After lots of trials, this is hands-down the best recipe for vegan sugar cookies that are soft, hold their edge, and are yummmmmy!
This is my go-to recipe for sugar cookies for every occasion. Unlike my absolute delicious Vegan Gingerbread Cookies, which are a bit seasonal (I say with a heavy heart), sugar cookie cutouts can be used all throughout the year. This makes them a HUGE favorite of mine.
I’ve tried a bunch of different sugar cookie cutout dough recipes, some are gluten-free, vegan, and good ol’ classic sugar cookies. Out of all of them, this is my favorite. The cookies are soft, they don’t go stale quickly, and aren’t too sweet. We’ll keep the sweetness for the vegan Royal Icing that I LOVE to add on top!
The only problem with these all-time favorite cutout cookies is that I eat them. One after breakfast, one mid-afternoon, and another after dinner. Ugh. With this recipe making roughly 20 cookies, depending on the cookie cutter shape, that’s almost a week of me eating cookies.
It’s for this reason that I try to make them around a holiday so I can gift some of them and keep some of them. That way, not a lot of guilt because I made other people happy too! Winner-winner!
Let’s get to the recipe, which as it happens is SUPER easy to make!
Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
Gathering the mixins – vegan sugar cookie style
Admittedly, this recipe does make a cutout cookie that is a touch darker than the classic sugar cookie recipe. It tastes wonderful and when iced, I promise it won’t draw any attention, yet it is a little bit darker.
That’s due to the coconut sugar. It tastes more like brown sugar and tastes a little bit like caramel. So, if you can handle that, the rest is a breeze!
First let’s gather our ingredients for the sugar cookie dough:
- 2 tbsp Chia Seeds
- 5 tbsp Hot Water
- 4 1/2 Cups of Gluten-Free Flour
- 1 1/4 tsp Xanthan Gum (if needed per GF Flour package)
- 3 tsp Baking Powder
- 1 1/2 cup Vegan Butter Substitute
- 1 1/2 cup Coconut Sugar
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1 tsp Almond Extract
how to make a chia egg substitute
In most of my vegan baking, instead of using an egg I use Chia Seeds and Hot Water. They create a slimy goop that substitutes perfectly for real eggs. You WILL see the seeds in the cookies, but you don’t taste them at all. Another good reason to cover the top up with Royal Icing so cranky Uncle Ed doesn’t complain!
All you need to do is combine the Chia Seeds and Hot Water, gently folding them together in a small dish.
They need to sit for a few minutes, so this is the first step I do before anything else. That way, as I’m preparing the dry ingredients, it can have time to reach its slimy perfection!
Sugar Cookie Dry ingredients
The next step is to sift together all of the dry ingredients. I find a lot of recipes have you do this after the moist ingredients are blended, yet I like to clear as much mess as I can BEFORE I get my beast of a mixer out.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my KitchenAid. It’s simply BIG. So it doesn’t come out until all of my dry ingredients are put away to save counter space. Not to mention my stress-levels. I don’t handle clutter well. Less is ALWAYS more in my world!
Just set this aside until you need it. Now, notice this logic, you can put away half of your ingredients as you pull out your mixer!
Sugar Cookie Moist Ingredients roll call!
Now we start the action!
In a LOT of recipes, they say to allow the butter to reach room temperature. ME, not being trained properly in any fashion (stating the obvious), I take the vegan butter sticks straight from the refrigerator and pop them into the mixing bowl. Then the mixing paddle can have at it!
Keep it going until that vegan butter is a smooth and creamy delight! It might take a few minutes, so keeping close by one of the books I HIGHLY recommend is a good idea.
When the butter is smooth, go ahead and add the coconut sugar. Give it a few minutes to get really soft and blended well with the vegan butter.
I’m going to ask that you trust me here. Adding the Chia Egg Substitute may be a little off-putting. You’ll see the Chia Seeds and wonder what-the-heck??
That’s why I’m asking you to trust me. Add the Chia Egg Substitute, and both the Vanilla and Almond Extract and mix them all together. What starts out like …
Will soon end up tasting just fine!
Sugar Cookie Dough Dry Ingredients
This is SO easy because you already prepared the dry ingredients. Now you just have to add all of them to the mixing bowl little by little.
Give each addition a little time to assimilate into the dough before adding the next. They need time to become friends and get acquainted so don’t just dump in the entire bowl of flour. You’ll be cleaning it up EVERYWHERE!
When it’s all nice and blended, and you’ve scraped the bowl to make sure ALL of it is accounted for, you are then ready to chill the dough.
With a clear counter, take out one large piece of plastic wrap and place it neatly on the counter. Then add another one going the opposite way on top of it. You’re going to plop the dough right in the middle of the two and wrap it up tight just like a burrito!
You’re going to refrigerate this for one hour.
Perfect time to clean up the kitchen and sit with a nice cup of coffee or tea and get back to that book! ORRR, you can check out some of the other posts:
- How To Layout Furniture For An Open Floor Plan
- How to Make Minestrone Soup with Tortellini and a Kick!
- How to Gift Wrap Separate Lids & Bottoms
- How to Make the “Merry Everything and Happy Always” Wood Sign
- How to Make a Big Ribbon Bow the EASY Way
The secret to sugar cookies with edges
Have you ever made cutout cookie dough, taking time to cut each shape perfectly, only to have them melt into a blob in the oven?
I have and I’m guessing you have too!
While there are some ingredients that contribute to this, one secret really helps to keep the edges, and that is refrigeration!
Take out your sugar cookie dough burrito from the refrigerator and NOW while it’s still a little soft, roll it out and cut out your shapes. Put each shape at least 1″ apart on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet. THEN they go back into the refrigerator for at least another hour!
When enough time has passed, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. When the oven reaches temperature, take one or two (depending on the size of your oven) cookie sheets out of the refrigerator and put them directly into the oven. Don’t even let them sit for a second on the counter.
Leave the other trays in the refrigerator until it’s their turn to bake.
Each cookie sheet will take about 8-9 minutes to bake properly. Check the bottom edges and take them out of the oven when the edges are golden brown.
Leave them on the cookie sheet to solidify a bit, which will take about 5-minutes. Then you can move them to a cooling rack to allow them to cool off completely!
Here are a few of my most-used cookie cutters:
And that’s it!
Let’s recap the steps to make these cookies so you can plan your time accordingly.
- Make Chia Egg – 1 minute
- Sift Dry Ingredients – 5 minutes
- Blend Moist Ingredients – 6 minutes
- Add Dry Ingredients – 5 minutes
- Refrigerate – 1 hour
- Cut cookie shapes – 20 minutes
- Refrigerate – 1 hour (or more)
- Bake – 25 minutes (all the sheets, plus time to cool)
So it looks like, you need to have a block of time that’s about 3 hours. Albeit with chuncks of down time as the cookies chill and bake.
If you’re planning to ice them, which you really should because they’re SO much better iced, make sure they are 100% completely cooled off!
Here’s a quick little video of how I made the black and white gingham tree cookies shown. I’m little by little teaching myself how to decorate cookies until the time comes that I can take a real class!
What you’ll see is flawed but that’s okay. It was so fun and the cookies are delicious. All around, even though they’ll NEVER be mistaken for the work of a professional, I consider this a successful project that will lead into my next decorating attempt.
That’s it for now, my friend!
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VEgan Sugar Cookie REcipe
- To begin, you need to prepare your Chia Egg. Heat up 5 tbsp of Hot Water (I use tap water as our's gets really hot) and put that in a small bowl with 2 tbsp of Chia Seeds. Set aside.
- Next, you need to sift your dry ingredients. This includes the Gluten-Free Flour, Xanthan Gum (if needed, check your flour label), and Baking Powder. Set this aside.
- Take your Vegan Butter, I prefer Miyoko's Classic Fresh Organic Vegan Butter if you can find it, and cream it in your mixer. When smooth, add the Coconut Sugar and Chia Egg. Blend until they are well integrated and then add both the Vanilla and Almond Extracts. Continue to blend until it's all nice and smooth.
- In parts, add your dry ingredients. Scrape the side of the bowl and mixing paddle to get all the dry ingredients off and mixed into the batter. Keep going until everything is well blended.
- Lay a large piece of plastic wrap on the counter, and empty the mixing bowl into it. Wrap up the dough and chill for an hour in the refrigerator.
- After an hour, take the chilled dough and roll into 1/4" sheets to cut your cookies. I like to cut right on our quartz counters using a little sprinkle of flour to make sure it doesn't stick. To sprinkle the flour even and light, put a heaping spoonful into your sifter and shake gently over the counter.
- Put the cookie cut-outs onto cookie sheets lined with parchment paper. Make sure each cutout shape is at least a 1" apart from one another. Place them back into the refrigerator for at least an hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Once it arrives at this temperature, place the cookie sheets into the over using the middle rack. The cookie sheets come straight from the refrigerator! This is a way to help keep the edges from losing their shape. Bake for 8-9 minutes until the bottom edge is golden brown.
- Allow the cookies to cool right on the cookie sheets for 5 minutes before moving to cool racks. That's it! Personally, I like to ice my sugar cookies. If you do too, you'll need to allow the cookies to completely cool before doing so.
You can see how to ice the cookies in a Fall Leaf design on the blog.
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Amount Per Serving Calories 288Total Fat 14gSaturated Fat 9gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 37mgSodium 184mgCarbohydrates 37gFiber 1gSugar 15gProtein 3g
Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
Vegan Royal Icing Recipe
- 9 tbsp Chickpea Brine (1 can of Chickpeas or Garbanzo Beans)
- 4 c. Powdered (Icing) Sugar
- 1 tsp Almond Extract (optional)
- Food Coloring (as needed)
- Drain brine from a can of Chickpeas (Garbanzo Beans).
- Add to the mixing bowl. Mix well on high as you move to the next step. You will have extra brine remaining. Do NOT discard the extra. You may need it later!
- Sift powdered sugar into a separate bowl.
- Add Almond Extract to the mixing bowl.
- In equal parts, add 4 cups of powdered sugar. Blend until smooth.
- Continue to add additional tbsp of powdered sugar, as needed, until the icing can stand without losing its shape for at least 15 seconds. This is your piping icing.
- Separate into smaller bowls as needed for your icing colors.
- Add food coloring as appropriate.
- After piping the cookies, you may need to mix in by hand small amounts (1 tsp at a time) of Chickpea Brine into individual bowls to make icing into flooding consistency. This will lose its shape more quickly than the piping icing yet still NOT be runny.
- Once you have finished icing all of the cookies, allow icing to harden overnight or as needed.
For Gingerbread Cookie Dough, click HERE.
Amount Per Serving Calories 33Total Fat 0gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 1mgCarbohydrates 5gFiber 1gSugar 1gProtein 2g