with finely ground coconut… So, what I did was instead of making ‘cookies’ was to line a jelly roll pan with parchment paper and ‘mashed’ them all in there, keeping it even. Then baked the whole pan (I believe it totaled about 30 minutes – til they were golden brown). I made coconut almond joy bars instead. They stayed together really well. Let them cool and sliced them into little squares. Ohh I also ‘pulsed’ the almonds so they were smaller. They were good last night, and even better today after being in the fridge. Thanks for the recipe

    • Renee' says:

      Tammy, Thank you so much for your comment. What a great idea. I think I’ll give that a try! Someone else suggested putting them in mini muffin tins also. I would use liners for less mess of course. Glad you liked them. I also made another batch last night. They are great to put in lunchboxes for a healthier treat option!

  4. Bree says:

    To die for.. I fried some cinnamon honey banana bites to go with them because why not? SO.. I couldn’t find canned coconut milk at the store so I used the regular unsweetened box of coconut milk.. yea, don’t do that haha, it never thickened in the pan even after an hour, I obviously don’t know anything about baking, so as you can imagine I just put the milky globs on the tray and gave it a go. Definetly not mad, but round two is in the works:) Thanks! Lol

    • Renee' says:

      Hi Bree! Thanks for your comment. I agree about the banana bites! Why not! Sorry about the coconut milk. Hopefully, the next go round will be better. Remember to press the spoonful to the side of the bowl then gently slide them off onto parchment paper. Wet your fingers, then gently shape. I cook mine around the 15 min mark. Sometimes, depending on how thick they are I will leave in a few more min.

    • Renee' says:

      Hi Kathleen,
      That is a good question? I have no idea. I guess you could calculate the calories for the entire recipe & then divide by how many cookies you make. A lot would depend on the size of cookie I guess. I’ll try to come up with it & let you know! Thanks, Renee’

  5. Angela says:

    Would love to know carb count on these! Also I planned to use sukrin fiber syrup instead of honey. I’m going to put them in a pan and make bars as suggested above. Excited to try them

    • Renee' says:

      I don’t know the carb count, unfortunately. I love the idea about making bars. Let me know how they turn out! Another reader suggested putting in mini muffin tins. I tried it with mini baking liners & they were great. I love the size & can just pop one in my mouth whenever I want a small treat! Perfect! Good luck. They can be a little tricky to keep together. Remember to wet your fingers after putting in the pan to pack them tighter.

  6. Pamela says:

    Made these tonight. Followed the directions with exception of..1st I cooked the coconut milk and honey on medium until it boiled and then boiled it for about 5 mins. I didn’t leave it and continued to stir it constantly. 2nd I added a little more coconut. They came out perfect and the family loved them! Thank you Renee for sharing this recipe!

  7. Emma says:

    I make these ALL the time! Being gluten intolerant on top of having a rice allergy, oh and vanilla too, it’s hard to find a sweet treat. The key really is to let the coconut milk cool. I put mine in a large glass lock Tupperware container and pop it in the freezer while the oven preheats! I’m attempting the muffin tin method tonight just for the heck of it lol. Thanks for the recipe!!

  8. Kat says:

    Fail for me, just fell all apart, even tried putting them in frig & freezer, just had to scrape them off the cookies sheet into the garbage can 🙁

    • Renee' says:

      Hi Kathryn! Awesome! Let me know how they turn out! Great idea! Pumpkin seeds are high in magnesium. I may try that or even mixing them next time!

  9. Cat says:

    Made these the other night. They did fall apart so I put them in the freezer. That did the trick! Making them again now. Added a little Tapioca starch to thicken the “condensed milk” a bit more. Love these!!

  10. Tobin says:

    You said “Paleo”… but the “Semi-sweet chocolate” is a HUGE no-no… so i’m trying to figure out how these are still paleo…… am i missing something because if I can have semi-sweet chocolate chips on the diet, than im totally doing it wrong.

    • Renee' says:

      Hi Tobin, Thanks for your comment. I buy them on Thrive Market & they are listed under Paleo. I’m sure in true cavemen days this would not be acceptable. To be honest, I really don’t know 100%. I am going by what Thrive Market says. I definitely wouldn’t eat more than 1 at a time, due to the calorie content & they definitely wouldn’t be considered keto.

    • Midwestg says:

      Try Lilys stevia sweetened chips or make your own (coconut oil, sweetener and cocoa and keep in freezer, or melt a baking bar and add sweetener- let it sit on counterfor 5 hours to harden) an internet search will turn up other options

  11. Jade says:

    I just tried this today! The batter looked a little to runny, so we added some almond flour. The only thing we did not care for was how they fell apart so easily. I did read the muffin tin tip, so we might try that next time! They were so tasty, even the non-paleo people in the house were munching on them!

    • Renee' says:

      Hi Jade! Thanks for your comment. If the batter was a little runny, you probably need to reduce your milk more. I’ve found that if I reduce it by at least 1/3 it does better.

  12. Abbey says:

    I really want to try these–they look incredible! Do you think using a regular muffin pan would work? I don’t have one for minis…

    • Renee' says:

      I don’t use a muffin pan. A reader suggested it because she had a hard time getting them to stick together. I just spoon the mixture onto parchment paper & with wet fingers shape into the desired shape. Remember that they don’t rise, so leave them a little thick. I hope you enjoy as much as we do. Let me know how they turn out.

  13. Carmella says:

    They were a hit!!
    These are so good! Even better than I was expecting! Mine didn’t turn out as crumbly as others describe the comments. They are very filling and delicious. I thought they would turn out too moist because when I was rolling them into balls they were supper moist, but they turned out perfect! The chocolate chips made the whole cookie a brown color which didn’t bother me. It made me 20, perfect shaped cookies. They are also very easy to make.
    When I make them again here are some things I would do differently next time I make them:
    – Bake them for 30 minutes instead of 20
    – add a splash of vanilla extract
    – add a sprinkle of cinnamon
    Thank you, Renee’! My family loved them!

    • Renee' says:

      Carmella, Thank you so much for your comments! I am so glad you liked them. I have a sensitivity to vanilla, but what a great idea about adding it & the cinnamon. I tend to bake mine a little longer too! Glad you enjoyed them!

  14. Bari says:

    I LOVE these! I am gluten free, but not paleo. I grew up on a bar called Dolly Madisons, So I substituted pecans for the almonds. Oh my they are so very good!!!

  15. Sue says:

    I just made these (in oven as I type and they smell wonderful). The uncooked mixture was really sweet. I reduced the honey to 3 T rather than 4 as I do like things less sweet than most people. Now I’m wondering if T is teaspoons rather than tablespoons.

    • Renee' says:

      Hi Sue, Great question! You are right, it is Tablespoons. My daughter does have a sweet tooth, but you can definitely reduce it or omit to your own tastes!

  16. Jeanne H says:

    I made these last night because I had a can of sweetened condensed coconut milk I wanted to use. I am gluten free but not paleo, so if you don’t mind the cane sugar instead of honey, this prepared product saved the step of boiling the coconut milk. I didn’t have enough almonds, so I added some almond flour to make up the difference. I also added an egg just to try. After 25 minutes in the oven and cooling in the fridge, these had a perfect cookie texture and didn’t crumble at all.
    Thanks for the great gluten and dairy free recipe!

  17. Elyse says:

    Just a clarifying question: when you say full-fat, are you referring to not using light coconut milk, but just a normal can of coconut milk? Or are you referring to just the fat of the coconut milk? Trader Joe’s calls it Coconut Cream. And if not the latter, has anyone tried that, and does it work?

    • Renee' says:

      Hi Elyse, Great question? Yes, I am referring to the regular coconut milk in the can, not the light or what’s in the refrigerated section. I think I provided a link to the brand that I buy. I also have started buying the Thrive Market Brand. I really like it too!

  18. Monique M. says:

    Hi Renee! My name is Monique and I’m a Personal Trainer and Nutrition Coach at a prestigious corporate fitness center. I decided to make your recipe w/a personal twist; vanilla beef collagen protein! I know it sounds disgusting, however, I chose beef collagen for 2 reasons:

    1.- I wanted to keep the recipe Paleo
    2.- I need people to understand beef collagen protein does NOT taste like vanilla-flavored beef

    I invite you to give it a try! I made them in the mini-muffin tin and it yeilded 48. They are the talk at my gym! My co-workers can’t get enough! Thank youcor sharing, Renee! I look forward to sharing more of gour genius ideas paired w/my nutritional boost!

    • Renee' says:

      Hi Monique, Thanks for your comment! I too have added beef collagen to mine for the added benefits. I use unflavored but I love the idea of vanilla.Thanks for sharing! I’m thrilled that everyone loved them!

  19. Faye says:

    I added an egg white to this recipe, it really helped bind it together, and made them nice and moist, they didn’t fall apart at all, and I only had to bake them about 14 minutes.

  20. Kara Fraser says:

    These! These are sooo good! So I took the recommendation of others and added an egg. I then used a muffin tin and put liners in it. I molded them in my hand and then pushed them into the muffin pan, molding to the bottom, filling about 1/4 of it. I baked for 30 minutes. I then took them out of the muffin tin and put them on a plate and put in the refrigerator still in the liner. They were very easy to take out of the liner, you just peel it back as you eat. Thank you so much for taking the time to post this. These are perfect for that sweet treat craving! This is my first week of going paleo and it has been very hard detoxing from all the foods I love.

  21. Tracey Williamson says:

    For vegans I am assuming maple syrup could be used instead of honey, and of course no eggs. I don’t care about them falling apart or looking perfect, I am about taste and keeping them compassionate and healthier ! I will think about some of the tips here, add pumpkin seeds and tweak to my desires. Its nice that people share their tips too, thanks to all.

  22. Gladys Wiolfe says:

    These are amazing!!! I made them exactly according to recipe… let them cool on the pan and in the fridge when they were done in the oven!!! These will be a go to for all time!!!

  23. Beth says:

    These were absolutely amazing! I made a few changes. I added almond extract to coconut/honey morning mixture, used only 3/4 c. Chips and added a beaten egg white which helped hold them together. This recipe is definitely a keeper!

  24. Jenny B says:

    Hi there, my taste tester loved them. I used a muffin tin and liners, they turned out fabulous!! Thanks so much for the recipe💜

  25. Diana M. says:

    I also had some trouble getting them to stick together nicely, but they taste great and my bf thinks they are fabulous! We’ve been lowering carbs lately and I haven’t made cookies in a few months, which is rare for us lol. So naturally he was thrilled to have a tasty treat in the house. This leads me to my question for you…..do you know the nutrition value in these cookies by chance? More specifically, how many carbs are in them….approximately? I could probably figure it out but if you know this already, that would be much easier. Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  26. Diana M. says:

    I apologize, I just re-read the above comments and see that you already said that you do not know the carb count in these cookies. Sorry about that. I might try to figure it out based on total ingredients and then per cookie. If I get it figured out, I’ll let you know 🙂

  27. Kim says:

    Wow so great!!! So I needed my first batch to work since i was making it as a potluck item. Reading through user tips, I went ahead and added an egg to the mix before trying to ball or mound up batter. WAY too runny, so i pulled out my mini muffin tin and tiny cups and voila, great. But then I had the rest of the batter. Using another user idea, i added maybe 1/3 of almond flour to the mix, and these ones retained their shape to bake on parch paper, and WOW the texture is cookie like. So yummy!

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