Easy, homemade cut-out vegan gluten-free sugar cookies you can make for Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Easter, Halloween…they’re perfect for ANY occasion! This recipe can be made soft or crispy, it’s up to you. And yes, they’re 100% egg-free, dairy-free, nut-free, gf, and delicious! Decorate with buttercream frosting or a simple vegan icing that hardens, recipes for both are included.
Author: Gwen Leron
1 ½cups + 2 tablespoons (241g)gluten free flour**see important note about flour below**
In a medium bowl, add the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt. Whisk to combine and set aside.
In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until blended and creamy, about 3 minutes. Stop to scrape down the sides of your bowl when needed. Add milk and vanilla extract, blend again.
Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix on low speed with your electric mixer or with a wooden spoon until a soft, sticky dough has formed. Form the dough into a ball.
Place the dough ball on a piece of plastic wrap and pat down into a disk. Wrap the dough disk and place in the refrigerator to chill for at least 3 hours.
Remove from fridge.
Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
Line cookie sheet(s) with parchment paper.
Dust a piece of parchment paper with a little gluten free flour and place the chilled dough on top of the flour. Place another piece of parchment paper on top of the dough and using a rolling pin, roll dough out until it is ¼-inch thick.
Cut out shapes and place them on the prepared baking sheets, leaving at least 1-inch of space between the cookies.
Gather dough scraps and repeat rolling and cutting until all of the dough has been used.
If using, sprinkle the cookies with the sanding sugar.
Bake cookies. For softer cookies, bake for 11-12 minutes, for crisp cookies, bake for 13 minutes.
Remove from oven and let cookies cool on the cookie sheet for 1-2 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.
Fully cool before decorating.
To Make Icing
Add all icing ingredients to a small mixing bowl and mix together until smooth. If the icing is too thick, add more milk, 1/4 teaspoon at a time.
Add colour gel, if desired.
Fill a piping bag with the icing and using a small tip, decorate cookies and top with sprinkles, if desired.
To Make Buttercream
Add butter and salt to mixing bowl and mix with an electric mixer for 2 minutes until soft and creamy.
Gradually add the powdered sugar and mix on low speed. Scrape down the sides of your bowl when needed.
Add vanilla and slowly add milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, continuing to mix. Add additional teaspoons, if needed, until the desired consistency is met. Scrape down the sides of your bowl when needed.
Turn mixer up to medium speed and mix until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Stop occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Mix for a couple more minutes if you want a creamier, fluffier frosting.
If using, add your gel food colour at this point, mixing after each addition until you get to the colour you like.
Decorate cookies and top with sprinkles, if desired.
Please read all of the information and FAQ info above, as well as the notes below before making this recipe.
This recipe makes anywhere from 18-26 cookies, it all depends on the cookie cutter sizes you use. When I use a 3-inch circle cutter, I get 18 cookies, when I use a variety of cutters that are different shapes and sizes, I get anywhere from 20 - 26. Recipe can be doubled, if needed. If doubling, separate the dough into two equal pieces and wrap them separately before chilling.
It’s important to know that different gluten-free flour blends use different ingredients and ratios, so results may vary if you substitute. I have never used any other brand of gf flour to make this recipe other than Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1 to 1 Baking Flour (Amazon link) in the blue package, NOT the red package, so please know that your results may not be the same as mine if you substitute with another gluten-free flour blend. The weight listed above is for this specific brand of flour.
If the gluten-free flour blend you are using does not contain xanthan gum, add 3/4 teaspoon to the dry ingredients.
This recipe will NOT work with coconut flour or any other single gluten-free flour, it must be a blend.
Make sure that your butter is slightly softened before starting, NOT melted or TOO soft. To make sure your butter is at the ideal softness, lightly press your finger into it. If it leaves a shallow indent, your butter is at the perfect temperature. If your finger sinks into the butter with barely any effort, your butter is too soft. Refrigerate it until it has firmed up and then test it again.
If your cookie dough gets too warm while rolling and cutting, place it back in the refrigerator to cool down for about 15 minutes.
If you're using smaller cookie cutters, those cookies will require less baking time than larger cookies. Keep similar sized cookies on the same baking sheets so they can be pulled out at the same time.
If you will be adding colour to your icing or buttercream, gel food colours are recommended since the colours are more vibrant and water-based food colour will thin out your icing and buttercream.
Feel free to experiment with different extracts to flavour your cookies differently. You can either omit the vanilla extract and use a different one, or you can halve the amount of vanilla and add another one. Some ideas: mint, almond, orange, lemon, coconut.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in a cool, dry spot for up to 5 days.
Freezing Baked Cookies: Freeze the cookies in single layers in a freezer bag or airtight container, with parchment paper separating each layer, for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator or at room temperature and when you’re ready to serve, just place them on a plate, bring them to room temperature, and enjoy.
To freeze the cookie dough for baking later: Wrap the cookie dough tightly and place it in an airtight freezer-safe bag or container and freeze for up to 2 months. When you’re ready to bake them, remove from the freezer and thaw overnight in the refrigerator. When ready, start back at step 5. If the dough is a little hard to roll out, let it sit at room temperature for 10 minutes.
Dough can be made in advance and kept in the refrigerator, tightly wrapped, for up to 3 days.
Nutrition info is based on 1 of 18 x 3-inch circle cookies cut 1/4" thick without sanding sugar, icing, buttercream, or sprinkles and using the recipe as it is written and is only to be used as a rough guide. Click to learn how nutrition info is calculated on this website.