Italian pizzelles with the same classic flavor and texture, but vegan! This recipe uses seven simple ingredients to make a beautifully delicate and delicious waffle cookie that everyone will love.
Pizzelles were a staple every holiday season in my Italian American household, so it was only fitting that I made a vegan version. If you’re unfamiliar with pizzelles, they’re waffle-style Italian cookies traditionally made from eggs, flour, butter, and sugar. They can be made crispy and crunchy or soft and fluffy, but we prefer them crispy!
With the advent of products like Just Egg, making pizzelles 100% plant-based is now easier than ever. Everything from the taste to the texture is spot on to what I remember as a child. I am so glad, too because I couldn’t picture Christmas without this classic Italian cookie. We hope you love this pizzelle recipe as much as we do!
Here’s What You Need to Make Pizzelles
Flour: We use all-purpose flour for our pizzelles. Sifting in the flour helps keep the batter clump-free resulting in the perfect consistency. If you are looking for flour recommendations, we like to use this one.
Butter: Using dairy-free stick butter is ideal for this recipe. We recommend either Earth Balance buttery sticks or Country Crock Plant Butter. We recommend using melted butter when adding it to the mixture.
Sugar: To sweeten up our pizzelles. We like to use organic sugar to ensure that it isn’t processed through bone-char. If you are unsure about what sugar to buy, we like this one.
Eggs: The perfect liquid egg substitute for this recipe is Just Egg. If you aren’t familiar with Just Egg it’s a plant-based egg made primarily from mung beans and cooks and bakes just as chicken eggs would. It’s definitely a game-changer!
Vanilla: Adds the perfect subtle vanilla flavor.
Baking Powder: This will help with the texture of the pizzelles get thicker and puffier.
Star Anise: This is an optional ingredient, but it’s in my family recipe, so I had to include it. I honeslty love the way it tastes, but if you aren’t a fan of a subtle black licorice flavor, you may want to leave it out.
Powdered Sugar: Another optional ingredient, but we like to dust our finished pizzelles with powdered sugar. This will give them a beautiful look and also an extra pop of sweetness
Pizzelle Press: I know this is a very specific appliance, but it’s pretty difficult to make pizzelles without one. We have an electric one we purchased last year, but my mom also has a cast iron one that is heated on the stove top.
Scoop: This is used to measure the batter as it’s scooped onto the pizzelle press. The maker we have came with the perfect-sized scoop, but if yours doesn’t, a tablespoon works great.
Hand Mixer: This is used to cream together the egg and sugar. If you don’t have a hand mixer, you can whisk them vigorously to achieve the same effect. You can also use a stand mixer.
There are a variety of different flavor options when making pizzelles. Each one is just as delicious, so it comes down to personal preference. As mentioned above, my family always makes them with star anise. Other options include flavoring them with lemon, orange, vanilla, or cocoa powder. You can even drizzle them with chocolate and top them with nuts like pistachio. Another delicious option is to shape your pizzelles into bowls and scoop ice cream into them. I want to perfect rolling them into cannoli shapes and fill them with cream. This recipe may come next year, so keep an eye out. However you choose to make your pizzelles, you can’t go wrong!
Fun Facts about Pizzelles
Pizzelles are the oldest known cookie.
They originated in Abruzzo, Italy.
The village of Colcullo was once over run by snakes and once they were cleared, people celebrated with pizzelles.
The word pizzelle comes from the Italian word pizze which means “flat” and “round”. Pizza is also originates from this word.
In a medium mixing bowl, beat together the liquid egg substitute and sugar with a hand mixer or whisk. Add in the melted vegan butter and vanilla, then continue to mix.
With a sifter or mesh strainer, sift your dry ingredients into the wet mixture. Using the hand mixer, mix until a thick batter forms. Add in star anise and mix through.
Turn on your pizzelle maker and allow it to heat up. We like to keep ours around setting 3, but it may vary depending on the pizzelle maker being used.
Using a tablespoon (or the spoon that came with your pizzelle maker), scoop the batter into the center of each pizzelle mold and close the press. Allow them to cook for 30-60 seconds, depending on how crispy you want them.
Remove them from the press gently and place them on a cooling rack to cool completely.
Once fully cool, dust with powdered sugar if desired and enjoy.
We crush out star anise with a rock, but you can also use your hands or a knife.
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