Fluffy 1-Bowl Sugar Cookies (Vegan + GF)

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Stack of multi-colored Vegan Gluten-free Sugar Cookies

We’ve officially reached the month of December and I have one thing on the brain: Cookies.

OK, cookies and somehow convincing John to get a real Christmas tree this year. The old fake one is looking real sad.

Send good vibes and tree care tips, please.

Series of photos showing the steps for how to make Vegan Gluten Free Sugar Cookie dough

You may remember I made vegan gluten free cookies last year. However, with yet another year of recipe development under my belt, I’ve learned a lot since then and have tried new techniques and gluten free flour blends. The result? I’ve cracked the code on perhaps the most fluffy, perfect gluten free vegan sugar cookies on the planet.

Big claims, I know. But kinda true.

Plus, this recipe is simple requiring just 1 bowl and less than 45 minutes start to finish. Ready to see this wizardly? Onward.

Circle, star, candy cane, and Christmas tree sugar cookie cut outs on a plate

The base of these cookies is vegan butter, organic cane sugar and vanilla extract. For the egg, I went with aquafaba – the liquid left behind in a can of cooked chickpeas, which makes a lovely egg substitute in most vegan baking and whips up like egg whites! Magic, I know.

I hope to do a post on aquafaba soon as I get a lot of questions about it and recipe requests, so stay tuned! But if you follow my instructions below you’ll be fine.

Next comes my special blend of GF flours:

Almond flour (which creates a perfect crumbly texture)
Cornstarch (which puffs them up and provides shape + structure)
And my DIY Gluten Free Flour Blend (for extra binding)

Frosted Vegan Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies on a white plate

The batter only chills for 15 minutes while the oven preheats, during which time you can make your frosting. These little dudes are also quite delicious plain if you’d rather keep things simple.

And may I add that these cookies are undetectably vegan and gluten free and are eerily reminiscent of Lofthouse sugar cookies!? Yeah, I know. Exciting stuff. Give them a try for yourself and let me know how it goes.

If you try this recipe, let us know by leaving a comment, rating it, and (forever and always) tagging a photo #minimalistbaker on Instagram so we can see. Cheers and happy baking, friends!

Stack of delicious Vegan Gluten Free Sugar Cookies on a plate

Fluffy 1-Bowl Sugar Cookies (Vegan + GF)

Fluffy, perfectly sweet sugar cookies made in 1 bowl! Roll out and cut into shapes or roll into easy circles. Entirely vegan and gluten-free, and perfect for the holidays and beyond!
Author Minimalist Baker
Stack of Vegan Gluten-Free Sugar Cookies
4.87 from 91 votes
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 37 minutes
Servings 24 (cookies)
Course Dessert
Cuisine Gluten-Free, Vegan
Freezer Friendly 1 month
Does it keep? 3-4 Days



  • 1/2 cup softened vegan butter* (1/2 cup = 1 stick // or dairy butter if not vegan)
  • 2/3 cup organic cane sugar*
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3 Tbsp aquafaba (chickpea brine – the liquid left behind in a can of cooked chickpeas // or sub 1/4 cup (50 g) pumpkin purée* // amount as original recipe is written)
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 2/3 cups gluten-free flour blend*
  • 2/3 cup almond flour (not almond meal – the texture and flavor is different)
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch or arrowroot
  • 1 Tbsp unsweetened almond milk

FROSTING optional


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (176 C) and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • Add softened vegan butter (make sure it’s softened – not melted or cold) to a large mixing bowl and beat or whisk until creamy and smooth – about 1 minute.
  • Add sugar and mix on medium speed until fluffy and light – about 1 minute. Then add chickpea brine (or other egg substitute*) and vanilla and mix again, scraping down sides as needed.
  • Add baking powder and sea salt and blend or whisk to combine. Then add gluten-free flour blend, almond flour, and cornstarch and mix on low until the ingredients are combined. I had to switch to a wooden spoon toward the end. Add almond milk and stir once more.
  • The dough should be thick, moldable and a little difficult to mix at this point (see photo). If too soft, continue adding a mixture of gluten-free flour blend, almond flour, and cornstarch until a thick, moldable dough is formed. If too thick, thin with a bit more almond milk.
  • Transfer dough to the refrigerator and chill for 15 minutes*. Once chilled, use a cookie scooper (I like this one) or a Tablespoon to measure out 1 1/2 Tbsp amounts of dough and gently roll into balls – the dough will still be soft so be gentle. Arrange on the parchment-lined baking sheets with 1 inch room between each and press down gently with the palm of your hand to smash slightly.
  • Alternatively, roll out the dough on a well-floured surface until about 1/4-inch thick and dip cookie cutters in gluten-free flour before pressing into the dough. Use a floured spatula to gently scoop onto baking sheets. This recipe works well with both cut outs and traditional circles!
  • Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes or until the cookies appear fluffy and the edges are slightly beginning to dry out. Let cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a plate to cool completely.
  • To make frosting (optional), add softened vegan butter to a mixing bowl and whisk or beat until soft and fluffy – about 1 minute. Then sift in powdered sugar in small amounts and mix. Around the 1-cup mark, add the vanilla extract and whisk. Continue adding powdered sugar until you have spreadable frosting (I used about 2 cups powdered sugar // amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). If you prefer a thinner frosting, add a little almond milk to thin. If it becomes too thin, add more powdered sugar. If it becomes too thick, add more almond milk. Add natural food coloring at this time (optional).
  • Frost cookies or leave plain! I decorated with some naturally-dyed sugar sprinkles like these. Organic cane sugar as a base should ensure vegan friendliness.
  • Storage: Once cooled, store leftover cookies covered at room temperature for 3-4 days or in the freezer up to 1 month.



*I tested this recipe with coconut oil and found it didn’t work for me. Therefore, I’d highly recommend sticking with vegan butter.
*I tested Miyokos vegan butter and Earth Balance soy-free buttery sticks. Both work, but I found Earth Balance gives them a slightly better texture.
*If you’d like to cut back on sugar, sub 1/3 cup of the sugar with 1 packet (~1/4 tsp) stevia extract- I like Trader Joe’s brand (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). This will make the cookies softer, so you may need to add more gluten-free flour, almond flour, and/or cornstarch to help thicken the dough.
*The chickpea brine substitutes an egg in this recipe. In its place, you can also try subbing 1/4 cup pumpkin puree, 1 egg replacer, or 1 small chicken egg if not vegan (amounts as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). I haven’t tested it with a flax egg or any of the other substitutes and can’t guarantee the results.
*You can substitute an equal amount of our NEW 1:1 gluten-free flour blend for the gluten-free flour blend in this recipe.
*If not gluten-free, sub the almond flour and gluten-free flour blend with unbleached all-purpose flour, but keep the cornstarch – it helps them puff up.
*You can make the cookie dough ahead of time and refrigerate up to 2-3 days in advance. Simply let the dough rest at room temperature for 30 minutes before scooping and baking. It should be soft and moldable.
*Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated without frosting.

Nutrition (1 of 24 servings)

Serving: 1 cookies Calories: 122 Carbohydrates: 17 g Protein: 1.3 g Fat: 5.6 g Saturated Fat: 2.6 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 48 mg Fiber: 0.8 g Sugar: 5.8 g

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  1. Jessi says

    Question–do these keep well for a couple of days? I am considering making them for a bake sale so the GF/DF kids get a treat, too, but I would need to make them a day or two before.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jessi, they keep okay, but are best when fresh! A day before might be okay though. Another option would be to make the cookie dough in advance and refrigerate for 2-3 days and bake the cookies day of, if that’s possible! If making ahead, let the dough rest at room temperature for 30 minutes before scooping and baking. Hope that helps!

  2. Wendy says

    I made this and was so thrilled to find a GF vegan recipe for traditional sugar cookies. But they turned out dry, crumbly and not good. I noticed you did not say to whip the aquafaba here but I did, since it’s whipped in your other recipes. Was it not actually meant to be whipped? Just trying to troubleshoot why they didn’t turn out.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so sorry they turned out dry, Wendy! There’s no need to whip the aquafaba for this recipe – just add 3 Tbsp chickpea brine in step 3. If you used 3 Tbsp whipped aquafaba (measured after whipping), then that would cause them to be dry. If that’s not the issue, then we wonder what gluten-free flour blend you were using? Some are more drying than others!

  3. Janelle says

    I have been making these cookies every year for Christmas for years. They are my sister’s favorite and our tradition now 😊

  4. Ann says

    I made these last night and they turned out fantastic! I used hazelnut flour and ripple milk due to an almond allergy. I had to use 3T of milk to get the dough the right consistency, and then I baked them for 7 minutes.

    This recipe works 100 times better than subbing gf flour in the recipe I grew up with so I’m thrilled and grateful! I agree with other comments that these are less sweet, so even though I prefer to just top my sugar cookies with sprinkles, I will make frosting for these (and try increasing the sugar next time). Thank you!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Kelly, they will be less fluffy and more like a cut-out sugar cookie. Check out this recipe for guidance (there’s a gluten-free option in the notes).

  5. Mari Schimmer says

    Made these last weekend for our godson whose Pa is gluten-free. I used puréed pumpkin for the “egg” and I’m relieved to report that these were so easy to roll and cut out! they passed the test with both our 2 and a half year old god son and his Pa, who said sugar cookies are something he’s missed since going gf. Thank you for providing easy, reliable recipes so that gluten free humans can feel celebrated!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you and your family enjoyed them, Mari. Thanks so much for the lovely review! xo

  6. Stacy says

    Made these using a combination of the gluten free blend recipe on your blog, your new gluten free blend and Bobs red mill. Used aquafaba and miyokos butter, absolutely incredible! Great texture and super tasty! Highly recommend :)

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! Thanks so much for the great review and for sharing your modifications, Stacy. We’re so glad you enjoyed!

  7. Allison says

    I just made two batches for a Christmas cookie party and they turned out really well! I used Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 GF flour and arrowroot plus almond flour. In response to other comments that the cookies aren’t very sweet, I upped the sugar to a full 1c. I used oat milk (bc that was what was in the fridge) and found that I needed about 3 Tbsp to get the dough to bind rather than crumbling. Maybe the BRM flour absorbs differently than other blends? The cookies turned out very well, but I burnt a couple trays with 9 minutes at 350 – so I’d suggest erring on the side of caution!

  8. Cassie says

    So far all of your recipes have been a huge hit in our house- including little guys! Most recently the V/GF Pumpkin Chocolate Chip cookies have been on repeat :). We are newly Dairy Free and GF, so I am still learning… You mentioned that Organic Powdered Sugar ensures that it will be vegan. Is it by nature also gluten free?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Cassie! Thank you for the kind words and support! Yes organic powdered sugar should naturally be gluten-free.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Casey! We haven’t tried these without almond flour and can’t guarantee results, however you could try oat flour or slightly more gluten-free blend. We suggest noting the texture of the dough in the photos and trying to replicate it!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi there, we haven’t tried this recipe using only almond flour and we suspect the texture would be more crumbly and oily, and not very fluffy. Hope this helps!

  9. Elaine says

    I made this recipe last year for the Christmas time and the whole family gobbled it up including my super picky husband. I didn’t make the frosting then because it was delicious on its own. I got some halloween/fall cookie cutters and wanted to make them again before the holiday season but I had a question about the frosting. Could you use coconut oil in the frosting recipe (only) instead of the vegan butter?


    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      We’re so glad you and your family enjoyed them, Elaine. Thanks so much for the lovely review! We haven’t tested the frosting with just coconut oil and we’re not sure if it would work, but let us know if you try it!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Bella, that should work! Let us know what you think when you give the cookies a try!

  10. Heather says

    I made these exactly as the recipe outlined with one substitution (used a gluten free flour from Trader Joe’s rather than creating the recommended mix, as I’m baking these for a special occasion and don’t normally use gluten free ingredients) and they turned out… bitter? They are a bit dense and then have a bitter, almost sour aftertaste. I’m not sure where I went wrong! Any tips?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Heather! So sorry to hear this! We don’t have much experience with the trader joe’s gluten free flour, but we have had experiences with brown rice flour contributing an unfortunate bitter taste to baked goods. It’s possible that the combination of flours they use creates a more dense result as well.. we’d suggest using the Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 gluten free flour, if you try another store-bought blend!

  11. Jessica Paul says

    I made these to the exact measurements. They turned out so beautifully soft and melt in your mouth deliciousness😍 Im keeping this recipe as my go to sugar cookie recipe. You can do awesome designs based on how mold-like they are. You do need to be very gentle with them but man do they have this layer of softness. Its a dream cookie lol. Thank you for creating this to share!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! So glad you enjoyed these cookies, Jessica. Thanks so much for the wonderful review!

  12. Lori Thomas says

    These were pretty easy to make and came out sooo delish. I’m not a baker and I was able to make the cookies and the frosting without a machine mixer, just by hand. Sooo good! Thank u!

  13. Jan says

    My granddaughter is allergic to egg, wheat, tree nuts, peanuts, coconut and dairy. I would love to make these cookies for her. Can you suggest a substitute for the almond flour?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jan! We’d suggest trying either try a 1/2 and 1/2 mixture of more cornstarch and some potato starch, OR another “nut” flour. Many readers have had success with tigernut flour. They will work using all GF flour, but they will be slightly more dense and crumbly! Let us know how it goes!

  14. Cedella Janczak says

    The best sugar cookies hands down!! I made them with all purpose flour (used 1 cup & cut the recipe in half). They taste like normal dairy full sugar cookies, I couldn’t tell a difference! The one issue I have was the frosting turned out wacky. I used flax milk and it seemed that the butter (smart balance) separated from the sugar. It still tasted good, but looked a little odd!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      So glad you enjoyed these cookies, Cedella! So strange about the frosting, glad it’s still yummy though!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Cedella, we think it would work! Perhaps slightly less all purpose than GF as it tends to be more absorbent. Let us know how it goes!

  15. Adi says

    Hi, I’m excited to make these, but we have all sorts of allergies. Was wondering if it could be made with no almond flour and just all GF flour? Oat, almond, and coconut are all allergens for us so not suitable substitutes.

    Thanks in advance! We love your recipes!

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Adi! We’d suggest trying either try a 1/2 and 1/2 mixture of more cornstarch and some potato starch, OR another “nut” flour. Many readers have had success with tigernut flour. They will work with all GF flour, but they will be slightly more dense and crumbly! Let us know how it goes!

  16. Vanessa says

    This recipe was spot on! Aquafaba for eggs?? Amazing! They were the perfect texture and the taste was unbelievable. The frosting was really tasty too! No one believed me when I said they were vegan. I was incredibly skeptical at first when collecting the ingredients. A skeptic no more! Thanks MB! I’ve already shared the recipe with others!

  17. Valerie Everhart Hernandez says

    I am interested in making these in advance for a family member who lives out of town. Would it be possible to make the dough, shape into balls, and freeze until ready to bake?

  18. Sarah says

    Another win for minimalist baker! These cookies are so good! You’d honestly never know they’re GF or vegan.
    I used Nutiva shortening, as I didn’t have vegan butter on hand. Subbed oat milk for almond milk for the same reason.
    I also added a pinch of lemon zest to the dough, but I think they would’ve been just as good without.
    These cookies are toddler and “non-dessert loving” husband approved.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Woohoo! We’re so glad you and your family enjoy them, Sarah. Thank you so much for sharing!

  19. Cami says

    You are my hero honestly. Never thought I’d have sugar cookies again after having to cut out dairy and gluten. These are seriously so easy. I’ve tried rolling them out and cutting, which I’ve decided works a lot better after refrigerating for about an hour. I also will make balls and then smush them down a bit so they’re super fluffy.

    I really like them with frosting and my partner really likes them without. I made alien shaped ones for a friend who is very into aliens (and put green frosting on them!). We use the bob’s redmill 1:1 and cornstarch. We’ve never added extra plant milk, though 1 time I added more flour when it seemed too wet.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Aw, so kind, Cami! We’re so glad you both enjoyed them. Thank you for sharing! xo

  20. Laura says

    I made these cookies for my son’s graduation party, and they were the HIT of the party! I had so many incredible compliments, even from my mother-in-law, and she is a tough critic. No one could believe they were gluten and mostly dairy free. Proof that vegan (or almost vegan) and gluten free is yummy! I will definitely make these again for the next special occasion… so delish! I did use a real fresh egg from one of my friend’s chickens, and the Miyokos vegan butter.

  21. Gina says

    These cookies are amazing and so so easy! I usually bake vegan, and originally made these for a cookie swap with some GF family members. I have now made the recipe a 2nd time and they are just as good. Fluffy, soft like a lightly sugary pillow in your mouth. The recipe calls for frosting, but I haven’t made any either time I baked. The perfect soft puffy cookie! ❤️

  22. Jacqueline Sarkisian says

    Quick question! I want to insure that I account for all possible allergens, would oat flour be an appropriate substitute for almond flour?

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerSupport @ Minimalist Baker says

      Hi Jacqueline, oat flour is more dry, while almond flour adds moisture. If using oat flour, we’d suggest starting with less. Hope that helps!

      • Amanda says

        The recipe says it yields 24 cookies but is there a rough estimate for what size these might be? I’m trying to make 3-4 inch cookies and I am trying to figure out if I should double the recipe amounts

  23. Olivia Camargo says

    I am looking forward to making this recipe but I am wondering, would I be able to use bob’s red mill egg replacer instead of the aquafaba?