Vegan Sugar Cookies with Hazelnuts
Sugar Cookies
  1. Get ready while your hands are clean and dry. Check coconut oil to make sure it is solid but soft enough to push a table knife through. As needed, refrigerate oil to make it harder or put it in a bowl of warm water to soften. Also get out a cookie sheet that will fit in your refrigerator, rearranging your fridge as necessary. Line that cookie sheet with parchment paper and set out three more sheets of parchment paper. Get out another cookie sheet to bake on. Make sure there is an oven rack in the center position. Get out four dinner plates or waxed paper to protect the dough while you chill it. I use plates to avoid throwing away the waxed paper.
  2. Put coconut oil into a mixing bowl and beat until smooth. Sift in powdered sugar and mix until combined. Add aquafaba, vanilla, and almond extract and beat until combined.
  3. Put the remaining cookie ingredients in the mixing bowl on top of the powdered sugar mixture. Stir the dry ingredients on top with a fork to blend, then mix all ingredients together until cookie dough forms a smooth ball. Do not beat dough longer than you need to or you will get the proverbial tough cookies. If dough remains crumbly, add another tablespoon aquafaba or water.
  4. Divide dough in half and use your clean hands to pat them into flattened disks about two inches thick and six inches across. Put each disk on a dinner plate and cover with another plate. (If you’d rather, wrap them in waxed paper.) Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or for up to a week.
  5. While dough chills, make frosting if you want. Put buttery spread in the same bowl you used to make the dough. No need to wash it if you scraped out it out reasonably well. (No eggs!) Beat buttery spread until fluffy. Sift in powdered sugar and add remaining ingredients. Beat until smooth and fluffy. Taste and add more vanilla or salt as desired. If the frosting is too soft, sift in more powdered sugar. If it is too hard, add more aquafaba or water. If not using the same day, put in a covered container and refrigerate for up to a week.
  6. Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly flour piece of parchment paper or a clean section of counter about the size of a cookie sheet. Put one chilled dough disk in the center of the floured area, lightly dust with flour, and cover with parchment paper if desired for easy rolling.
  7. Roll dough flat so that it is about 1/4 inch thick using a rolling pin or clean wine bottle, working from the center of the dough toward the edges. Cut into shapes using cookie cutters, pastry cutters, or a table knife. Use a thin metal spatula to lift cut-out cookies onto the parchment lined cookie sheet, leaving some room between cookies as shown. When the cookie sheet is full, refrigerate it for at least 8 minutes.
  8. Now the cookie-making cycle is ready to take off. Repeat with each batch: cut, chill, bake, and cool. While the first sheet of cookies chills, cut on the next set of cookies and arrange them on a sheet of parchment paper. After the first sheet has chilled, take those cookies out of the refrigerator. Slide the parchment paper with the chilled cookies onto the baking cookie sheet and pop it in the oven. Bake for 8 minutes, until the cookies just start to brown. Slide the freshly cut cookies onto the cold cookie sheet, refrigerate them, and start cutting out another batch of cookies. Put the baked cookies on wire racks to cool and use the parchment paper they were on for the cookies you just cut out.
  9. When cookies are cool, spread with frosting and decorate as desired. Store in air-tight containers with layers of decorated cookies separated with waxed paper for up to a week. Freeze cookies for up to two weeks, frosted or unfrosted.
Recipe Notes
  • If you want round cookies fast, in step 4 roll cookies into four logs about an inch and a half across instead of two disks. Wrap in waxed paper and chill, then slice into circles that are a half inch thick and bake. No need for the second chilling. Sprinkle with colored sugar before baking if you want or enjoy unadorned. You can of course frost and decorate as fancy ornaments or miniature planets.
  • Make-ahead options for your convenience or a party. Make the dough up through step 4 and refrigerate it for up to a week. Make the frosting and refrigerate it for up a week too. Now you can bake cookies quickly before a party. You can also show up at someone’s house or a community kitchen with dough, frosting, cookie cutters, and decorations for a fun session of cookie making.
  • Substitutions:
    • Replace the hazelnut flour with almond flour or just more white whole wheat flour.
    • If you can’t find white whole wheat flour, use half all-purpose flour and half whole wheat flour.
    • For cookies don’t use coconut oil and taste more buttery, use  224 grams of Earth Balance buttery products instead. That’s 1 1/4 cup of whipped organic buttery spread or 1 cup of the soy-free buttery baking stick.  For easy handling of the cut-out cookies, refrigerate them for five minutes before arranging the shapes on the baking sheet. This is the version that my Taster likes best and that wowed my book club at our holiday dinner.
Nutrition Facts
Vegan Sugar Cookies with Hazelnuts
Amount Per Serving
Calories 173 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 7g 11%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.2g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.5g
Sodium 44mg 2%
Potassium 18mg 1%
Total Carbohydrates 26g 9%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Sugars 17g
Protein 2g 4%
Vitamin C 0.2%
Calcium 1%
Iron 4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.