How To Make Delicious Lactation Cookies!
BellyBelly’s lactation cookies recipe is suitable for pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers. The whole family, in fact!
And oh boy, do these delicious cookies work for so many breastfeeding mothers!
Do lactation cookies really work?!
Yes! Lactation cookies really do work for many new mothers, according to our readers. In a poll, approximately 90% of our forum members told us BellyBelly’s recipe worked for them. And you can see for yourself, by scrolling through the countless testimonials from BellyBelly’s readers. You’ll find them not only throughout this article, but in the comments section below too.
“My boobs are spraying like a fire hose. I’m waking up wet in the night, in a way I haven’t since the early days. They are mental!” — Audax
Please be aware that of course, we can’t guarantee any specific results. Lactation cookies will have no impact for some mothers, who have underlying issues needing addressing.
If you’re having breastmilk supply issues, please be sure to also read about common milk supply issues.
Important Note Before Making Lactation Cookies
Most breastfeeding problems are preventable and fixable, and many are caused by incorrect latch or scheduled feeding.
Please contact the Australian Breastfeeding Association for support, or hire an IBCLC (International Board Certified Lactation Consultant) to help diagnose what’s really going on. If you’re in the US, contact La Leche League.
Most GPs are not trained in breastfeeding beyond a few hours of information. They cannot give you the same level of advice and support that well trained breastfeeding workers can.
Lactation Cookies Recipe
Prep time: Approximately 15 minutes
Oven temp: Preheat to 170C or 338F
Makes: Approximately 14-16 cookies, using a dessert spoon per cookie (double the recipe for more)
When making BellyBelly’s lactation cookies (which we think is the best lactation cookies recipe in Australia… perhaps even the world!), please try to source organic, local ingredients wherever possible. I’ve tried to use healthy alternatives where I can. Bear in mind, lactation cookies need to be sweet enough to hide the very bitter taste of one of the most powerful ingredients.
If you’re already breastfeeding, try eating the dough as well as the cookies. It seems to be even more effective at increasing supply.
Do not eat uncooked dough if you are pregnant. There is a risk of bacterial infection from eating raw egg.
Lactation Cookies Ingredients
- 1 cup self raising wholemeal flour (if you have plain flour, add 1/2 teaspoon baking powder)
- 1/2 cup butter (you can use organic virgin coconut oil instead if you prefer)
- 3/4 cup brown sugar (if you want to reduce sugar, you could try just 1/2 cup)
- 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal
- 1 egg
- 2-3 tablespoons of water (depends on how moist you prefer the cookies to be)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract (optional, for flavour)
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional, for flavour)
- 1-2 tablespoons of brewers yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 & 1/2 cups oats – organic, steel cut oats are best for you, but rolled oats are fine
- OPTIONAL: 1/2 cup of your favourite biscuit ingredients (see suggested list below)
Here’s a popular brand of brewer’s yeast – it’s IMPORTANT to get the right sort. Click here to get some delivered straight from Amazon.
Brewer’s yeast is one of the most important ingredients in lactation cookies. It is not the same as bakers yeast or nutritional yeast, so don’t substitute it for anything else!
This miraculous powder is quite nutrient dense. It contains protein, fiber, selenium, riboflavin, thiamine, niacin, copper, vitamin B6, potassium and folate.
You can add brewer’s yeast to smoothies or other foods and drinks for the same effect!
Lactation Cookies Recipe – Method
- In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar, then add the egg and vanilla. Mix well.
- In a separate bowl, combine the flaxseed and water, let them sit for a few minutes before adding to mix.
- Add the dry ingredients (apart from the oats and your additional ingredients) and mix well again.
- Stir in the oats and your additional ingredients.
- Using a dessert spoon, scoop the mixture into your hand and roll it into a ball.
- Place the biscuits onto a lightly greased or lined baking tray. Flatten them a little with your fingers or a spatula. If you like a soft centre, don’t squash them down too much.
- Bake the lactation cookies for around 10-12 minutes, depending on how well cooked or crunchy you like your biscuits.
“I know they worked for me, because I squirted after eating them for a bit. I hadn’t done that for months!” — PumpkinZulu
How do lactation cookies work?
Wondering what makes lactation cookies work?
There are specific ingredients in lactation cookies which are said to help you produce more milk.
Galactagogues (foods that promote breastmilk production or flow) includes brewer’s yeast, as well as flaxseed and oats.
This is why you must not leave out or substitute the brewers yeast when making lactation cookies.
Nutritional yeast and bakers yeast are different, and will not have the same effect.
How long do lactation cookies take to work?
Most new mothers who used BellyBelly’s lactation cookies found a noticeable increase in supply almost immediately. However for some mothers, it may take up to 24-48 hours.
BellyBelly’s lactation cookies are awesome, but, they can’t fix problems needing to be addressed by a professional. As mentioned earlier, if you have milk supply issues, sometimes the best thing you can do is get advice from a breastfeeding expert (IBCLC) first. Also, read our article about common milk supply issues.
“I’ve only used them for about 24 hours and the milk is flowing! So happy and excited that they’re working so well!” — Rika-Marie
Can children eat lactation cookies?
Yes! Lactation cookies are also perfectly safe for children, family and friends too.
Don’t worry, it won’t make them spontaneously lactate – lactation requires developed milk ducts!
“I made a particularly potent batch this week. So much so, my friends having been calling me ‘Wet Patches!’ I haven’t needed to use breast pads for a couple of months. I doubled the flaxseed meal, added cocoa and hazelnut meal – they taste like Nutella.” — Audax
Lactation cookies variation ideas
There are so many delicious ingredients you can add to your lactation cookies to flavour them up!
You might like to add coconut, banana, grated apple, chic chips, sultanas, almonds, chopped prunes or dates… the list is endless.
Our members have made variations of the lactation cookies recipe by using these delicious combinations:
- Coconut and banana
- Choc chip and cranberry
- White choc chips and macadamias
- Dried apricot and white chocolate
- Apple cinnamon: 1 teaspoon of cinnamon instead of vanilla, 1/2 cup chopped dried apple and 1/2 cup sultanas. BellyBelly member, Audax, also added 2 tablespoons of stewed apple and found the cookies turned out lovely and moist.
- For a healthier, lower carb and more fibre rich flour, use 50% or 100% coconut flour. You might need to add an extra egg. If you only have regular white flour to make lactation cookies, that’s fine, but remember it’s the most unhealthy flour.
“I was eating 1-2 each feed, and only just cooked them so they were still quite soft. I noticed a huge difference when I ate them, and I soaked through everything. When my son was feeding, I’d hold a cup under my other breast, and collect about 40mls just from leakage!” — Ryatha
Do Lactation Cookies Work? A Test!
“YES, they DO WORK! I’ve found them especially helpful for afternoons and evenings when my baby is cluster feeding. It feels like I’m all out of liquid gold. So, I munch a couple of bikkies and have a big drink of water. I can feel my boobies expanding with fresh milk!” — Glamourcide
As far as I’m aware, there’s no official research into lactation cookies.
So, a BellyBelly forum member, Pholi took it upon herself to run a little test.
Here are her results:
“Started eating cooked lactation cookies at a rate of approximately 2 per feed. Average 24 hour yield over 5 days was: Before: 372ml. After: 412ml.
Increase of 40ml, or 11%.
Stopped eating cookies for 2 days. Average 24 hour yield: 397ml.
Decrease of 4%.
Started eating raw lactation cookie dough. Which, according to collective BellyBelly community wisdom, is supposed to be even more effective than cooked dough. Ate the equivalent of 2 per feed. Average 24 hour yield over 4 days: 449ml.
Increase (from cooked dough average) of 37ml, or 8%.
Increase (from no dough in the previous 2 days) of 52ml, or 13%.
Increase (from before eating any cookies or dough) of 77ml, or 20%.
Conclusion: When I ate the cookies, raw or cooked, it made a positive, measurable difference to my supply. But the raw dough made a bigger difference. I was certainly not leaking or spraying, or even feeling any fuller. I think that the fact that the numbers dropped when I stopped for 2 days strengthens the results.”
How many lactation cookies should I eat?
Most mothers consume around 2-5 lactation cookies per day, usually before a feed. If you notice your baby is unsettled after consuming them, cut back the amount you’re eating.
“I love these things!! Made a heap yesterday, and ate some dough as well, oh yum! First time in a week I’ve been full, and bubs got boobie drunk!” — Sarah
Do lactation cookies make you gain weight?
The sugar and grain combination of lactation cookies can result in weight gain and inflammation. Both sugar and grains spike blood sugar levels, with the excess sugar going on to be stored as fat.
Lactation cookies are great to try if you really need a boost. However, if you have issues with blood sugar levels, gut issues or thrush, or if you have concerns about weight gain, lactation cookies can make these things worse.
As easy as it is to binge on delicious, yummy cookies when you’re tired, feeling flat or low in energy, try to restrict your intake, or opt for less sugar in the recipe.
If you’re worried about your weight, you can try:
Can Lactation Cookies Cause Gas?
Brewers yeast, the key ingredient in lactation cookies, can cause mild cases of gas and bloating. If you’re feeling any discomfort in your gut, cut back the amount of cookies you’re eating, or reduce the amount of brewers yeast in your cookies. If you have Crohn’s disease, you may want to give the cookies a miss if you’re worried about symptoms being triggered.
What Else Can Help With My Supply?
- Start your day with a healthy breakfast – here are 13 great ideas
- Keep up your water intake. Have a glass of water next to you every time you breastfeed. Throughout the day, try to sip water every 15 minutes. Drinking water helps boost energy and concentration levels, which dehydration robs from you. Adding in an electrolyte powder to your water is so beneficial (such as this lemonade electrolyte from Key Nutrients or Ultima Replenisher), because it will help you get better hydrated and give you some magnesium too. Avoid sugary sports drinks from the grocery store – it’s sugar water and won’t hydrate you properly.
- Drinking fennel tea can also help increase supply
- Avoid dummies (pacifiers), formula or nipple shields unless advised by a lactation consultant. They decrease direct nipple stimulation, which means less milk production
- Offer the breast more frequently. Demand equals supply as far as breastmilk goes. When your baby is sucking at the breast it sends your body signals to make more milk
- Fenugreek can also increase supply. If you have a colicky or windy baby, fenugreek can irritate your baby – try other methods first. It’s also very bitter, so try this as a last resort
- Baby doesn’t seem well? If your baby is losing weight or doesn’t have plenty of wet nappies, please seek help without delay.
“I made a batch yesterday morning. I’ve had to get up this early to express, as I woke up feeling very full and leaky and uncomfortable!! So they have definitely made a difference!” — eza