I LOVE FALL! One of the reasons is because of my birthday on September 29th, but also because I adore all the holiday festivities that come with the chilling of temperatures and the shortening of the days. My sister and her wife are vegan and I try to be gluten free most of the time, so I wanted to create a recipe that we could pull out when we all gather for holidays. One of our traditions is that we bake and decorate cookies for Santa and these are perfect for any occasion that calls for a quick and easy roll-out, cookie-cutter-perfect, sugar cookie ready to be decorated. Check out this spooky version and makes sure to save this link for these go-to sugar cookies that are "buttery," flaky, and soft and frosted with the most decadent and simple icing ever!
Tips: It's important not to over-bake these babies. They will look very light, but they will harden as they cool.
They will be a bit delicate, so handle with care.
Feel free to use food colorings to change the tone of the icing. I used matcha green tea powder to get this beautiful green color, but you can adapt this recipe for any cutout and any occasion!
For this recipe you will need: A baking sheet, parchment paper, measuring cups and spoons, rolling pin, mixing bowl, frosting bag or plastic bag for frosting, and your choice of cookie cutter shapes.
INGREDIENTS: Makes approximately 16-18 cookies
For the cookies
2 1/2 cups gluten free flour, like Bob's Red Mill
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegan butter, softened but not melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/4 cup nut milk
For the royal icing
2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/8 tsp almond extract
2-4 Tbsps nut milk
For the matcha version: 2, Jade Leaf Matcha single serving ceremonial matcha stick.
LET'S MAKE COOKIES
Make that dough
Mix all dry ingredients together
Add your softened butter and mix until a sandy texture is reached
Add in your extracts and nut milk and mix, using your hands to combine completely.
Form dough into a flat, round disc and chill in refrigerator for approximately 30 minutes
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
Line your baking sheets with parchment paper
Remove dough from fridge and roll out on a lightly floured surface until the dough is about 1/8 inch thick or to your desired cookie thickness. *Thicker cookies will need a little more baking time
Press cookies cutters into dough and transfer cookie cutouts onto baking sheet
Repeat until your sheet is full, leaving about 1 inch between cookies
Bake for 8-12 minutes, depending on thickness
Remove gently from baking sheet and cool on wire rack until ready for icing
Getting royally iced
Add powdered sugar, extracts, matcha powder, and nut milk (one tablespoon at a time) until a slightly runny texture is reached. It should be firm enough to hold its shape, but fluid enough to be piped and spread.
Make that cookie magic- aka let's decorate!
Pipe an outline around your cookies and allow to dry slightly.
Fill in with additional royal icing making sure to spread to edges.
*If you have achieved the right consistency, the icing will smooth out slightly, so don't worry too much about making it perfect
SERVING TIPS: These can be a make ahead cookie for a decorating party or put in a cellophane bag to hand out as holiday treats. Just be careful as they aren't as sturdy as your conventional sugar cookie. They are great with a tall glass of milk and there's a whisper among the reindeer that this recipe is Santa Claus approved.
This is definitely a recipe that I keep coming back to. I inherited a variety of classic cookie cutters and it's tradition to make at least one, usually more, batches of sugar cookies to enjoy by the fire or even as an afternoon snack. I like using food coloring to have a variety of icing colors, as well as a collection of holiday-themed sprinkles to really up the ante. My biggest piece of advice is to have fun with these! Even if they aren't the most visually pleasing, they are still pleasing to the palate. I hope you enjoy.
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If you love these cookies, try exploring some more recipes that I know you'll enjoy!
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