Soft vegan gingerbread cookies

Soft vegan gingerbread cookies

soft vegan gingerbread cookies

It’s this time of the year again – as soon as you step outside you get bombarded with various reminders that’s it’s almost Xmas. I ventured out to the city centre this week in search of fine piping nozzles and I came home a little down, I must admit. Although I thought I was prepared for the Xmas frenzy, seeing the high street awash with cheap, mass produced trinkets that we have all been brainwashed to buy and which end up in a landfill as soon as we move on to the next commercialised occasion has made me feel really, really low.

The amount of ‘stuff’ that no one really needs screaming out to you from every shopping window is dizzying and mind-boggling and it feels like it is on an ever growing scale despite the constant environmental crises happening left, right and centre. We are still far too detached from the fact that this mindless consumerism is killing our planet and is bringing us no happiness at all and I don’t know what will it take to get us to take notice. End of the world, I guess, but it will be too late by then…

We are going to Poland for Xmas and at my suggestion we are doing away with Xmas presents completely this year cos we all have enough stuff, cos no matter how hard you try you always end up with unwanted gifts cluttering your home at best and because we all know there is no Santa by now so we can roll with this. It felt like I was being a bit of a grumpy old Grinch but everybody was relieved cos let’s face it Xmas shopping is a chore. I love giving presents and I am totally up for giving thoughtful and / or homemade gifts, but it’s buying stuff to just tick a box that I can’t get behind.

So speaking of homemade presents, gifting little parcels of homemade cookies is a nice present, I think. These soft vegan gingerbread cookies are really easy to make and fun to decorate too. I am not going to win any icing competitions for my effort, but they are nice enough to look at plus they fill your house with the most amazing Xmassy scent, so they will get everybody in the Xmas spirit without the need for tinsel or Xmas crackers 😉 .

soft vegan gingerbread cookies making

soft vegan gingerbread cookies dough

soft vegan gingerbread cookies cutting

soft vegan gingerbread cookies macro

Soft vegan gingerbread cookies plate

makes
60
PREP
30 min
COOKING
10 min
makes
60
PREPARATION
30 min
COOKING
10 min
INGREDIENTS
  • 250 g / 2 cups all purpose flour OR a tried and tested GF flour mix (I use this one)
  • 50g – 100g / ¼ – ½ cup sugar*, coconut sugar for refined sugar-free version
  • 1 tsp instant yeast
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp quality cocoa powder
  • 1½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1½ tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp fine sea salt
  • 50 g / 60 ml / ¼ cup melted refined coconut oil or other neutral tasting oil
  • 60 ml / ¼ cup smooth (not chunky!) applesauce**
  • 120 ml / ½ cup maple syrup

ICING

  • 125 g / 1 cup icing sugar
  • water
METHOD
  1. Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. Stir all the wet ingredients (the last three) together in another bowl.
  3. Stir wet ingredients into the dry ones until loosely combined, then knead the dough gently together.
  4. Divide the dough in half and refrigerate it for 30 minutes.
  5. Before you are about to take the dough out of the fridge, set the oven to 175° C / 350° F and line two baking trays with a piece of baking paper.
  6. After resting, take the first portion of the dough out of the fridge. Give it a few minutes to bring it to room temperature. Roll it out (gently pressing with a rolling pin) on a lightly floured surface. For softer gingerbread cookies. roll the dough out quite thick (about 5 mm / 0.2″) and cut the cookies out of it with cookie cutters. If you want the cookies to be crunchy, roll them out a bit thinner and bake them for longer.
  7. Arrange the cookies on the prepared baking trays. You don’t need to leave a lot of space between them as they don’t expand much. Group similar size cookies together so that they cook in the same time. Bake small cookies for about 7-8 minutes and larger for 9-10 minutes. The longer you bake them for the crispier (and less soft and chewy) they will turn out, so adjust the baking time to your preference.
  8. To make the icing, mix icing sugar with a very small amount of water (about 1 tbsp) until you obtain a thick sugar paste.
  9. Place your icing into a small plastic or pastry bag. Push it all into one corner and cut a tiny bit off that corner with a pair of scissors. Start with a small hole and make it bigger if necessary. Apply the icing by squeezing the icing through the hole. Allow the icing to solidify before piling the biscuits on a plate or storing them in a box.

NOTES
 *I used 50 g / ¼ cup sugar and, especially with icing, they were sweet enough for me. Duncan prefers them a little sweeter so please adjust the amount of sugar to your liking. I used 25 g dark and 25 g light muscovado sugar.

**I blended my homemade applesauce super smooth in my blender first. It’s not necessary, but you definitely do not want chunks of apple in it before adding to the dough.

If you are after crispier gingerbreads, check out this earlier recipe of mine.

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NUTRITIONAL INFO
calories
36
2%
sugars
3 g
3%
fats
1 g
1%
saturates
1 g
4%
proteins
0 g
1%
carbs
7 g
3%
*per cookie
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5.0
9 reviews, 23 comments
REVIEWS & QUESTIONS
cathy:
I've been making vegan gingerbread for roughly 20 years, as long as I've been vegan, and there was always something weird or wrong with the recipes, but this one was absolutely perfect. Everyone loved it - thank you and happy holidays from the U.S.!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thank you so much, Cathy! I'm delighted to hear that I've broken bad vegan gingerbread spell ;) Happy Holidays to you and your nearest and dearest too! x Ania
Keiko:
This cookies were so easy to make and also the dough was really easy to work with. I love the texture of soft and chewiness! I will be making this few more times at least this winter :) Thank you for great recipe as always. x
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks Keiko! So nice to hear that you enjoyed them and plan to make again. x Ania
Kara F McVey:
These gingerbread cookies were incredible! They were super easy to make and came out with the perfect texture. I gave them to a couple of very picky kids and even the two-year-old liked them ( I used the full amount of sugar). The adults (myself included) loved them too! In the past I used a different recipe, but found that the other cookies always came out too hard. This will definitely be my go-to recipe from now on! My compliments and thanks to the genius chef!!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Aw, thank you so much for your kind words, Kara! I'm delighted to hear that both you and the kids enjoyed them and that you plan to make them more often. x Ania
Lily:
Hi! I just made this and they are sooooooo soft, I love them! :)
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thank you, Lily! I'm really happy to hear that! Ania
Pete:
Ah ok, so it’s to replace fat rather than sugar? In that case I may try smooth nut butter and see how it affects flavour
    Ania
    Ania:
    Yes, that should work too, but perhaps loosen the nut butter with a little water first (and then measure it out) as apple sauce has quite a lot of moisture in it. Ania
Pete:
Hi Ania, I make a lot of your recipes and they always turn out really well!
I want to make these but wondered about skipping applesauce - would you recommend a substitute?
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Pete,
    Thanks, I'm really happy to hear that. You could sub it with say pumpkin puree? or simply add more coconut oil - it will make them more indulgent. Ania
Chrissy:
Lovely cookies, tasted awesome and went down a treat in our house! Nice simple recipe which came out just as expected.
    Ania
    Ania:
    I'm delighted to hear that, Chrissy! Thanks for letting me know that you enjoyed them that much. x Ania
Lisa:
Thanks for the recipe. What can I use instead of maple syrup?
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Lisa,
    I haven't tried anything else, but I am pretty sure that agave or rice syrup will work just as well. Hope that helps! Ania
Sarah:
Best gingerbread we’ve made—baked with my daughter this afternoon. We didn’t have applesauce, so I used some puréed pineapple, and used extra virgin olive oil instead of coconut. Really delicious :) Thanks and merry Xmas from Australia.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks Sarah, I am delighted to hear that - pureed pineapple sounds equally delicious. Merry Xmas to you too! x Ania
Jane Ward:
Thanks for this recipe, we loved the soft, gently spiced cookies and they were very popular with children and staff at school too - the recipe made enough for everybody! :)
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks Jane! I am really pleased to hear that! x Ania
Jenny:
Hi Ania, how well / how long do these keep? Do they need to be refrigerated afterwards? I want to know how far in advance I can make them to give as gifts.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Jenny,
    I have given them all away straight away so I am not sure but they should be okay for a week in an air-tight container. They contain no egg so they they won't spoil as such but may dry out a bit and become less soft, that's all. Ania
Sally:
I’m going to be looking out that gorgeous tart from last year 😉
    Ania
    Ania:
    Great to hear, Sally! I hope you'll enjoy it if you decide to make it. Ania
Sylwia:
These are absolutely delicious! At first I wasn't sure about the consistency, but after keeping the dough in the fridge for a little while, it solidified and the cookies came out perfect. Dziekuje za przepis Aniu!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Yay! I am delighted to hear that, Sylwia! And thank YOU for taking the time to rate the recipe - much appreciated! Pozdrawiam serdecznie! x Ania
Sally:
Lovely cookies! I like the mottled Moggie the best ☺️ We feel the same about the mindless Xmas consumerism but I think it’s changing for many people. The shops have been suffering here for some years and people either choose not to gift, give charity gifts in lieu, buy at op shops or have a very low cost ceiling and the gift has to be second hand. We haven’t given gifts for three years and it certainly takes the stress out of it. The times they are, a slowly!, changing. Too slowly remains to be seen.
Will you be taking a sabbatical while in Poland? I’m sure all your followers would love to think you were having a break. Perhaps post a few Polish pics in lieu if feel have to do something. Xx
    Ania
    Ania:
    Thanks Sally, it's heart warming to know that there are people out there who feel the same. I sometimes feel like there is only a small pocket of people who take steps to change while everybody else carries on as they were. Yes although I am preparing all my recipes in advance so I will be posting as per usual except for the Xmas day. Have a wonderful Xmas and thank you for your continued support! x Ania
Tristin:
What if we don't have instant yeast? We bought a refrigerated container of live yeast and I guess we bought way too much. Trying to use that up instead.
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Tristin,
    I am not sure you can use them in this recipe as none of the liquids used here are suitable for activating live yeast and you don't want to add any extra moisture. The best I can suggest is swapping some of the maple syrup out for sugar and using almond milk (instead of the maple syrup you subbed out) to activate the yeast, but I have not tried that so I am guessing at this point. Hope that helps! Ania
Dianne:
What is the purpose of the yeast in your recipe since it also has baking powder and soda? These look amazing and love the simplicity of the recipe. Thanks!
    Ania
    Ania:
    Hi Dianne,
    It aerates the dough making for softer gingerbreads, you can skip if you don't want to use it, but the biscuits will be a little bit harder. Hope that helps! ANia
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