These soft-baked vegan snickerdoodles are thick and fluffy! I use applesauce to cut down on the butter needed and to help the cookies stay soft instead of becoming crispy. I reduced the amount of sugar needed, making them still sweet, but not super sweet.
If you’re new here, most of my recipes are plant-based and oil-free. These dairy-free snickerdoodles, however, do use vegan butter as a treat, making them special for the holidays. I wanted a chewy holiday sweet treat, but quite frankly I’m not a fan of super sweet and really buttery desserts anymore.
While I try to avoid loads of processed foods, oil and eat mostly whole food that’s plant-based; I just don’t crave super sickeningly sweet desserts anymore (but still wanted a little something special). Hence the reduced fat and reduced sugar vegan snickerdoodle. They can even be made with whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose.
How to Make Vegan Snickerdoodle Cookies
Preheat the oven to 350˚ F (180˚C) and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Mix one tablespoon of ground flaxseed with 2 ½ tablespoons of water and let it sit and gel while you prep the rest of the ingredients (about 10 minutes).
Mix the sugar and cinnamon for the topping together in a small bowl. Whisk the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, ground cinnamon, and salt together in a medium bowl, then set aside.
In a large bowl, cream the butter and the sugar together until it's combined and creamy. Use a hand mixer or a stand mixer.
Then add the unsweetened applesauce, flax egg, and vanilla extract to the butter and blend.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and combine.
I briefly use the hand mixer to incorporate the wet and dry ingredients, then finish combining by using a silicone spatula, scraping around the bowl. The dough should be thick and easy to form a ball.
Use a cookie scoop or an overflowing tablespoon to form about 1 ½ tablespoon dough balls and roll them in the sugar/cinnamon mixture to coat.
Spread the cookies 2 inches apart on a parchment paper or silicone mat-lined baking tray. Lightly press them down (flattening them a little bit), because they don't spread too much while baking. Check on the cookies at around 12 minutes.
They will take about 12-15 minutes to bake depending on your oven. Slightly under baking them produces a soft cookie, so they don’t brown much or get crispy. To check if the cookies are done, gently press the top of a cookie with your finger, if the top springs back the cookies are done. If it leaves a fingerprint, bake longer.
Let the cookies cool for about 10 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack, they'll be soft but they firm up while cooling.
Tips for Baking Snickerdoodles (Vegan)
- Use ground flaxseed not whole flaxseed
- Don't leave out the cream of tartar, it gives the cookies that traditional tangy taste from snickerdoodles. It also reacts with the baking soda for the cookies to rise.
- Whole-wheat flour gives a nice nutty flavor to baked goods and can be used instead of all purpose flour.
- The butter should be softened not melted.
- A lot of oven temperatures are inaccurate. For years I've used just an inexpensive stainless steel instant read oven thermometer to remedy this issue.
I used Country Crock dairy-free plant butter when testing this recipe. Since all dairy-free butter isn’t the same, here are some tips to troubleshoot the recipe if the texture is off.
- If the cookie dough is too dry and crumbly, add a tablespoon or two of dairy-free milk. If the dough is too wet, add a tablespoon of flour.
- Or if the dough is too sticky to roll, it can be refrigerated to firm up for 30 minutes to an hour.
I made these eggless snickerdoodle cookies for a holiday party and they were a hit, I hope you enjoy them too!
Originally published on December 21, 2020, updated on December 11, 2021.Print
Soft and chewy vegan snickerdoodles with a sugar-cinnamon coating.
- flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flax seed+ 2 ½ tablespoon water)
- 1 ½ cup (190 g) all-purpose or whole wheat flour (spooned and leveled)
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup (58 g) vegan butter (softened)
- ½ cup (100 g) raw cane sugar
- ¼ cup (61 g) unsweetened applesauce
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- Preheat: the oven to 350˚ F (180˚C) and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
- Make a flax egg: Mix one tablespoon of ground flaxseed with 2 ½ tablespoons of water and let it sit and gel while you prep the rest of the ingredients (about 10 minutes).
- Topping: Mix the sugar and cinnamon for the topping together in a small bowl.
- Dry ingredients: Whisk the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, ground cinnamon, and salt together in a medium bowl, then set aside.
- Wet ingredients: In a large bowl using a stand mixer or a hand mixer, cream the butter and the sugar together until it's combined and creamy. Then mix in the applesauce, flax egg, and vanilla extract into the butter.
- Combine: Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix to combine, I briefly use the hand mixer to incorporate the wet and dry ingredients, then finish combining by using a silicone spatula, scraping around the bowl. The dough should be thick and easy to form a ball.
- Roll: Form cookie dough into balls, about 1 ½ tablespoon and roll them in the sugar/cinnamon mixture to coat.
- Bake: Spread the cookies 2 inches apart on the prepared baking tray, lightly pressing down the balls to flatten them out because they don't spread much, then bake for 12-15 minutes.
- Cool: Let the cookies cool for about 10 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack, they'll be soft and firm up while cooling.
- Storage: Store in an airtight container at room temperature for about 5 days.
Spoon the flour out of the bag and into the measuring cup, then level off with the back of a knife. Flour can settle and compact while in storage, scooping it out ensures the cup of flour is not too tightly packed. Too much flour in the recipe can result in dry cookies.
The cookies can also be flattened after baking while they are still warm, creating pretty little cracks from the cinnamon coating cracking. Baking them in mounds may take a couple more minutes to bake (closer to the 15-minute mark).
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Dessert
- Method: oven
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: vegan cookies, dairy free snickerdoodles