Lactation cookies are allll the rage – but are they actually worth eating? Here are a few things to know about lactation cookies, plus the dairy-free lactation cookie recipe that I personally loved!
Easy Recipe for Lactation Cookies
Ah, lactation cookies.
Have I seen a topic more talked to death in breastfeeding groups than these?
When a mother is struggling to increase breast milk supply, it can feel like everyone has an opinion on it.
What you should eat. What you shouldn’t eat. How much you should nurse. If you should pump.
While the very best way to increase milk supply is simply by increasing stimulation to the breast, there ARE foods that can help support or increase milk supply.
What are Lactation Cookies?
Lactation cookies are cookies that are made with certain galactogogues (foods that are thought to help support breast milk supply).
Women make or buy these with the hope that they can help to increase their milk supply!
Do Lactation Cookies Really Work?
I don’t know that I’ve actually seen a study done on these…so I can’t really say if they work or not.
In my experience, when I made the cookies I made below, I truly feel like they worked. I struggled with my milk supply for several months when Oliver was a baby, and any time I ate these, I would wake up engorged the next morning, and I did pump more.
That never happened any other day.
However, that could have been due to just having more calories! It’s really hard to say.
Most lactation cookies do contain healthy ingredients, so they aren’t terrible to eat either way.
I think a lot of it can depend on whether you have true low milk supply issues as well. For moms who truly cannot produce enough milk (which, I believe, is around 2%), there really isn’t much you can do!
Just for fun, I did a little survey in my breastfeeding group – and these were the results:
Out of the 33 people who took the poll, 66% said they DID NOT see an improvement in their milk supply with taking lactation cookies.
How Long Does it Take for Lactation Cookies to Work?
My lactation consultant would always say that if something you are doing will affect your supply, it will usually be within three days.
If you’ve been eating lactation cookies for three days, and you aren’t seeing any difference, they probably won’t do anything.
Milk Maker Lactation Cookies
These are some of the most popular lactation cookies you can buy.
My opinion? Not worth the cost at all.
You can just about buy all the ingredients to make LOTS of lactation cookies for the cost of one package of Milk Maker lactation cookies.
Convenient, yes. But expensive.
How Many Lactation Cookies Should I Eat?
I would say it depends on the size. If they are large cookies, one should be sufficient…if they are small? Don’t feel bad eating a couple at a time.
With the recipe below, the cookies ended up pretty small, and I would eat three in the morning and one or two at night.
Where to Buy Lactation Cookies?
While I do think that making lactation cookies are going to be your best bet, I also get that it isn’t always possible!
There are lactation cookies available pretty much everywhere – online (Amazon, Etsy, independent companies), in stores like Walmart and Target, and at boutique stores!
Lactation Cookies Recipe Without Brewers Yeast
The majority of lactation cookies will have Brewers Yeast. It can be one of the more expensive ingredients.
You can leave it out if you want, though they may not be as effective.
Easy Lactation Cookie Recipe
Most lactation cookies will have the following three ingredients:
- Powdered Brewers Yeast
- Ground Flax Seed
- Rolled Oats (Preferably Steel Cut Oats)
These ingredients can all be found online or at a local health food store.
Beyond that, you can really add whatever ingredients you want. It’s best to keep them healthier rather than not – but you definitely want them to be edible.
Here is my recipe for Lactation Cookies. I really loved these, and I thought the flavor was great.
The full printable recipe is available at the end.
What You’ll Need:
- Coconut oil
- Brown Sugar
- Flaxseed Meal
- Vanilla extract
- Brewers Yeast
- Whole Wheat Flour (This is the best brand of whole wheat flour)
- Baking Powder
- Rolled Oats
This recipe makes 24 cookies, and they can be stored in an airtight container – preferably in the refrigerator!
You don’t need any fancy equipment for these cookies. I would suggest the following:
- Cookie Sheets
- Silicone Baking Mats
- Hand or Stand Mixer – you can just use a wooden spoon in a bowl if you like (I do love my Bosch Universal Plus, though!)
Dairy Free Lactation Cookies
- 1/2 cup virgin coconut oil
- 1/2-3/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal + 3 tablespoons water.
- 2 eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons brewers yeast
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
- 1/2 cup walnuts**
- Preheat oven to 340 degrees.
- Combine flaxseed meal with three tablespoons of water and let stand for 2 minutes.
- Mix together with a hand or stand mixer coconut oil and brown sugar.
- Add in flaxseed meal mixture, eggs, and vanilla and mix until blended.
- Add the flour, brewers yeast, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt and mix well.
- Add oats and walnuts.
- Place by the spoonful on a prepared baking sheet.
- Bake for about 12 minutes and cool on cooling rack.
** Feel free to add any extras you want - chocolate, coconut, other nuts, dried fruit, etc.
You may be able to use honey instead of sugar for a healthier version.
Adapted from http://www.bellybelly.com.au/breastfeeding/lactation-cookies/
Originally posted in 2015; updated in 2019.
Other Breastfeeding Posts You May Enjoy:
- Sudden Drop in Milk Supply? 15 Things That Might Be the Culprit.
- How to Lose Weight While Breastfeeding (Without Losing Your Supply)
- 5 Breastfeeding Facts You May Not Know About