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These Vegan Sugar Cookies are the BEST sugar cookies! They’re thick, soft, just 8 ingredients and naturally dairy free. Decorate them with our easy cookie icing for a fun Christmas break activity or holiday dessert!
Gift the cookie lovers in your life a vegan cookie box filled with these decorated vegan sugar cookies, Peppermint Meltaway Cookies, Vegan Gingerbread Cookies, Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies, Thumbprint Cookies, Vegan Eggnog Snickerdoodles and Vegan Pizzelles!
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Flax egg: Our vegan egg of choice for giving these vegan sugar cookies structure and bind the dough together. If desired, opt for a store-bought vegan egg such as Bob’s Red Mill vegan egg replacer.
- Sugar: Cane sugar and powdered sugar are essentials when making decorated sugar cookies! In order to ensure your Christmas cookies are vegan and vegetarian friendly, use organic sugar. Non-organic sugars are often processed through bone char to bleach them white.
- Vegan butter: We’ve used both Earth Balance vegan butter sticks and Country Crock Plant Butter Sticks and had excellent results. Opt for a vegan butter stick over a butter spread for the best texture. Unfortunately substituting oil will not work in this recipe.
- Vanilla extract & Almond extract: Adding both to the sugar cookie dough creates the BEST tasting cookies. If needed, substitute one for the other. This will slightly change the flavor, but still be delicious.
- Flour: We used all-purpose flour to make these sugar cookies as classic as possible. We have not tested a gluten-free version and unfortunately can’t recommend it.
- Baking powder: This leavening agent gives these thick sugar cookies just enough of a rise without changing their shape. Please do not attempt to substitute baking soda. These two cannot be used interchangeably.
- Almond milk: A small splash of almond milk is used to create the best cookie icing consistency. If necessary, opt for another unsweetened plant-based milk such as oat milk, soy milk, or coconut milk.
- Mixing bowls
- Electric hand mixer or stand mixer
- Plastic wrap, parchment paper, or vegan wax wrap
- Rolling pin
- Cookie cutters
- Baking sheet
- Piping bag (for decorating with icing!)
How to Make Soft Vegan Sugar Cookies
- Rest the butter at room temperature. Remove the butter from the refrigerator and allow it to rest at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before starting, or until softened. This will allow it to cream easily into a soft vegan cookie dough.
- Make the flax egg. In a small bowl, mix together the ground flaxseed and water until well combined. Set aside for 15 minutes to thicken.
- Mix together the dry ingredients. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- Cream the butter and sugar. In a separate large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the softened vegan butter and granulated sugar using an electric hand mixer or paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Add the prepared flax egg, vanilla and almond extract. Mix until combined.
- Add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, mix until a uniform sugar cookie dough forms.
- Chill the dough for at least 1 hour. Tightly wrap the sugar cookie dough in plastic wrap, parchment paper or a vegan wax wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Roll out sugar cookies. Using a rolling pin, roll out the vegan cookie dough until ¼ to ½-inch thick on a lightly floured surface. Cut the cookies into your favorite Christmas shapes such as snowflakes, snowmen, Christmas trees, and stars. Place on a lined baking sheet.
- Chill the cut sugar cookies. Transfer the lined baking sheet to the fridge for at least 10 minutes while the oven preheats.
- Bake. Bake the vegan sugar cookies for 9 to 11 minutes, or until the edges are lightly golden.
- Cool to room temperature. After baking, allow the cookies to rest on the baking sheet for 2 minutes, then transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Make the vegan sugar cookie icing. In a small bowl, whisk together the organic powdered sugar, vanilla extract and unsweetened almond milk. Add food coloring as desired, then transfer to a piping bag or squeeze bottle.
- Decorate! Don’t stress about making your sugar cookies perfect – just have fun with it!
- Enjoy. Allow the cookie icing to set a bit, then serve.
Expert Tips and Tricks
- Don’t overbake! After 9 to 11 minutes, it may appear that the sugar cookies are not finished baking, but keep in mind they will continue to firm up as they cool. The bake time results in the best vegan sugar cookies with soft and chewy centers and slightly crisp edges! Trust us.
- The chill time prevents over-spreading. If you’ve ever made cookies that spread into thin, flat cookies during baking, chances are high the dough was too warm. In order to help these vegan sugar cookies keep their shape, it is essential to chill the cookie dough for a minimum of 1 hour before rolling out the dough.
- Work in batches. If you want to take your time rolling out the dough, cut the dough into two dough balls. Keep one half in the fridge while working with the first half to prevent it from becoming too warm.
- Roll the dough out directly on a silicone baking mat! Although you can certainly roll your cookie dough out on a clean work surface, we highly recommend rolling out the cookie dough directly on a silicone baking mat or piece of parchment paper. This way you can pick up the mat after cutting your shapes and immediately place it on a cookie sheet. No need to transfer them one by one and risk ruining your cookies’ shapes.
- Try icing with a squeeze bottle. This method is great for mess-free, precise decorating and the bottle is easily reusable when icing cookies like Gluten-Free Lemon Poppyseed Breakfast Cookies, Vegan Gingerbread Cookies and Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Cookies.
Store leftover iced sugar cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. Be careful when stacking the cookies – the icing is on the softer side and can smear.
How to freeze vegan sugar cookie dough: If desired, the unbaked vegan sugar cookie dough can be tightly wrapped and frozen after step 5. Freeze for up to 3 months, then thaw the dough completely in the fridge before rolling out and baking as usual.
More Vegan Christmas Cookie Recipes You May Enjoy:
- Cinnamon Roll Cookies
- Vegan Ube Sugar Cookies
- Ginger Molasses Cookies (Gluten-Free)
- The Best Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- Pecan Cranberry Shortbread Cookies
- Cinnamon Twist Cookies
If you make this recipe, let us know what you think in the comments below! + If you post any photos on Instagram, make sure you tag us @sweetsimplevegan and @consciouschris so that we don’t miss it, we love seeing your photos!Print
Nutrition facts label provided by Nutri Fox.
Disclaimer: The nutritional information shown is an estimate provided by an online calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional’s advice. This page may contain affiliate links, which simply means that we earn a commission if you purchase through those links, but your price remains the same. Thank you for supporting Sweet Simple Vegan!