An easy recipe for paleo friendly and vegan gingerbread cookies. Using almond flour, no eggs or substitutes and just a little dough chilling time. Perfect for the holiday season – gift giving, cookie exchanges and more.
It’s that time of year where all I can think about is cookies! Cookies for all of the holiday cookie exchanges coming up.
Whether it’s for work, with friends, neighbors or family, you always need a good gingerbread recipe. And this one happens to be made with almond flour making them gluten-free and paleo friendly.
AND no eggs! So this gingerbread recipe is vegan too.
I actually polled my Instagram audience for which type of gingerbread they’d like to see:
- gluten free
Well paleo won by a landslide but vegan was second and guess what? Now this recipe meets all of those needs!
Vegan Gingerbread Cookies Recipe
Ingredients needed for Vegan Gingerbead
- Super-fine Almond Flour – This kind of almond flour is made from blanched almonds. It’s the best to use for baking cookies, cakes and breads or muffins. I haven’t tried “almond meal” with this recipe so I don’t recommend it.
- Gingerbread spices – ground ginger, cinnamon, all spice and just a pinch of cloves.
- Tapioca flour – Using tapioca flour will help hold the dough together. I haven’t tested this recipe without it but arrowroot or cornstarch can be subbed. Coconut flour may also work, but I’d only use 2.5 TBSP here.
- Vegan butter or ghee – This recipe can be made with a vegan friendly butter or ghee for a paleo option.
- Vanilla – Always a good idea!
- Coconut sugar – Just 1/4 cup used here. You can also use brown sugar if you’d like. I imagine date or maple sugar could work too but I haven’t tried this.
EQUIPMENT: pastry roller or rolling pin, parchment paper, gingerbread cookie cutters.
How to make Vegan Gingerbread with Almond Flour
Making these healthy gingerbread men couldn’t be easier! Everything can be mixed in one bowl and the dough is easy to work with. You just need to make sure you chill it for about 1 hour before rolling out and cutting the gingerbread men and women out.
Step 1 – Mix the wet ingredients
Mix together the melted butter with molasses, sugar and vanilla until smooth.
Step 2 – Add the dry ingredients
Step 3 – Chill the dough
Once the dough has combined, you’ll want to shape it into a round disc (for rolling out later) and place on parchment lined baking sheet. Chill the dough for at least 1 hour, up to 2 days in the refrigerator.
Step 4 – Roll out the dough & cut
Now it’s time to roll the dough. I placed my dough on an extra long piece of parchment paper, folded it over and then used my roller on top of the parchment paper. This gingerbread dough is a little sticky so this part is necessary.
Roll the dough out so it’s about 1/4″ thick. Then use the gingerbread men and women (or other shaped cookie cutters) and cut out your people.
To remove the dough from the parchment paper, make sure to use a flat edge spatula.
Step 5 – Bake
Now all that’s left to do is bake the cookies and repeat the rolling out process and cutting out with the remaining dough.
I got about 14 gingerbread men cookies, using various sized cookie cutters. You can also double this recipe for more cookies.
Decorating the Gingerbread
Use a simple “royal icing” recipe or use a coconut sugar icing if you’re looking for a paleo-friendly option.
To make powdered coconut sugar, simply process about 1 1/2 cups of coconut sugar with 1 TBSP tapioca flour until super fine. Then mix with milk or water to make the icing as you would with traditional confectioners sugar. I add one teaspoon liquid at a time and mix really well until I’ve reached the desired consistency – not too thin but not too thick.
Note: You won’t get the white contrast of confectioner’s sugar if you opt for coconut sugar. Here I used organic powdered sugar.
Questions about these Healthy Gingerbread Cookies
- Can I use a different flour like all-purpose or whole grain? With this particular recipe I don’t recommend it. This recipe was developed specifically for almond flour, so please stick with that for best results.
- Can I use coconut oil? Coconut oil holds up differently when baking compared to butter. Even though the dough is chilled prior to baking, I can’t say with 100% confidence using coconut oil here would work the same.
- Do I have to chill the dough? Yes! Chilling the dough will ensure the gingerbread hold their shape. This dough can be chilled up to 2 days in advance, kept in the refrigerator.
Have fun and enjoy these with your loved ones, and Santa, of course.
More Holiday Cookie Recipes
- Eggnog Cookies
- Cranberry Orange Cookies
- Whole Grain Sugar Cookie Cut Outs
- White Chocolate Raspberry Blondies
If you make this recipe, be sure to leave a comment and review on the blog! I love hearing from you, and it helps others learn more about the recipe too! Xx Ashley
- 4 1/2 TBSP vegan butter or ghee, melted
- 2 1/2 TBSP molasses
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups super-fine almond flour
- 1/4 cup tapioca flour
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp all spice
- 1/8 tsp cloves
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1 TBSP + 2 tsp lemon juice, milk or water (or more for desired consistency)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF and line large baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
- Mix together the melted butter with molasses, sugar and vanilla until smooth.
Once the dough has combined, shape into a round disc (for rolling out later) and place on parchment lined cutting board. Chill the dough for at least 1 hour, up to 2 days in the refrigerator.
Now it’s time to roll the dough: placed dough in between two pieces of parchment paper. This gingerbread dough is a little sticky so this part is necessary. Use roller or pastry roller to roll the dough to about 1/4″ thickness. Cut out dough using the gingerbread cookie cutters (or other shaped cookie cutters).
- Using flat edge spatula, quickly (but gently) scoop the gingerbread onto the parchment lined baking sheet, leaving about 2″ space. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Continue rolling and cutting out dough until all the dough has been used. Cool cookies on baking sheet.
- Mix together powdered sugar with lemon juice (or water or milk) until icing is thick enough (but thin enough) to decorate the gingerbread with lines and dots as desired. Allow icing to completely set (at least 30 minutes) before storing.
If the dough seems dry after you’ve used your hands to combine everything really well, add 1/2- 1 tablespoon of milk or water.
paleo friendly icing recipe: to make powdered sugar with coconut sugar, blend about 1 1/2 cups coconut sugar with 1/4 cup tapioca flour or arrowroot starch until extra fine. Mix as usual with liquid until desired consistency. If you find the icing is too thin, simply add a little more powdered sugar until thick enough to decorate lines.
Cookies store best flat as to not mess up icing.