How I Ended Up On The Dr. Oz Show

In case you missed it, I’m going to be on The Dr. Oz Show later today for a healthy cookie recipe that I came up with. Crazy, right? I still can’t believe I’m going to be on TV. (Local friends: The Dr. Oz Show is on at 5:00 PM on FOX!)

So, I bet you’re wondering how this whole thing happened, right? Well, I’m going to tell you. It started on November 15th when I received an email from the producers at The Dr. Oz Show inviting me to submit a recipe to their first ever Healthy Holiday Cookie Challenge. It was your typical PR pitch, and I’m sure they emailed a ton of other bloggers too, but it sounded like a neat opportunity, and I had nothing to lose by submitting a healthy cookie recipe. Plus, I had been toying with the idea of making an eggnog cookie for the holidays, so I sent in the following recipe:

Eggnog White Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 7.5 ounces chickpeas (half of a 15 oz can), drained and rinsed
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup soy eggnog (or light eggnog)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup white chocolate morsels
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350*F.
  2. Combine chickpeas and 1/4 cup of eggnog in a food processor; blend until smooth.
  3. Combine remaining ingredients (including the rest of the eggnog) in a large bowl along with the chickpea-eggnog puree and mix well.
  4. Spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
  5. Portion cookie batter onto a baking sheet about 1 inch apart.
  6. Bake for 20-22 minutes until cookies start to lightly brown.
  7. Remove from oven and cool before serving.

Makes 2 dozen cookies

These cookies are awesome!!! And I swear you can’t taste the chickpeas at all””they just add a nice moist consistency to the cookies.

A couple of days after the taping, I brought a batch of these Eggnog White Chocolate Chip Cookies to Thanksgiving dinner at my grandparents’ house so everyone could try them. Well, they were a big hit and the entire batch was eaten within minutes of putting them out for dessert. A couple of people even wrapped some in napkins to take home for later! I still can’t believe how well they went over with my family””even Mal loved them and he’s not a huge fan of sweets.  

Anyway, I submitted my Eggnog White Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe to The Dr. Oz Show. The very next day, I received an email from one of the Associate Producers, who said she loved my healthy cookie recipe (the chickpeas caught her attention), but she asked me to make it even healthier, so back to the kitchen I went. I love a good challenge, especially when it involves cookies!

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Here’s what I did: I replaced the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour, swapped out some of the sugar for agave nectar (apparently, Dr. Oz loves it for baking), and used antioxidant-rich dark chocolate chips instead of white chocolate morsels. The finishing touch was cinnamon sprinkled on top since Dr. Oz talks about its metabolism-boosting properties. I figured I’d get bonus points for using it! Plus, the cinnamon added a festive holiday look to the cookies.

Eggnog Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 7.5 ounces (half of a 15 oz can) chickpeas
  • 1/4 cup soy eggnog (or light eggnog)
  • 2 tbsp agave nectar
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate morsels
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350*F.
  2. Combine chickpeas and eggnog in a food processor; blend until smooth.
  3. Combine remaining ingredients in a large bowl along with the chickpea-eggnog puree and mix well.
  4. Spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.Roll batter into 1-inch balls and flatten on baking sheet about 1-2 inches apart.Bake for 12-15 minutes until cookies start to lightly brown.Remove from oven and cool before serving.

Makes 2 dozen cookies

This batch of cookies turned out pretty well, but they tasted like healthy cookies, if you know what I mean. The consistency was dense and sort of chewy and the flavor wasn’t sweet and wonderful like a typical cookie. I’m all about “healthifying” recipes with low-calorie and more nutritious substitutions, but, at the end of the day, cookies should taste like cookies. With that said, if you decided to make one of my cookie recipes, go with the first one! 

Ok, back to my story!

The producers at The Dr. Show loved my second recipe, so they invited me to come on the show as a finalist in the Healthy Holiday Cookie Challenge. After that, everything happened really fast. The producers booked me a train ticket to New York City and asked me to submit a video about my cookies, which appears as an intro piece on the show. (It’s super dorky. My sister cracked up laughing the second she saw it, so I’m sure guys will love it.) Two days later, I was at the NBC Studios telling Dr. Oz about my healthy cookie recipe. (I also managed to rope Theodora into this whole adventure. She’s in the healthy cocktail segment on the show today!)

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Just in case you plan to watch, I won’t tell you anything more about the episode. But, for those of you who asked what Dr. Oz is like in person, he’s really nice. I was noticeably nervous about appearing in front of a live studio audience on national TV (I mean, who wouldn’t be, but I have severe anxiety about this type of stuff), so Dr. Oz put his arm around me to try to make me feel comfortable. He also acted really interested and impressed by my cookie recipe, which made me feel good and a lot more confident. During the commercial breaks, Dr. Oz talked to the audience and danced to the holiday music. When he messed up his lines, he just laughed and started over. He was surprisingly chill and laid-back.

I hope you decide to tune in to The Dr. Oz Show this evening! I also hope I don’t look like a turd on national television!

Lunch

Today’s lunch was canned tuna mixed with lemon juice, salt, pepper, and black beans. I added some Pretzel Chips on the side for scooping it up.

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Lunch also included the most amazing baked grapefruit. This baby tasted like just like dessert. 

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Tonight’s agenda: watching The Dr. Oz Show, CrossFit, and Christmas shopping! Big night ahead!

151 Comments

  1. I love eggnog in anything – I’m planning to dedicate Saturday to making traditional recipes gluten-free! If I’m successful, I’ll send you the transitioned recipe!

  2. How come you never shared this contest with your readers like the original e-mail that you had in this post (I see you’ve edited the post and taken it down) asked you to do? I usually like your blog, but it seems strange that you would go back and edit this post if you feel like there was nothing wrong with what you did.

    1. @Kimberly: I’ve been meaning to address this issue, but, honestly, I didn’t know what to say. Hopefully, I can explain what happened.

      I get tons of PR pitches (hundreds each week), so I rarely ever post them on CNC since they’d take over my blog and annoy my readers. With the Dr. Oz email pitch, I entered my recipe on a whim and never thought in a million years I’d ever hear from them. It didn’t even cross my mind to share the info on CNC.

      When I wrote my post yesterday, I decided to include the email from the producers as a way to explain how I ended up on the show. I didn’t think anyone would get upset about not being notified of the contest, but readers did, so I edited the post. Now, I realize I shouldn’t have done that and should have just explained what happened in the first place. I’m really sorry about that. I screwed up.

      Moving forward, I will explicitly note when a post has been edited and promise to be as transparent as possible on my blog. Additionally, I’ll try to mention the really great opportunities that come my way on CNC.

      I really hope you (and everyone else who I upset) can forgive me. Sometimes, I’m stupid and react without thinking, which is exactly what happened with this situation and, obviously, made things worse.

  3. I recorded it yesterday, since my sister, niece and I were making Christmas cookies. I don’t think we made one healthy one! 🙂 Anyhow…I just watched it. It fun to see you, and “hear” you. You looked great and did not look nervous at all. It was a fun show. Were you as lucky as the audience members with the Christmas gifts?
    Congratulations on passing your exam!

  4. Gosh I asked the same question Kimberly asked in just as polite a way, and my comment was deleted… :/ Any idea why, Tina?

        1. Hey, we all make mistakes, including me. I know what I did wasn’t right, but, at the time, I didn’t know what to say. Like I mentioned in my previous comment, I reacted without thinking, and I am very sorry about the actions that followed. I’m ready to move on and, hopefully, you (and other readers) will understand and do the same.

  5. That’s super awesome you were on the Dr. Oz show! I just went to his website and watched your little segment! It was super cute! Great job! I will most defiantly be making those cookies this season. Merry Christmas!!!

  6. Well, I guess you didn’t accept my first comment since I don’t see it up in the comment section now. You answered my question by addressing Kimberly. It would have been nice to see something in a post explaining what happened and not me having to look if my question even went through moderation. I enjoy your blog and will continue to read, just a bit bummed.

  7. Great interview, Tina! I was wondering why you didn’t address all the free stuff you got, like Theodora did. It seems like a dishonest thing to leave out, given how upset people got that you didn’t mention the contest ahead of time. Thoughts?

    1. When I wrote this post, the episode hadn’t aired yet, so I didn’t want to say too much since the producers asked us not to talk about it– and the giveaways were a huge part of of it. Plus, being on the show was more of a highlight for me than getting all of that stuff– even though it was pretty awesome!

  8. hey tina! i just wanted to congratulate you on being on the dr. oz show, i just watched the segment w. you and cookie monster!! that is so cool!!
    xo, kristina

  9. It’s in poor taste that you didn’t invite your readers to participate in the contest and then edited the original post to a) look like that wasn’t part of the invitation from Dr. Oz, and b) claim you did so *because* people were upset. I teach middle school. If one of my students did something analogous, and then claimed they did it because people got upset, we’d have a long conversation about ethics and doing the right thing.

  10. Why would anybody bother to eat something that doesn’t taste good?? The second batch look like rocks…seriously, if it doesn’t taste good – then either don’t eat it or get a healthy snack that DOES taste good.

    This is so stupid. As is Dr. Oz who is the biggest media plug and ridiculous. And agave – it’s still sugar – no difference.

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