Vegan Baking 101: Holiday Cookies

The holidays are full of yummy treats! I mean if there was ever a reason to wear those elastic waist pants outside of your own home, holiday treats are it. Cakes, pies, and Santa’s personal favorite (trust us, he told us himself): cookies.

Unfortunately, those cookies often times contain things like: milk, eggs, milk chocolate, butter, and a load of other things that vegans, and those with milk and/or egg allergies can’t enjoy. We want to make sure you and all of your loved ones have enough treats to make them break out the stretchy pants this season!

Can you imagine a holiday without cookies?

 

SUBSTITUTIONS: 

Milk Substitutions:

Luckily, due to the rise in the manufacturing of plant based, dairy-free milks, this is the easiest step!

 

  • Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • Unsweetened Soy Milk
  • Unsweetened Rice Milk
  • Unsweetened Oat Milk
  • Unsweetened Hemp Milk
  • Unsweetened Hazelnut Milk
  • Unsweetened Cashew Milk

 

Noticing a trend? Go with unsweetened! Since you’ll already be adding sugar, or some sort of sweetening agent to your cookie recipe, it’s best to go with an unsweetened milk to avoid an inedible “too sweet” cookie (if there is such a thing.)

 

 

Egg Substitutions:

Substituting eggs when baking vegan desserts isn’t difficult. Luckily, there are plenty of easy, and a few more complex, options!

 

1 egg =

  • ¼ c unsweetened applesauce

(a fun bonus to get unsweetened applesauce with cinnamon for spiced cookies)

  • ¼ c mashed banana

(be careful, the banana flavor does come through other ingredients)

  • ¼ c vegetable oil

(if the recipe calls for more than 1 egg, try a different method–too much oil can cause the cookies to become greasy)

  • Flax or Chia Seed Egg

(combine 1 tbsp of ground flaxseeds (or chia seeds) with 3 tbsp of water. Stir thoroughly and set aside in the fridge for around 15 minutes. Once the mixture “sets” in a gooey type texture it’s ready to use!)

 

 

Butter Substitutions:

Like plant-based milks, the vegan butter business is in full swing, making it easy to grab a vegan friendly butter replacement at your local grocery store!

 

  • Earth Balance Vegan Butter

(they even come in baking stick forms)

  • Coconut oil

(measure out as you would butter: if recipe says solid, measure solid. If recipe says melted, measure melted.)

  • Olive oil

(around ¾ c of olive oil = 1 c of butter according to our research. You may want to make atest batch before you give them to Santa in case of any excess greasiness.)

 

 

Milk Chocolate Substitutions:

While we realize a lot of cookie recipes include chocolate chips (because that’s the best type of cookie, right?) it’s not always easy to find dairy-free, vegan friendly chocolate chips. If you’re struggling to find vegan friendly chocolate chips, not to worry, there are plenty of other options!

 

  • Carob chips

(there are often sweetened and unsweetened version of this. The choice is up to you.)

  • Any vegan friendly dark chocolate candy bar. Simply cut into chunks that resemble the size of chocolate chips and measure out as the recipe says. Easy as that!

 

Now that we’ve got our substitutions covered. It’s time to share a decadent vegan friendly chocolate chip cookie recipe that won’t let even Santa down!

 

———— Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe ————

*The recipe below is adapted from My California Roots

Ingredients:

1                      flax egg (see above)

1¼ cup            all purpose flour

1tsp                 baking soda

½ tsp               salt

½ cup             Earth Balance Vegan Butter

½ cup              dark brown sugar, packed

⅓ cup              white granulated sugar (go with an organic sugar to ensure it is vegan

friendly)

1 tsp                vanilla extract

1 cup               non-dairy chocolate chips

 

Directions:

 

Heat oven to 350F.

Place a piece of parchment paper, or use a vegan friendly cookie spray to ensure cookies don’t stick.

Make your flax egg and set aside.

Combine dry ingredients.

Soften butter, then add sugars and whisk quickly until fluffy and combined.

Add flax mixture and vanilla to the whisked butter until combined.

Add dry ingredients to the butter mixture and stir together with a spoon, slowly adding the chocolate chips. Be careful not to over mix.

Measure out onto baking sheet with one heaping tablespoon for each cookie.

Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until the under layer turns a golden brown.

Cool and dig in!

 

 

Shauna Willetts