These healthy Gingerbread Cookies are just as delicious as the traditional version, only they are made with gluten-free almond flour. They are so fun to decorate!
Why You’ll Love Them
They taste amazing. These cookies have the perfect balance of sweet and spicy gingerbread flavors. You can top them with any icing you love, or just roll them in a little coconut sugar for an easy holiday cookie.
They’re allergy friendly. These cookies are naturally gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, and vegan. If you have friends or family members following a grain-free or Paleo diet, they will love them, too!
They’re easy to make. All you need is 1 bowl and a few minutes to stir the dough together. For drop cookies, you can cook them right away, or let the dough chill for easier cut-out cookies.
They’re nourishing. Made with almond flour (which is simply ground almonds), these healthy cookies will leave you feeling more satisfied than the kind made with white flour and sugar.
Ingredients You’ll Need
What’s in healthy gingerbread cookies?
- Blanched almond flour
- Arrowroot starch
- Ground ginger
- Ground cinnamon
- Ground cloves (optional)
- Maple syrup
- Coconut oil
The arrowroot starch in this recipe acts as an egg substitute, and it also lends a more flour-like texture to the cookies. If you don’t keep arrowroot on hand, you could probably also use corn starch or tapioca starch with similar results.
The most important thing to know about this recipe is that you can tweak the ratios slightly. I’ve been playing with this one for years, and if you prefer less molasses flavor, you can reduce that to just 1 teaspoon, and add an extra 2 teaspoons of maple syrup for a slightly sweeter flavor. (My kids love it this way now that they are getting older and are exposed to more sugar at school.)
How to Make Vegan Gingerbread Cookies
1. Mix the dough.
In a large bowl, combine the almond flour, starch, spices, molasses, maple syrup, coconut oil, baking powder, and salt.
Once the dough has been stirred together, it’s important to chill the mixture so it’s easier to work with for cut-out cookies. You’ll need to chill it in the freezer for at least 30 minutes, or in the fridge for at least 1 hour.
2. Make the cut-outs.
Place a large piece of parchment paper on your work surface, and then set the chilled cookie dough down in the center of the paper.
Cover it with another piece of parchment paper, to help prevent sticking, then use a rolling pin to roll the dough evenly into a flat layer, about a 1/4-inch thick. Use your favorite cookie cutters to cut out fun shapes, then carefully remove the excess dough and transfer the cut-outs to a large parchment lined baking sheet.
Repeat with the remaining dough, rolling out the scraps again to cut-out more cookie shapes. You should get at least 12 cookies from this batch, but it will vary based on the size and shape of your cookie cutters.
Bake the cookies in an oven preheated to 350ºF for 10 to 12 minutes, depending on how crispy you like them. The longer you cook them, the crispier they will be. For a soft center, remove the cookies after just 10 minutes of baking.
Let the cookies cool for at least 10 minutes on the pan, as they will be fragile when they are warm. Once they have firmed up, you can transfer them to a wire rack to finish cooling, if you need to use the pan to bake more cookies.
Once the cookies are cool, you can add any decorations you like! Frost them with a simple powdered sugar frosting (recipe below) or try coconut sugar frosting, for a naturally sweetened option.
Serve the cookies at room temperature, or transfer them to an airtight container and store them in the fridge for up to a week. You can also freeze these cookies for up to 3 months.
Healthy Gingerbread Cookies (Almond Flour)
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large mixing bowl combined the almond flour, starch, ginger, cinnamon, salt, and baking powder and stir to combine. Add in the coconut oil, maple syrup and molasses and stir again until a sticky dough is formed.
- To make cut-out cookies, place the dough in the freezer for 30 minutes to help it firm up, or in the fridge for up to 2 hours. (Alternatively, you can skip the cut-out cookies and just roll the dough into tablespoon-sized balls, roll them in a bit of coconut sugar, and flatten them on the baking sheet with your hand.)
- Once the dough has been chilled, place the dough in the center of a large piece of parchment paper, then place another piece of parchment paper on top. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a flat layer, about 1/4-inch thick. Pull away the excess dough to reveal each shape, and re-roll the dough to create more shapes. You should end up with 12 to 15 cookies, if use use cookie cutters about the size of the palm of your hand.
- Bake the cookies at 350ºF for about 10 minutes for cookies with a soft center, or 12 to 14 minutes for a more crisp cookie. (The edges should brown for a crispier cookie.) Allow them to cool completely on the pan before icing and serving. They will firm up as they cool.
- Leftover cookies can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week in the fridge, or you can freeze them for up to 3 months.
- I’ve made these cookies with almond meal and almond flour, both with good results. If you need a recipe that doesn’t use starch, try my original ginger cookies.
- Melted butter can replace the coconut oil, if you don’t need a dairy-free or vegan cookie.
If you try this recipe, please leave a comment below letting me know how you like it! And if you make a modification, I’d love to hear how that works out for you, too. We can all benefit from your experience!
Reader Feedback: What’s your favorite holiday cookie? These are definitely the winners for me, but my husband’s favorite are these Peanut Butter Balls (or “Buckeyes”).