Am I the only one that’s kind of being blindsided by Christmas this year? I keep thinking I have these magical ‘few more weeks’ that are quickly dwindling to nothing. It is certainly not due to lack of cold weather – which we have had an abundance of since…October. I think it is mainly the fault of Thanksgiving – for falling
on the fourth Thursday of November as it always does so late this year. But – none the less – I am officially caught up. And Christmas is coming.
The past few years I’ve found Christmas to be more and more about slowing down, and being grateful for what we have. Not to sound cliche – but, life has thrown us enough curve balls in the past few years, that sometimes I just need a moment to sit still, take it all in, and realize we’re all okay.
So, to catalyze my Christmas spirit, I decided to make some cut out Christmas cookies. Some vegan, gluten free, refined sugar free Christmas cookies, that is. And I have to say, they turned out lovely. This was the first time I had really baked with coconut sugar, after trying it out in powder-making last week, and I am impressed. While it still, very obviously, sugar, which should not be consumed in any form in large quantities, it was very tasty and seems to have not effected me in the ways that processed sugars do. For these cookies, I used the sugar that I had processed into ‘powdered sugar’. I’m not sure that this step was 100% necessary, but if your sugar is a larger granular, it would probably be best to powder it to give your cookies a smoother texture. With that said, you could use another sugar of your choice in these cookies as well. Coconut sugar tends to be a little less sweet, though, so your cookies may turn out sweeter than mine if you use another sugar. Here is a link to the gluten free flour blend that I use. You can feel free to use your own, but if it does not have xantham gum in it, you need to add 2 teaspoons to the recipe. You can also substitute ‘real’ butter for earth balance, if you prefer. I’ve always been one to take recipes more as mere ‘suggestions’ anyways. Making these cookies the other night did put me in the Christmas spirit. But, admittedly (not to be a total downer) they also made me a smidge bit sad. I’m ready to make Christmas cookies with kids of our own. Sad feelings aside, they are lovely cookies. 🙂I made these cookies in the mixer. You may be able to get away with them not in the mixer – but your butter would need to be really soft, and you’d have to stir a lot. Great arm exercise, though! These cookies could be rolled into any shape, or cut using cookie cutters. If the dough gets too sticky while you’re working with it, pop it back in the fridge for a few minutes and it will firm back up. You could also decorate them with your toppings of choice, but I decided on plain cookies tonight. I hope some Christmas baking gets you into the holiday spirit. 🙂
- 2 cups gluten free flour blend
- 2 teaspoons xantham gum (only if not included in your flour blend)
- 1 + 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 1 cup coconut sugar, processed until powdery
- 1/2 cup butter substitute (I used Earth Balance)
- 1 flax egg (1 tablespoon flax mixed with 3 tablespoons water and let sit for 5 minutes)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Mix your flax egg and set aside
- Mix your dry ingredients together in a medium size bowl (flour blend, xantham gum (if not included in flour blend), baking powder, salt, sugar)
- In your mixer bowl blend the butter, flax egg and vanilla. Mix on medium speed until butter is creamed with the other ingredients.
- Slowly add in the dry mixture, mixing until a soft dough forms
- Place the dough in the fridge for at least 30 minutes (it could be frozen at this step)
- When ready to make cookies: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
- Take the dough out of the fridge and roll it out on a surface lightly dusted with brown rice flour or other gluten free flour. Be careful to not get the dough too thin.
- Cut into shapes, or roll into cookies. If the dough gets too soft, put back in the fridge to let it firm back up. Place the cookies on a greased cookie sheet, or on a silicon mat
- Bake at 375 degrees for 8 - 10 minutes, watching closely. If you used coconut sugar, the cookies will already be a golden brown color - to know the cookies are done, poke them - if they're firm with just a little bit of a give to them, they are done
- Let cool completely before icing or serving. Store in an airtight container
- This dough (Pre baking) freezes so well! Just put it in a baggie, flatten out and zip closed!
I included this recipe in a recipe roundup. You should click here to check out other cool recipes!