Vegan Gingerbread Cookies

Vegan gingerbread cookies made with spelt flour! These little cut-out cookies are crispy around the edges and lightly chewy in the center. Bake them for the holidays and have fun decorating them with the family! The best part? There’s no chilling required!

gingerbread cookies

Is there anything more festive than gingerbread cookies?

These cookies are simple, perfectly sweet, crisp around the edges and soft on the inside. They’re also made vegan thanks to a flax egg and vegan butter!

Even better? Enjoy your gingerbread cookie with a cozy gingerbread latte.

spices, flour, sugar and molasses in measuring cups and jars
hand mixing gingerbread cookie dough
closeup of gingerbread dough cut into cookies
plain gingerbread cookies
How to Make Vegan Gingerbread Cookies

I have a few methods to make these cookies.

One option is to use a stand mixer or a hand mixer. For this method, you’ll be using softened butter (room temperature butter). Simply beat the butter and sugar together in the stand mixer, then add the molasses, vanilla and flax egg. Beat until combined and creamy. Add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.

Another option, if you don’t have a stand mixer or hand mixer, is to to it all manually. Simply combine the butter and sugar together using a fork. Add the molasses, vanilla and flax egg and mix until creamy. In another bowl, mix all your dry ingredients together and add it to your wet mixture.

For both methods, you’ll then flatten the dough about 1/4-inch thick and form approximately 16 cookies (or more depending on how thin you make them). Bake for 8-10 minutes, let them cool, then decorate!

What Vegan Butter Should I Use?

The type of vegan butter you use may change the outcome of the recipe. I tried the Becel vegan butter (in a tub) and the Becel vegan butter sticks (both salted). The sticks are harder and so the cookies spread a little less. If your butter is very soft, it will be safer to chill the dough for at least 3 hours before baking.

Can I use Different Flours?

Yes! This recipe has been tested with whole grain spelt flour, all-purpose white flour, whole wheat bread flour and all-purpose whole wheat flour. All worked perfectly with just a very slight difference in texture. I wouldn’t recommend bread flour if you want your cookies to look perfectly smooth.

How to Decorate Gingerbread Cookies

Once the cookies have cooled down completely, it’s time to decorate them! This is the best part if you ask me. Decorate them yourself or make it a fun activity with your family.

I have an incredibly easy 3-incredient icing you can use to decorate your cookies! You can also add a few drops of food coloring if you’d like a little pop of color! I love to keep it simple with eyes, buttons and a smile, but you can make it as simple or as advanced as you’d like.

gingerbread cookies on a baking sheet
vegan gingerbread cookie in latte cup

Vegan Gingerbread Cookies

Vegan gingerbread cookies made with spelt flour! These little cut-out cookies are crispy around the edges and lightly chewy in the center. Bake them for the holidays and have fun decorating them with the family! No chilling required!
Course Dessert
Cuisine vegan
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 28 minutes
Servings 16

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon flax seeds, ground
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 cup vegan butter, softened (see notes)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cup whole grain spelt flour, spoon and leveled (see notes)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
  • 1- 1 1/2 teaspoon ginger, ground
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, ground
  • 1/4 teaspoon clove, ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Icing

  • 3/4 cup icing sugar (vegan)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon plant-based milk of choice (I used plain oat milk)
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the ground flax seeds and water. Set aside and let it thicken for a few minutes.
  • Meanwhile, add your butter and brown sugar to a medium mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat the sugar and butter together with the stand mixer or a hand mixer. You can also use a fork and whisk it manually if you prefer. Add the molasses, flax egg and vanilla. whisk until creamy.
  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, clove, baking soda and salt. Transfer the dry mixture to the wet mixture and stir to combine. The mixture will seem dry, this is normal.
  • Place the dough on a lightly floured surface. Knead a few times until the dough becomes smooth. Roll it out using a rolling pin, until it gets about 1/4-inch thick.
  • Cut the dough using a cookie cutter. Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheet. Form another ball using the leftover dough, roll it out again and form more cookies. Continue this process until all the dough is used.
  • Bake for 8-10 minutes. The cookies should be slightly crispy around the edges and soft in the middle. They will get crispier as they sit. Let them cool completely.

Prepare the Icing

  • Whisk the icing sugar, milk and vanilla in a medium mixing bowl. Pour it into a piping bag or a ziploc bag with a very small corner cut off. Decorate the cookies as desired.

Notes

This recipe doesn’t require any chilling. The cookies hold their shape perfectly as is. However, if you want to prepare the dough ahead or time, you can keep the dough in the refrigerator, wrapped in plastic wrap until ready to bake.
I tried this recipe using softened room temperature butter and cold refrigerated butter. Both worked well, but note that the cold butter will be a little harder to mix with the sugar. Softened butter made the cookies spread just a tiny bit more.
You can make this recipe using whole grain spelt flour, all-purpose white flour or all-purpose whole wheat flour. Whole wheat bread flour will also work in a pinch, but the texture won’t be as smooth.
I tried the recipe with both 1/3 cup and 1/2 cup of brown sugar. The difference was almost undetectable, so use what you’d like.
I like to use 1 teaspoon of ginger, but if you want more of a ginger kick, use 1 1/2 teaspoon.
The type of vegan butter you use may change the outcome of the recipe. I tried the Becel vegan butter (in a tub) and the Becel vegan butter sticks (both salted). The sticks are harder and so the cookies spread a little less. If your butter is very soft, it will be safer to chill the dough for at least 3 hours before baking.

If you make these vegan gingerbread cookies, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! I love to hear from you guys. And of course, if you try this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram!

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WELCOME!

Nourished by Caroline

I’m Caroline, a registered dietitian located in Kelowna, British Columbia. I focus on plant-based nutrition and intuitive eating. I believe in living a balanced life, while eating the food you love. Learn more about my practice here or book an appointment today!